How to answer the question, “Why Sales?”

Why Sales?

Why sales? A question that is commonly asked during interviews for sales positions.

Job interviews for sales positions are considered some of the most demanding interviews. The entire line of work is deemed to be high-energy, high-pressure. That being the case, the question, “Why Sales?” comes with some interesting information surrounding it.

This question is usually asked once the candidate has settled in and usually comes in rather unexpectedly, often accompanied by stoic or even lofty looks from interviewers.

It is where a well-prepared candidate can shine by thinking on their feet and keeping their cool while demonstrating all their smooth, persuasive charms.

This blog is meant to help readers understand the intent of this question and help them answer it in the best possible way.

Why Do Interviewers Ask This Question?

Interviewers ask a few interesting reasons, “Why sales?”

The interviewer is seeking to understand the level of passion in an individual. Interviewers know that sales jobs are extremely taxing. These jobs often entail a lot of brick walls and dead-end leads. Salespeople need to dig deep within themselves and find the energy and passion for going until they land the deal.

Salespeople are expected to make significant decisions at the drop of a hat. They need to think on their feet and respond with flair. Another primary reason “Why Sales?” is a favourite amongst interviewers is that it gives them an insight into how quick a candidate is.

“Why sales?” is often asked to ascertain the candidates’ real reasons for wanting the job. The response helps them understand a candidate’s motives, why they want the job, and why they are interested in sales.

“Why sales?” is also a great way to add some unexpected pressure to the interview process so that the candidate can demonstrate how they handle incredible stress.

How to answer, “Why Sales?”

While knowledge and experience help greatly, showcasing one’s enthusiasm and passion is the best way to start responding to this question.

Ideally, interviewers are looking for someone who can start talking and piece together a significant reply when they are done talking.

Your response should be confident, clear, and transparent and if you can pull it off, make it funny. Including a short, quirky anecdote will work in your favour. Just make sure it is your story. Sales whizzes are renowned for their funny stories and edge of truth descriptions of events. They all love to share those stories, and if you are thinking of using a borrowed story, the chances are pretty high that they have heard it before.

Here are a few examples for candidates to get the gist of what they should say. It is strongly recommended that none of these responses be used word-for-word. These are mere examples, and candidates are encouraged to add their personality and flair to their responses. The last thing you want is to sound like you have rehearsed the answer.


Response to why sales? – One

Sales are the first job I ever did; I knew I loved it from day one. I’ve enjoyed every day of work for the last five years. Nothing feels greater than cracking a tough deal, especially when you know how much you will change the customer’s life.

It takes me ten seconds to determine if a customer is here to browse or buy; I can see it in their eyes.  

I’ve worked very hard to get very good at this job; I love it.

Response to why sales? – Two

Sales can be a high-strung field; I try to approach every situation calmly and level-headed. I thrive under pressure. When I have targets to meet, I know exactly what I have to do to get them and how to land the sales.

It’s all about knowing what a client needs and finding the best way of presenting the solution.

Response to why sales? – Three

I love talking to people; I love presenting them with real solutions to the issues they are facing. I would instead do nothing than meet people, have a few good laughs, and walk away smiling with a signed deal.

The growth potential is excellent. Yes, I know it is hard work, but I need that kind of challenge. It is the kind of role that will give me back as much as I put in. The growth potential is almost limitless.

Use a combination of some of these examples, but again, do not forget to add your spin to it. Make it about an experience you have had.

What Not to Say While Answering the Why Sales Interview Question

There are a million different ways of answering the question, “Why sales?” You will figure out an excellent response for your situation, but here are a few things you definitely should NOT say.


“It’s all about the money.” Of course, incentives and bonuses are great, but that should never be the primary reason for choosing a role. After a certain level, financial returns do not bring the same motivation they used to. A genuine passion for selling and people is vital in sales.


“I don’t know.” It is about as bad as a response can get. Never say you aren’t sure why you are suited for a role. If you aren’t sure, you should not be in the interview room. Interviewers perceive this response as a waste of their time and a complete lack of seriousness from the candidate.


“I am the best at sales.” While this article does say you have to be confident, and the examples above exude confidence, you cannot afford to be overconfident. A good salesperson knows the pain of failing to land a deal. Let them know that you are suitable by showing it, not just saying you are the best.


This last part isn’t vital for any interview, sales or otherwise. Make sure you have intelligent questions to ask. It could be about the role, the product or what they expect from you. Walking out of an interview without asking any questions is, without doubt, a negative. Prepare a few questions ahead of time.

To wrap it all up, answer the question with a smile. Believe in yourself. Read through this article again and work in some imaginary scenarios and different responses to the same question.

Sell hard, and don’t give up. Remember, an interview is your chance to display your skills and get the interviewer to buy.

I want a sales job

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