Behavior based assessment

Vima collected and analyzed a large pool of videos together with psychological experts and computer vision scientists (to identify patterns in voice tonality, facial expressions, body movements, and spoken word that are related to specific personality traits and soft skills). This allows Vima to predict how individuals are likely perceived by others based on their behavior expression: this is how this report stands out from standard psychometric reports. Standard personality test reports give a summary of what individuals say or think about themselves. The current report gives an analysis of how experts perceive individuals.

Video quality criteria

To ensure validity and interpretability of the results, the context in which the video was recorded needs to correspond to the context of the algorithm, trained on professional self-presentations, as stated in the application (introduce yourself, your career, professional interests, etc.)

  • Technical criteria: visibility of the face and upper body without background noise (e.g. multiple people in the video, shaking or blurry video), as well as audio-quality of the voice, free of acoustic noise (e.g. background music, echo).
  • Behavioral criteria: the self-presentation topic, the individual’s language and cultural background, a relative state of neutral emotion and normal alertness, and other intentions of the individual that may deceive the system (e.g. talking about the weather, lying).

Vima makes internal technical and behavioural quality checks but does not take over the responsibility of the user to follow the given instructions.

Algorithm trained on expert annotation

Individuals’ scores reflect the impression they give to people who have a solid psychological training and experience in person assessment. The experts come from the same language and cultural background as them but are not acquainted to them.

Norm group

  • Individuals’ scores have been compared with those of a reference or norm group consisting of thousands of people. This serves as a benchmark to understand their personality characteristics and skills with respect to those of other individuals with a similar demographic background (typically gender, language, culture/nationality, age, profession).

  • Vima’s norm group represents the general population. Thus, this report is not intended to diagnose psychological disorders. It does, however, give and aid in reflection on what makes individual unique in their ways of thinking, feeling, and interacting with others.

Temporal fluctuation

  • Differences between scores from different sessions (for example, day 1 – day 2) are observed in any test, from psychometric to neuro-psychological tests such as brain scans. While temporal fluctuation naturally exists and may affect also these test results, the rule of thumb is that differences within an individual do not overshadow stable differences between
  • A one-shot result tells individuals how others likely perceive them as them behaved during that particular video. Taking several tests over a period of time additionally helps to tell individuals how they are consistently perceived, which may give a more stable window into individuals’ actual traits and skills.

No good or bad results

  • The contents of this report do not imply any positive or negative judgment or value. Person characteristics can be both assets and liabilities. Integrated within your individual context, this report can be of help to identify which characteristics may be an advantage or disadvantage given the situation or position individuals are in. This report takes no account of context.
  • Certain characteristics can be helpful in certain environments or for certain jobs/tasks, and at the same time disadvantageous in other situations. Also, characteristics that are socially undesirable in one culture may not be in another culture. For example, in many western countries it is more desirable to be extraverted. Or, high neurotic individuals will perform better for detail-oriented tasks than emotionally stable individuals.
  • Every effort has been made to present both potential upsides and potential downsides to the characteristics resulting from the analysis. Only after integration of the results in individual’s current environment, one can evaluate the extent to which they may affect them now and in the future.
  • Finally, everyone can develop strategies that help to maximize the advantages and minimize the costs of specific traits or skills. Skills are acquired through training and practice and can thus be further developed. And even though one’s personality is more stable, personality traits develop and may change over time following pervasive life experiences. Different types of coping can be used depending on the nature (stability) of the skill or trait and depending on the affordances and constraints in your environment and professional situation.

Personality

Vima describes personality profiles on 5 abstract but core dimensions that are recognized world-wide (known as the “Big 5”).

Extraversion (versus introversion)

Extraversion is a personality trait that relates to energy and enthusiasm, especially when dealing with people. High scorers are socially outgoing. Low scorers are introverted and serious in relationships with others.

Agreeableness (versus antagonism)

Agreeableness is a personality trait that reflects interpersonal interaction style. High scorers are compassionate and cooperative. Low scorers are competitive and critical.

Conscientiousness (versus impulsiveness)

Conscientiousness is a personality trait that relates to motivation and persistence. High scorers are well organized. Low scorers are not inclined to make plans or schedules.

Neuroticism (versus emotional stability)

Neuroticism or emotional stability is a personality trait that reflects different ways of reacting emotionally to distressing circumstances. High scorers are resilient and rarely express negative emotions. Low scorers are often having strong emotional reactions.

Openness (versus closedness to experience)

Openness is a personality trait that describes response tendencies to various kinds of experience. High scorers are imaginative and open-minded. Low scorers are conventional and down-to-earth.

Soft Skills

Vima assesses several soft skills[1] that are crucial in person assessment in professional contexts. Published research established that these skills 1) can be reliably perceived by humans based on nonverbal behavior[2] assessment, 2) can be translated to algorithmic protocols that predict these expert human perceptions. These skills cluster together under three high-level skills: professional, social, and communication skills.

Communication skills

Communication skills as defined by the criteria given below. Research indicated that these are the most important drivers of a professional’s evaluation of someone’s communication skills.

  1. Clear: conveying a message in a way that is easy to perceive, understand, or interpret.
  2. Concise: giving a lot of information clearly in a few words.
  3. Communicative: willing, eager, or able to talk or impart information.
  4. Persuasive: good at persuading someone to do or believe something.
  5. Confident: showing confidence in conveying the message.

Professional skills

Professional skills as defined by the criteria given below. Research indicated that these are the most important drivers of a professional’s evaluation of someone’s professional skills.

  1. Competent: having the necessary ability to do something successfully.
  2. Hard-working: tending to work with energy and commitment; is diligent.
  3. Professional: being competent, skillful, or assured.
  4. Motivated: being enthusiastic and determined to achieve success.
  5. Resilient to stress: being resilient, able to adapt to stress.

Social skills

Social skills are defined by the criteria given below. Research indicated that these are the most important drivers of a professional’s evaluation of someone’s social skills.

  1. Sociable: willing to talk and engage in activities with other people.
  2. Positive: being constructive, optimistic, or confident in activities with other people.
  3. Friendly: being kind and pleasant to interact with.
  4. Enthusiastic: having intense and eager enjoyment or interest in activities with other people.
  5. Good at teamwork: being collaborative, able to work with others.

What is a skill? Psychologists define a skill as an ability or proficiency to perform a specific physical or mental act, acquired through training and practice

[1] Did you know that voice tonality (the way you speak) is nonverbal, even though it is part of the verbal message? See it as the package or « wrapping » the words.