30 Interview Questions For Hiring A Salesperson

  • Honest and likable – they don’t fake it with clients
  • They know how to establish relationships and it starts the minute they walk into an office or pick up the phone. They are outgoing.  They do research on prospects. They try to connect with everyone they meet, including the administrative staff.  As a salesperson, you need to understand that EVERYONE you talk to in an organization has the potential to kill your sale.
  • The best sales people walk the line between persistence and annoyance. They cannot be afraid to ask for the client to sign the contract.
  • Great sales people are high-energy doers, NOT slow-motion procrastinators.

Where to place find Salespeople

  • Trade schools
  • Employment websites
  • Your own website
  • Career expos/Job Fairs
  • College Employment Placement Offices
  • Community Networking

Salesperson Interview Testing Ideas

  • Test candidates out by having them go to another phone and read from a sales script to you.
  • Have them leave a message on an answering machine so you can play it back to hear how messages sound.
  • Give them a writing test. How they write is how they speak.
  • Read a one minute company bio and then ask five questions about the information you just provided.

30 Interview Questions for Salespeople

  1. Tell me about your last three days at work– beginning to end.
  2. How many first appointments do you have each week?
  3. What do you like and dislike about the sales process and why?
  4. What do you like and dislike about the products or services you’re selling now and why?
  5. What attracts you to this industry?
  6. What are your long-term professional goals?
  7. What do you do personally for your professional development?
  8. What are your favorite selling books?
  9. What type of sales cycle is most rewarding to you? A long cycle for a big-ticket item or a series of smaller, more frequent sales.
  10. As sales professional, what do you see as your primary and secondary roles within a company?
  11. In your current position, how much time would you say you spend directly with prospects and customers throughout the sales day and what specifically do you do with them?
  12. Describe a situation with a client or prospect where you made a mistake. How did you handle the error?
  13. Describe a couple of instances, big or small, where you took a different tack in achieving an objective than was the company standard?
  14. Describe a time where a creative approach to meeting an objective didn’t work and what you did next?
  15. What do you think are the most important skills in succeeding in sales?
  16. What are your top three open-ended questions for initial sales calls?
  17. In your current sales environment, describe the process you go through to qualify your prospects?
  18. What is the largest group you’ve presented to (externally/ internally)?
  19. How do you organize a presentation?
  20. What do you like and dislike about presentations and why?
  21. What do you see as the key issues in negotiating?
  22. What do you see as the key skills in closing?
  23. How would your present prospects and customers describe you as their sales representative?
  24. Describe a time your company did not deliver on its product or service and how you responded?
  25. Describe one or two of the most difficult challenges and/ or rejections you’ve faced in the past and how you responded?
  26. How many rejections do you take in a typical week?
  27. What would you say your one or two biggest failures or mistakes were? What did you learn from them?
  28. What are some of the challenges you see that are facing this industry?
  29. How would those with whom you work now, across all areas of the company, describe you and the work you do?
  30. Describe a time you led a group of people, the primary challenges you faced and how you handled them?