Have you faced this interview question before?
I am sure, you would have. So, what is the relevance of this question at the time of an interview?
Is it just a ‘filler’ question to ease you a bit or does it have a higher significance?
Well, if you think it is the former, then let me tell you it is not. Every interview question has a reason to be asked. Each question tests you on certain abilities. Perhaps, the interviewer leaves no stone unturned for understanding the psyche of an interviewee and making the final decision.
Refer also to – Who Influenced/inspires you The Most?
Let us hear the truth behind this interview question.
CASE STUDY: Sales Job Interview
Interviewer: “What inspires you the most in your career? What influenced you to achieve your goals?”
Interviewee 1: “I love to meet people, interact with them and make new friends each day. I look forward to each day keeping in mind that I shall make new friends. I would say meeting new people each day is something that excites me, inspires me.”
Interviewee 2: “I love to study human behavior on a one to one basis. Whenever I meet someone, I try to understand his/her apprehensions, likings, inherent nature and the way he reacts to a certain situation. On each sales call, I meet new people and I make use of this interest of mine in gauging their decision making behavior. I would say what inspires me is trying to understand the psyche of a customer and influence him in a way that he feels he is not being coerced into a decision. Reading about a successful Salesperson and successful deals are my influencers and inspirational/motivational aspects”
Which one of the interviewees do you think might obtain the job? Well, as per me, it will be the second interviewee. Why?
1. A sale is not about making friends. It is about understanding the psyche of a customer and convincing him enough for making the desired decision. Thus, the second interviewee has hit the right spot. He has let the interviewer know that he is experienced in making sales and knows how to strategize a sales call. Further, he has cleverly positioned his inspirational attributes with the main objective of a sales call.
2. The second interviewee has also made a point that he knows what goes in the mind of a customer and he is well equipped to tackle that.
Note: Whatever it may be, the point is, whenever you are faced with such a question, you should try to answer in a way that subtly touch-bases with the ideal qualities of an employee.