The key to answering this question is to show how you have used the experience to improve. If you can show how the experience of failing allowed you to develop as a sales manager, you’ll make a positive impression on the interviewer.
Considering using the STAR method when answering behavioural questions such as this one. STAR, which stands for situation, task, action and result, is a method used to answer job interview questions. When using this method, you start by describing the situation, followed by the task, the action you took and the end result.
Here is an example answer to this question:
‘While employed as a sales manager at Example Company, I had been given a goal of achieving securing 25 new deals within the year. By the end of the year, I had only secured 23 new deals.
Initially, I was very disappointed in my performance. I spoke to my manager and we discussed where I may have gone wrong. We determined that I could have done more to build profitable relationships with potential clients.
Since then, I have always taken steps to build robust client relationships. This involves taking clients out to dinner and getting to know them personally. In the three years since I failed to meet my sales goal, I have exceeded all sales targets that I have been given.’