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Be­ing bet­ter placed to read and un­der­stand what peo­ple want is the ul­ti­mate com­pet­i­tive ad­van­tage.

ALAN STEVENS IS KNOWN AS ‘The Celebrity Pro­filer’ and is recog­nised as a lead­ing au­thor­ity on ‘read­ing’ peo­ples faces. Dur­ing Trans­form 2017, Alan taught the #su­per­six some of the ba­sics to build­ing rap­port us­ing fa­cial pro­fil­ing. In this ex­clu­sive, he tells Sarah Bell about some of the tell-tale signs we all carry around with us.

US­ING A face-read­ing technique called Rapid Trait Pro­fil­ing com­bined with anal­y­sis of fa­cial ex­pres­sions and mi­cro­fa­cial ex­pres­sions, as well as NLP tech­niques, Alan is very quickly able to de­ter­mine some­one’s per­son­al­ity and emo­tions – even if that is some­thing they are try­ing to con­ceal.

“I clear rooms,” said Alan on the topic of what ‘ex­actly’ he does. “Of­ten peo­ple are afraid that I will see the worst in them, but what I do isn’t about char­ac­ter; it’s about per­son­al­ity and com­mu­ni­ca­tion styles.

“You can have two peo­ple with the same traits – one good and one bad. It’s about cre­at­ing en­hanced re­la­tion­ships and un­der­stand­ing the peo­ple around you.”

In a busi­ness where first im­pres­sions count and the X-fac­tor of ‘rap­port’ will win and lose deals, be­ing bet­ter placed to read and un­der­stand what peo­ple want is the ul­ti­mate com­pet­i­tive ad­van­tage.

Ac­cord­ing to Alan, face-read­ing can be done by “look­ing at the ridges and crevices that form through re­peated mus­cle ac­tion”. A per­son’s face then tells a story of how they like to take in in­for­ma­tion and how they pre­fer to act.

“Phys­i­ol­ogy and neu­rol­ogy are linked, so your face is an archive of your thoughts and it leaves marks over time. This is dif­fer­ent from a fa­cial ex­pres­sion or a mi­cro-ex­pres­sion, which can give away the way peo­ple re­ally feel in the mo­ment,” he ex­plains.

Alan says that there are 68 traits on a per­son’s face that he uses in com­bi­na­tion to work out their char­ac­ter­is­tics. Some traits are passed down ge­net­i­cally – na­ture traits – whereas nur­ture traits change all the time.

So how might hav­ing this skill to read faces work in prac­tice? Let’s try it out with a few ques­tions.


How much space some­one re­quires de­pends on whether the eye­brows are set high or low. Those with high­set eye­brows (think An­gelina Jolie, Leonardo DiCaprio or Nikki Horner from our #su­per­six) like their space to be re­spected. They are as friendly as the next per­son once they feel com­fort­able with some­one, but they like a lit­tle bit of space and time to make de­ci­sions – they are more dis­cern­ing. Alan sug­gests, “When meet­ing them, step up, shake hands, then step back and al­low more space be­tween the two of you, and wait for them to ini­ti­ate closer con­tact.”

Those with low-set eye­brows (think Lily Collins, The Bach­e­lor Sam Wood or Darin from our #su­per­six) are more ap­proach­able. Alan sug­gests wear­ing softer colours to help soften per­ceived for­mal­ity and you will ap­pear more ap­proach­able.


An in­di­vid­ual’s eye­lids will let you know how much de­tail that per­son likes. Those with ex­posed eye­lids are big-pic­ture thinkers (think Jared Leto, Mila Ku­nis or Lukas from our #su­per­six). Alan says that th­ese peo­ple ‘want you to get to the point’. and will tend to in­ter­rupt you or fin­ish off your sen­tence for you. By con­trast, those with con­cealed eye­lids (think Re­nee Zell­weger, Prince Harry or Michael from our #su­per­six) “tend to over-an­a­lyse sit­u­a­tions and things. Be pre­pared for lots of ques­tions.”


Ac­cord­ing to Alan, the dis­tance be­tween the eyes in­di­cates how tol­er­ant a per­son is. Wide-set eyes (think Kate Moss, Will Smith or Leanne from our #su­per­six) are con­sid­ered more tol­er­ant. “It takes them longer to re­act than those with clos­eset eyes, but it also takes them a long time to let go of is­sues.” Those with closer-set eyes (think Sarah-Jes­sica Parker, Liam Hemsworth and Ben from our #su­per­six) don’t like to be in­ter­rupted as they be­come “very fo­cused on tasks”, ac­cord­ing to Alan, and while quick to re­act, they are also “quick to let things go and for­get”.

Alan says that even just mas­ter­ing th­ese three traits could help set you apart from your com­peti­tors, help­ing you to con­nect and build rap­port with po­ten­tial clients by match­ing your pre­sent­ing and com­mu­ni­ca­tion with their level of space, in­for­ma­tion and tolerance. SARAH BELL

Alan Stevens

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