The Audible-Ready Sales Podcast
The Audible-Ready Sales Podcast

Episode 0 · 1 month ago

Positioning Your Sales Skills

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Much like progressing a deal, as you progress in your sales career, being able to position your sales skills in those interviews can help you differentiate yourself, and win the role. John Kaplan explains how to position yourself as a buyer-focused salesperson and what to look for in the company that you’re interviewing for to ensure you can be successful. After the conversation, leave us a comment on LinkedIn. Share with us, “What was that one thing that made you qualify out a company you were interviewing for?”

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You know, you need to know the exact activities that you need to do to be successful in the organization. If they have that well defined and you feel good about, you know, stepping into selling role and being successful, then I'd go for it. You are listening to the audible ready podcast, the show that helps you and your team's sell more faster. Will feat your sales leader sharing their best insights on how to create a sales engine that helps you fuel repeatable revenue growth, presented by the team at force management, a leader in BTB sales effectiveness. Let's get started. Hello and welcome to the audible ready sales podcast. I'm Rachel Clap Miller and today we are tackling the job interview, a topic I know a lot of you are faced with as you move through your selling career. John kapl enjoins me today. Hi John, Hi Greatchel John. I was just talking to a listener of our podcast recently who said he actually found the audibolready sales podcast because he was in the...

...middle of a sales job interview for a BTB Tech Company and was getting asked a lot about selling on value, a lining two challenges, stacking requirements, and he found himself a little little loss. So he end up searching content and found us, which is great. But I thought that topic would be a good one to cover in the podcast and that's what I want to talk about today. How do you position yourself in the sales interview to show that you are a buyer, focus seller? Yeah, I think it's a great topic. It's obviously a really relevant topic with, you know, unemployment in the text sectors like zero percent, so there's a lot of people that are evaluating companies and looking at opportunities. That's a great, great time to be and it's a great time to be a seller today. So you know, your ability to articulate how you self value is pretty much table steaks today. So for both the candidate and the interviewing company, you've got to bring your a game on this, on this conversation, and so I hope we get...

...a chance to really dig into that on this podcast. Yeah, I mean as companies, as hiring managers, we're almost competing. We're in a dog fight for the top elite sales people out there. And as a as you said, it's a great time to be looking for a job as a salesperson and making sure that you're working for the company were. That where you can succeed the most. So I think a great place to start is this concept we call the essential questions. The initial things you want in a job interview is to make sure that the company has clear answers to these essential questions. I know some of our listeners are familiar with it, but they may not be familiar with how you can use it in a job interview. So talk a little bit about the essential questions, John, and how interviewees can use it them as a test. Really good. So table steaks for me. In a company that calls themselves a you know, a value based company, a company that goes outside in and so puts the customer first, they should...

...absolutely have aligned common language around the answers to these four essential questions. Whenever I say for Central Questions, I get this little thought process in my mind that everybody's listening wet, whether you're listening to it on a run or whatever you're doing, you already know the answers these four central questions or you know the four essential questions and I'm just going to repeat them here. What problems do you solve for your customers? How specifically do you solve these problems? How do you solve them differently or better than anybody else? And where have you done it before? If you're interviewing with a company and they do not have aligned answers, you could talk to one person that has the answers these central questions. Many times I find some of the executives in a company have an answer, a CEO has an answer or technical founder has a pretty good answer around this and then I go to the next person that I interview with...

...and they don't answer the questions the same way. That's a problem. That tells me that those, the answers to those four central questions are probably not operationalized in the selling motion inside the company, which means you're going to have a difficult time if you choose that company. So you know if the first and you're interviewing with, if they can't clearly answer those questions, you know, like I said, you'll have difficulty and and you know how you can help customers see the value of the solution. If people at the company can't clearly articulate that, that's a problem. That's a big red flag right. They're great indicator of the type of clarity you're going to have in the company when you take that job, and we've all worked for companies that don't provide that clarity. So don't, don't make that mistake and those essential questions open that value conversation. And the next thing to understand for the company that you are interviewing with, John, is really what that sales process is. What...

...am I looking for here when it comes to the sales process? It's good because now we if you have the answers to the four central questions. I want to understand how that value manifests itself in a sales process. And so you have to have a sales process that really does a couple of things so you know, when you're looking at these companies, look at the sales process. Ask them to share with you the sales process. First of all, they can't share it, I want you to paper. That's a problem. And if they can't share it in a way where you understand who does what when. The first thing I'm looking for, Rachel, is I'm looking for how does the customer buy? And, based upon how the customer buys, I'm looking at what critical activities do you want me to do in each stage of the customers buying cycle, which then becomes kind of our sales process us.

So I want to understand who does what when. I also want to understand how do you make the customer participate in their own rescue throughout the process. So I look for things like customer verifiable outcome. What is the customer doing in the process? What does the customer have to do before we move forward in the next stage? And, you know, are the selling stages aligned to how the buy or buys, as I talked about? That's kind of like the first thing that I'm looking at table sticks. You can think of the sales process as your playbook. You know, you need to know the exact activities that you need to do to be successful in the organization. If they have that well defined and you feel good about, you know, stepping into selling role and being successful, then I'd go for it. If you have the answer those for center questions, they can walk you through a sales process that's aligned to a customers buying process. You understand who's doing what when, including the customer. You're cooking with gas as a as the beginnings...

...of what looks like a great opportunity for you. Yeah, well, you know we started this conversation by saying how can you make sure that you are showing the fact that you are by are focused? If you're a salesperson in a job interview, and we've talked about things, that you want to make sure the company you have, the company that you're interviewing with, has it key answers to these social questions, which are really that they have a clear understanding of the value they provide the market place in the differentiation of their solution, and then also making sure that that company you're interviewing with has a clearly defined sales process so you're going to know, you're going to have great clarity on what you're selling, who you're selling to and how you're supposed to be doing it, like your key rules up that the sales process. And the component to this, John, is that by making sure the company has those components, by asking questions related to both of those areas that we've talked about, you are demonstrating that you have a value based mindset. By opening up...

...those conversations, you are you are able to demonstrate that you have that value based mindset to the interviewing yeah, I think that's really related to that concept of you know, how you sell is many times just as important as what you sell, and so the same thing is as you take a look at, you know, interviewing. So on the one hand you are allowing the company to qualify you as a value based seller and just as important, you are qualifying them as a value based provider. So I use that to kind of give people spirit as they go into these interviews. I'm like the interview it goes both ways. So they're qualifying you and you're qualifying them, and I think that's probably about fifty fifty of an interview process. It's about fifty percent them qualifying you and about fifty percent of you qualifying them. That is...

...a really, really fair and successful makeup of a good interview. Yeah, I think that's actually would be a great little Qaa I'm linked in to ask people what was that thing that made you qualify out the company here. It really good, really good. You should put that in the show notes to yeah, it's some answers, I guarantee you. Rachel, This topic I've gotten so many conversations with people have just walked away from companies because, you know, they just did not have their stuff together. As it relates to these, you know, topics that we're talking about, and I think companies get lazy around that with now is not the time to get lazy. The labor market is extremely tough. In technology it's like less than zero percent unemployment, and it is you got to bring your a game, and so these principles go both ways, for sure. So, John, as we wrap up, what are the tips you have for sales people who are interviewing for jobs trying to show that their buyer focus one of the best ways you have...

...for them to demonstrate that beyond what we talked about. Well, I think the best advice that I could give somebody is to, you know, to encourage you, when you're interviewing, to treat it like a sales call and in and I always appreciated that when I was the interviewer. I always appreciated when the person that I was interviewing really represented them themselves as if they were on a sales call. And so the company that you're interviewing with has challenges just like a buyer, and you want to think about how you can help them with those challenges. You know how you can help them better than anybody else that they're interviewing and you want to make sure that you can talk about where you've done it before with very specific examples. It's basically the answers to your own for essential questions to the problems you identify through either before the interview or during the interview process. So be very specific in your examples and relate...

...them back to what you've discussed and uncovered in the interview. So the best advice I can give is treat every interview as a sales call, which means at the end you're closing for something. When I was interviewing sellars and they didn't close me for something like, Hey, I want to get direct feedback on how this interview went. What are the next steps? Do I have your you know, your permission to proceed, or what have you, it was it was always very apparent to me to the people that treated as a sales call. We got very definitive actions and next steps and I always waited for it as the interview or as the interviewer, and I could always tell people that were used to closing and people that were that were very, very natural in an interview process because they were just handling it like a sales call. So that's the best advice I could give you today. That's great,...

...and I will say also a great way to keep these topics top of mine is too regularly listen to the audible ready salespot if a man. So thank you for the conversation today, John, my pleasure. Go get them all right, go get them everybody, and thank you for listening. At force management we're focused on transforming sales organizations into elite teams. Are Proven methodologies deliver programs that build company alignment and fuel repeatable revenue growth. Give your teams the ability to execute the growth strategy at the point of sale. Our strength is our experience. The proof is in our results. Let's get started. Visit US at force MANAGEMENTCOM. You've been listening to the audible ready podcast. To not miss an episode, subscribe to the show in your favorite podcast player. Until next time,.

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