Have you ever landed that first round interview and never heard back on next steps or even if there was a next step? You thought it went well, but you never got the call back. Why?
We have all experienced some sort of rejection and let’s face it, not a great feeling. Sometimes interviews can go wrong. You could make a mistake that can cost you. That’s not to say that the reason isn’t due to that there was competition and they found someone more qualified, but believe it or not it could be something much more in your control that cost you the opportunity. Here are some reasons you may not have moved forward in the process but ways you can avoid these pitfalls.
First Impressions Matter…You Didn’t Seem To Care
Your interview starts the night before. Get ready mentally and physically and don’t be late! Print out your resume, bring a pad folio, put on your suit, shine those shoes and do your research. When you walk through those doors, anyone you meet from the receptionist to the hiring manager you want to be polite and professional. Being nice goes a long way, so have a strong handshake and good eye contact to set the tone.
You Weren’t Able To Answer My Questions
Make sure you know your story and be able to articulate your experience. I cannot emphasize this enough. You’re in sales, you live by numbers and quotas so know them. You want to be able to answer the interviewer’s questions about your quota, your percentage of quota, how many calls/emails/demos you did on a weekly basis. You should know your territory and who you were selling into. If you can’t answer these questions with conviction, and honesty might I add, you are already setting yourself up for failure in this interview. Be prepared to answer those questions about yourself.
You Didn’t Ask Me Any Questions
One of the biggest pet peeves of many hiring managers is when a candidate does not have any questions, so make sure you have them prepared. It’s all about the fact that you took your time to be prepared. It shows that you are serious about your search and not just another candidate walking through the door. Remember you may be a great sales person, but you do not know what their model is like, what their culture is like, so ask! It’s just as important for you as it is for them.
You Lacked Confidence
Be energetic, enthusiastic and positive. Walk that fine line of confidence and cockiness. Portray that you are confident in your learning ability. Show that you are coachable, moldable and that you will succeed regardless of how much experience you had. People buy from people they like and they also hire people they like, so act like you want to be there. Being motivated is every manager’s dream. They would rather reel you back in vs. pushing you constantly.
You Didn’t Close Me
This is very important. You’re in sales and closing deals is a big part of that job, so a hiring manager wants to know that you can do that. Ask the interviewer if they have any questions or concerns about you or your ability to do the job. Good managers will tell you. This will give you the opportunity to uncover what they are concerned about and more importantly the ability to overcome any and all objections. If they have concerns, answer in the affirmative. Acknowledge and address concern, putting it to rest. If they don’t have any concerns, then perfect! What is the next step in the process and when should you anticipate hearing from them? Give them the assumptive close, i.e. “If I do not hear from you by a certain date, then I will follow up direct with you.” This is very important because it’s a way of keeping your foot in the door. Get their business card for follow up.
I Never Received A Thank You Email
This is sales 101, it’s a must! After every interview whether you met 1 or 5 hiring managers, you must send each one a separate thank you based on your experience and why you would be a great fit for the role. Sending a mass email is lazy and will not make a good impression.
Keep in mind that you could do everything right and still not get the job. It’s common, but activity breeds success. Remember looking for a new career opportunity is a full time job, so what you put into it is what you will get out of it. Don’t let these “lazy” pitfalls prevent you from getting the job you want. Stay confident and persistent. You are after all a sales warrior. Good luck!