Keep Profiles of Important People

Profiles help you keep track of what makes your colleagues and coworkers happy and productive.

Stever Robbins
5-minute read
Episode #392

Summer was over, and Grandma Cuddles had welcomed a new batch of little children to her daycare center. After ceremoniously replacing all the old little tykes’ file folder labels with ones for the new group, she was ready to begin the intake process. 

Grandma Cuddles cares a lot about helping her young charges become productive members of society. Very, very productive. Behind the daycare center is an adorable vegetable garden, with tomatoes growing on tall, strong sticks, and carrots planted in neat little rows for her students to tend.

She’s noticed that some children are better with the carrots, while others are better with the stick. When it’s chore time, she matches jobs to the strengths of the worker. Carrot children work with carrots, and stick children work with sticks. Unfortunately, Grandma Cuddles often forgets which are which, and there’s nothing quite like watching a carrot child suddenly get hit with a job involving sticks. So many tots have come through the daycare center that they all start to look alike—and not just because of the “special Cuddles treatments.”

Google and Facebook have enough information about each and every one of us to turn them into their mindless slaves. Fortunately, they don’t use the information they’ve collected for vast psychological manipulation (at least, not as far as we know). Since the name of the game is psychological profiling for success, you can and should do it too.

Really Get to Know The Important People in Your Life

People are different, and you have to handle different people differently. Start to build a profile on the significant people in your life. Track how best to communicate with them in different situations. And don’t just rely on memory! Write down your notes about each boss, team member, loved one, or blackmail victim in a separate file in your reference system. I put each person’s profile in a note on my smartphone, named PROFILE person’s name. Then when I’m going to meet with someone, their profile takes only seconds to bring up. The important part, of course, is making sure you have a profile that covers a person’s most important attributes. 

Include the Love/Appreciation Languages

Include each person’s Love and Appreciation Languages. As covered in my past episodes, people recognize appreciation in different ways. If you want to reward someone for a job well done, do it in the language that they best understand.

When little “Urchin” (Grandma’s affectionate nickname for one of her students) finishes the daily quota of metal sculpture, suitable for proud display on mummy or daddy’s Bentley, Grandma just looks in Urchin’s file for the right appreciation language. “Words of Affirmation!” Grandma’s favorite! “How wonderful it is that you put in all this fine effort. I’m very proud of you!” For an appreciation language of “Gifts,” Grandma might have given little Urchin a carrot as a sweet, motivating gift. 


About the Author

Stever Robbins

Stever Robbins was the host of the podcast Get-it-Done Guy from 2007 to 2019. He is a graduate of W. Edward Deming’s Total Quality Management training program and a Certified Master Trainer Elite of NLP. He holds an MBA from the Harvard Business School and a BS in Computer Sciences from MIT.