Can You Be Trusted?

Let’s be upfront with each other… A job title with the word ‘Sales’ in it is often surrounded by negative connotations and unflattering stereotypes.

Sales, in some people’s minds, is nothing more than a 5 letter dirty word and is immediately met with scepticism and distrust, however, it might not always be the actions or what is said by the sales person which is the underlying cause of these stereotypes!!!

Can You Measure Trust?

Both the Princeton and Kent Universities have conducted research to measure the ‘perceived trustworthiness’ of someone based on purely their facial features. The results are amazing!

Quite simply, subjects were shown pictures of random people and asked [amongst other things in the Princeton test] to give a score about the trustworthiness of the person shown on a scale of 1 to 5. [1= Not at all 5= Very]

The results were so compelling that they have now been able to catalogue those facial features, shapes, and bone structures that will catergorise YOU as someone who people will trust or not. A vaguely important part of sales maybe?

 With both Universities having independently arrived at the same conclusions, and with ‘facial modelling’ computer software the Kent research team were able to show that with the tiniest of tweaks they could manipulate someone’s face to appear less or more trustworthy!

Gordon Brown – Ex Prime Minister

[Note… I’m scared by all of them!]

The picture on the left is the original, yet notice how in the second they have been able to manipulate it to give ‘Gord – as I like to call him’ a softer and more trustworthy features.

·         Wider / Rounder jaw line

·         Thinned eyebrows

·         Slightly wider / rounder nose

·         Rounder / larger mouth

Now… the scary one, picture 3 – This guy should not be allowed out without supervision or a tag around his ankle!

With increased thickness of the eyebrows, a sharper chin, sunken eyes and smaller mouth, ‘Gord’ has become very untrustworthy in his appearance.

Another Example

David Cameron – Ex Conservative British Prime Minister

Nick Clegg – David Cameron’s ‘Right hand Man’

Some Random Person

The Measures Of Trustworthiness [Results from the Kent research]

Characteristics of a ‘trustworthy’ face:

:: A fuller more rounded shape to the face

:: Jaw line is softer in appearance

:: Eyebrows are thinner and less imposing

:: The eyes are more rounded and larger

:: Eyes also appear brighter

:: The nose is more refined in shape and the nostrils are smaller

:: Larger mouth with thinner lips

:: Smooth face with no facial hair

:: Warmer, brighter complexion

Characteristics of an ‘untrustworthy’ face:

:: Overall shape of the face becomes more contoured

:: Jaw line becomes sharper and pointed by about 20%

:: Eyebrows become thicker by 25% and are more knotted

:: The eyes become less rounded, relatively wider and more closed

:: Eyes are further apart

:: The appearance of the eyes are dull and darker appearing subtly “dead”

:: Bridge of the nose is wider and nostrils are measurably larger

:: Smaller mouth with fuller lips

:: Facial stubble is more prevalent

The Ramifications For You!

So… I am not suggesting that you provide plastic surgery to all of your ‘untrustworthy looking’ sales team members, nor am I suggesting that you now go to your boss and explain why you are not getting the deals and hitting target because your face fails you!

What I am suggesting is that if you do a self-analysis based on the research above then you should be able to understand what your prospects ‘feel’ about you from their first impressions.

In another post, I will look at what strategies and techniques can be employed to ensure that your prospects get the very best feeling about you and your trustworthiness.

Your comments are hugely welcome.

“Salesology is a professional sales training approach which combines two crucial selling elements – the Art of Sales and the Science of Persuasion. Master these vital sales skills and strategies and let me guide you to become an ‘ELITE’ performer.” – Gary

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