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Influencing your sales interview

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Candidates for a sales position often think that the best way to ace the interview is to provide a big resume which details all their previous positions. However, it is also very necessary to create a receptive psychological environment.

Extensive research of some of the top sales professionals in various industries has revealed specific speech and behavior patterns which increase the chance of getting a yes. These patterns are also reflected in six principles of influence.

1. The Reciprocation Principle



People quite often say yes when they feel that they owe it to you.

Example: Responses are doubled when charities include personal address labels inside their direct mails.

On the Interview: Go to the interview with the attitude that you are there to help them. When you sincerely express it and feel it, it will create a sense of obligation automatically.

2. The Scarcity Principle

People often say yes if they think that the availability of something is dwindling.

Example: Sales pitches such as, till supplies last, last day today etc.

On the Interview: Tell your interviewer about a circumstance which will make it difficult to hire you in the future such as another job offer. Direct the discussion on what they would lose without the services you can offer.

3. The Authority Principle

People often say yes to those who seem to have special credibility and knowledge.

Example: Companies bring in engineers and technical experts into their sales processes for closing major opportunities.

On the Interview: Show elements from your career which show your command over unique knowledge rather than just your selling abilities. Tell the interviewer about a unique expertise which can help you sell the product or service of the firm.

4. The Commitment Principle

People often say yes when they have made a prior commitment in your presence.

Example: If a market researcher asks a respondent about whether they are helpful or not will get more people that agree to do the survey.

On the Interview: Try to ask the interviewer about the particular kind of person that they would like to hire and then match yourself to these characteristics.

5. The Consensus Principle

People often say yes when they are provided evidence that others similar to them are saying the same thing.

Example: Typically advertisements demonstrate their demographic using their product that they want to sell.

On the Interview: Offer references to the interviewer from people who match the demographic profile of the interviewer closely. For example, if an interview is an HR executive of middle age, offer a reference from another middle aged HR executive.

6. The Likability Principle

People often say yes if they know the asker and like him/her.

Example: Likeable celebrities are often used as spokespeople in commercials.

On the Interview: Identify something about your interviewer that you really respect and like. This will be sensed by the interviewer and he would be naturally led to respect and like you. This builds on a real emotion.
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