One of the key areas where we help our clients is in recruiting and selecting top performers. In this work, we often work with a client through the entire process of recruiting and selection.   And though I have hired thousands of sales professionals – leaders and representatives in my career – I am STILL amazed at some of the experiences I have in conversations/interviews!

oh noThis past month has been especially rich with examples and I’m going to share some tips of Not Tos today and then To Dos later this week.  Some of these are going to sound so ‘duh’? or ridiculous and yet each one is based on something a candidate has done or said in just the last month.


10 What Not to Do’s When Searching for a Sales Job

  1. Insult the interviewer. No matter what stage you are in during the interview process, it is not okay to ask the interviewer for THEIR credentials, ask them if THEY have ‘really’ reviewed your resume or let them know that ‘This question I would rather answer with the owner of the company.”
  2. Pontificate or hypothesize. Do not tell the interviewer what you believe everyone should be doing or how, in theory, things should work but that you know better and think everyone else is wrong.
  3. Overstate your results. We check! If you say you have been #1 for the last 4 years, we will verify it.
  4. Send notes with typos. An easy demonstration of your lack of detail and the care you will take with quotations and customer information.
  5. Delay in respondingand then say ‘Well, i thought I had an offer coming in so I put this opportunity on the back burner.”
  6. When asked a question, tell the interviewer that you already answered that question for someone else in the company.
  7. Suggest that the question asked doesn’t make sense and ask the interviewer to give YOU an example instead.
  8. When asked a question, do not say “Wouldn’t the example I gave you about ___________, already have told you that?”
  9. Express that you think the process they are taking is too much and you are wondering to shortcut it.
  10. Refer the interviewer back to your resume over and over, instead of answering the questions.

And a bonus ‘What not to do’ – Do NOT send the interviewer a note critiquing their interview style or telling them why certain questions or the process ‘did not work for’ you. 

Hope you had a chuckle or a gasp as you read the list.

More this week on what TO DO to land that job!

Have any additional Not To Do’s?  Send them over and they’ll show up in the Comments.