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Profile for Rob Scott, Managing Director of Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment

The interview is about establishing the candidate's credentials and identifying if he or she would be a good fit into your organisation taking into account personal characteristics such as presence, attitude, manner, confidence and ability. It cannot be stressed enough that taking the time before and during an interview to put your potential sales employee at ease will make a considerable difference to the outcome of the interview.

Helping the applicant out by preparing them better for the interview will result in them feeling positive and at ease. You as an interviewer will then be able to spend more time on important issues: determining and establishing the candidate's skill and fit within your culture.

There are numerous methods in which you can help prepare and relax your candidate so here are some simple yet extremely effective methods:

Who Are You and What Do You Do?

Describe the company - give an outline of the nature and history of the company, its products or services, its mission and philosophy and a few unique aspects. You should be able to provide the candidate with an idea of the company's 'personality', culture and what it 'believes in'. In addition, providing the background and titles of the interviewer(s) will also allow the candidate to feel relaxed.

Ask a 'Settling Question'

How to Relax Candidates in an InterviewGood candidates will have prepared beforehand and a 'setting question' would be something like 'How much do you know about our business?' or 'How much do you know about our Industry?'.  This will not only allow you to gauge how much depth you need to go into about your business and industry but will help settle the candidate as they are able to impress by talking fluently about the research on you that they've undertaken.

Pardon - What did that mean?

The language used when describing the company or job role should be 'jargon free' for easy comprehension, even if you deal within highly specialised work. This will consequently enable the candidate to understand more by not feeling uncomfortable by having to ask what a certain acronym means.  Remember that some jargon may only be used by your niche sector or possibly even just your organisation.  Also, remember that your management speak may not be universally understood.  I mentioned to a German candidate once about 'thinking outside of the box' and it took him a while to regain his composure as he interpreted it literally and had no idea what I was talking about!

We Are Above Average

Whilst highlighting achievements and company successes, you can cite client successes, awards won and mention employees who have performed above average.  This will demonstrate your commitment and dedication to client satisfaction, your team and its members.

Hand Over Your Brief

Brief candidates on the general outline of the interview. Communicate your plan for the flow of the interview, but do explain that this is not rigid. If an interview is based on set questions alone it can sound very boring and dull, particularly if you have both been "practising" ahead of the interview. Plan and have an agenda to ensure that you capture the required information to interview and benchmark effectively but don't be afraid to jump around the sections of the agenda for the meeting to be more natural.  

However, as I am sure you are already aware, there are some people who have greater experience at being interviewed and it will be down to you to judge how much time to give the interviewee to prepare beforehand - you don't want to waste their time if they are ready to launch straight into it.

Allow The Candidate To Shine By Getting Them Excited!!!

Throughout the duration of the job interview, help the candidate demonstrate his or her best knowledge, skills and hunger for the job. Start with "small talk" and factoring in a little "getting to know you" time by asking several easier questions until the candidate seems relaxed. This will provide endless benefits for you throughout the interview process.

You can initially look for and question an additional attribute to help the candidate relax: their passion. Find either a project that the candidate recently worked on or their hobby or interests. The interviewee will probably get very excited - they will talk more quickly, be more animated and hopefully even forget for a moment that they are in an interview. This will highly benefit the candidates who feel very nervous and uncomfortable being in an interview situation. Talking about a passion of theirs will enable them to lose all signs of nervousness.

Admittedly, in an interview situation, the prospective employer and candidate are not equal parties. There is, therefore, a risk that the candidate will be afraid to be them self, relax or argue with you because you are in a position of power. However, if candidates are given the opportunity to discuss a passion of theirs that you have little knowledge on, they will be given a greater opportunity to demonstrate their selling skills by trying to convince or inform you on a particular subject.

Make Them Feel Comfortable

There is a chance that you may have a candidate who is inexperienced at being in interviewing situations or a person who may suffer from bad nerves. You will be able to make the best of your candidate during the interview (especially those who do suffer from terrible nerves) by creating an aura of relaxation - even if you are feeling the nerves too!

If you are to use any type of recording equipment then make sure the candidate is comfortable with it - explain what you are doing, why you are doing it and exactly how exactly the interview will be recorded and used post-interview. Do not under any circumstance undertake any recording of interviews without obtaining permission from the interviewee.

It Takes Two to Fandango

Preparation prior to the interview (for example reviewing and highlighting essential points on the interviewee's CV) will also help you feel at ease. Having two relaxed people talking together will make for a more natural interview. If you are uptight and nervous prior to or during the interview, it is likely to make the candidate nervous too.  

Make sure you give yourself 10 minutes prior to the interview so you can gather all the materials necessary for the interview, this will help to reduce your stress state. If you are stressed you have a greater risk of creating havoc for the interview - being prepared and calm will help ensure things go smoothly.  Also, switch off your own mobile phone. and ensure that your team shouldn't disturb you unless it's critical.  I had a client once that was checking his emails whilst interviewing and surprise, surprise the candidates weren't interested in joining his business!

Don't Follow Your ABC's

If you are holding an assessment centre or if a large number of candidates are to be interviewed over a specific period of time (for example over an afternoon), candidates may expect to be interviewed alphabetically by surname. Candidates with surnames that fall at the latter end of the alphabet will expect to be interviewed last.  It could be good practice to list interview candidates in random order rather than alphabetically to provide variety to the interview process, manage potential employees interviewing order expectations and help Mr Zaidi manage his nerves when he is expecting to be the last interviewed.

How Many is Too Many?

Don't overwhelm your candidate with a large panel of interviewers. This will only overpower the candidate thus making them more nervous, distressed, intimidated and further unable to perform to their full capability. Certainly at first interview, keep to a limited amount of interviewers during the initial stages of interviewing, preferably no more than 2 or 3 to allow the candidate to show you their true colours.

To Conclude

Keeping the atmosphere relaxed will make for a better interview. Why? Because a relaxed applicant will be more honest, open and talk more. The more they talk, the more you will learn about them. This, therefore, makes for a better judgement and hire that will help you develop a strong, healthy, productive competitive organisation.


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Milton Keynes
01908 061 400


01543 227973

Understood the type of person we were looking for and good follow ups - not too frequent.

Managing Director, bigHead Bonding Fasteners Ltd

I just wanted to thank you for your help with our recruitment process which went very smoothly and has – we hope – found us just the person for the job!

Managing Director, Citrefine International Ltd

In an industry where people over promise and under deliver, Rob and his teams have consistently provided a high-quality service. It is great to deal with someone that has an excellent understanding of UK industry, and a passion for sales.

Sales Manager, TR Fasteners

Giles is highly professional and was a pleasure to work with. He achieves excellent results through his personable skills and tenacity. I have no hesitation in recommending Giles to anyone who considers employing his services.

Commercial Director, G4S Government & Outsourcing Solutions

Rob’s knowledge of the recruitment industry and his thoughts and how to make it better for his clients have always been eye opening. I would recommend Rob to anybody who is looking for a professional, knowledgeable and flexible recruitment specialist.

CEO, Friday Ad Online Services

I have used Aaron Wallis to fill a number of our Sales Development Manager roles and I have found them to provide a very professional service. I will use their services again in future recruitment campaigns.

HR Business Partner, Greene King

I have always found Rob to be very knowledgeable about our industry sector, and it is refreshing to see after all of these years that Rob continues to quickly and accurately understand my requirements.

HR and General Manager, THK

I really liked the YouTube presentations which made the service seem both simple and accessible. The company came to see me, and my management team, at short notice to present their service and I liked the support and advice that I received about maximising the results from the applicant.

Managing Director, Leisuresec plc

We were impressed not only by the quality of candidates you found for us but also the level of information, preparation and qualification you put into the process. You continually kept us informed of each person’s feelings about the process, which is very important but often overlooked. I am looking forward to working with your company again in the future.

Commercial Director, Incentive Facilities Management

I found Aaron Wallis to be very professional and efficient, taking time to understand the role and the type of candidate we were looking for. The candidates they put forward met our criteria and were of a high standard. The service they provided was exemplary and I would have no hesitation in recommending them, and will certainly consider using them again in the future.

HR Assistant, Fischer Connectors Ltd

Giles Phillips is a rare find in the minefield of sales recruitment; an honest and thoughtful recruiter who considers the needs of both the client AND the candidate to create perfect role matches. I look forward to working with him again in the future.

Marketing Director, City of London Police

Rob is a true recruitment professional that goes the extra mile that I have never experienced from any other recruitment agency before. If you need sales people call Rob or someone in his team, as they really are experts in sales recruitment.

Sales Director, Inside Business

We appointed Aaron Wallis in February and the successful candidate, out of the six which Aaron Wallis introduced, was able to join Alphametrics before the end of April. The whole process took less than three months. I would recommend Aaron Wallis’ services to others without hesitation.

Chief Financial Officer, Alphametrics

Since joining DSGi, Rob has been a supplier of permanent staff and has performed to an extremely high standard, successfully filling 98% of roles he has worked on. If anyone is looking for a good sales and marketing based consultancy with an informal yet professional approach, I would recommend Rob.

Senior Recruitment Consultant, DSG International

Aaron Wallis has continuously provided us with suitable candidates that have been proactively sourced. Having used countless recruitment companies, Aaron Wallis are the only company that I can count on to deliver.

Managing Director, JARK Healthcare Recruitment

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Fantastic service, helped me find my ideal job quickly and smoothly. Would highly recommend them

C. Caine, Candidate

Perfect from start to finish. Simon deserves a shout out. Best recruiter there is. If you need a job, this guy will get you one. He's like the super man of recruiters. Top man, can't recommend him enough.

M. Crisp, Candidate

Very good advice and support was given during the course of the interviewing process. Potential job seekers would be well advised to use this company whilst looking for their new career.

R. Speakman, Candidate

I can honestly say that the time and expertise you gave me was way beyond any other recruitment consultant I dealt with. You are a rarity in your industry.

S. Akers, Candidate

Really excellent experience dealing with Aaron Wallis. Liam Oakes who helped me get a great job was brilliant. Kept me up to date during the process and offered great help and advice, and a thoroughly nice guy. Highly recommended!

J. Hathaway, Candidate

Aaron Wallis have provided me with an excellent service, Giles went out of his way to help me preparing for my interview and supported me through all the processes. If you need an agency to give you a fully professional and consultative approach to finding you a new career move, the Aaron Wallis can certainly provide this for you.

D. Richards, Candidate

A great recruitment company to work with. Excellent experience with Aaron Wallis through the entire recruitment process. The team was really professional and extremely helpful. Darren was a pleasure to work with. He was friendly, supportive and gave me great advice. Thank you very much!

A. Bauchet, Candidate

Excellent experience from first contact to ultimately securing a suitable placement. Giles looked after me in a very professional and friendly manner. He used his expertise and experience to ensure I was put forward for the most suitable positions for my skill set and found me a new role very quickly. I can't recommend Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment highly enough.

M. Green, Candidate

Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment are a very friendly and professional recruitment organisation who listen to your needs, work with you and act on your behalf which sets them apart from many of their competitors who in my experience are willing to throw anything at you. We discussed my history, my preferences and my wishes - one opportunity was introduced. It was perfect. I start at the end of June.

R. Buckley, Candidate

Aaron Wallis is an outstanding recruitment agency specialising in high calibre sales positions. I was working directly with Darren Dawrance who went above and beyond my expectations in sourcing me my perfect role. I was kept in regular communication with Darren and he worked extremely hard to secure my dream job. Highly recommended and Thanks Darren for all your expertise and hard work.

R. Sealy, Candidate

Aaron Wallis helped me secure a position I really wanted. Giles saught to keep me updated with all the details preceding interviews and after with feedback. I would highly recommend Giles and Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment.

L. Taylor, Candidate

Aaron Wallis (and in particular Rob Scott) have been fantastic throughout the recruitment process, and even a few months down the line, still continues to care. Rob clearly cares about each individual and has a wealth of knowledge and expertise, which shows in the work he does. Each candidate is not just a number, and the support received from Aaron Wallis has helped me get a career which I truly enjoy.

M. White, Candidate

Excellent service, very professional and friendly, would and have, recommended Aaron Wallis.

E. Heley, Candidate

Good swift process with Aaron Wallis, informative regarding the role and the process was moved at a good pace with healthy interaction. Would recommend them to anyone pursuing a change.

S. Bartlett, Candidate

I've had a really good experience working with Giles Phillips at Aaron Wallis. From initial contact to the finer details of securing the job, he has been very professional and a pleasure to work with.

M. Shutt, Candidate

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