“Numbers are the highest degree of knowledge. It is knowledge itself.” ~ Plato
A candidate earlier this week asked me what to prepare for his upcoming sales interview with a hiring client. I could have gone over the usual points about researching the company’s website, getting a decent night’s rest, mapping the route to the office so not as to be late, wearing a professional suit and other obvious points short of brushing one’s teeth. Instead, I told him, “Make sure you know your sales numbers thoroughly.” His reply almost caused me panic and concern, “Oh, that’s fine. I have them listed on my resume.” No, that is not knowing your numbers.
If I asked you what your daughter’s hair colour was or your spouse’s birthday (I hope!) – you would know this immediately, right? That’s the level of knowledge and understanding you need as a sales professional when discussing your sales career’s metrics and performance in a career interview.
Some sales details you should know and be ready to discuss:
• Your sales targets and attainment.
• Your annual sales budget numbers.
• % Growth of your territory or vertical.
• Number of new clients acquired.
• Number of prospects in your pipeline.
• Number of sales calls/visits you make daily, weekly, monthly, etc.
• Number of presentations you make daily, weekly, monthly, etc.
• Your sales closing ratio.
• Your best month ever.
• Your worst month ever.
• Awards you won.
• Number of sales staff at your company.
Keep track of all these metrics using a journal, Excel sheet, company sales report and any other tracking tool you can update and review with ease.
Know your numbers inside and out. This is important.
Almost as important as your spouse’s birthday.
Darryl Dioso is a Managing Partner at HR4U and the Founder of Resource Management Solutions Group (RMSG). For close to 20 years, Darryl has been helping company clients like Xerox, Weight Watchers, Discount Car Rentals, BC Ferries with their recruitment, Human Resource Management, business processes and sales initiatives. He is passionate about sales, business, technology, sports, travel and most of all – his family.