The best sales managers have more than average drive; they enjoy working in a highly competitive environment and having to meet or exceed established sales goals. Of course, they are also good communicators who can easily connect with prospects and turn them into long-term customers. If your company has an outstanding team of sales managers that deliver, it will be poised for short- and long-term success. So, how do you go about finding the right sales manager for your business – that rare individual who can help drive revenue and improve your bottom-line? There are no set rules for interviewing prospects, but these five questions will assist you in determining who is the right sales manager for the job.
1. What do you know about our company?
A sales manager who is serious about your job opening will take the time to learn about your company before the interview takes place. Viewing your company’s website and various social networks is a great way for prospects to learn more about your company’s brand and the products or services you offer. If a prospect knows nothing about your business, or its industry for that matter, consider this a red flag. You want a sales manager who fully prepares for your interview and has an understanding of what your company is all about. This is a sign of commitment and forward-thinking, two traits of successful sales managers.
2. How do you define “success” for your career?
This is a question that will result in a wide variety of answers. Some sales managers define success as making a lot of money, while others view it as working at a company that has a great corporate culture and positive work environment. Obviously, you will want to hear an answer like this: “I view success as meeting my sales goals each month because it helps the company scale and helps me maintain a good income.” You might also hear “success” being defined in other ways, such as “I closed a very difficult deal after many months of hard work,” or “I was able to land a new account that was with a competitor of ours for five years.” Remember who gives you the most interesting and compelling answers to this question, because this person might stand above the rest when it comes time to hire.
3. Describe your perfect work environment.
Sales managers thrive in a fast-paced and team-oriented environment. Traditionally, a sales manager’s compensation is directly tied to how much the sales team makes, so working with highly capable and talented team members allows for greater productivity and a positive work environment. Be wary of prospects who tell you the perfect work environment is one “with a large office and window view,” “work-at-home days,” or “office hours that work around my schedule.” How your sales manager prospects answer this question can determine how well they will fit into your company.
4. What are your strengths?
Every sales manager has their own unique strengths, such as a track record of sales success, the ability to land new business, or the willingness to train and mentor new sales associates. You know exactly what you want in a sales manager, so don’t consider anyone who doesn’t meet your requirements, particularly when it comes to personal strengths. It goes without saying that you want a sales manager who can sell – and sell a lot – but you also want honesty, loyalty, professionalism, and the willingness to work. These are the attributes of a model sales manager… one that can help take your business to the next level.
5. What is one thing you would like to do better?
If you want to find out how your sales manager candidates view themselves and their capabilities, this is the question to ask. Every sales professional has strengths and weaknesses, and being able to recognize the latter is a sign of humility. If your prospects convey things they would like to improve upon, such as their selling techniques or industry-specific knowledge, they are most likely forward-thinking individuals who strive to be their best. Stay clear from prospects who claim they are doing everything perfectly and have no areas that need improvement.
This blog entry was written exclusively for SmartRecruiters.com by Balboa Capital, a leading independent provider of small business loan products and equipment leasing programs since 1988. Balboa Capital has assembled a team of some of the most qualified, reliable and forward-thinking sales managers around. The company’s team of recruiting professionals is expert when it comes to screening applicants’ cover letters and resumes, and conducting personal interviews with candidates for their sales manager positions. If you are a sales manager looking for an exciting and rewarding career, visit Balboa Capital’s equipment leasing careers page today.
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