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Voiceprint Analysis

Voice analysis on the Radio

7 June 2011 | Be the first to comment »

Last year Peter Bouw was interviewed on Dutch radiostation Radio 6FM about how he uses the VPA software for voice analysis in his recruiting and coaching work. VPA voice analysis is a unique and exceptionally helpful tool. The interview is in Dutch but we provided an English translation.

During these times when jobs are uncertain and work cannot be taken for granted, it can prove to be useful to discover where your strenghts lie. Peter Bouw owns a consultancy business where he offers coaching and works with the VPA software for voice analysis.

Select the play-button on the media-player below to listen to this interview (in Dutch)!

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More info on Peter Bouw and his company at www.notariscoach.nl and www.watzegtjestem.nl

Radio 6FM  Gooi-en Eemland Actueel

Read the English translation of the interview with Peter Bouw:

Q: During these times when jobs evaporate easily and work is uncertain, it is useful to know where your abilities lie. Peter Bouw owns a consultancy business that includes voice analysis and coaching. This aroused our attention and I hope yours too.

Q: What should we think about with voice analysis?
A: The voice analysis is a computer program developed by a quantum physicist, a Dutchman resident in Sweden, who believes that there is coherence between the emotions that go around in our brains and the voice that expresses them. We are not conscious of this, but it happens nonetheless. The VPA program has been designed to show people a personal mirror were they can see what their psychological health is and which behavioral patterns they have. Even physical fitness can be measured with the system.

Q: Is this not somewhat scary?
A: No, it is not scary. It is enlightening. People are delighted. They are shown the pitfalls they are normally not aware of.

Q: Now we reach a level that could appear threatening to people who have never done this type of thing before. Yet it is very interesting to anyone who wants to gain more insight into him or herself. Anyone who sometimes poses him or herself the question: Why do I have a problem with this or that. Anyone who wants to gain insight into what are their strengths and weaknesses. They might already receive coaching from a company coach, but they can also go to Peter Bouw and use the VPA Voice Analysis. I had never heard of this voiceprint analysis before and I believe it is truly unique, but then I am not a bellwether. In any case I do think it is special enough to ask Peter to come to the studio. You get results without having to fill in all types of questionnaires, which might even last entire days. With a voice analysis you can get a complete analysis within the short time that I have spoken just now.
A: Yes, that is correct. The VPA system has been developed in such a manner that the first minute is used to analyze the tone or key of your voice. It is used to analyze the voice. After this the software measures which emotions are present and where they might come from: Not the words you spoke, but from the frequencies of your voice. Naturally the person who makes the analysis has been trained to interpret the data to the person who does the talking. After the recording you are presented with a whole range of characteristics, amongst which: the person in his/her social arena; how a person presents his- or herself; how others perceive him/her; the emotional characteristics of a person, or their impulsive characteristics…

Q: This is something very special. You might perceive yourself as appearing in a certain manner to others. Maybe I would perceive myself as nice, pleasing and inviting to converse with, but you might see something altogether different: Intrusive, unasked for approach, asking questions you do not want to answer, etc.
A: That is not to me but the system might. The voice analysis system provides me as a certified user with information which allows me to can say: You say that you like to be around people, but is that really the case? The VPA software might demonstrate that you have trouble with authority. This conclusion would not come from me but from the system itself. I just get to see this. In the VPA system emoticons are displayed and these emoticons each represent an emotion. If the emotions provide an overall indication that someone has trouble with authority then that is a point for discussion. A point that you would perhaps not think about in another situation but do now that is it measured.

Q: On a practical note: What can you do with it if you know this?
A: You can talk about it with people, coaches, trainers: Where did this come from?

Q: Only if you have an open mind to that.
A: With any request for help I receive it is necessary that the person wants to be helped. People do not just ask me: Tell me what is wrong with me. I provide people with what can be a pain point. After this it is up to them what they want to do with it.

Q: What is your experience with the people who come to you and have a request for help, or their company has made a request for help? Do they have such a revelation that they say: I was tied in knots, but now I have a direction that I can continue towards?
A: Yes indeed. That is naturally the best result. When you receive a help request, provide a voice analysis, and provide the person with the tools that helps them forward. An example: One of my clients is a sales company of hearing aids that provides audiologists. One of their salesmen is a top salesman who scores very well in sales. The problem they have is that he needs to keep their sales management system up to date, and he cannot keep this up. They have talked with him about this four or five times: You have to update the system because we need to manage inventories, track sales numbers and manage sales. Even though they had discussed this, he could not bring it up and it was going to cost him his job if he would not improve.
To me they presented the question: Where does this originate? I had a meeting the man in question and asked him: What is your background, where are you from, describe your family life. After this I set the voice analysis software loose on him. His voice analysis demonstrated that he had difficulties separating main and side issues. Now what is the trigger for such a person? In his mind he was never relaxed. His mind was always a chaos. He always wanted more than he could do. He was not aware of this and he had to find a way to work on this. That meant either improving his time management, or learning how to relax. This could be in any manner, for example through meditation or yoga. Key was at least make this a topic for discussion. This allowed him to achieve a dedicated focus and it allowed him to do better at his job.

Q: Is there a bandwidth where you say: Some things you can change and adjust, but in other cases someone might aim for something totally different from their capabilities. A situation where you might say: “Do not pursue this any further because our analysis shows that you really cannot do it”; or “Focus on the things where you have more strengths”?
A: That is a possibility. For instance if a person grew within a company and was given the job of manager based on their seniority. They have leadership, but you get what is known as the Peter principle. Professor Peter was a researcher who found that: John was a road worker. John was the best road worker on the team. John was made foreman, but John is a road worker and not a foreman. This means he hit his functional ceiling. This can be the case for people: Someone who became manager might like it because of the salary and career opportunities. But the person has to be able to fill the shoes. They should be able to lead, to be appreciated by people, to be respected as a leader. It is difficult to become a manager if this is not inside you as a person. Voice analysis can help you to understand and focus.

Q: Can anyone use VPA and voice analysis? Not only companies but also private persons?
A: Absolutely. I am based in Huizen, but I work all around the Netherlands. At my website www.notariscoach.nl you can read about my coaching as well as voice analysis.

Q: Peter Bouw, thank you very much!
A: My pleasure.

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