Interview with a Hiring Authority - Answers from a VP of Sales & Marketing

Posted: April, 10, 2014 | Categories: Workplace Tips & Professionalism

As part of our goal to help our employees get into the job and career they have been planning for and to assist our clients in sharpening their own interviewing skills, we sat down with Ashton Woods Homes VP of Sales & Marketing, Dan Gezella. We asked Dan a few of the questions regarding characteristics of an outstanding candidate, corporate dress code, what to bring to an interview and other tips for giving or conducting the best interview. Here are the questions we asked Dan:

Q1.In your opinion, what are the top characteristics that make a candidate outstanding?


My success as a sales manager hinges on my ability to find the right people and mold them into an effective team. I believe in selecting the 'best choice', I look for individuals to join the team who will successfully implement the sales process so that the company will meet its performance goals. Among the personal characteristics I look for include:

  • Balance - No one can be successful for long if there are significant problems in other facets of their life.
  • Confidence - A sales consultant must be able to lead their customers to make the correct buying decision. To do this they must have confidence in their knowledge of the product they represent and have the ability and techniques to make a compelling presentation.
  • Constancy - A sales consultant must be able to make a long term commitment to excellence and a willingness to stay on course.
  • Courage and Resiliency - Sales consultants must learn to take risks to lead effectively, they must be able to take responsibility for their own actions or inactions, they must not be afraid of a negative response or a 'no'?, they must learn how to learn from their mistakes.
  • Desire - To be successful a new home sales consultant you must want the personal and financial rewards that go along with the position.
  • Enthusiasm '“ A new home sales consultant must be upbeat, positive and exhilarating to help ease customers anxieties and to get them involved and excited about the process.
  • Experience '“ Prior experience is a plus, I typically look for a stable consistent job history with demonstrated levels of success in all areas of new home sales. Preferring, at least 2 to 3 years stability per employer.
  • Knowledge and Coach ability '“ A new home sales consultant must be willing and have the desire to learn and grow professionally. I let them know upfront my expectations for continued education neither through ongoing training at our sales meetings or through courses offered by the GHBA.
  • Integrity '“ There is no room whatsoever for anything less than absolute and unquestioned integrity. Without trust nothing else matters, either within the sales team or with our customers.
  • Pleasing Personal Appearance '“ Good grooming, appropriate dress and neat indicates competence and professionalism. This reinforces their position as a competent authority.
  • Pride '“ Portrays a confident individual that is successful. They take ownership in everything they do and are cognoscente of the special knowledge and skills they possess.
  • Responsibility '“ I rely on my sales team to'? do the right thing'?. I must be comfortable in knowing that they can make their own decisions.
  • Warmth '“ They must have a genuine regard for helping people
Q3. How have your standards of 'corporate dress'? changed, if at all?

People want to buy from successful builders and successful sales people. Therefore, it is imperative that we present a successful image, a professional picture at all times; in all our communications, and our personal dress. Our mantra is always represent yourself in a professional manner. The company is judged by the people it keeps. When people meet an Ashton Woods sales counselor, they are forming opinions of them and of the company. We set expectations for managing personal grooming habits, be conscientious about such items as clean, well-trimmed fingernails, polished shoes, neat hair, clean teeth and fresh breath. Be appropriately attired for the business environment the company has created.

Men: Conservative business suits preferred with light colored dress shirts.(White, blue, pink, or yellow, is appropriate). A minimum would be dress slacks, dress shirts, tie and jacket. Shoes must always be polished and clean and dress socks are a must.

Women: Suits or professional (tailored) dresses are preferred. Dressy skirts and blouse combinations (preferably with a jacket) are a minimum. Slacks may not be worn except for those that are part of a business suit. No 'casual dresses'?, casual skirts and tops, and dress shoes must always be worn (flats are ok, if dressy.)

Q4. What is something an interviewee might bring with him/her that would impress you?

Examples of their accomplishments, pictures or copies of awards, continuing education classes, seminars attended, professional designations/certifications, special projects, or examples of industry involvement. These candidates tend to demonstrates a high level of motivation, eagerness to learn, are aggressive, assertive and hungry to make a lot of money and are willing to work hard to obtain their goals.

By JWilliams Staffing

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