Sunday, March 20, 2011

Sales Engineer Interview Questions

This post has been updated and new content is in  How to Answer Sales Engineer Interview Questions

Found this little gem online looking for some well thought out interview questions (both on the giving and receiving side here). http://www.best-job-interview.com/

It brings me to thinking about hiring good SEs and how you validate the best candidates during an interview. Of course good SEs might be hard to hire, so how would you suggest identifying the best people for the job? For me, behavioral questions which find previous situations which they've performed the required activities and drilling into their ability to execute on them and the breadth of their experiences is key.

The thing with SEs is you don't want to end up with a good implementer or consultant without the sales know-how, or a person with the sales ability but lacking in the technical depth. So you have to test both of these aspects, and find a balance between the two.

The next step, finding a good Sales Engineer Manager, is another chestnut. Finding someone respected by SEs usually means one of them, and then finding a good SE that can manage other SEs well - that is key. So then you test yet another ability and find the correct balance of the three. The best job interview site also had an article on the Manager Q&A for interviews in case you are interested.

I would be very interested if anyone wants to comment on send in some tried and trusted SEquestions as a comment here!

2 comments:

trowengineering said...

I have used the information available at http://www.best-job-interview.com/ and recommend anyone preparing for an interview take advantage of the same resources (especially when it comes to writing thank you notes). My biggest piece of advice is to be prepared to ask your own questions during the interview process.

I am currently working on compiling a list of questions geared towards recent college graduates and young professionals in career transition. I have experience interviewing in both situations and want offer my advice to others.

I have been asked to describe a major financial decision and my purchasing process.

Other questions like:

Tell me about a time you have failed.

How do you define success?

Have you ever had to handle conflict?

Have you ever been rejected?

What makes a good sales consultant?

Based on what you know about our organization and current customers, describe the sales process you would use to acquire new customers?

During a recent interview with a CCTV and Controls company I was asked to put together a business plan in less than 2 days. My only directive was to produce a document that would outline my sales goals and business objectives as a Direct Sales Representative.

But the best question I was ever asked was "If on the first day of the job I asked you to buy one million square feet of astroturf for me, what would you do?"

Check out my blog at GoProSalesEngineer.com

Job said...

Thanks a lot for sharing "Sales Engineer Interview Questions".

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