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February 1, 2022

Practical inside sales interview questions are important when interviewing for a new sales position and considering who to hire.

Imagine you’ve got some great candidates, but you are unsure which one you should hire. It’s hard to know just from resumes alone.

To avoid a new hire who doesn’t fit your company culture, you need to ask some tough questions during the interview process.

Here are our top 15 inside sales interview questions and answer that will help you find the best salesperson, inside or outside of your company.

 

1. What do you love about sales?

It would make sense to ask questions like “What is your favorite thing about sales?” or, for those who seem uninterested in the work, I’m offering them, “Why do you want to be a part of this team? What’s your passion?

What To Look Out For:

When looking for a salesperson, you want to see someone excited about solving problems instead of focusing on money. Look for an answer that isn’t all about the paycheck.

If the candidate is more interested in money than doing a good job, that’s not what you want. You’re looking for someone who cares about your company and wants to do well by it.

 

inside sales interview questions

2. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

During an inside sales interview, it’s a good idea to find out what your sales rep sees themselves doing in the future. What do they want their career to look like?

What To Look Out For:

If you want to find a committed and engaged salesperson, don’t just look for someone content with sitting at their desk. Find an individual that enjoys the company to grow as well.

 

3. What do you tell yourself when your day is full of rejections?

Asking this question will help you understand how committed an inside sales rep is to their job. If they are resilient, they’ll keep pushing through even when things get tough.

What To Look Out For:

Asking the candidate about how they process rejection and what they do to move forward can be a great way of figuring out if this person is equipped for sales. For example, it might not bode well for an inside sales rep who gets easily shaken by no’s from prospects.

 

inside sales interview questions

4. How do you use social media in your sales process?

It’s the digital age, which means social media plays a huge role in sales. The only sales interview question here is what this will look like in the overall sales process.

Every salesperson has their way of doing things, and everyone is different. But understanding how social media fits into the process can be critical.

What To Look Out For:

In the interview process, it’s essential to find out if your candidate is excited about social media. If they light up when you ask them how they use Twitter and Facebook for sales purposes, then that means good things.

Keep asking questions! Do they have a LinkedIn profile? Have they ever contacted prospects on there or used it to find leads?

 

5. What type of work environment do you feel most comfortable in?

Here’s a question that will help you see if the person interviewing for your inside sales position is really up to snuff. The process of selling through inbound calls can be hectic and fast-paced, so make sure they’re ready.

To understand the needs of your sales reps, ask them this question.

What To Look Out For:

To find the right person for your company, you need to know what kind of environment they would thrive in. If a candidate is going into an interview with you and their expectations align well with yours, then it’s likely that they will be a good fit.

 

6. Do you spend your time reading blogs or books about work?

I’ve learned that the most successful salespeople are those who always keep themselves up-to-date on trends and best practices. This way, they can avoid getting left behind.

What To Look Out For:

If you find out that a salesperson doesn’t invest any time in knowledge-building, they may view themselves as an expert. This is not always the case; some great reps might not read often but should still be staying up on trends somehow – even if it’s through email newsletters.

One of the best qualities for an inside sales rep is their willingness to learn and improve constantly.

 

inside sales interview questions

7. What questions would you ask when you’re qualifying a lead?

Learning about the reps’ ideal sales process will help you understand how well they’ll perform in your company’s inside sales department. You might even pick up a few questions that are golden when qualifying them.

What To Look Out For:

Every salesperson has a different process, and they might not fit in with your company’s ideal one. But don’t worry! Every person is unique, so there’s no reason to doubt their capabilities.

To learn more about the processes of others, ask them what their process is and why they do things a certain way. You might be surprised by how much you can gain from this simple question.

 

8. What do you do when a dream client is being difficult?

Every salesperson will have a problematic prospect or client at some point. Whether they handle the situation well and fit in with your company culture is determined by how they react to these challenges.

What To Look Out For:

This question is trying to figure out how quickly the salesperson can get frustrated when dealing with a difficult client. If they answer that, they will stop working on listening to their reasoning.

If you are looking for a job with an over-inflated ego, look elsewhere.

 

9. What was the most brutal criticism your last manager gave you, and how did you respond to it?

There was this meeting with a sales rep, and it turns out that he doesn’t want to hear criticism. He said, “of course, I’m open to feedback.” But when we went over the specifics together, his demeanor changed.

What To Look Out For:

If you’re listening to a story about their boss, pay attention to how they describe them. Is the person painting that manager as an unreasonable enemy who was out to tear them down or someone who genuinely wanted help? No matter what kind of story is being told, it’s easy for people with healthy attitudes towards criticism and feedback to see through this.

 

inside sales interview questions

10. How tech-savvy are you? Do you have experience with CRM tools?

When you are hiring for an inside sales rep, it is essential to know if they will manage their work independently. Will the candidate need a lot of help with your CRM?

What To Look Out For:

If you’re hiring for a CRM position and they have experience with technology, then that’s fantastic. If not, don’t be too quick to dismiss them.

If you are hiring for a position that requires technology, make sure to test their willingness and eagerness to learn. Teaching them may be worth it if they seem interested in learning the new skills necessary for this job.

 

11. Have you ever had a dry spell in sales? How did you get out of it?

One of the best questions to ask a potential salesperson is handling adversity. We all have slumped, so what you want to know is whether or not this person has ever been able to get themselves out.

What To Look Out For:

It’s only natural for sales slumps to happen from time to time. However, what is essential is how the inside sales rep gets back on track and overcomes a slump.

If they tell you that they’ve never experienced a slump, then there’s probably something fishy going on.

 

12. What steps will you take to make this role the best it can be?

If you’re hiring someone for an inside sales position, it’s essential to see what they can offer that no one else will. When selling advertising space on TV screens, people would always ask ” why do you want this job,” and my answer was simple: because nobody could do it like me.

What To Look Out For:

If you’re hiring for a position that doesn’t require someone to work long hours, then they should be willing to put in the occasional evening call if it’ll help close a deal. Try and get an idea of their plan so you can see how well-suited they are.

 

13. Why do you like working in inside sales?

When hiring for your inside sales team, it’s essential to find passionate people about this type of work. If they’re not really into the job and willing to put in a lot of effort, you won’t reach company goals or make quotas.

What To Look Out For:

The old-school sales process is dead. The only way to sell nowadays is through inside sales, which means that you need to look for people who are excited about the prospect of working with clients without leaving their desks and not just those looking for a high base salary.

From there, you can get a better idea of how well they would fit in your company’s sales team.

 

14. What is the best thing about our product?

You want to see how they plan on selling your product, but it’s important not to make them feel pressured by asking too many questions. So get a sense of their understanding of the benefits and features before diving into more specific details.

What To Look Out For:

Finding out that a candidate has done their research and knows what they are talking about, it’s usually safe to assume that the person will sell my product well. They’ll also have likely researched other companies in the industry as well.

If you’re not doing your research, it’s because you don’t care.

 

inside sales interview questions

15. What are you interested in? What would be your best argument for me to get into it too??

Clari VP of Revenue Growth and Enablement, Kyle Coleman, has an interesting question for you.

“One of the most important aspects of being a successful salesperson is pitching your product. I interviewed over 1,000 candidates for SDR and inside sales roles because they have this skill set. It turns out asking them how good their pitch was didn’t tell me much about whether or not they would be able.

I soon realized that asking a candidate about their knowledge of the product or how they would sell it was not nearly as important as I thought. It became clear to me after a while that my questions were only telling me what kind of online research skills they had.

But now, I want to ask you a question. It’s not about your skills or experience in sales – it’s something else entirely: what gets you up every morning?

One of the most effective ways to find a salesperson is by getting an in-depth conversation. I have a 5-10 minute chat with them and then go from there, assessing their personality traits against what we’re looking for.

I’m always on the lookout for people who can communicate well and are excited about my product. If they’re enthusiastic, I need to ensure that their passion translates into a productive work environment.”

 


Conclusion

If you want to make sure that your salespeople will succeed at the company, ask these questions before hiring them.

Our collection of inside sales interview questions and answers is also helpful for freshers in the sales business. You don’t have to ask every question word for word. You can change the wording and make it your own.

Take the questions you like, mix in some of your own and start interviewing candidates. It is essential to find a candidate that will work well with your company culture.

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