18 Commercial Sales Manager Interview Questions (With Example Answers)

By ResumeCat Editorial Team
Published August 11, 2022

It's important to prepare for an interview in order to improve your chances of getting the job. Researching questions beforehand can help you give better answers during the interview. Most interviews will include questions about your personality, qualifications, experience and how well you would fit the job. In this article, we review examples of various commercial sales manager interview questions and sample answers to some of the most common questions.

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Common Commercial Sales Manager Interview Questions

What does your ideal commercial sales manager role look like?

The interviewer is trying to gauge the candidate's ambitions and career goals. It is important to know what the candidate is looking for in a role in order to determine if they would be a good fit for the company.

Example: My ideal commercial sales manager role would involve working with a team of sales professionals to increase sales and grow the company. The role would involve developing and implementing strategies to increase sales, working with clients to develop relationships, and managing the sales team.

What motivates you to sell?

The interviewer is trying to gauge the candidate's level of motivation and their reasons for wanting to sell. This is important because it can help the interviewer to determine whether the candidate is likely to be successful in the role and whether they will be a good fit for the company.

Some possible reasons that a candidate might be motivated to sell could include:

- They enjoy working with people and helping them to find the right products or services that meet their needs

- They are competitive and enjoy the challenge of trying to win over customers

- They like the feeling of achievement that comes with making a sale

Ultimately, it is important for the interviewer to understand what motivates the candidate and whether that is in line with the company's values and what is required for success in the role.

Example: What motivates me to sell is the satisfaction of knowing that I am helping my customers to solve their problems. I also enjoy the challenge of finding new and innovative ways to market my products and services.

Why do you want to be a commercial sales manager?

Sales managers are responsible for leading and managing a team of salespeople. They are responsible for setting sales goals, developing sales plans, and managing budgets. They also work closely with other departments within the company to ensure that the sales team has the resources it needs to be successful.

It is important for a sales manager to have a clear understanding of what their goals are and what they need to do to achieve those goals. They need to be able to motivate and lead their team, and they need to have a strong understanding of the products and services that they are selling.

Example: I want to be a commercial sales manager because it is a position that allows me to use my skills in sales and marketing to help a company grow its business. In this role, I would be responsible for developing and implementing sales strategies, managing a team of salespeople, and overseeing the overall performance of the sales department. I believe that I have the necessary skills and experience to be successful in this role, and I am eager to put my knowledge to work in a new environment.

What do you think are the key skills necessary for success in this role?

The interviewer is likely asking this question to gain insight into the candidate's understanding of the role and what they believe are the most important skills necessary for success. This question can also help the interviewer gauge the candidate's self-awareness and ability to articulate their own strengths and weaknesses. It is important for the interviewer to ask this question because it can give them a better understanding of the candidate's qualifications and whether or not they are a good fit for the position.

Example: The key skills necessary for success in this role include:

- Strong communication and interpersonal skills
- The ability to develop and maintain relationships with clients
- The ability to negotiate and close deals
- The ability to identify and assess commercial opportunities
- Strong analytical and problem-solving skills
- The ability to work independently and take initiative
- The ability to manage time and prioritize tasks effectively

What do you believe is the most important trait for a successful salesperson?

The interviewer is asking this question to gauge the candidate's understanding of what it takes to be a successful salesperson. In order to be a successful salesperson, it is important to have a strong work ethic, be self-motivated, and be able to build relationships with customers. It is also important to be able to handle rejection and have thick skin.

Example: The most important trait for a successful salesperson is the ability to build relationships with potential customers. A successful salesperson understands the needs and wants of their potential customers and works to create a rapport with them. They are also able to effectively communicate the features and benefits of their product or service in a way that resonates with the customer. Additionally, a successful salesperson is always learning and growing, constantly looking for ways to improve their skillset.

What do you think separates the best salespeople from the rest?

There are a few key qualities that separates the best salespeople from the rest. The best salespeople are usually very outgoing and have great people skills. They are also usually very driven and competitive, and have a strong work ethic. Finally, the best salespeople are usually very knowledgeable about their product or service and are able to effectively communicate that to potential customers.

It is important for a commercial sales manager to be able to identify these qualities in potential salespeople because they are key to success in sales. The manager needs to be able to hire people who have the potential to be top performers, and who will be an asset to the company.

Example: The best salespeople are the ones who are able to build strong relationships with their customers. They understand the needs of their customers and are able to provide them with the products and services that they need. They are also good at problem solving and are able to find creative solutions to problems that their customers may be facing.

What are your thoughts on quotas?

There are a few reasons an interviewer might ask this question. They could be trying to gauge your opinions on affirmative action or equal opportunity practices. Additionally, they may want to know if you think quotas are an effective way to increase diversity in the workplace.

It is important to be thoughtful and considerate in your answer. The interviewer is likely looking for signs that you are open-minded and respectful of different perspectives. They also want to see that you are able to have a constructive conversation about controversial topics.

Example: I believe that quotas can be a helpful way to ensure that sales teams are meeting their targets, but they should not be the only metric used to measure success. Quotas can create an environment of unhealthy competition and pressure, which can lead to unethical behavior. Additionally, quotas can be difficult to attain if they are set too high. I believe that a quota should be one of several measures used to assess a sales team's performance, and that it should be reviewed and adjusted on a regular basis.

How do you handle objections?

There are a few reasons why an interviewer might ask a Commercial Sales Manager how they handle objections. First, it allows the interviewer to gauge the candidate's sales skills and see how they would handle a real-life objection from a customer. Second, it allows the interviewer to see how the candidate responds under pressure and handles difficult situations. Finally, it gives the interviewer some insight into the candidate's problem-solving skills.

Example: The best way to handle objections is to be prepared for them in advance. Think about the most common objections that you receive and have responses ready. Be sure to practice your responses so that you sound confident and sincere.

When you are confronted with an objection, take a deep breath and stay calm. Listen to the objection carefully and then restate it in your own words to be sure you understand. Once you have clarified the objection, you can begin to address it.

Be sure to keep your response short and to the point. If the objection is complex, you may want to ask for some time to think about the best way to respond. Thank the person for bringing up the objection and let them know that you will get back to them soon.

Can you give me an example of a time when you overcame a difficult challenge in sales?

The interviewer is trying to assess the candidate's ability to handle difficult challenges in sales. This is important because the candidate will need to be able to overcome challenges in order to be successful in the role.

Example: I was once tasked with selling a new product that no one had ever heard of before. It was a tough challenge, but I was able to overcome it by doing extensive research on the product and its potential market. I also reached out to my network of contacts and was able to get some early adopters on board. Once I had a few success stories, it was much easier to sell the product to others.

What do you consider to be your personal strengths and weaknesses when it comes to selling?

The interviewer is trying to gauge the self-awareness of the commercial sales manager. It is important because a good sales manager should be able to sell themselves and their product, and they should also be aware of their own strengths and weaknesses in order to better manage their sales team.

Example: My personal strengths when it comes to selling are my ability to build rapport with customers, my ability to listen to customer needs and my ability to close sales. I am also very knowledgeable about the products I sell and the industry I work in, which gives me an edge when it comes to negotiating. My weaknesses include being too pushy at times and not always being able to take no for an answer.

What do you believe is the biggest key to success when selling?

The interviewer is trying to gauge the commercial sales manager's understanding of what it takes to be successful in sales. It is important because it shows whether or not the manager has a clear understanding of what it takes to succeed in sales and how to motivate their team to achieve success.

Example: The ability to build rapport and relationships with potential customers is the most important key to success when selling. It is also important to be knowledgeable about your product or service, and be able to effectively communicate its value to the customer. Finally, it is also critical to be able to close the sale and seal the deal.

What resources (books, websites, etc.) do you use to stay up-to-date on best practices in selling?

The interviewer is trying to gauge the candidate's commitment to staying up-to-date on best practices in selling. This is important because it shows that the candidate is willing to continuously learn and improve their skills, which is essential for success in any sales role.

Example: I like to stay up-to-date on best practices in selling by reading books, websites, and articles from experts in the field. I also attend sales conferences and webinars to learn from other successful salespeople. Additionally, I am always testing out new sales strategies and techniques to see what works best for my products and my customers.

How do you develop relationships with potential customers?

The interviewer is asking how the commercial sales manager develops relationships with potential customers to gauge their people skills and ability to build rapport. It is important because being able to develop relationships with potential customers is a key skill for a commercial sales manager in order to close deals.

Example: There are a few key ways to develop relationships with potential customers:

1. Establish rapport and build trust. This can be done by actively listening to potential customers, showing genuine interest in their needs, and being transparent about your own intentions.

2. Demonstrate your expertise and value. Be sure to share your knowledge and insights in a way that is helpful and relevant to potential customers.

3. Be responsive and available. Make it easy for potential customers to get in touch with you and follow up in a timely manner.

4. Follow up after initial contact. Keep the conversation going by sending helpful information or resources, inviting them to events or webinars, or simply checking in to see how they're doing.

What strategies do you use to overcome objections and close deals?

The interviewer is asking this question to gain insight into the candidate's sales strategy and to see if they have a plan for overcoming objections and closing deals. It is important for the interviewer to know this because it will give them a better understanding of how the candidate sells and if they are likely to be successful in the role.

Example: There are a few key strategies that I use to overcome objections and close deals:

1. First, I always make sure that I fully understand the objection. This means taking the time to listen to the customer and ask clarifying questions. Only once I have a full understanding of the objection can I begin to address it.

2. Once I understand the objection, I work on addressing it directly. This means being honest and transparent with the customer about what we can do to solve their problem.

3. I also make sure to emphasize the benefits of working with us. Customers want to know that they will be getting value for their money, so I make sure to highlight all of the ways that our product or service can help them.

4. Finally, I always give the customer a sense of urgency. This means letting them know that there is a limited time to act and that they need to make a decision soon. This often helps to push customers over the edge and gets them to commit to working with us.

Can you provide an example of a time when you successfully overcame a objection?

The interviewer is trying to gauge the commercial sales manager's ability to overcome objections in a sales setting. It is important for the commercial sales manager to be able to overcome objections because it is a common obstacle in the sales process. If the commercial sales manager can't overcome objections, it will be difficult to close deals.

Example: I was recently working with a client who was considering switching to our company's services. However, they were hesitant because they felt our prices were too high. After doing some research, I was able to provide them with data that showed that our services would actually save them money in the long run. This convinced them to switch to our company, and we were able to successfully overcome their objection.

What do you consider to be your greatest achievement in sales?

There are a few reasons why an interviewer would ask this question. First, they want to see if you have a strong track record in sales. Second, they want to see if you are able to identify and articulate your successes in sales. Finally, they want to see if you have a clear understanding of what it takes to be successful in sales. By asking this question, the interviewer is trying to get a better sense of your skills and abilities as a sales manager.

Example: My greatest achievement in sales was closing a deal with a major client that resulted in a six-figure commission. This was a complex sale that required me to use all my skills and knowledge of the product. I was able to successfully negotiate on behalf of my company and secure a contract that was very beneficial for both parties. This was a major win for my team and I am very proud of the result.

How have you evolved as a salesperson over the years?

There are a few reasons why an interviewer would ask this question to a commercial sales manager. First, it allows the interviewer to get a sense of how the sales manager has developed over the years and how their experience has shaped their current approach to sales. Second, it provides insight into how the sales manager has adapted their sales techniques and strategies in response to changes in the marketplace or in the needs of their customers. Finally, it helps the interviewer to understand what motivates the sales manager and what drives their success. By understanding how the sales manager has evolved over the years, the interviewer can get a better sense of what makes them tick and what makes them successful.

Example: As a salesperson, I have evolved in many ways over the years. I have become more knowledgeable about the products and services I sell, and I have also become more experienced in dealing with customers. I have learned how to better understand customer needs and how to match them with the right products and services. I have also become more efficient in my work, and I now have a better understanding of how to close a sale.

What advice would you give to someone who is just starting out in sales?

There are a few reasons why an interviewer would ask this question to a commercial sales manager. First, it helps the interviewer gauge the manager's experience and knowledge in the sales field. Second, it allows the interviewer to see how the manager would handle coaching and mentoring a new salesperson. Finally, it gives the interviewer insight into the manager's management style and whether they are able to provide constructive feedback.

Example: The best advice I can give to someone who is just starting out in sales is to never give up. Sales is a tough business and there will be a lot of rejections, but if you keep pushing forward and don't take no for an answer, you will eventually find success. Also, always be learning and studying your craft. The best salespeople are always trying to improve their skills and knowledge, so that they can close more deals and make more money.