You have updated your resume, networked and passed the initial phone interview and maybe even your first face to face interview. You have moved forward in the interview process and you are wondering how you can step up your game and what you need to do to prepare for you upcoming sales interview. Most sales representatives know to come with a few copies of your resume printed on nice paper, bring a brag book and dress for success. What many qualified sales representatives do not still realize is they must bring a 30 60 90 day sales plan.
A 30 60 90 day sales plan is a strategy for success during your first three months on the job. The plan first outlines for the hiring manager your knowledge of the companies products, competition and the responsibilities of the job. It lets the hiring manager know you understand the companies’ missions and goals and more importantly the plan allows you to showcase your skills and demonstrate what you can do for the company. 90 day plans outline what you do your first week on the job, to how you plan on growing the business up to day 90 on the job.
Here are our top 7 reasons to bring a 30 60 90 sales plan to the sales interview.
It is expected
Hiring managers all expect a few things as a given on the interview, regardless of what you are interviewing for they all expect a candidate to be on time, dressed appropriately and to bring hard copies of your resume. Sales managers are going to expect something extra, they are more often expecting the candidate to bring a 90 day sales plan detailing what they will do the first 90 days in the territory. This is especially true on the second interview after the candidate has more information on the position and what is expected in the role. As a recruiter I have seen a front runner in the interview process get knocked out because they were the only candidate who did not prepare a 30 60 90 day sales plan. Our agency is also seeing a trend in hiring managers asking the candidate to prepare a 90 day sales plan presentation as part of the interview process.
Set yourself apart with what you can do
A resume is a document showing what you have done in the past and what you are currently doing and is useful for getting the interview. Conversely, a 30 60 90 day sales plan is the first glimpse of what type of employee you will be in the future. This is your opportunity to wow the hiring sales manager with what your work ethic, attention to detail and creativity will be. Make sure you do your research on the territory and do not just fill in the plan with information for the sake of putting a plan together. Get details on the products, competitors, referral sources, locations and timelines. Spend some quality time on your sales plan, it shows the hiring manager you will be a conscientious and a hard worker.
Shows you are organized
In just about every job interview for any position, questions are asked that highlight how organized a person you are. From questions about time management, how you organize your day and how you maintain your top accounts. Being organized is one of the most important traits of all sales representatives. Top sales producers know how to work a territory from top producing (A) accounts, accounts that are ok, but can do better (B), to less desirable (C) accounts. They know how to plan their day to get the most visits to referral sources and grow the territory. This all starts with organizing their sales plans, making sure the plan looks good and has a clear design and is laid out correctly in chronological order.
Display your contacts
Part of a sales plan is listing referral sources names and addresses and how often you may meet with them to grow the business. When you complete a 30 60 90 day sales plan the hiring manager has a list of your current contacts, who you will meet with right away and your 90 day goals. In many cases this can set you apart from your competition who may have no contacts. Conversely if you have no book of business you are going to show how quickly you will succeed in getting in the door in those top accounts.
There are a few stand out skills of top sales representatives, like having strong presentation skills. Hiring managers want to know a new hire can present to customers, co-workers and management at corporate training’s. If you prepare a 30 60 90 day sales plan you have the opportunity to display your presentation skills to the hiring manager. How you organize your plan, how eye catching, personal style and content you have researched. Presenting is not always standing in a room and public speaking, but how you exhibit your information one on one to the hiring manager lets them know you can do the same with a customer.
Helps you decide if you want the job
When you prepare a 90 day sales plan a large part of it is doing your homework. You must analyze the territory, understand the corporate mission, study the products and competing products, know who the referrals sources are and sales goals. Knowing all of this information gives a candidate a clear view of the position and whether the company and position are a fit. Remember the interview process in not just for the hiring manager it is for candidates as well.
Prepares you for first 90 days on the job
The first 3 months of a job is typically considered a review period from your employer. Employees need to be trained on products and corporate processes, meet co-workers, meet the referral sources and identify new sources of revenue. Many companies now have a “90-day clause” in the hiring contract, enabling them to fire you without explanation. Preparing a 90 day plans gives you a jump on corporate expectations and directs you to success your first 30 days on the job.
Sales managers are always looking for top producers to add to their sales team. Show them you will be one of those top producers, by bringing a 30 60 90 day sales plan to your next interview.