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Account Manager Interview Questions

To help you prepare for your Account Manager interview, here are 30 interview questions and answer examples.

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Question 1 of 30

What feedback did you receive at your last job?

How to Answer

The interviewer wants to not only find out what kind of feedback you may have received in the past from managers but, more importantly, determine how you handled it. You will want to show the interviewer that you were open to receiving your supervisor's feedback, took it constructively, and used it to better yourself and your work performance.

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30 Account Manager Interview Questions & Answers

  • 1. What feedback did you receive at your last job?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to not only find out what kind of feedback you may have received in the past from managers but, more importantly, determine how you handled it. You will want to show the interviewer that you were open to receiving your supervisor's feedback, took it constructively, and used it to better yourself and your work performance.

      1st Answer Example

      "At my last job, my manager told me that I was spending too much time on certain accounts. I realized that I had become so immersed in those specific relationships (because I saw huge opportunities there) that I wasn't paying enough attention to some of my other accounts. I recognized that he was right and from that point forward I made sure to better allocate my time and energy across all of my accounts."

      Experienced Example

      "My manager at my previous job informed me I needed to prioritize clients more effectively during a time when I was still new to the industry. He took the time to meet with me and helped me focus on a better methodology. With that feedback, I successfully created an improved tracking system and therefore created an opportunity to spend my time on other areas of priority."

  • 2. What motivates you to perform your best?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to find out what drives you to work hard and be successful. For the account manager position, the interviewer will likely want to hear that you're motivated by human connections since that's such a big part of this role. Whereas a person strictly in sales might be driven by commissions (money), and this may be one of your internal motivators too, an account manager tends to be motivated by solving problems and building trusting relationships with others.

      1st Answer Example

      "The reason I'm cut out to be an account manager is because I genuinely enjoy helping and getting to know clients. Many of them honestly become friends of mine; I build trusting and long-term relationships with them. During our talks, I find out what business challenges they are dealing with, and nothing pleasures me more than when I can offer them a solution to their problem(s). I always stay up on new product features so I can educate the clients and potentially solve issues for them."

      Experienced Example

      "I am a strong self-motivator. I am passionate about the role and find great joy in being successful. Engaging and leading a team to success and creating long-lasting business relationships with individuals from all walks of life are also powerful motivators for me. I find a sense of purpose in my work. Knowing that my hard work will help me achieve professional goals and watching my company grow is the ultimate motivator for me."

  • 3. Tell me about a time when you made a mistake that made a client unhappy. What did you do to fix the situation and what did you learn?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to know how you recovered from a mistake that you made. It's most important that you show the interviewer what you learned from the mistake so you don't repeat it again. Explain that you view mistakes as a chance to learn, not as a failure.

      1st Answer Example

      "When I first started working for my current company, I called an important client right in the middle of earnings season. I wasn't calling to provide any investment information that might have helped him during this time; I was just doing a friendly check-in. The client wasn't happy that I wasted his time, especially during this hectic period. I apologized sincerely and wrapped up the call so he could go on with his day. I never forgot the lesson I learned from that experience. Now, I only make contact with clients when I have an express purpose or information of value to provide, and I always pay attention to when I choose to make the call."

      Experienced Example

      "Early in my career, I had gotten so swept up in some of my larger accounts that I missed the deadline for a client. He was understandably frustrated with the lack of communication and didn't feel his business was valued. I apologized and ultimately retained the client in the end; however, it was a hard lesson to be learned. I ensure that all my clients are made to feel as if their individual needs are my top priority."

  • 4. Tell me about the largest or most important project you have ever worked on. How did you manage it?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to hear about your involvement in a big project. Explain what the project was about, how you contributed to it, and what the end result was. You can also discuss what you learned from the experience and how you will carry those lessons into the future with you.

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  • 5. Why should we hire you over other candidates?

      How to Answer

      A lot of times this is the last question an interviewer might ask you. It's a chance to really sell yourself, and you should make sure to rehearse your answer several times in advance so it flows and you don't stumble at all. Talk about your strengths and how they differentiate you from others. Be specific and exude confidence.

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  • 6. Tell me about a contribution you made to the last team you worked on.

      How to Answer

      It's important to show the interviewer that you are a team player and someone who works well with others. Talk about a time when you were expected to achieve a goal in a team setting. Discuss how you went above and beyond to help your team and how your team achieved success.

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  • 7. What type of sales and account management software do you have experience using?

      How to Answer

      There are many different software programs widely available that account managers use to organize and prioritize their accounts. Most likely the company you're interviewing for uses one of these programs. Let the interviewer know which programs you have experience with, and also indicate that you are always open to learning new software as well. If you don't have experience using any common programs, focus on conveying that you are a fast and eager learner.

      User-Submitted Answer

      "Throughout my years of managing key accounts I have used several software to help me organise my contacts , prioritize accounts, segment markets and also plan my call schedules. I am very familiar with the use of Microsoft Excel which is what I use in my current role. In my last role managing key accounts I used the Salesforce CRM - agora. I'm also a quick learner and can easily adapt to new CRMs"

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Marcie Wilmot

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Marcie Wilmot Reviewed the Above Answer

      Awesome! This is a strong answer. You clearly explain all the ways you use software (organizing contacts, prioritizing accounts, segmenting markets, planning call schedules), which software you're familiar using (Excel, Salesforce), and that you'd be quick to learn new CRMs. Perfect! Just consider glancing over the job description before the interview as well to see if any programs that you've used before are mentioned (and just so you know what software they'll likely have you use in the role).

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  • 8. Why is this job right for you at this time in your career?

      How to Answer

      Discuss with the interviewer why you are looking to make a change and why you believe you're a great fit for this role. Don't just say that you are 'looking for growth;' instead, be thoughtful and draw upon the research you have done on the company. Make sure the interviewer knows how excited you are by their specific company, open position, and industry. And be positive about your current/last employer; negativity doesn't come across well.

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  • 9. What are your greatest strengths? Weaknesses?

      How to Answer

      This is a common question that is asked by interviewers for many different role types. Going into the interview, be able to recite several strengths and at least one weakness of yours. In this case, choose strengths that are related to the account manager role (friendly/pleasant, easy to talk to, a natural networker, great at selling, a relationship-builder, organized, etc.). When it comes to weaknesses, try to pick one that can also be viewed as a positive.

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  • 10. Let's pretend I'm a client of yours. How would you up-sell or cross-sell this company's products to me?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would ask this question in order to see how you actually act as an account manager. You will need to use your imagination and pretend they are a client. Prior to the interview, make sure you research the company, its products, and the industry, in addition to rehearsing how you would up-sell or cross-sell its products. Practicing beforehand will make this type of question much easier to answer in person.

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  • 11. How do you meet your targets?

      How to Answer

      Part of being a successful account manager is being able to sell. By asking this question, the interviewer is looking for some insight into your selling methodologies. They want to know that you can consistently meet or even surpass your targets. Discuss the strategies you've successfully used in the past to meet your quotas and how you will do that in this position as well.

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  • 12. What do you think our company's biggest challenge is?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to know how much you researched the company and the industry it's in before you came to the interview. Being knowledgeable in these areas shows you are genuinely interested in this specific job. Being able to suggest possible company/industry challenges also shows the ability to think critically. Even better if you can propose some possible solutions as well.

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  • 13. If you were your own client, how would you describe yourself as an account manager?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer can learn a lot about you from this question. You will want to appear confident without being arrogant, and you will want to discuss several of the attributes and personality traits that the interviewer is looking for in an account manager. Namely, that you are friendly, communicative, capable, honest, proactive, client-focused, and smart.

      User-Submitted Answer

      "I think that my clients would consider me a friendly and down-to-earth person. They would say I'm someone who adds value to their practice and business. They would also consider me an honest person who is clear about what my products and services can and cannot do and that when I make them a promise I go out of my way to make sure I fulfill it."

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Marcie Wilmot

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Marcie Wilmot Reviewed the Above Answer

      Awesome! You sound like an amazing account manager. :) Have any clients, colleagues, or managers ever conveyed any of these sentiments to you before? If so, mention that to support the assertions you've made. Otherwise, these are all excellent qualities for an account manager to possess so good job!

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  • 14. As a manager, how do you successfully motivate your team?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to know how you will ensure your team is motivated and productive. As a manager, you will need to uncover what intrinsically drives your team members, what they are passionate about, and how they like to be recognized or rewarded. You can then use this knowledge to support, encourage, and motivate them. If you have an example from previous teams you've managed, then share!

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  • 15. As a manager, how would you evaluate the success of your team's members?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to know more about how you would lead a team. One very important aspect of managing others is continually being aware of each team member's performance. If anyone is struggling, it is your job to help them improve. Talk to the interviewer about how you plan to measure and track each team member's success.

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  • 16. Why are you interested in this specific account manager position?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to know what about this job appeals to you and why you have decided to apply for it. This is a good opportunity to show the interviewer that you have researched their company and that you understand what the job entails. You will want to express interest in working for their company and briefly explain why you are well suited to the position.

      User-Submitted Answer

      "I believe in working with a company whose primary focus is bringing about breakthroughs that change patients' lives and one evidence of this are the timely research and advanced tech that brought about the Pfizer covid19 vaccine- I'm a people person and I'm passionate about getting results and because I believe in the quality of the products Pfizer is offering to customers, I believe I can contribute significantly to growing the business"

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Marcie Wilmot

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Marcie Wilmot Reviewed the Above Answer

      Nice! This is a strong answer because your passion for the company and its products really shines through. You also mention some of the skills you have that align with the role. Excellent response!

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  • 17. When have you made an error that resulted in an account leaving your company?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants you to describe a time when you made a mistake at work. It's important that you clearly explain what happened, what your role in the situation was, how you worked to rectify it, and what lessons you learned. Be honest and take responsibility but emphasize how this taught you to do things differently in the future.

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  • 18. If you could choose between getting a higher base pay without the ability to earn many commissions/bonuses or a lower base pay with the ability to earn more commissions/bonuses, which would you pick and why?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer has asked this question to determine how driven you are to sell. Although your primary job function as an account manager is to foster new client relationships and keep existing clients happy, there is also a large sales component. The interviewer will want to hear that you are motivated to sell, which generally means that you are open to earning commissions and bonuses in addition to your base salary.

      User-Submitted Answer

      "While I'm open to most pay structures, the idea of earning more through commissions and bonuses definitely appeals more to me. The idea that I can earn based on how much work I put in will definitely motivate me to put in more and more work. I enjoy the challenge of closing deals especially tough ones and building relationships with even the most difficult customers."

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Marcie Wilmot

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Marcie Wilmot Reviewed the Above Answer

      Awesome! It's great that you indicate that you're open to most pay structures, but the interviewer will undoubtedly be happy to hear that you like the idea of earning more through commissions and bonuses since account managers typically get paid according to this type of pay structure. You come across as someone who is extremely motivated and who will work hard to earn more. Have you ever worked for this type of pay before? If so, mention this. Otherwise, great answer!

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  • 19. What do you like most about your current role?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to find out what motivates you and what makes you tick to see if it aligns with the position. Consider what an account manager does (builds and maintains relationships; upsells/cross-sells/sells; educates clients about the products; pinpoints client problems and tries to resolve them) and relate that to your current job in a favorable manner.

      User-Submitted Answer

      "In my current role as an area sales manager, I'm responsible for establishing new clients sometimes in the retail pharmacy industry and also maintaining relationships. I like the challenge of having to be innovative in the face of competition to ensure that I keep my customers happy. I add value to them by helping them manage their inventory and save costs by reducing expiries. I listen to their feedback and"

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Marcie Wilmot

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Marcie Wilmot Reviewed the Above Answer

      Nice! It's great that you start off by explaining what you do in your current role. In what ways have you been innovative in the past to beat out the competition? Can you provide more details about that and explain further why you enjoy this so much? Then finish by expressing excitement about doing the same in this new role. Good job!

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  • 20. How do you stay in contact with customers?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to find out more about how you maintain relationships with clients. Since this is such a vital part of the account manager role, you will want to rattle off the ways in which you will be communicative, helpful, and friendly toward the company's customers.

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  • 21. You have been given 50 clients. How would you manage them? What would you do first?all at your current or last position.

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to know how you will handle a lot of clients while still giving them all the attention they require. You will want to discuss how you will prioritize and organize the clients, as well as how frequently and in what ways you plan to communicate with them. It is important that you balance the needs of the clients with the needs of the company.

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  • 22. If a long-term key client informed you they're considering ending our business relationship, how would you turn them around?

      How to Answer

      It's important to the interviewer that you know how to save accounts. In other words, if a client becomes unhappy or disenchanted with the company's products or services, then as their account manager, you will need to step in and talk to the client in order to remedy the problem and keep their business. Tell the interviewer the steps you would take to fix the issue and make the client happy again.

      User-Submitted Answer

      "I would schedule a meeting with the client and try to find out what the issue is. I will make sure I listen to understand and also empathize with the client. If it has to do with the quality of our service, I'd find out what more value we can offer them for the same price and once I get the solution I get back to them on it."

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Marcie Wilmot

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Marcie Wilmot Reviewed the Above Answer

      Nice! It sounds like you have a good process in place to save a client who is considering leaving. Can you include an example of a time when you did this? Practice using the STAR method to answer this type of interview question (talk about the situation, your task/role, the action you took, and what the end result was.) Good job!

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  • 23. Why are you looking to leave your current position?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer might inquire about the reason you're leaving your current job. If you're not careful about how you answer this question, you might raise red flags in the interviewer's mind. For instance, you definitely don't want to bad mouth your prior employer (even if they deserve it!) Frame everything in a positive light. You want to be honest, positive, and bring the focus back to what the new role has to offer you versus what you currently have.

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  • 24. Tell me about your leadership style.

      How to Answer

      The interviewer might ask you this question if they are looking for an account manager who will also train and oversee others. In this case, you will want to express confidence in taking charge and setting a good example for others. Discuss how you have helped hire, mentor, and supervise others in the past, in addition to talking about the style of leadership you ascribe to. If you are lacking experience in this area, tell the interviewer about the personality traits you possess that would make you a good leader.

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  • 25. What do you know about our company?

      How to Answer

      This is an important question because the interviewer wants to see drive and hunger on your side to work specifically for their company. They don't want to sense that you are desperate for any job. Make sure to do your research on the company prior to the interview so you know what it does, what kind of products it sells, who some of its larger customers are, etc. and why you will fit in well there.

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  • 26. Why do you think you would be a good account manager?

      How to Answer

      This is your chance to really sell yourself. You know what account managers do (build/nurture relationships; upsell/cross-sell/sell; educate clients about the products; pinpoint client problems and try to resolve them) so now you need to show the interviewer that you excel in these same areas. If you have experience doing these things, share that. If you lack experience, emphasize how your personality is well suited for the role and how you're eager to learn and grow.

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  • 27. Do you know any of our customers?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer is interested in finding out if you know any of the company's clients. It is beneficial to the company if you have existing relationships with any of their customers because this will make it easier for you to introduce and/or sell their products to them. If you already have connections within the industry, definitely name drop and let the interviewer know. If you don't, indicate that you are working on building up your industry network and understand the importance of doing so.

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  • 28. How long have you been involved in selling this type of product?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to know how much experience you have working with the type of product the company sells. The more experience you have with this kind of product, the easier it'll be for you to hit the ground running when you start working there - and the interviewer knows this. If you have sold or worked with similar products in the past, definitely let the interviewer know. If you lack experience in this area, talk about your willingness and eagerness to learn.

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  • 29. How well do you know our industry?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to know how much industry knowledge and experience you have. They are hoping to hear that you are already familiar with the product types and terminology and that you have a network of connections that you will bring with you to the role. If you have a background in the same or a similar industry, let the interviewer know. If not, indicate how eager and willing you are to learn about it.

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  • 30. Tell me about your experience in account management and/or sales.

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to know how much experience you have in this kind of role. If you have had prior roles in account management or sales, perfect! Tell the interviewer all about them and how you excelled in these positions. If you lack experience in this area, talk about the personality traits you possess that will make you a great fit for this role.

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