Remember that the job interview is a sales situation. You are the product and the interview should be approached in the same way a sales professional prepares for a sales meeting. Here are six steps to take to win the job offer in your sales interview.
Find out as much as possible about the employer
An experienced sales person would make sure to have extensive knowledge of the client. The more prepared you are for the job interview the greater your chance of success. Research the company online, drop by before the interview and pick up company brochures and reports, research the type of sales work involved, find out about their competitors.
Just as a sales professional listens carefully to understand the client's needs, so must the candidate in the sales interview. Active listening is an essential skill in sales, show the interviewer what a good listener you are. Find out what the interviewer is looking for in the right candidate and then demonstrate how you meet those needs and requirements.
Making a connection with the interviewer quickly is essential to success in the sales interview. You need to be able to assess the right approach to the particular interviewer and adjust your own approach accordingly. Mirror the interviewer, both his tone and body language.
Ask the right questions
Your research will help you to prepare the most valuable questions to ask in the interview. Ask questions that further uncover the company and job needs so that you can reinforce why you are the right candidate and sell yourself effectively. Prepare and take with you a number of good questions that you can choose from in the interview situation.
Take evidence of you suitability. Include documents that point to your success - letters from clients, awards, business plans you previously drew up, sales reports etc. Nothing impresses like hard evidence!
Close the sale
It is important to take some control of the interview process at the end. Ask the interviewer if there are any concerns about the suitability of the product - you! Address these concerns. Express enthusiasm and ask for the job. Ask for details of the next step in the process and make sure you stay in the loop. Ask an alternative choice -type closing question such as "Shall I email you or phone you to get feedback?", "Would you prefer I call you in the morning or the afternoon?"
The Sales Interview Guide