How do you prove ROI on personality profiling

How do you prove ROI on personality profiling?

Personality profiles like DiSC, Insights or Emergenetics are common in the workplace. Many experienced employees proudly claim to have completed a number of them!

Lessons are learned and the reports carefully hidden away at the bottom of a drawer until they are randomly discovered in an office move!

Some organisations use personality profiling as a standard tool and expect all team members to go through the process. Occasionally it’s part of the process that decides whether or not you’ll be joining said team!

But others have a more sceptical perspective and need a clearer view of the benefits.

Most of these personality profiling tools come with a licence fee and broadly speaking those that charge have more case studies to call on and are underpinned by more robust scientific research.

So if you do bump up against a finance director who demands to see the Return on Investment (ROI) how do you build the case?

ROI isn’t always financial

A return isn’t always a financial one. You don’t expect financial reward for spending a week by the sea but you’ll come back from holiday feeling fitter and stronger.

You might work somewhere where investment in talent development is a given and you don’t need to justify what it pays back.

But for most people and organisations return is presumed to be financial. We wrote about this in our book, Untangle Your Sales, back in 2021.

We’d all spent time on the doorstep during COVID celebrating the NHS by beating saucepans and blowing whistles. Yet you knew that the next time a pay award for doctors and nurses came around it would be driven by cold, hard cash.

Look how that played out. There’s not a clear enough ROI attached to keeping people well.

Measuring non-financial ROI

Most would agree there are many benefits from personality profiling tools. Things like:

  • Retaining and motivating key employees
  • Better team dynamics
  • More tailored customer relationships

But if you’re pushed to place an ROI on these you will need to conduct some deep research. If you’re lucky you’ll identify that customer conversion rates improved after your training course and bingo! There’s your return.

But it’s more likely you’ll need to elicit direct feedback from attendees. You might need interviews to pick out how they changed their behaviour and what impact that had. Have they saved time, improved quality or maybe nudged up customer review scores?

These are all benefits you can attempt to put a hard number against.

How does personality profiling help?

The obvious benefit of personality profiling is that it helps an individual employee better understand themselves and how they come across.

This often creates surprises (unless you’re one of those who’s already completed the full set of profiles!). So being able to assess yourself against broader business norms helps reinforce your areas of strength and things you want to work on.

In many cases, these tools are used as part of a team initiative and there’s deeper benefit in being able to compare directly with your peer group or immediate team.

Very often people find certain individuals difficult to get on with. Or maybe certain meetings or agenda topics always seem to get stuck on personalities or taboo topics.

One reason we prefer Emergenetics as a personality profiling tool is that it measures seven different attributes, all of them independent of each other.

Imagine you’re stuck in a fractious team meeting with some people insisting route A is the way to go. Others are digging in their heels, reluctant to engage in agreeing actions.

It can be really helpful to use the Emergenetics attributes to identify that those with certain Expressive preferences are dominating the airwaves whilst others are struggling to be heard.

At the same time people with a Structural preference want to understand HOW route A is supposed to work. Those with Conceptual leanings are bored of the lengthy debate.

Being able to spot what’s happening in real time and highlight to people how some behaviours are limiting progress adds real value. It saves meeting time and helps productivity and morale.

How do you profile customers?

In most industries the reality is you’ll not be able to formally profile your customers. Occasionally we come across organisations working in partnership in a way that this makes sense, but it’s rare a customer will commit the time and energy.

That leaves us having to guesstimate what our customers’ preferences are using some carefully loaded questions.

A good personality profiling tool should be a representative cross-section of the working population. So if you were sending an email to 1000 customers you can assume every personality style is included in that audience.

This means your communication needs to be tailored to tick every box. Some want a punchy headline or a visual message. Others want simple bullet points or documented evidence and testimonials.

If every sentence contained all these elements you’d be accused of using AI to generate your message. But you can check that all communication preferences are catered for in the overall look and feel.

Similarly, if you were running a conference then certain personality types are most likely to ask questions. So can you facilitate Q&A or give an option to submit in advance so those less assertive are able to be heard?

Building your comms so they reach every communication or thinking preference gives you a better return by connecting with all types. It can also be a lot of fun!

Personal customer communication

If your customer communication is at a more personal level (say your sales operation is more of a key account model) then you can focus more on your key contacts.

Do your buyers or decision makers prefer headline-grabbing pitches or are they looking for the financials? Maybe they focus on the team and people impact rather than numbers.

How do these individuals respond to agendas or pre-reads? Some will really enjoy it while for others it’ll sink in the deep sea that is their Inbox.

Asking these questions will help your team better engage with these important customers and over the years the Emergenetics team have many quantifiable examples of how it’s impacted revenue and customer uptake.

You’ll not be surprised to know that using personality profiling to improve the performance of internal teams and to engage with customers is a real passion of ours.

If you’d like to dig deeper into this then get in touch and we can explore further.