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Posts Tagged ‘background checks’

The Ideal Partner Possesses These Ten Qualities

Sunday, October 14th, 2018
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Nobody is perfect, but select, dominant personality traits make a person either irresistible, or the opposite, incorrigible.

Everyone has his or her own unique challenging personality traits, to various degrees. Severe, dangerous cases aren’t common, but given there’s at least a chance the person may be a problem for you, leaping without looking isn’t advised.

Below I list ten common, admirable personality traits.

  1. Emotional balance and emotional maturity ensure you can talk through complex issues with your partner without him or her lapsing into a childish and impossible to deal with disposition.
  2. A lack of defiance and stubbornness means your partner is flexible enough to reason and compromise when appropriate.
  3. Authentic humility and modesty translates into a lack of vanity and narcissism. The narcissist’s demands make it a one-sided partnership; he needs near constant attention, praise, and admiration, or he is likely to be unhappy.
  4. A healthy, but not excessive, desire for the acquisition of money assures your partner won’t put the love of money above all else.
  5. A big picture outlook, instead of perfectionism and excessive attention to detail, makes a better partner.
  6. The ability to cope with a reasonable amount of constructive criticism, and a lack of excessive inhibition allow for a healthy alliance.
  7. Objectivity ensures the person won’t hinder himself or herself, and the partnership, with self-deception and excessive fantasy oriented thinking. An inferior sense of discernment can potentially be devastating.
  8. Integrity is one of the most desirable traits a person can have. Those who have great difficulty living up to his or her asserted convictions make appalling partners.
  9. Honesty is also one of the most agreeable traits, for obvious reasons. Insincerity, deception, and lies ruin many unions.
  10. Transparency means you won’t be kept in the dark about important matters. Excessive secretiveness and evasiveness aren’t admirable characteristics.

Please note: clinical behavioral terms (and other extreme expressions and conditions) such as “narcissistic,” “prejudiced,” “evasive,” “envious,” “paranoid,” “confrontational,” “sadistic,” “defiant,” “emotionally unbalanced,” “mental disorder,” “dejected,” “depressed,” “psychotic,” “vindictive,” “deceitful,” “domineering,” “dumb,” “psychosis,” “pathological,” “duplicitous,” “two-faced,” “hot-tempered,” “lacking in integrity,” and “dishonest” aren’t typically addressed in assessments related to potential hires (or other, similar situations) because they are unrelated to the personality qualities needed to successfully do a job. In order to do an assessment under normal conditions within ethical boundaries, the subject first allows permission for the formal analysis. Extreme situations such as an innocent person’s life being at risk and, or dealing with a dangerous criminal might warrant an analysis involving the types of personality characteristics featured in this article.

All of the above personality traits (in the extreme—high risk territory), negative and positive, are readily identified through unconventional security investigations.

While it’s true the perfect partner, either business or personal, doesn’t exist, you can make your life easier by identifying negative attributes before it’s too late.

Copyright © 2018 Scott Petullo

42% of Felony Background Checks are Erroneous

Monday, March 16th, 2015
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According to the Government Accountability Office, government background checks identifying convicted felons were erroneous at least 42 percent of the time.

Thousands of job seekers with clean records have been flagged as criminals. Read more about the problem in this New York Times article.

Two other related problems include convicted felons who aren’t flagged in background checks, and even the most trusted databases including arrest records but no indication if the person was convicted of a crime.

Not all public record information is available from any single site and some of it isn’t valid. Public records search firms offer notoriously inaccurate basic background check reports because it’s too time consuming to check every state and local database.

It’s understandable that employers refuse to hire those with certain offenses such as violent crime or theft. However, there doesn’t seem to be a consensus on what a disqualifying offense should be for certain jobs, and the ever-increasing number of offenses an individual can be arrested for is troubling. A criminal conviction may be something victimless like being caught sans clothing with your lover on a deserted public beach late at night.

Any arrest whatsoever can ruin a person’s chances for a successful career. But don’t blame the cops. They simply enforce laws enacted by politicians, like those in the U.S. Congress.

An aside, today’s law enforcement seems more about collecting revenue than keeping us safe. Victimless crime constitutes more than 80% of the U.S. federal prison population. Trillions of taxpayer dollars have been wasted on the drug war, U.S. prison boom, harsh sentences for petty and victimless crimes, and a wasteful criminal justice system.

There is no shortage of dangerous and dishonest people in the world. The purpose of a background check is to uncover personality red flags. But in order to do this effectively, you must utilize more than just a routine public records check.

To uncover any potential problem areas, I recommend a range of employment and, or psychological evaluations, comprehensive public records background checks, and multiple interviews.

To really get to know someone, use more sophisticated options, such as traditional security investigations, and handwriting analysis, included in my non-traditional security investigations.

Copyright © 2015 Scott Petullo

What Really Matters Besides The 3 Most Important Interview Questions

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012
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The job interview is one of the most important parts of the hiring process, along with background checks, confirming employment history and credentials, and evaluating skills related to the job.

George Bradt, a contributor, succinctly captures the core essence of the job interview in 3 key questions:

  1. Can you do the job (abilities)?
  2. Will you love the job (motivation)?
  3. Can we tolerate working with you (are you a fit for the company and its current employees)?

The above-linked article is from the perspective of a hiring manager or business owner who wants to hire the best candidate possible for the job and minimize turnover.

Considering that about 40% of corporate executives leave their respective organizations in less than 18 months, existing hiring practices aren’t very efficient.

Not only do bad hires damage the company’s profit margin, but being placed in an inappropriate job also hurts a person’s career.

The problem with relying heavily on the interview process is that many applicants excel at interviewing; they’re rapid-fire thinkers who will look you in the eye and tell you exactly what you want to hear in a convincing way, even if they aren’t sincere. Essentially, just like personality self-tests, the interview process can be manipulated, and you won’t even know it until after the person is hired.

I recommend the following to avoid the above-mentioned pitfall:

  1. Conduct multiple interviews with several supervisors.
  2. Evaluate the candidate’s skills related to the job through multiple assessment methods, including handwriting analysis and comprehensive astrology and numerology.
  3. In the case of having the luxury of several good candidates from which to choose, identify the least risky candidate through handwriting analysis and comprehensive astrology and numerology. This involves looking for compatibility red flags between the potential new hire and existing staff, and also identifying personality red flags (e.g., involving people skills) that might clash with the company’s culture.

Additionally, it’s wise to confirm the potential employee’s true motivations to determine if they are likely to love the job or not. For example, no matter what they say in the interview, if they thrive in a team environment, they won’t be happy working independently.

Under stress on the job, after the hiring process and while superiors aren’t watching, a person’s authentic personality emerges.

There exist many personality traits and red flag concerns that aren’t easy to measure by only talking to an applicant, reviewing their resume, and through standard personality evaluations.

Having an accurate read of character through handwriting analysis, and comprehensive astrology and numerology, you’ll greatly reduce your risk, and save enormous amounts of time and money in hiring situations.

Copyright © 2012 Scott Petullo

Background Checks: Social Media Monitoring Service Now Available

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010
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According to HireRight, a leading provider of background checks, “…on average, 10% of all background checks adversely affect the candidate that is being screened…”

That figure may be on the rise, thanks to Social Intelligence Corp., a background screening service that specializes in monitoring social media, such as Facebook.

The company provides “…active tracking of publicly-available social media content generated by employees, manual review of objectionable material by social media experts…” and even “…near real-time notifications and alerts.”

In other words, if a job candidate or existing employee is posting questionable content on his or her social media pages, then their potential or existing employers could find out about it if the content is public.

More information here:

Although this background screening service is a good way for employers or individuals to reduce their risk, it’s only one potential part of an effective, comprehensive background and evaluation program.

To reduce your risk as much as possible, always screen carefully, and fairly, using multiple forms of appraisal, including handwriting analysis.

Copyright © 2010 Scott Petullo

Hidden Regulations Trip up Small Business Owners

Tuesday, October 19th, 2010
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A continually increasing number of government regulations for businesses makes it harder to keep current on all mandates, especially in relation to screening and hiring.

Even as the only employee of your business, if you decide to hire one or more employees, you must adhere to the same laws that larger companies follow.

Privacy Rights Clearinghouse offers an Employer Checklist and Tips section in their Small Business Owner Background Check Guide:

Also, it’s wise to always be aware of the laws within the FCRA (Fair Credit Reporting Act) in regards to background checks and screening:

In addition to background and reference checks, it’s recommended you gauge candidates’ abilities related to the job through a range of assessment methods, such as personality profiling tests and handwriting analysis. In doing so, you reduce your risk of an expensive bad hire enormously.

Copyright © 2010 Scott Petullo

Most Common Things Job Candidates Lie About

Tuesday, September 14th, 2010
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The Society for Human Resource Management’s 2010 “Background Checking: Conducting Reference Background Checks” survey includes revealing details about which background topics are most commonly misrepresented by job candidates.

Sample question from the survey:

“How often do you discover information that is inaccurate compared to what job candidates presented during the interview process when conducting reference background checks on job candidates…?”

–60% said they “sometimes” find inaccuracies with dates of previous employment (6% answered “always”)

–51% said they “sometimes” find inaccuracies with past salaries (6% answered “always”)

–46% answered they “sometimes” find inaccuracies with former job responsibilities (4% said “always”)

–39% answered they “sometimes” find inaccuracies with education background (4% said “always”)

–Only 16% said they “sometimes” find inaccuracies with military discharge information (3% said always)

–8% answered that they “always” find inaccuracies related to articles published and speaking

The survey was completed by over 400 hiring professionals.

More information here:

It’s possible to overlook potential red flags while doing background checks. But using multiple forms of assessment, including handwriting analysis, in your screening process will greatly reduce the costly mistake of a bad hire.

Copyright © 2010 Scott Petullo

Stunning Peak into Background Screening Statistics

Tuesday, September 7th, 2010
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By all means, trust your gut and watch for any possible red flags while interacting with new people in the workplace or in your personal life.

But that method isn’t foolproof, and the usual background checking methods aren’t either.

How many times have you heard shocking stories about someone previously thought by almost everyone to be the poster child of congeniality and virtue?

Employment Background Investigations, Inc. lists some shocking background screening statistics on their website, including these below:

–In 2005, there were 389,380 establishments with at least one incident of workplace violence.

–According to the 2006 report from the Bureau of Labor statistics, over 70 percent of United States workplaces did not have a formal program or policy that addressed workplace violence.

–According to the 2007 ADP Annual Screening Index, 41 percent of employment, education and/or credential reference checks revealed a difference of information between what the applicant provided and what the source reported.

–NAPBS industry statistics indicate at least 1 in 4 international credentials are fraudulent.

–Terrorism figures: There have been 25223 incidents, 88478 injuries and 44657 fatalities due to terrorism this decade.

–Drug-using employees are two times more likely to request early dismissal or time off, three times more likely to have absences of eight days or more, three times more likely to be late for work, four times more likely to be involved in a workplace accident and five times more likely to file a workers’ compensation claim.

–An estimated 3.1 percent of employed adults actually used illicit drugs before reporting to work or during work hours at least once in the past year, with about 2.9 percent working while under the influence of an illicit drug.

More information here:

It’s important to clear away the fog surrounding the true intent of the people with whom you interact on a professional and personal level, especially those you don’t know very well.

One of the best ways to do that is through multiple assessment methods, including handwriting analysis, so you can avoid being vulnerable to high risk.

Copyright © 2010 Scott Petullo

Over 50% of Ex-employees Pilfered Confidential Corporate Data

Tuesday, August 24th, 2010
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According to Ponemon Institute’s “Data Loss Risks During Downsizing” January 2009 national study, 59% of U.S. ex-employees stole confidential company data.

The survey covered over 900 participants who were fired, laid-off, or left for another job during 2008.

The type of information made off with included e-mail lists (65%), non-financial business information (45%), and customer information (39%).

79% of those who admitted stealing acknowledged they were disobeying company rules.

“The top reasons given for stealing data include: ‘everyone else is doing it, the information may be useful to me in the future, I was instrumental in creating this information, the company can’t trace the information back to me and the company does not deserve to keep this information.’”

This finding suggests it’s a good idea to take extra precautions with disgruntled employees: “It is very interesting to note that employees who do not trust their former employer to act with integrity and fairness are more likely to take the data. 61% of respondents who were negative about the company took data while only 26% of those with a favorable view took data.”

Confidential data loss can easily equate to a loss of competitiveness for any business. Are you actively taking steps to reduce your security risk?

One of the most important things you can do as a business owner, or in your personal life, is to thoroughly understand who you are dealing with through comprehensive background screening before you open yourself up to excessive risk.

Handwriting analysis is one of the most accurate forms of personality assessment. It identifies the real personality, the one behind the persona, to help you avoid nasty surprises in the future.

Copyright © 2010 Scott Petullo

Four Good Reasons to do Background Screening

Thursday, August 5th, 2010
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According to risk reduction giant Kroll, there are at least four good reasons to do background screening:

“A. Better safeguarding organizational assets. Employees have access to valuable physical assets and company information. Ensuring the honesty and integrity of the staff protects your organization and can minimize the risk from theft.

“B. Hiring the best employees or selecting the ideal applicants. A background check helps confirm that a candidate is qualified for your position through education, professional qualifications and/or employment experience. The check can also help in hiring trustworthy staff by highlighting any discrepancies on CVs or job applications.

“C. Avoiding long-term costs. Recruiting, bringing on board and training can be time-consuming and costly. Ensuring your new hire is qualified can reduce staff turnover. It can also alert you to potential red flags such as absenteeism or poor work performance.

“D. Maintaining your good reputation and building trust within your organization. The act of conducting background checks demonstrates your organization’s commitment to honesty and integrity – important values to you and your staff.”

More information here:

As outlined above, preventing theft, selecting the most qualified and appropriate applicant for the job, avoiding the enormous expense of a bad hire, and maintaining your good reputation and level of trust within your organization make thorough background screening necessary for optimum success.

Besides checking education credentials and professional licenses, employment history, and conducting thorough interviews and background investigations, it’s wise to do these three things to reduce your risk of legal concerns and assure you’re operating honorably:

–Have the applicant sign a release agreeing to background checks before and during employment

–Assess their skills related to the position through multiple evaluation methods such as personality profiling tests and handwriting analysis

–Inform the applicant that the hiring decision is based on all factors combined, including the interview process, references, investigations including examining public records, and assessment methods

Copyright © 2010 Scott Petullo

66% Report Improved Quality-of-Hire Due to Background Checks

Tuesday, June 29th, 2010
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HireRight, one of the world’s largest employment screening providers focused entirely on employment screening, surveyed more than 1800 human resources, recruiting, and other hiring professionals in their 2010 Employment Screening Benchmarking Report.

The following statistics from the company’s report stand out:

*10% of background checking results adversely affect candidates. Negatives range from exaggerations of education and experience to serious unreported felonies.

*21% of companies have endured incidents which could have been avoided with a background check or drug test.

*62% of organizations that have experienced difficulties in the last year report poor quality hires.

*66% of those surveyed report improved quality-of-hire as a result of background checking.

More information can be found here:

You can increase your chances of avoiding trouble by using multiple forms of evaluation, including handwriting analysis.

Copyright © 2010 Scott Petullo