Given my company’s explosive growth recently, it occurred to me that I’ve combed through dozens of resumes, and had endless interviews and phone screens. How can so many people fall through the same cracks over and over? In Sales, your success is determined by the impressions you make. You are on an endless interview that demands preparation and the ability to always be “on”. Time and time again, I will meet very talented individuals who come to interview, but haven’t even visited our website. How can you sell our product when you don’t even know what we do?
Anybody looking to get hired needs to make sure they have this list covered when meeting a prospective employer.
1. Make a good first impression
I only have one first impression of you. So do our clients. Are you dressed appropriately? Are there typos on your resume or is everything sharp? Be sure to smile and hold eye contact. If you’re confident, I’ll assume there’s a reason why.
2. Show me you’re interested in this industry and company.
The best candidates are the ones who have an understanding of the industry they’re looking into. They’ve read up on the company, it’s current situation, major competitors, and recent news. They know the company’s major products, clients, and initiatives. The best candidates NEVER over prepare for this part of the screening process.
3. Be Interested in Me.
I have a problem that needs to be solved and a role that needs to be filled. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve met candidates who don’t care about my problem at all. They talk about how great they are, but don’t bother to find out what the exact situation is at the company they are applying for. This is where SPIN selling comes in handy. You need to figure out the exact situation at the company you’re at. Ask questions like why do you need this role filled? What is the exact issue you’re trying to solve? What are the implications of these problems not being filled? What kind of person are you looking for? These questions will set you up when you start to explain yourself.
4. Have a story.
Having a story is key in sales. It’s also a very important piece of getting hired. A good story will help you cut through the clutter and get remembered. A story helps answer the question of why this new job opportunity solves the next piece of your puzzle and helps humanize you. One of my colleagues interviewed with me and told me his story about moving to Seattle in the 80’s to start a rock band. He gave my company importance and told me why he was interested in the company and the role. He told me why it was the next piece of his puzzle.
5. Tell me why you would be the BEST fit for the role.
Don’t tell my why you would be good, tell me why you’d be the best bet. Sell me on the fact that I should choose you over other candidates. What do you bring to our organization that others can’t match? Are you inexperienced and are looking to grow into a role? Tell me why that’s more beneficial to me then hiring someone with more experience. Don’t only tell me about your past experience, but tell me how that helps ME.