An Intro to Classic DiSC

Posted on

The classic DiSC model is a personality / behavioral assessment tool that describes different personalities based on four main styles. These styles are:

  • Dominance
  • Influence
  • Supportive/Steadiness, and
  • Conscientiousness/Compliant

Here’s a high-level look at each…

Dominance is characterized by a direct and decisive approach to problem-solving and decision-making. People with a Dominant style are typically confident, competitive, and are goal-oriented. They tend to be assertive and can sometimes appear to be aggressive to others. They are not afraid of taking risks and are motivated by challenges and opportunities to showcase their abilities.

Influence is characterized by a sociable and outgoing personality that thrives on interaction with others. People with an Influential style are typically lively, enthusiastic, and optimistic. They excel at persuading others and motivating teams with their charisma. They are often creative and seek excitement and variety in their work. However, they may struggle with attention to detail and may need help with follow-through on projects.

Supportive/Steadiness is characterized by a steady and methodical approach to tasks. People with a Steady style strive to keep things on an even keel, avoid conflict, and maintain harmony in their work environment (hence this style is also called Supportive). They prioritize relationships above all else and appreciate cooperation, collaboration, and dependability. They are often patient and supportive team members who may need to be encouraged to take risks and make changes.

Conscientiousness/Compliant is characterized by a focus on accuracy and precision. People with a Conscientious style pay close attention to detail and strive for perfection. They are usually methodical and analytical thinkers who prefer working with data and facts. They are often reliable and consistent team members who are self-disciplined and take pride in their work. However, they may struggle with delegation and may be perceived as overly critical or inflexible by others.

Managing the 4 DiSC Styles

Understanding the different disc styles can help you become more effective in managing your relationships with others. The four disc styles are Dominance, Influence, Steadiness, and Conscientiousness. Each style has its own unique strengths and weaknesses, and understanding how to manage them can help you communicate more effectively with different types of people.

The Dominance style is characterized by a desire for control, competitiveness, and a focus on results. If you are managing someone with a Dominance style, you should be direct in your communication, giving them clear instructions and setting clear expectations for their performance. Be sure to give them space to make decisions and take charge of their tasks. Respect their need for autonomy and give them opportunities to lead.

The influence style is characterized by a desire for recognition, positivity, and persuasion. If you are managing someone with an Influence style, you should focus on creating a fun and engaging work environment. Allow them to express their creativity and give them opportunities to interact with others. Provide feedback on their performance and recognize their contributions, as this is important to them.

The Supportive/Steadiness style is characterized by a desire for stability, harmony, and a slow pace of work. If you are managing someone with a Steadiness style, you should focus on creating a predictable and stable work environment. Provide clear instructions and expectations, and give them time to adjust to changes. Avoid being confrontational and focus on building rapport and trust with them.

The Conscientiousness/Compliant style is characterized by a desire for accuracy, attention to detail, and a focus on quality. If you are managing someone with a Conscientiousness style, you should provide clear and specific instructions and be detailed in your feedback. Be sure to recognize their hard work and attention to detail, and create an environment that supports their need for accuracy and precision.

Managing the different disc styles requires flexibility and an understanding of the unique strengths and weaknesses of each style. By taking the time to understand your team and adapt your management style to meet their needs, you can create a positive and productive work environment.

Delivering Feedback to the 4 DiSC Styles

Delivering feedback can be a challenging task, especially when it comes to different disc styles. Each disc style has its unique characteristics, strengths, and weaknesses, which require a different approach to feedback. Here are some tips on how to deliver feedback to each disc style.

  1. Dominant (D)

    Dominant people are result-oriented, confident, and often outspoken. When giving feedback to a dominant person, focus on the end result rather than the process. Make sure to keep the feedback direct, concise, and to the point. Be prepared for pushback or disagreement and do not take it personally. Finally, highlight any positive contributions they have made to the team or project.
  2. influence (i)

    Influencers are sociable, persuasive, and thrive on positive feedback. When giving feedback to an influencer, use positive language and start with appreciation for their attitude and enthusiasm. Be specific about the areas they need to improve and provide solutions for improvement. They appreciate feedback that is direct but delivered in a constructive and positive tone.
  3. Supportive/Steady (S)

    Steady individuals are supportive, dependable, and often avoid conflict. When giving feedback to a steady person, be gentle and avoid negative language or confrontation. Focus on the impact of their actions on the team or project, and highlight areas where they have made a positive impact. Ensure to communicate in a supportive way, assuring them that you respect their contributions and see the value of their input.
  4. Conscientious/Compliant (C)

    Conscientious people are analytical, detail-oriented, and require accuracy. When giving feedback to a conscientious person, provide detailed explanations of their performance and explain where improvements can be made. Be prepared for questions and critical analysis of your feedback. Provide recommendations for improvement, and also highlight where their strengths lie.

Delivering feedback to the different DiSC styles requires a tailored approach to suit their unique characteristics. Remarkable feedback requires a careful, thoughtful, and individualized approach, taking into account the individual’s communication style, preferences, and needs.

The 4 DiSC Styles in Conflict

There are four main disc styles in conflict: dominant, influential, steady, and compliant.

Dominant individuals are direct and assertive in their communication, which can make them appear aggressive or confrontational. They prioritize results and may be seen as insensitive to others. Tips:

  • Be direct and concise in your communication.
  • Focus on facts, results, and practical solutions.
  • Present logical arguments and avoid personal attacks.
  • Allow them to take charge and make decisions.
  • Be prepared for assertiveness and a desire for control.

Influential individuals are outgoing and expressive, often using humor and storytelling to engage with others. They can become distracted or scattered, and may struggle with follow-through on tasks. Tips:

  • Engage in friendly and open communication.
  • Show appreciation for their ideas and enthusiasm.
  • Allow them to express their emotions and opinions.
  • Provide opportunities for collaboration and social interaction.
  • Be prepared for a more casual and informal communication style.

Steady individuals are calm and reliable, valuing stability and harmony in their relationships. They may be conflict-averse and have difficulty making decisions quickly. Tips:

  • Create a calm and supportive environment.
  • Take time to listen actively and show empathy.
  • Present ideas and suggestions in a non-threatening manner.
  • Highlight the impact on relationships and team harmony.
  • Be patient and allow them time to process information and make decisions.

Conscientious/Compliant individuals are detail-oriented and methodical, preferring clear guidelines and procedures. They can become overwhelmed by change or uncertainty, and may struggle to take initiative. Tips:

  • Provide detailed and well-organized information.
  • Be prepared to answer questions and provide evidence.
  • Respect their need for accuracy and precision.
  • Avoid rushing or pressuring them into quick decisions.
  • Emphasize the long-term benefits and potential risks.

Understanding these different DiSC styles can help individuals manage conflicts more effectively by recognizing their own style and adapting their communication to better connect with others. It’s essential to remember that these are general guidelines, and individuals may exhibit variations within each style. Effective conflict resolution also involves active listening, empathy, and finding common ground. Flexibility and adaptability in your approach can help navigate conflicts more successfully.

Rewards and Appreciation

Each of the four DiSC styles (Dominance, Influence, Steadiness, and Conscientiousness) has different preferences when it comes to receiving rewards and appreciation. Here’s a general overview:

Dominance (D) style:

  • Recognition: D-style individuals appreciate direct and public recognition of their accomplishments. Acknowledge their achievements in a straightforward and confident manner.
  • Tangible rewards: They may value rewards that demonstrate status or offer practical benefits, such as bonuses, promotions, or material gifts.
  • Autonomy and trust: Show appreciation by giving them autonomy and trusting them with challenging tasks or leadership roles.

Influence (i) style:

  • Verbal praise and acknowledgment: I-style individuals thrive on verbal recognition and praise. Offer positive feedback and acknowledge their contributions in public settings.
  • Social recognition: They appreciate being recognized and appreciated in social settings, such as team celebrations or public events.
  • Opportunities for collaboration and networking: Provide them with opportunities to socialize, connect with others, and engage in collaborative projects.

Supportive/Steadiness (S) style:

  • Personal and sincere appreciation: S-style individuals value authentic and personal expressions of gratitude. Offer them heartfelt thanks and acknowledge their consistent support and loyalty.
  • Stability and security: Show appreciation by creating a stable work environment, emphasizing job security, and recognizing their dedication to the team’s well-being.
  • Small gestures: S-style individuals appreciate thoughtful gestures, such as handwritten notes, a team lunch, or a personalized gift.

Conscientiousness/Compliant (C) style:

  • Quality of work recognition: C-style individuals value appreciation that recognizes their attention to detail, accuracy, and high-quality work. Acknowledge their meticulousness and the impact of their contributions.
  • Intellectual stimulation: They appreciate opportunities to enhance their knowledge and skills through learning and professional development opportunities.
  • Detailed and specific feedback: Provide constructive feedback that highlights their strengths and areas for improvement. They value feedback that helps them grow and refine their work.

It’s important to note that these are general tendencies, and individuals may have their own unique preferences. Understanding and adapting to the preferences of each style can help create a more meaningful and impactful reward and appreciation system.

Prepping for the PMP Exam?

Where does this fit? So glad you asked: