Soft Skills Identification in Hiring – How to Know Who You’re Hiring

What did they do in ancient Egypt that employers are still using with amazing success today? They analyzed handwriting.

Does handwriting really show the personality of the writer? Does analyzing the writing of potential job candidates work?

Answer: YES.

90% of European employers consistently use it for hiring, promotion, and interpersonal conflict. Obviously this repeat use indicates satisfaction with the results.

However, for many North American employers it is still an unknown quantity. It sounds “flaky.” It sounds just plain weird.

But stop to think about this for a moment.

We all make judgments on others by reading their body language. We watch when they walk or perform any other physical movement. We watch their facial expressions. Once we know someone well we recognize their movements as being typical and unique to that individual. We even comment about children that they have the gestures and mannerisms of their mother or father.

So why would the movement we use to write be any less individual and unique?

It isn’t.

The way you move when you write is every bit as unique as the way you move when you walk, run, turn, eat, talk, or any other body movement you make. And just as you can tell a great deal about a person when you meet them from their general body language, you can tell a great deal about them from their written body language too. The advantage of writing is that the body language is “frozen” in ink.

We all read body language, but those who have studied it and become experts can tell a great deal more. NLP, Neuro-Linguistic Programming, is one such method but there are many others. And in the same way every one can tell some things from handwriting although obviously someone who has studied handwriting analysis can tell a great deal more.

There is no room here to give anything but the briefest of examples. However here is one quick one: write on one sheet of paper and line of heavy, fast, very angular “w”s, joined together, and on another page write a line of soft, gentle curvy “e”s. Now show them to anyone and ask who is more angry and forceful, and who is more relaxed and gentle, they will of course tell you that the writer of the heavy, angular writing is more angry and forceful.

And so it goes with all handwriting. A trained analyst can tell the entire personality from writing.

One of the many benefits is that it shows “soft skills”, or personal qualities which almost everyone nowadays claims, in their resume, to have. There soft skills are extremely difficult to evaluate in someone you have just met. Is the writer honest, determined, a self starter, easy or hard to get along with, logical or overly emotional, detail oriented, organized…

Handwriting can tell all that and so much more.

Whether you learn it yourself or hire an analyst, it can be one of the most valuable tools in your hiring tool box. Someone qualified in this skill can tell at a glance each of the traits mentioned above. You can carry on a conversation with a trained handwriting analyst as though s/he knows the person intimately (which they of course do, through their writing) asking all the question you want, and getting unbiased, truthful answers. Or you can learn to identify specific traits yourself quite easily, and use that as your do-it-yourself help.

Either way, don’t discount handwriting analysis as a hiring tool because it’s new to you. It’s not new to the world, and it has been proven hundreds of thousands of times to be an amazingly useful hiring tool.

Here are just a few traits for you to look for.

The clear thinking individual will write with well spaced lines, not overlapping each other.

When you find lines of writing running into each other, for example the tails of “g”, “y” & “j” running into the upper extensions of “l”, “k” and “h” in the next line, you have confusion of interests: someone who has so much on the go that they don’t have adequate time or focus to give to any one thing. This is not a desirable trait is almost any employee.

On the other hand, if the lower case “f” is split in the middle, with upper and lower portions approximately the same length, this is organizational ability. It doesn’t matter in what “style” the lower case “f” is written, so long as some kind of cross bar or split divides it equally in half.

Then there is the trait of direct thinking. This has an up side and a down side. It is someone who has the ability to clear away all unnecessary details or information and focus on what is important, but it is also someone who may dispense with the “niceties” of polite conversation and be rather blunt and overly direct. Good in some positions, a liability in others!

So I encourage you to start looking for these things in handwriting, and as you do so you will convince yourself of the viability of this form of personality identification, and of it’s usefulness.

Writing cannot lie, and had already proved it’s worth to thousands of employers around the world.

Fiona MacKay invites you to visit to sign up for membership. Receive gifts of an e-book, Fiona’s 5 most sought after articles, access to the popular Signature Analysis Quiz, plus receive the ezine full of how-to information on handwriting analysis, personal development tips, and special members only offers. Set up your free membership account today at

© Copyright – Fiona MacKay

Author: Fiona MacKay
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