There’s this thing you can do in “the field” which basically amounts to making a quick educated guess about the personality traits of people you encounter. It was presented to me originally as “profiling,” but it has nothing to do with ethnicities or figuring out the mindset of hypothetical serial killers.
There are two reasonable ways that I know of to do it. One involves using the Meyers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI). You basically observe the person briefly and make some snap judgements about four personality dimensions they exhibit.
Are they Introverted or Extroverted, iNtuitive or Sensory, Thinking or Feeling, Perceiving or Judging?
Then you come up with a result, like for me I’m an “INTP” leaning toward “ENTJ.”
Why this is valuable to you, and you have to do some studying to make it so, is that each of the possible 16 types have common characteristics and can generally be dealt with in ways that consider those characteristics.
A way to make the typing faster and aid in understanding how to approach people is to have a few famous examples of each type in your head and basically guess which famous person an individual is most like. For instance, if someone gives off a “Bill Clinton” vibe, you might assume they’re an ESFP and deal with them “how you would deal with Bill Clinton.”
This is not so hard as it seems and you can kind of assess people in like 12 seconds or so after a while. You’ll make errors, but it’s systematic and can help sometimes. The more you read about the MBTI and the more you practice the better you get at it.
The other system I’m aware of is simpler and is used by some airlines in flight attendant (or Sexy Stewardess, as I like to call them ) training.
Basically you decide whether anyone you encounter is most like a Panther, Penguin, Dolphin, or Owl. Then you deal with them according to your experiences in dealing with similar people. I’m an Owl.
I imagine bouncers, cops, and such must have something similar. If any of you do I’d be very interested to hear about it.