How a personality assessment can be a good marketing strategy
Hello it’s Scott Trevethan here from Scott Partners. I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Alan Stevens, a known Celebrity Profiler, as part of our Small Business Heroes show. In this interview, we discover how skills in personality and character assessments can be a wonderful asset and how this can bring success to any business as well as a good source of satisfaction to the employees, customers and co-entrepreneurs.
SCOTT: Welcome to the Small Business Heroes show, where we talk about everything to help your small business grow and prosper. I’m your host, Scott Trevethan, and today I’m talking to Alan Stevens.
Now, Alan is known as the Celebrity Profiler and Australia’s leading personality and business profiler. He’s been featured on national TV, profiling the likes of our leading politicians, TV, and sports stars, as well as Britain’s royalty. He works with businesses, health professionals, teachers, coaches, and parents to help them understand themselves and read other people far more effectively.
Using Rapid Pattern Profiling techniques, Alan is able to conduct advanced personality and character assessments in just minutes, and with the number of profiles running into the thousands, Alan’s services are unique and unrivaled it he field of reading people.
Welcome to the Small Business show, Alan Stevens. How are you?
ALAN: Thank you very much. Very good, thank you.
SCOTT: I’m a little bit nervous about this interview, because clearly you’re reading me and what I look like – and we’ll get into that a little bit further, but I’ve just given you a brief introduction; can you tell us a little bit about what you do and how you do it?
ALAN: What I do, as you said, I read people through their facial features, their body language, and their micro expressions. Your facial features will tell me how you like to think and process and how you like to behave. It doesn’t tell me what you’re thinking about or what you’re going to do, but it tells me how you actually go about it. So that tells me your personality. So straightaway, I know what careers, sports, hobbies, what tasks will suit you, how you like to be spoken to, so I can then speak to you in the way in which you want to be spoken to.
The body language and the micro expressions, they tell me your emotions in the moment so that I know how you’re really feeling, also down to the point of if we are talking and I’m asking you questions about something that you don’t want to tell me, I know if you’re telling me lies or not. And then using NLP, neuro-linguistic programming, that’s a way we speak to people; I then use that to confirm everything that I’ve been reading. So I never assume I’ve got it. I always test everything that I’ve done.
SCOTT: Wow. How long does all this take? I mean, how long before you get an accurate read on me?
ALAN: I would start to get that – if we were in the same area, as you were walking towards me, I’d pick that up straightaway. I’d be picking up – from across the road, you can start to pick up some of the traits that far away. So information, it comes to me before the person actually gets there. I’m always looking at whether they’re the sort of person who needs to sit down or we can walk around, got to be on the move.
As they come towards me, do they require space before I greet them? How far do I extend my arm out to them to shake their hand? How close do I stand to them? That I see before they’ve even got there. How much information to give them, how much detail, etc. I can see that in their face before I even open my mouth. And if I’m smart enough, before I even go and see somebody, I go and look at their LinkedIn page, their Facebook pages or websites, I look at their photographs, and I already know their personality before I even go and see them.
SCOTT: It’s just amazing to think that the features that you’re born with have such an impact on personality. Is there more you can say about that?
ALAN: It’s two things. We have the traits that we are born with and are passed down in the genes, and we have traits that we develop in response to our environment. Some traits are locked in concrete, so to speak, and others are traits that we change depending on our environment and depending on how our attitudes change in life as well. They don’t change overnight, but they do change over a period of time.
It’s like anybody who’s been working out. You can tell that they’re fit. If they’ve been working out by just working hard, being a laborer, for instance, you can see that they’re fairly solid and they’ve got muscle development. If they’ve been working out at the gym say as a bodybuilder, you’ll start to see the sculpted effect. So you’ve got a pretty good idea, yes, they’re fit, but how do they stay fit?
Your face is the same. When you have an expression because you’re thinking in a particular way over and over again, you use the same muscles, and you’ll end up building ridges, crevices, etc., which is what I’m reading on the face. So your face is a history of how you like to think and behave.
SCOTT: Wow. So not just the eyes being the window to the soul; the whole face and package.
ALAN: That’s right. The whole face becomes a window to the mind.
SCOTT: Wow. Does the work that you do mirror or build on the early work that say Allan Pease was doing with body language?
ALAN: As I said, I use the facial features, which are completely different. The micro expressions, the little twitches on the face, the expressions that we have when our unconscious mind responds and our conscious mind cuts it off. The body language is another support. That’s one of the four areas that which I work in. Allan works a bit with the micro expressions too, I believe, now, but mostly the facial features, the personalities, there’s very few people that do that.
SCOTT: Right. Is the nature of your services, what you do to help is to teach people to be able to read the same as you? Can you develop that level of competency? Or is it about saying, “Hey, here’s a client I’ve got to meet in half an hour; what can you tell me about this person?”
ALAN: We can do all of that. If somebody wants to learn – I’ll just say, look, you should’ve seen my background and where I’ve come from and why I started reading faces; you’ll know that I wasn’t very good at all. So if I’m as good as I am now, then I’ve come a long way from where I was. So can everybody else. In fact, when people come to me and they say, “Look, could I be as good as you if I learn from you?”, I say, “My expectation is you’re going to be better. Because you’ve got something that I didn’t have.” They say, “What’s that?” I say, “Me teaching you.”
SCOTT: [laughs] Absolutely.
ALAN: So I’ll teach them everything that I know. And I don’t just teach people – I know it’s bad grammar, but I like to use the term “I learn people.” So while I’m teaching, I’m always learning as well, which means I’ve always got more to offer them. So I can always expand on what they’ve learned so far with more information.
SCOTT: That’s beautiful. In terms of what a small businessperson can use these sort of techniques for – why don’t I rephrase this in the form of a question. How can a small businessperson use these sort of techniques in their everyday business lives?
ALAN: Breaking an organization down, you may look at the fact that they’ve got staff, so how to work with their staff and get better loyalty out of their staff. At the moment, about 80% of people who quit their jobs don’t quit their job; they quit their manager. So managers need the skills to be able to build better rapport, because if your staff are happy, they’re loyal, they’ll function, they’ll be productive in everyday goals.
And money’s not really that important to people. It is when there’s nothing else, but if you’re looking after yourself the right way, they will actually stay with you without getting any further income from you. And they’ll actually look at other jobs that may pay more and go, “No, I’m not going there because I love it here.” It’s all about being happy in what we do. So that’s the first area.
Then you’ve got the whole managers talking to each other or businesspeople talking to each other. How do you connect with those and how do you build rapport? At the end of the day, we don’t do business with anybody we don’t know, like, and trust. If we don’t trust them, we’re not going to get anywhere with them at all. So by being able to read somebody, you’re able to build rapport very quickly.
Then you look at the customers. How do you read your customers? You can’t put them through a psychometric profile where you ask questions. “Oh here, you want to buy something? I’ll put you through this examination first.” We can’t do that. But we may first come in, look at their facial features – I’ll even tell you their buying habits, how they buy.
I’ll give you an example; I was asked to do a workshop with a group of people, and I started to talk about the facial features, and one of the ladies there said, “Oh, my husband’s got those features. That’s the way he behaves.” When I found out they just bought a car, I said, “Did you buy it together?” She said yes. I said, well, I guarantee that you’re the one who wanted to know the resale value, the cost of running, what the bits and pieces that he wanted to put on the car were going to cost. Because you were looking at “is this car the value that we’re looking for?”
In his case, I said he got in behind the driver’s wheel, sat down, adjusted the seats and everything – he just didn’t get in and have a look, but made himself comfortable in there, with the door shut, looking out the window. Would probably have been on the outside going, “Look at me” but on the inside it was vroom, vroom like a little boy. She just went, “Oh, yes, he’s always like that. Wherever we go, I’ve got to worry about the expenses, and he wants this.”
So when a client comes in the door, if you’re able to read them and you know how to talk to them as well, you find out how they buy, how quickly they make decisions, etc. You know how to present to them. You know how to actually find out why they’re there in the first place, what they’re looking for, and how best to match what you have to their needs.
SCOTT: I guess, like everyone else would be sitting here thinking, that would be just an absolutely wonderful skill to have, and a wonderful asset to any business, as you say, whether you’re a leader, manager, or on customer service or any sort of people-focusing role. How long does it take before you become proficient at it, or before it can make a real difference to you?
ALAN: Some people pick it up really fast. It’s down to the person themselves. How much they actually practice it. I’m training a psychoanalyst at the moment, and within these first couple of sessions, he was using the information working with his clients. He was even working with bipolar and schizophrenic clients, and with that making instant connections with them. As he said, he was able to connect with them faster than he could before.
Other people will go away after training and go, “I’ve got to go and practice this.” So again, that comes down to your personality as well. Some people are highly confident; they’ll pick it up very quickly, or they think they have. Because they feel they have, it’s a bit of an advantage for them, so they will behave in a way in which they think they know it. Somebody who builds their confidence, who learns and then has to go away and practice it, they’re going to take longer. But I know that when they get it, they’ll have got it really well and truly. They’ll be very good at what they do. They’ll have their confidence at that point, and away they’ll go.
SCOTT: It’s a fascinating field, and one that I truly think that many, many of us would benefit from. How do people go about working with you if they want to learn more? I know, because I’ve downloaded your app. What are the specific ways that people can do to get more involved in the sort of work that you’re doing?
ALAN: There’s a range of things. Number one, I do profiles for people, where they send through their photographs, and from those photographs I can tell them about their personality. In some cases people go, “I want to know how people see me, so I know how to present to them better.” So that’s one level of profile. Another one might be, “I want to know what careers or sports and hobbies will suit me.”
Or we have a couple who say, “We want to be profiled. We want to build on our relationship.” Because we’ve got the Five Love Languages, but when you apply this to those, you go to a deeper level again. Words of affirmation – how do you speak them? Physical touch – what type of physical touch?, etc. So I’ll do two profiles for people, and then they can look at their profiles, compare notes, understand the differences, and then start talking to the differences.
And the way of learning how to talk to the differences is, as you mentioned, the mobile apps. The first one is called ProfileMe, one word, which you profile yourself or somebody else. On seven of the trait levels, it tells you a lot about that person. The second app, Profile Match, you profile yourself and you profile the other person, and it tells you “This is the way you like to be spoken to; this is the way they like to be spoken to. So change so that you’re at the same level. This is how you’ll make that connection with them.”
So that’s a place to actually get a bit of a taste for it. Because I’m looking at a total of 68 traits when I’m looking at profiling somebody within the four realms. So those seven traits are a very good introduction.
Then there’s corporate trainings. There’s also one-on-one trainings. They can be done online, face-to-face. It goes everything from reading an eBook that I have up there, which has about 20 of the traits, an introduction to those, which is called The Face, and it was designed for people to understand – especially children – what careers might suit them before they finish their final subjects and select their final career. So they can get a career that’s more likely to be conducive to their personality.
So there’s those range. So it’s virtually, you have a need, you tell me what your need is, and then I’ve got the solution for it.
SCOTT: That’s fantastic. What’s the best place to contact you? Obviously they can go to the App Store to get the apps.
ALAN: Both Google Play and iTunes for those. If they want to find the links to those, everything comes back to my website. In fact, on the homepage you’ll find links to the one book and the two apps.
If you go to the media page, yes, you’ll find out about the work I’m doing, but probably the most valuable page for them to have a look at will be the testimonial page. In there – I just counted them the other day – there’s 75 testimonials; 22 of them are videos, and 11 of them weren’t actually recorded at the time that I did the work. They were recorded nine months, a year, two years, three years, and four years afterwards. Those testimonials are proving that people are still getting results long after I’ve done work with them.
Then on any of those pages, go to the contact page, send me an email, tell me where they saw me, and just tell me what they would like to know. I’ll organize a quick phone call for them, and we can have a chat and see how I can help them.
SCOTT: What’s the website address?
ALAN: It’s AlanStevens.com.au, and it’s Alan with one “L,” A-l-a-n, and Stevens, S-t-e-v-e-n-s, dot com dot au.
SCOTT: I’ll put those links just below the video so everyone can contact you there. Alan, thank you so much for joining us on the Small Business Heroes show today. I’m sure we’ve all very much enjoyed learning about what it is you do with profiling, and I’m sure, like I am, we’re very keen to explore it a lot further with you. Especially, it can have such a big impact. It’s like a door; you just walk through it, and it’s beautiful.
Thank you very much for listening today, watching the Small Business Heroes show. My name’s Scott Trevethan. If you’d like to check us out on our Facebook page, which is the Small Business Heroes group, also you can go to our Facebook page and like it. It’s Scott Partners. Or go to our website, which is www.ScottPartners.com.au. My name’s Scott Trevethan, and you’re listening to Small Business Heroes.