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How do I prepare for a Salesforce sales interview?

How do I prepare for a Salesforce sales interview?

The first step in landing that job is preparing. And, when it comes to getting hired by Salesforce, preparation starts long before receiving an invitation to schedule an interview. There's so much information out there on how to land a new position at this company and what to expect from interviews - but not everything seems consistent across all of the articles online.

So here we've compiled some tips, tricks, advice, and examples of questions you may be asked during a Salesforce interview. The best way to use these resources is to take them one question at a time, then try asking each interviewer directly if they have any more specific follow-up questions or concerns.

Here are some key things to think about ahead of time when preparing for a potential Salesforce Interview:

1) What should I bring to my interview?

It's easy to get caught up thinking "I'll just show up and see what happens," when interviewing for a role like this. But, when you're actually invited to come in for an interview, don't go empty handed. Bring something with you that shows off your personality and experience. You could even consider bringing a book of poetry that speaks to your interests (or a favorite coffee mug). While preparing your interview you can review all the interview questions here. It doesn't matter what you choose to bring into the room because it will only serve to make you feel good while you wait around for someone else to start talking to you. So keep yourself relaxed and happy regardless of where you find yourself sitting in front of a computer screen.

2) How do I dress for a Salesforce interview?

Like many industries, working in technology has its own set of professional norms regarding attire. When you walk through those doors wearing jeans, t-shirts, or other casual clothing isn't going to look right -- no matter what anyone tells you. Your clothes should reflect professionalism without looking like you didn't put any effort into making sure you looked presentable. For men, dark slacks work better than light pants, and buttoned down shirts always seem to convey confidence and poise. Women can wear nicer dresses or skirts instead of shorts or leggings. A nice blouse will help add polish without being too formal, which can sometimes feel stiff and boring compared to relaxed comfort.

3) Should I shave/get my hair done?

Shaving your face looks clean, but since most people tend to sweat heavily during an interview, shaving might cause problems later on. If possible, let your facial hair grow a little longer and groom it after arriving for your appointment. This gives you the option to freshen up between meetings without sacrificing your overall appearance. Even though women aren't required to shave their legs, having short hair makes sense for both sexes. In fact, women who wear shorter haircuts often have better success finding jobs than women whose hair is styled professionally every day. To maintain this style, simply brush your hair back behind your ears and clip stray hairs near your neckline. Men should avoid using styling products such as gel or mousse. These types of hairstyles leave residue that causes skin irritation.

4) Do I need anything special to pack for my interview?

You probably already packed your suitcase once for another trip away from home, so packing lightly shouldn't pose any problem. However, if you did end up needing additional items, bring along copies of important documents like resume and cover letter. Also, make sure to include extra batteries for electronic devices that require them.

5) Who will conduct my interview?

We recommend calling ahead and scheduling appointments with recruiters before you travel anywhere. They will typically give you clear instructions on exactly who will lead the meeting. While a recruiter is conducting your interview, treat him or her politely and respectfully. Keep eye contact strong but never stare at the person speaking unless requested otherwise. Don't interrupt or argue with the recruiter unless he or she asks you to stop. Listen carefully to his or her directions throughout the entire process, including breaks. Be aware of body language cues that indicate boredom or disinterest, and stay focused on answering questions accurately.

6) Can I bring someone with me to my interview?

Bringing friends or family members to your interview can be fun, but it can also become distracting. During certain parts of the conversation, you may want to share personal stories about past experiences or discuss goals for your career with others. Unfortunately, distractions can disrupt concentration, especially if your friend keeps trying to strike up conversations with the recruiter. That said, inviting a supportive third party can provide valuable insight into your background and skillset. Just remember to respect the boundaries of privacy set forth by HR professionals.

7) Will I receive feedback afterwards?

After completing your interview, whether virtual or physical, you should receive a thank you email from whoever conducted your session. This document will usually outline next steps and expectations. We suggest following up within 24 hours to confirm receipt of materials sent via mail or email. After reviewing feedback provided, you can decide what changes would benefit you moving forward.

8) Is there a particular part of the interview process I should focus on?

There are several areas of importance worth focusing on when preparing for a Salesforce interview. First, you want to practice delivering responses to common questions, such as "Tell us why you're interested in joining our team." Second, you should pay attention to details like proper etiquette and appropriate tone for your words. Finally, you must understand that the goal of your interview is to showcase your abilities and expertise, rather than to evaluate you personally. Many companies utilize behavioral assessments to determine future performance based upon an applicant’s response to various scenarios. Therefore, you need to answer questions honestly yet diplomatically.

9) Where does the interview happen?

Salesforce conducts interviews virtually over video chat software. Most commonly, candidates meet with recruiters in conference rooms inside corporate offices. Occasionally, however, interview sessions are held remotely outside of the office environment. Regardless of location, it's important to arrive early enough to relax and familiarize yourself with the surroundings. Asking beforehand about accessibility options, parking locations, and transportation services helps ensure smooth transitions throughout the event.

10) Do I need to prepay for anything?

No, you won't need to spend money prepping for a remote Salesforce interview. However, depending on your region, local restaurants and hotels may offer discounts to students and military personnel. Check your area for available student discount programs sponsored by nearby universities. Some cities offer free public transportation systems to residents, so take advantage of this perk. Lastly, check out the US Department of Defense website for Military OneSource benefits. This site helps veterans access discounts on flights, lodging, and food.

11) Am I allowed to record the interview?

Yes, absolutely. Recording your interview allows you to review and share notes afterward. Additionally, recording provides proof of your qualifications and demonstrates interest in the position. Before beginning recording, inform the interviewer that you plan to do so. Ask permission first, either verbally or written, and allow them the opportunity to say “no” if they prefer not to be recorded.

12) Are laptops encouraged?

Laptops are preferred during interviews and generally recommended by recruiters. Most importantly, make sure your laptop meets minimum requirements. Otherwise, you risk missing critical features crucial to your productivity.

13) Does everyone speak English in the office?

While most employees communicate primarily in English, there are still occasional situations where individuals may express themselves differently. Make sure you learn basic phrases in Spanish or French, and carry cards showing your proficiency in whichever languages you need.

14) Does everyone smoke at the office?

Smoking is prohibited everywhere except designated smoking areas in California. Smoking is also discouraged in open spaces like corridors.

15) Is lunch provided?

Most employers today provide two meals per day. Lunch is served cafeteria-style and includes typical American fare. Employees can pick from hot dishes, salads, sandwiches, pizza, and desserts.

16) Is childcare offered?

Childcare arrangements vary by employer. Please call the Human Resources department at your chosen organization to inquire further.

17) Is flexible scheduling acceptable?

Flexible schedules are frequently viewed favorably. Flexibility is great for parents, allowing them to balance careers with raising children. However, applicants who request days off due to sickness or vacation should explain why it was necessary. Employers often view absences caused by illness negatively.

18) Am I expected to participate in group activities?

In general, groups tend to form naturally among coworkers sharing similar interests. On rare occasions, however, teams may organize events designed specifically for employee participation. Such gatherings usually involve social outings, presentations, lectures, and training seminars. Depending on the nature of these events, participants may be expected to attend with colleagues of the same gender.

19) Do I need to bring a printed copy of my resume?

Generally, yes. At least three hardcopies of resumes are routinely given to interviewers. Printouts are useful for taking quick note of important points discussed, and digital copies are kept on file for reference purposes.

20) What kind of salary am I eligible for?

Salaries depend on industry standards, geographic location, relevant education level, prior experience, and previous compensation packages. Salaries range widely, and the average annual income for recent college graduates hovers around $35,000.

So, you've got the job. Congratulations! Now what? You probably have some idea of who will be interviewing you (the company's VP or Director of Product Marketing?), but you may not know how best to prep for that meeting.

We're here to help. Here is everything you need to know about preparing for and conducting successful interviews at Salesforce.

What questions should I ask in a Salesforce interview?

The key point of any interview is always going to be "what type of question would someone likely ask me?" If there were no other people involved, it'd simply boil down to one thing: How much time do we have together before this interview ends?

In general, though, there'll usually be more than just the two of you present during an interview session. And while these colleagues won't necessarily all be technical experts on product features, they might provide insight into certain challenges related to working within Salesforce.

That said, if you're lucky enough to find yourself sitting alongside only a single colleague—whether it's a project leader from another team, or perhaps even a fellow candidate applying for the same role—you're free to bring up anything relating to their own work experience, without needing to worry too much about offending anyone else in the room.

It's important to remember, however, that this person isn't the interviewer. It's therefore critical that you don't treat them differently to others—that you remain professional throughout.

For example, if you want to discuss something like where you see yourself fitting in with the rest of the organization over lunch, make sure you're doing so in order to offer genuine feedback rather than trying to use food breaks to try and catch out whoever's sitting opposite you.

Don't forget that everyone in a given interview panel has been selected because they fit with exactly what the company stands for. So when you sit across from a colleague, keep things simple by asking relevant questions that allow you to evaluate whether both parties think this could potentially be a good match for each other.

Here are some examples of great questions you could consider using.

1) Tell us about a situation where you had to deal with conflict. What did you do/not do, and why was it challenging?

2) What projects would you say represent your greatest accomplishment(s)? Why do those particular successes stand out against the competition?

3) As a Manager, which employee under-performs most often? What kinds of actions do you typically take to improve their performance?

4) Describe a recent failure or mistake. What happened, and what lessons did you learn from it?

5) Which part of the application process do you find most difficult? What kind of resources do you turn to for advice?

6) What do you feel are the biggest strengths of your current position? What weaknesses would you add to the list?

7) We read a lot of self-evaluations in corporate America, and many candidates tend to focus primarily upon areas such as leadership style, communication skills, etc., yet rarely spend any real attention on personal qualities such as drive, initiative, resilience, motivation, perseverance, flexibility, adaptability, multitasking ability, etc. What aspects of oneself do you believe are essential to success at Salesforce?

8) What's your favorite way to relax? Do you listen to music, dance around the house or simply lie back on the couch?

9) What misconceptions do people sometimes hold about you? In hindsight, what do you wish people knew about you personally?

10) What's your opinion on [insert topic]?

11) What do you enjoy outside of work? Hobbies, sports teams, movies, books, places visited, travel destinations…anything.

12) What's your preferred method of email management?

13) Some of my previous managers have told me that I'm very detail oriented. Is this true? Where do I fall short when it comes to managing information?

14) Based on your career path thus far, what accomplishments do you feel most proud of? What mistakes would you change? Have you ever considered changing careers entirely?

15) When making decisions, what factors weigh heaviest in terms of importance?

16) Who is somebody you admire professionally?

17) What's your dream vacation?

18) What's your definition of happiness?

19) What's your biggest weakness right now?

20) What do you hope to achieve next year?

21) What's your biggest fear regarding [insert topic]?

22) What changes do you think must occur in order for [insert topic] to become possible?

23) What are three words you'd use to describe your ideal day?

24) What would you tell your younger self to guide her through today's world?

25) What's one piece of technology you couldn't live without right now?

26) What's one tech gadget you're dying to buy, but haven't gotten around to yet?

27) What's the worst date night scenario you've experienced? What actually went wrong?

28) What's your least favorite aspect of your current position?

29) What do you love about your last employer?

30) Are there any parts of your background story that you'd prefer not to talk about?

31) What's the hardest decision you've made recently? What was the outcome?

32) What's your current level of happiness?

33) Can you share any interesting facts about yourself?

34) What do you strive for in life?

35) What's your goal for the future?

36) Would you consider moving overseas?

37) What motivates you?

38) What inspires you?

39) What makes you angry? What frustrates you?

40) What's your vision for the next five years? Ten years? Twenty years? Forever?

41) What's your biggest regret?

42) What's your proudest moment?

43) What's your idea of perfect happiness?

44) What's your biggest source of stress?

45) What did you struggle with growing up? What helped you overcome it?

46) What's your family's original home country?

47) What's your earliest memory?

48) If you weren't planning to go to college, what would you be doing instead?

49) What's your favorite book? Movie? TV show? Album? Food? Place? Topic? Field of study? Person? Animal? Color? Quote? Activity? Drink? Time period? Anything!?

50) What's your favorite part about being a small business owner?

51) What do you wish you'd done earlier?

52) What's your favorite quote?

53) What's your favorite movie genre?

54) What's your favorite season?

55) Name a few things you absolutely refuse to eat. Ever.

56) What's your favorite childhood toy? Game? Storybook character? Vehicle? Book series? Song? Band? Flower? Actor/Actress? Something else?

57) What's your favorite color?

58) What's your favorite animal?

59) What's your favorite car brand? Model? Year? Make & Style?

60) What's the craziest thing you've seen lately?

61) What are you currently reading?

62) What's your relationship status?

63) What's your favorite ice cream flavor?

64) What's your favorite kind of candy bar?

65) What's your favorite drink?

66) What's your favorite place to visit?

67) What's your favorite meal?

68) What's the dumbest thing you've ever bought online?

69) What's the best invention since sliced bread?

70) What's your pet peeve?

71) What's the funniest joke you hear regularly?

72) What's your motto?

73) What are you thankful for?

74) What are 3 pieces of wisdom you learned early on in life?

75) What's your favorite band? Singer? Music genre? Artist? Album? Songs? Lyrics?

76) What's your favorite clothing store? Brand? Designer? Item? Seasonal item?

77) What's your favorite celebrity crush?

78) What's your favorite type of workout?

79) What's your idea of heaven?

80) What's your biggest secret ambition?

81) What's your favorite sport? League? Event? Team? Player? Position?

82) What's your favorite hangover cure?

83) What's your favorite hobby?

84) What do you look forward to most in 2015?

85) What goals would you set for 2016?

86) What do you aspire to be someday?

87) What's your current phone setup?

88) What apps do you rely on daily?

89) What's your biggest guilty pleasure?

90) What's your favorite social network?

91) What's your view on religion? Politics? Social issues?

92) What's the best advice you've ever received?

93) What's your philosophy on life, love, and relationships?

94) What's the oldest computer you still use? Why?

If you want to succeed within your chosen field, gaining experience and honing your skills is absolutely essential. This holds true when looking for entry-level positions too---in this case, you need to be able to show that you have what it takes to become part of the team. Here's how to ace your next job interview so you hit all the right notes during the conversation.

First things first: Know exactly where you're interviewing. If you've been given specific dates or times, make sure they work into your schedule. Otherwise, use the information provided by the recruiter to find out more about their office culture. Use Google Maps to see if there are any traffic jams near them in advance (or check out Tripadvisor).com to know exactly where to park before heading over. You don't want to spend hours driving around aimlessly while trying to decide whether to stop for lunch!

Before getting dressed, take some time to familiarize yourself with everything you'll encounter on your day. Learn the layout of the building, understand which direction you should walk from each room, and even learn the best way to navigate up and down stairs. It will help speed up the interview process and reduce nervousness.

When arriving at the interview location, avoid using your cell phone until after you complete introductions. Make sure everyone has shaken hands upon meeting. Also, remember not to eat anything heavy 24 hours prior to the interview. Your interviewer may notice if you haven't had breakfast because of your anxiety level.

After completing introductions, wait patiently for the door to open. Once inside, introduce yourself again and shake hands with those present. Afterward, sit away from the table but close enough to hear clearly without being distracted. When asked a question, keep eye contact with your interviewer through your computer screen or directly across the desk.

You might think you'd feel most comfortable sitting in front of your laptop, typing away furiously during interviews. But recruiters prefer candidates who speak directly with them rather than pretending to type, since they consider both methods equally effective. So relax, focus on making good impressions, and try to look relaxed throughout the entire process.

Next, we'll review the typical steps involved in a traditional interview process. Keep reading to learn how to land your dream position faster than anyone else.

What is the interview process like at Salesforce?

The interview process varies depending on the role, but generally speaking, it usually consists of three main parts: 1) behavioral exercises, 2) situational assessments, 3) closing statements.

Behavioral Exercises

These tests consist of multiple choice questions designed to gauge your general knowledge levels, problem solving abilities and ability to handle pressure. They typically involve scenarios based off real situations companies face every day. For example, one common exercise asks you to select a company that would benefit the most from your product/service offerings. The goal here isn't necessarily to score high marks -- just to give you a better idea of what kind of employee you'd be working with daily.

Situational Assessments

During these stages of the interview process, you'll often be put through various "sales" scenarios meant to test your selling aptitude. These include mock customer meetings, giving presentations, handling objections, and negotiating salary packages. One popular scenario asks you to pitch a new hire onto existing customers.

Closing Statements

Once the interview process concludes, you'll receive feedback regarding why you weren't selected. Then, you'll have the opportunity to discuss why you believe you were the ideal candidate for the position. Recruiters call this stage of the process the "final interview." During this final step, you'll likely meet with management to discuss career goals, future opportunities, and compensation plans.

Now let's talk about how you can improve your chances of landing your dream job.

How do I pass an interview in Salesforce?

Salesforce offers many resources to help you gain insight into its overall workplace environment. In fact, the company encourages applicants to attend informational sessions hosted throughout the year. Each session covers topics such as leadership development, diversity awareness training and recruiting practices.

While attending these sessions, pay attention to several factors. First, note how others interact with executives. Are they respectful and attentive? Second, observe how employees greet newcomers. Do they smile? Finally, examine what happens once the event ends. How long does it take for people to leave? What kinds of conversations are taking place among attendees?

To further increase your odds of success, research the organization beforehand. Read blogs written by current and former employees. Look up articles published online about different departments. And search for news stories related to the particular department you plan to join. All of these sources offer helpful insights into the corporate culture.

In addition, study the products themselves. To determine if you truly enjoy helping clients solve problems, visit a few accounts and watch firsthand how engineers guide potential buyers toward solutions. Consider visiting events sponsored by Salesforce in order to get acquainted with other types of employees. Attendees tend to be friendly and eager to share tips. Plus, seeing experts in action gives you a chance to get excited about becoming one of them someday soon.

Finally, always dress appropriately for the occasion. Even though it seems counterintuitive, wearing business casual attire shows respect to the person conducting the interview. Avoid showing cleavage, short skirts, tattoos and excessive amounts of makeup. Remember, no matter what industry you belong to, professionalism goes a long way.

Once you've completed the above tasks, read on to discover ways to stand apart from other qualified candidates.

It's important to be aware that the majority of Salesforce's employees identify as members of the LGBTQ community. Because of this, the company makes efforts to provide equal rights to all prospective hires.

Is it hard to get an interview at Salesforce?

Yes, it can definitely seem difficult to secure a Salesforce opening. However, if you follow the advice mentioned earlier, you shouldn't have much trouble. Most importantly, stay positive. No matter what happens, never lose faith. Simply continue applying for jobs on a consistent basis. Eventually, you'll surely reach a point where you'll want to upgrade your resume and cover letter. At this time, you could start exploring additional options. Don't forget to network with colleagues and friends to spread the word.

Although it sounds daunting, passing an initial screening interview doesn't guarantee an invitation to move forward. On average, roughly 30 percent of applications end up going beyond a preliminary round. Of course, this percentage differs significantly between industries and roles. Therefore, you should remain persistent and professional regardless of your outcome.

And lastly, remember: Never settle for less. Always strive to acquire valuable experience in your desired profession(s), knowing that doing so will help you grow into a successful leader later on.



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