Career Growth
April 7, 2024

14 Questions to Ask Your Interviewer at a Sales Job Interview


Lauren Miller

At the close of every sales job interview, you'll be asked if you have any questions. This is not just a routine wrap-up; it's a crucial phase where you get to showcase your depth as a sales professional. You're not only there to answer questions but to engage intellectually, demonstrating your drive and keenness for the role.Your interviewers are gauging your potential and, notably, your skills in customer engagement. To shine, prepare insightful questions.Below is a guide to questions that can help you stand out. Note that whenever possible, you should frame a question by showcasing what you know first. Example: “I see that you recently raised a round of funding, how has this influenced your growth plans for 2024?”

1. Understand the Sales Process: “Could you walk me through your sales process?”

By asking for a birds-eye view of the sales process, you’re demonstrating an interest in really understanding how the company sells. The information you gather here can be used to ask more detailed questions about a particular part of the process.You might ask “What roadblocks do you typically experience at this point in the sales cycle?”

2. Envision the Onboarding: “What does the ramp-up period look like here?”

Asking about the onboarding process shows that you’re already thinking about how to succeed in the position. For follow-up questions, ask the interviewer about what sales professionals can do to make the ramp-up period a success. This reflects both your initiative and foresight.

3. Market Segmentation Insights: "How do you segment the market?”

Understanding how the company segments the market and assigns territories will help you gauge its broader strategy and operations. This can serve as a launching pad for additional questions such as: “How do you define an enterprise account vs. an SMB?” “How are territories assigned?” “What market segments are you currently focusing on?”

4. Traits of Top Performers: What are some common characteristics among successful sales representatives at your organization?"

You want to demonstrate that you have the potential to be a top performer. And top sales performers learn from observing. By asking this question during the job interview, you can demonstrate that you have humility and want to learn from top-performing peers.As a follow-up, ask if there are opportunities for mentorship or peer observation at the organization.

5. Growth Opportunities: “Can you tell me about opportunities for professional development?”

This is another question that allows you to demonstrate your commitment to self-improvement and up-leveling your sales skills. You might also ask your interviewer for recommendations on books and resources.

6. Performance Metrics: Aside from quota, what other metrics are most important for evaluating performance in this role?”

It’s helpful to ask about a broad range of metrics that will be used to evaluate your performance — not just quota. Asking this question shows that you’re goal-oriented and understand the importance of data analytics in modern sales.

7. Understand Quota Achievements: What proportion of sales representatives meet/exceed quota?”

Like the question on metrics, asking about quota shows that you’re serious about success. But more than that, this information can help you decide whether or not to accept a job offer. Although a low proportion of representatives meeting quota isn’t always a red flag, it can be.

8. Identify Current Challenges: “What is the biggest challenge currently facing the sales team?”

Every sales team faces challenges. Asking about them demonstrates your realistic approach to sales and an interest in the company’s strategies to tackle them. Don’t use this question as an opportunity to prescribe solutions. You don’t know enough yet! You’re just gathering information and demonstrating thoughtfulness.

9. Build Relationships with Management: What do the best sales representatives do to facilitate a strong relationship with their managers?” “What are some characteristics of your top sales rep?”

Your interviewer will likely be in your management chain. You want to show this person that you’re a good team player who values communication. This question can also reveal much about the sales culture and leadership style, which will help you make an informed decision.

10. Tech Stack Utilization: “Could you elaborate on the tech stack used here?”

Ask about the CRM, productivity tools, prospecting tools, and any other tools that you might be expected to use. This question demonstrates that you see the tech stack as a vital part of the sales process, not just a hoop to jump through.Follow up by asking how these tools integrate into the broader sales process.

11. Career Advancement Pathways: “What are common career paths for successful sales professionals in your organization?”

Ambition is always a positive in sales. Showing an interest in career advancement sends a clear signal that you want to contribute to the company not just now, but for years to come.

12. A Day in the Life: “What does a typical workday look like here?”

This question will allow you to get a sense of day-to-day life at the company. But beyond that, it reveals a lot about the sales culture at the company and which revenue-generating activities are most critical.You can use the information gathered to guide your other questions. For example, you might say, “It sounds like SDRs spend a lot of time cold calling. How much business does that generate?”

13. Long-Term Growth and Strategy: “What are the company’s growth plans for the next five years?”

Ideally, managers want to hire people who will stick with the company for years to come. Asking about the long-term strategy indicates your strategic thinking and interest in the company’s future, beyond your immediate role.

14. Commission Structure: How do you structure commission?”

(Note: This should be asked at a later stage when discussing compensation)Asking about the commission structure is a direct way to understand the company’s values and expectations. A good follow-up question: “How much do your highest earners make?” That demonstrates you’re interested in being at the top, not just somewhere in the middle.Remember, the answers you receive are not just responses but a foundation for further questions. Show interest in new verticals, products, and strategic plans to demonstrate your comprehensive understanding of the sales landscape and your potential role within it.Looking for your next opportunity? Start your search on the WISE job board for hundreds of open career opportunities at our partner companies.