Nothing will disqualify you faster than a history of job hopping, or a history of staying at jobs for less than a year. Obviously, the reason this is a red flag for companies is that they see themselves investing thousands of dollars hiring and training you only to think that their company will be the next one on your resume.
As the economy slowly recovers, companies are beginning to expand and hire sales reps again. If you’re looking for a job, or looking to change jobs, no doubt you will be sending your resume out, talking to hiring managers, and, if you’re lucky enough to get picked, even going on interviews.
Over the years, I’ve looked at thousands of resumes and interviewed thousands of sales reps. In fact, right now, I’m recruiting for several companies, and I’m amazed by how sales reps keep making basic, horrible mistakes that often times immediately disqualify them for any chance at landing a position. Often times, these mistakes even prevent them from getting an interview!
Here are the 3 worst interviewing mistakes sales reps are making, and what you can do to avoid them:
#1) Filling your resume with every job you’ve worked at for the last 10 years. The first mistake sales reps make – and that hiring managers look for first – is listing five to seven jobs (or more!) on their resume within an eight to ten year time frame.
Nothing will disqualify you faster than a history of job hopping, or a history of staying at jobs for less than a year. (One resume I saw last week listed 3 jobs this year alone!)
Obviously, the reason this is a red flag for companies is that they see themselves investing thousands of dollars hiring and training you only to think that their company will be the next one on your resume.
The Solution: Omit jobs you’ve stayed at less than a year, and never list more than four jobs in a ten year period (it’s better to have only three). You can disclose other positions once you move forward during the interview process – in person – after you’ve earned a change to wow them with your personality, experience, and obvious qualifications for the job.
#2) Talking for too long when asked a question. Whenever a hiring manager calls you and begins asking questions, make sure your answers are direct and short. You’d be amazed at how so many sales reps will go on and on and on…..
What the hiring manager is thinking is that you are a sales rep who will talk past the close, never listen to your prospects, and never close any business. “No wonder they’re looking for a job,” frequently goes through my mind…
The Solution: Listen carefully to what you’re being asked, think about how to answer it directly, then answer it and shut up! This one technique will separate you from 80% of the sales reps interviewing for the same position.
#3) Don’t interview or interrogate the hiring manager. I know that you have questions about the job, and you should ask a few, but don’t interrogate the hiring manager! Nothing makes us more irritated than being grilled about every aspect of the job, especially about the pay and comp plan. You’re the one being interviewed, not the other way around.
The Solution: Ask some basic questions but save the majority of them for the END of the in person interview. Believe me, the hiring manager will appreciate it and be much more likely to bring you in.
If you’re serious about getting a new position or moving up in your sales career, then avoid these 3 interviewing mistakes. Your chance of getting the new job will increase 100% if you do!
About the author
Mike Brooks is the founder of Mr. Inside Sales, a North Carolina based inside…