Competition for jobs in medical sales can be fierce. Health care is a fascinating field, and the work environment for medical sales reps is exciting, lucrative, and rewarding for those who want to really make a difference. However, sales interviews are difficult, and interviews for jobs in medical device sales, laboratory sales, biotech sales, imaging sales, or other health care sales are demanding. That means that you're going to have to work a little harder to set yourself apart from the competition and win the job. If your background and experience are up to snuff, all that's left is the interview. Here are six things you can do that absolutely will work to make the most of the time you have in your interview to impress the hiring manager and boost your chances of landing the job:

1. Research the company. In other words, do your homework. There's no excuse for not knowing what the company does, what its current issues are, what its goals are, where its products fit in the marketplace, and who the competition is. Your job is to take in this information and use it to figure out how you can help them reach their goals....and then frame your answers to interview questions accordingly.

2. Know what kinds of questions to expect from a medical sales interview, like "Can you travel?" or, "How will you build your market?" Have answers prepared for tough (but popular) interview questions such as, "What's your greatest weakness?" (definitely use a real weakness that helps you be a great sales rep--but not perfectionism) or "Why should we hire you?" Especially be ready for behavioral interview questions focused on tough situations you've had to deal with, or goals you've achieved and how you did it. Quantify your answers whenever possible. Hiring managers want sales reps who know their job is to ring the cash register.

3. Dress appropriately, and watch your body language. Dressing appropriately means dressing conservatively with no flashy jewelry or strong perfume. If you're not sure about your job interview body language, find a book to study, or research body language online. Try making a video of yourself and get a friend to help you critique it.

4. Create a 30/60/90-day sales plan, which is a short, 1-3 page outline of your first 3 months on the job–how you will get your training, how you will get up to speed on current accounts, how you will bring in new customers, and so on. It's impressive because it is evidence of how much you want this job, and how hard you're willing to work, before you even get the job. It shows the hiring manager that you understand the company, and you understand how to be successful in the job. A 30/60/90-day plan helps the hiring manager to see you in the job, which then makes it easier to make the decision to hire you. It also helps you guide the direction of the interview so that you are sure to get your points across, and it turns the interview into a conversation rather than a question-and-answer session. You can certainly make a 30-60-90-day plan yourself from scratch, but if you want to make your life easier, you can download samples and a template with audio coaching from the Sales Recruiter.

5. Bring your brag book. A 30/60/90-day plan shows the hiring manager what you will do, but a brag book shows the hiring manager what you have done. It's the evidence to back up what you say you can do. It should include your sales stats, performance reviews, "good job" notes or emails, resume, certifications, PowerPoint presentations you've created, brochures you've done, and what types of products or equipment you've marketed. A really thick brag book with a few critical things highlighted (that you show the hiring manager) is especially effective.

6. Know how to close the interview. If you're in sales, you know how to close the sale. A job interview is the same process, except that the product you're selling is yourself. This is one of the most important sales calls of your life. Don't leave without asking for the job. Whether you ask for it directly or you use an assumptive close by asking about the next step, it's important that you uncover any objections the hiring manager might have while you're right there to answer them.

Being well-prepared for the interview will boost your confidence, present you as a better candidate, and help you smoothly navigate the interview toward getting the job offer.

Author's Bio: 

Peggy McKee has over 15 years of experience in sales, management, and recruiting. She is the CEO of PHC Consulting, a nationally-known medical sales recruiting firm. See her website and blog for more on medical sales at She offers powerful tools and tips for resumes, LinkedIn, 30/60/90-day plans, brag books, and more that will help you succeed in your job search at