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How to Interview a VP of Sales Candidate

When a company grows, expands, replaces, or retires team members, it may hire new sales managers. These people greatly impact company culture and can significantly affect team morale. Choosing the right sales managers means ensuring sustainable goal achievement. To thoroughly screen candidates in an interview, ask all-encompassing questions that cover four areas: 

1. Personal

  1. What were your best and worst management decisions in the past year?
  2. Describe your decision-making approach when you’re faced with difficult situations. 
  3. What is an example of a strong sales manager’s attribute you possess that makes you a great leader?

2. People Management

  1. What elements do you focus on when building a high-performance sales culture?
  2. How do you alter your management style when working with very seasoned sales team members compared to less experienced reps?
  3. How do you communicate your expectations to team members? 

3. Customer Management

  1. Briefly describe your sales management process and why it works. 
  2. Tell us about a deal you lost to a competitor in a previous role.
  3. What is your sales team’s track record for acquiring and retaining clients? 

4. Business Management

  1. In the past year, what have you done to continue your sales education?
  2. Which sales tools do you use, and why?
  3. If you joined our organization, what specific actions would you take as a sales manager in the first month?

Ready to hire your next sales manager? Our team can help you define hiring criteria, screen candidates, and more. Contact us today to get started

Eliot Burdett

CEO at Peak Sales Recruiting

Before Peak, Eliot spent more than 20 years building and leading companies, where he took the lead in recruiting and managing high performance sales teams. He co-founded Ventrada Systems (mobile applications) and GlobalX (e-commerce software). He was also Vice President of Sales for PointShot Wireless. Eliot received his B. Comm. from Carleton University and has been honored as a Top 40 Under 40 Award winner. He co-authored Sales Recruiting 2.0, How to Find Top Performing Sales People, Fast and provides regular insights on sales team management and hiring on the Peak Sales Recruiting Blog.