What is Profiling?

Excellent performers have a positive influence out of all proportion to their numbers. We say these people have “It”. “It” is the combination of thinking, attitudes and behaviour that make the distinctive difference between an outstanding and average performer.

Profiling discovers how the excellent performers are different. You can use this information to increase excellent performance by making better training, selection and recruitment decisions.

How to identify what excellent performers do?

People often do not know what these crucial factors are. They discover them by explaining what they do to an interested and skilled listener. The listening uncovers what they think is crucial about being a success in their specific job. Both parties learn what the excellent performer does and thinks that makes for excellence. The best process is by individual interview. Common patterns emerge by analysing the collected data.

Stages of a project

  • Decide which group of staff to work with
  • Interview job holders
  • Analyse and classify data
  • Present data to clients in a feedback/planning meeting
  • Decide action and apply
  • Review progress, extract learning, modify or extend as appropriate


The training function obtains very specific information about the training needs of staff in key groups. The best people support the diagnosis. Job holders learn about how they do their jobs and about how other excellent performers do theirs. Cross fertilisation leads to further improvements. The organisation’s performance, and ultimately profitability, improves as the amount of excellent performance increases.

Quote from participants

We don’t want to discuss the profile;it is accurate. We want to decide what to do!

If you would like help using this idea, or have any comments or questions please contact me. Thanks, Nick