How to Answer Behavioral Interview Questions

Behavioural Interview Questions for sales

In the 1980’s, industrial psychologist Dr. Tom Janz introduced a method of interviewing called the “Behavioral Interview.” Research shows that this interviewing style is extremely effective, and as such, it has rapidly increased in popularity. The premise is that the best predictor of future behavior is your past behavior.

Whether you are a candidate looking for your next career move, or a hiring manager looking to recruit a key player, it is important to know how to accurately prepare for answering behavioral questions. This guide is designed to give you the basic structure for answering these increasingly common interview questions.

Behavioral Interview Tips

When developing a behavioral interview, employers consider the types of soft skills that will be needed for the position. When preparing for this type of interview, a job seeker should consider all these skills as well. By keeping these important traits in mind, a candidate can successfully prepare for any amount of questioning. Preparing for behavioral interviews will also help you answer more traditional interview questions.

To properly answer a behavioral interview question, there is a three step process referred to as “STAR“.

  1. The Situation or Task you were in
  2. Action that you took
  3. Result of that action

Behavioral Interview Example Questions

Question:  Describe a recent presentation that you have given.

How to answer:  Briefly talk about a presentation which you gave that was highly appreciated and commended by the audience. Give specific details about your preparation for the presentation, like your research, analysis and compilation of data, the manner in which the data was presented, etc. 
Establish the importance of good presentation skills in positively influencing the potential clients.


Question:  Describe a problem that you have faced with a potential client. What was your approach? And, what was the outcome?

How to answer:  Choose to speak about an incident with a favorable outcome. Explain your approach to the problem and the manner in which it was resolved. Your response should demonstrate your effective problem solving skills and logical thinking process.


Question:  Tell me about a deal that took a very long time to negotiate. What was the result?

How to answer:  Negotiations are a crucial part of the sales cycle. Again, this question challenges your persuading technique and communication skills. Thus, provide the interviewers with an example that highlights these skills.

Check out our List Of Behavioral Interview Questions.

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