Whenever I’ve been to an interview, my two favourite questions to ask are: “What is a normal day for someone in this role?” and “What will be your expectations of me after the first three months?”
The first question is usually answered with a quick outline of basic jobs and then quickly descends into some of the more quirky, unusual, or random tasks that sometimes crop up. Every time I’ve asked this question, I have walked away with a far better picture of what the job will actually entail than the brief overview in the job posting ever could.
The second question is often met with…to be honest…blank stares. This is one of those questions that, even if someone is prepared for it, can feel a little overwhelming. What do they actually want you to be doing in three months? How much responsibility is too much/not enough? They don’t want to scare you either by the scope of the role or the lack thereof. It’s a tricky question.
That’s why I like asking it.
And they are the same kinds of questions I ask myself before I start looking for a new piece of software: “How, specifically, will this product help me on a daily basis?” and “After several months of using it, what are the benefits I want to see?”
By asking myself these questions, I am able to go into a discussion with a sales person with a very clear idea of what I need and what kind of benefit I am hoping to get out of it.
The answers to these questions, when put to a sales person, give them a very clear picture of my requirements. If they are a good sales person, they’ll be able to tell me if their product can deliver on them within a few minutes.
When I overhear our own sales team being asked these very specific questions or being given very specific requirements, it always makes me smile because I know that the person on the other end of the phone has invested the necessary time and energy into properly scoping out their CRM needs.
This is, without a doubt, a sign of an implementation that is going to succeed.
So if you’re just starting your search for a CRM system, make sure you can answer the following questions:
What, specifically, do I need a CRM system to do for my business?
What are the benefits that I want to see as a result of the implementation?