[ Excerpt from my upcoming book, “LEVEL UP—How to make your relationships get better, your profits go up, and everything in life have less stress and more productivity, due to be published November 2018. ]
© 2018 Royce White, The Caris Group
What is the DISC Model of Human Behavior?
You’ve probably heard of the DISC Model of Human Behavior. Or something similar—Myers Briggs, Keirsey Temperament Sorter, Galen’s Four Temperaments, the Animal Characteristics of doctors Smalley and Trent, and other ones. There’s a good chance you have taken a DISC assessment at work or maybe on your own. You probably have a neutral opinion on it and probably have not used it to better yourself. Your boss probably had you take it and that’s as much as you remember. 40 million people have taken the assessment. That’s huge. Most people do not remember what their detailed assessment is. For those that have taken it, you may remember that you are a D, I, S, or C, but probably don’t remember your blend—which means your combination of DISC traits. No worries.
Why is this important? By knowing your personality profile—and other’s personality profiles, you can power through those areas that are more difficult—and because persistence is the biggest deterrent to success, you need to know where you are weak and how to get on and stay on target.
Don’t gloss over this! The DISC Model of Human behavior has a 85% plus, minimum effective rate—meaning that your assessment is correct at least 85% of the time—and usually more. That’s huge. As well, because I am a certified human behavior specialist with DISC, I have personally seen it help hundreds of people—including myself—to gain a better understanding of self and others.
If you knew that you have trouble focusing, you would be able to build a system to help you focus more when needed—and there are a lot of good systems for that. That one thing alone helped me gain the focus I needed to stay on target. If you knew that you are task oriented and weak working with people, you would be able to build a system to help you communicate better with others. If you knew that you had trouble saying no, you would be able to build a system to help you not take on too much—which can stop you from getting to success. By knowing how to assess others, how to strengthen your weak areas, you can adjust to have the crucial conversations and accomplish the necessary things to succeed. I’m going to show you how to build systems based on your need so you can thrive.
I can also tell you, that by knowing your assessment and applying this knowledge, you can have a better marriage, better relationship with your parents and kids, better relationships at work, better relationships with your students. If you learn and apply the concepts behind DISC you will learn things about yourself and others that otherwise will baffle you your entire life (“WHY do I do that??” and “Why does SHE do that?”). I use the DISC system because it is very simple and easy to remember and apply.
Don’t discount this either! Many people don’t want to be pigeonholed so they are unwilling to take the Assessment—this isn’t about labeling you, it’s about understanding you. Remember—the DISC assessment doesn’t make you something, it simply reveals what you already know about yourself but in many specific ways you probably don’t think about. So it is not making you something you are not—it is revealing who you already are deep down inside! It’s fascinating, accurate, and if you take the time to work it—it is life changing—prepare for a paradigm shift.
Here’s the key: Don’t just take the assessment, read it, and file it, forgetting it in a couple weeks. Understand it! Use it! Apply it! It’s well worth your investment of time. Really. I can say with all certainty, if you use it for the rest of your life, you will get much further-faster in all areas of your life. I teach others how to use it to get to success. My wife and I teach a seminar to other married couples how to use it to grow their understanding and communicating in marriage. I use it in business world to help teams communicate much better and help put the right people in the right places and help sales teams understand and connect with clients. The tool really is extremely valuable.
For those of you that already know your assessment, skip over taking an assessment and keep reading. For everyone else, you should take the assessment to learn your personality profile. It does cost something, but it will be the best money you ever spend—IF—you take the time to use it. Even if it cost $100 or $1,000 it would be worth it to know all the things it tells us about ourselves and all the headaches and heartaches it saves us.
To take the assessment go here.
If you don’t want to spend the money to know deeply who you are, keep reading—this is still good stuff to know…
The DISC Personality Profile is a model of human behavior and it is a fine-tuned science that will show you what type of personality you already have—how you are wired. It is not stereotyping you. It is not categorizing you. It is simply reflecting back to you in a systematic way what you have said about yourself. Then why do I need it? Because it brings a number of other truths to the surface that you have not thought about and helps you understand yourself and others much, much better.
The DISC Model
DISC stands for four personality types—
D is for Dominant
I is for Inspiring
S is for Supportive
C is for Cautious
The DISC system is a sophisticated model that will help you understand yourself and others better. It will lower stress and raise productivity. I use it in almost every situation in life. At work. At home. At play. It is true for every type of business because it’s about the person(ality).
No single style or personality is better than any other. They all have their strengths and weaknesses. Some traits will make it easier for you to accomplish in certain fields—and some will make it harder. I didn’t say impossible—just harder because you are wired differently than what it takes in that specific field. If you understand this, you can take the necessary precautions to ensure success. Some of the traits that make you good in one part of success, can be the same traits that make it difficult in another part of your success!
For example—it you’re an Inspiring personality (I), the same things that make you a great people person and good with clients, make it difficult to focus and do accounting (where C personalities naturally live—in detail). Actually, you will even struggle keeping your receipts and logging business transactions. Those things are boring and unimportant to you. Not that you can’t do it and do it well, it just doesn’t come naturally or easily—like working with your client does—and you must focus and be deliberate to accomplish it.
So there are things that come easily and things you will need to work on. I will show you how to do that, too.
Very important note: ALL of us are a blend of ALL four personality types, and when you take the assessment you will see exactly what your blend is.
You are born with these traits and the sooner you learn where your strengths and limitations are, the sooner you will be able to step up and raise the areas you are weak in and move faster toward your goals.
Keep in mind as you read this—and when you read any DISC assessment—that you are a blend of DISC personality types—not just a total ‘S’ (or total whatever trait). You will have some of all the DISC traits at differing degrees—some might be minimal or some off the charts (so to speak).
Let’s look at the four personality types and see how they help and hinder us.
You are confident, courageous, commanding, pioneering, resolute, definitive, determined, damn the torpedoes full steam ahead! You are task oriented and love to get things done. You’re motivated by power, authority, competition, winning, control, and success. In fact, that’s your claim to fame! You get things done! You are outgoing and task oriented.
You know where you’re going, you can get people involved, and storm the gates of hell to accomplish. But you can’t keep your staff/team because you burn them out emotionally and discard them. “There are wars to fight, battles to win, dragons to slay, products to sell, money to be made before your competition does and yada, yada, yada.” If you’re a one person business, that’s fine—you only have yourself to work into an early heart attack.
D’s make great entrepreneurial leaders. I say entrepreneurial because once the business grows past a few people, you start running into significant problems because you are not (necessarily) people oriented. You look for what works and head that direction. And if it fails, you chalk it up to experience and keep going. You take huge risk. If the data changes, you change direction instantly with it—which can cause havoc for your team—especially the ones whose personalities are opposite, hate risk, and like the status quo. You are entrepreneurs. 10% of the population are D’s—which means 90% of the population is not a D. Thank God. The wars would be endless…
D’s need to lower their dominant attitude when working with others. You still get to determine what happens—you’re in control—so lighten up. Be nice about it. We typically understand the what in life, but the how has a tendency to elude us (us? Yes, I have a very high D trait). If you are kind, you will go really far. Figure it out. You have the best opportunity naturally to make it in any business because of your drive. You will do better if you do the necessary homework to learn what to do and not just simply plow ahead with energy instead of wisdom. Learn what to do first and then do it better than anyone!
D teachers can see some students as lazy when it’s just that their pace is slower. You can demand that students keep up with your break-neck speed and awe-inspiring energy—without realizing it! Be careful. As a task oriented and outgoing person you can be demonstrative and dictatorial. Raise your kindness and lower your dominant traits when working with a reserved personality (C & S). Remember that they are naturally slower in their pace and you can frighten them with your non-stop attitude. Other D personalities will be right there with you and ready to move at the same speed you take them. C (Cautious) personalities share task orientation with you and can work well with you when you are precise, have good answers for their questions, and are judicious with their time. S (Supportive) personalities will improperly see your D personality as mean because you can be too loud, too fast, and too demanding. S’s are sweet and very people oriented—and they are your opposite. D’s are outgoing and task oriented. S’s are reserved and people oriented.
You are inspiring, influencing, impressionable, interesting, impressive, and involved. You shape the environment, persuade, and get involved with people. You love social recognition, group activities, building relationships. You’re charming, sociable and enthusiastic.
Your impulsiveness and disorganization leads to lack of follow-through and sometimes illogical conclusions. You can take your people down the wrong path. You need an anchor and systems in place to keep you on target. You are people oriented, not task oriented—so concentrate on the things that need to be done—not just the things you want to do.
You’re the life of the party. You live to bring joy and fun to the masses. You are the chief sales person whether it’s in your job description or not. You leave people feeling good about situations. You choose transparency over rigidity, substance over form. You’re a people person and treat others well—usually. You think of people first, tasks second… and that is your strength and limitation. You can also get so caught up in yourself so much that you forget other people.
Your main limitation is that you chose being liked over just about everything else. You can be selfish without recognizing it, thinking that you’re not because you’re making everything so much fun—and people like fun!
I’s make great salespeople. They are outgoing and people oriented. They love to perform and love taking people with them. They make great connections, but follow-thru is very difficult—possibly your greatest failure mechanism as a salesperson. You need a task oriented team member to keep you on target and to help you remember to do the homework necessary to get really good. Too often you rely on your natural talent—which is good, but not great. You need to study, practice, listen, and do the extra work necessary to get great. Don’t be lazy or you’ll end up starting to gain momentum but then crash and burn when you realize you don’t have the tenacity to stay on target and all your work will be wasted. Get consistency!!
Keep your eyes on the goal, do the work, and have fun—don’t substitute work for fun—you’ll do plenty of fun naturally. 25-30% of the population is an I.
You’re supportive, stable, steady, sweet, status quo, shy. You like routine, harmony, teamwork, and things to stay the same. You love to be accepted and sticking with what works. You emphasize achieving stability and accomplishing tasks by cooperating with others. You will show patience and loyalty and you’re a good listener. You’re motivated by infrequent change, stability, sincere appreciation, and cooperation.
Your strengths include being calm, dependable, easygoing, trustworthy, efficient, practical, conservative, diplomatic, and humorous. Under control, you are relaxed, reliable, cooperative, single-minded, steadfast, softhearted, systematic, and amiable.
In other people you will notice patience, calmness, desire for teamwork, and a methodical approach, kindness, caring, patience, understanding, and gentleness.
You like peace, helping others, friendly environments, finishing the job. You don’t like insensitivity, surprises, intense conversation, sarcasm, being pushed, and misunderstandings. You’re a hardworking team-player.
When you’re out of control, you lack initiative, you are dependent, used by others, indecisive, uncommunicative, inflexible, resistant to change, easily manipulated, slow, and resentful. You also have an over willingness to give and you put your personal needs last.
To be your best, you need to deal well with your fears and limitations. One of the biggest limitations is change. You do not like change. So you need to learn to accept change and be a lot more flexible when you can. Set up systems to notice when you are being inflexible. Tell your team that as an S you are wired to not like change. Ask them to challenge you in love and help you work toward it.
S’s make great teammates. You learn your job well. You perform well. You help out everywhere. You do a lot of the work. You will be involved in as much or as little as others want you to be. You don’t do well with D’s. You are sensitive and D’s have a tendency to step on you unintentionally which causes a lot of problems. On the other hand, D’s think S’s are lazy because they move more slowly than other personality types. Be patient with one another. D’s, remember to be kind. S’s, remember to express yourself candidly. Raise your D personality and be stronger when you need to. Don’t let others take advantage of you. The hardest word for you to say, is “No.” Learn to say it so you can accomplish the important things first.
30-35% of the population is an S.
You are cautious, competent, careful and calculating. Cognitive, critical thinking, compliance wanting, conscientious, correct, conformist, consistent. And because of all this you can be cold in your appearance toward others. You are reserved and task oriented‚ which means you are doubly task oriented. Don’t forget people!
You are the thinkers. The majority of you that went to college graduated with some kind of honors. You are perfectionists which can slow down your progress. Realize that some things are good enough and don’t engineer everything to death.
You stay on track long after others have given up. You are not pushy and you don’t have to be the leader like the D’s and I’s do—part of your reserved nature. You have little time for fooling around and you can see things in your mind unfold step-by-step. You love to be correct and hate to be wrong. Not because you think you’re better than others, you just enjoy being right—because—it’s right.
You like to keep things under your control because it ensures accuracy. You’re the ones who have been correcting my grammar as you have read this. You know what it means to do your homework and you naturally have to prove it yourself.
All this can make you seem cold and calculated, but that’s not your intention. You’re naturally curios and concerned about most things. You ask a boatload of questions which, to the other non-C personalities, can get tiring. I’s take it personally when you question them—they think you don’t trust them and it causes problems. Of course, I’s have a tendency to not be very careful with facts and the truth—they just want to get the story out—and that makes a difficult problem for a C.
C’s are your doctors, lawyers, pilots, best musicians and songwriters. You take the time (focus) to achieve the results that you want. That doesn’t mean that the other traits are bad at these things, it just comes more naturally for C’s because they can focus and stay on target more easily. Although you don’t like to lead, you will and you will make good Level 5 Leaders—the pinnacle of leadership—IF—you remember it’s about people.
One of your main difficulties is, being reserved, it’s very difficult to be up front or in sales. So you need to raise your I and D personality (outgoing trait) by learning to connect properly and to raise your people skills well. Doing the homework reduces your fears. Lots of small gigs for small crowds will allow you to address your fears and uncomfortable nature, and hone your craft.
25-30% of the population is a C personality.
The purpose here is not to say “you will be bad at a particular career if you’re not an X personality.” The point is for you to understand where your weaknesses are so you can strengthen them! Wonder why you are shy in front of a group? You’re a high S or C (reserved). Wonder why you fail to learn your job well enough? Good chances it’s in your ‘I’ personality. The point here is to understand why you have a propensity to fail in some ways and to get the help you need to make those things stronger now. Plus, knowing your strengths will help you push the good things harder when necessary and really push ahead.
This isn’t mumbo-jumbo. This is a science that has proven itself on six continents for every kind of normal person. The DISC model has been around since 1925 (and Galen’s model since 400 BC). So it doesn’t matter if you are male or female, young or old, any race, any religion, any nationality. Doesn’t matter what industry. This will help you understand yourself and others so you communicate far better and accomplish your goals much sooner. It’s a million dollars worth of information to help you for the rest of your life.
How do you find out what personality blend you are?
As I said earlier, there is an assessment you can take. Yea, I know this may be all new to you and may sound different, but it’s helped millions of people and I’ve personally seen it help hundreds of people understand why they do the things they do and help them understand others better, argue less, kill stress, and achieve more. It’s made a huge difference in my own marriage and my own work. It’s a small price to pay to help you learn to communicate better—and that in itself, will lower your stress levels and increase your productivity.
Take the time to do this. It will help you the rest of your life.
It would be a cool thing to have your whole family or team at work take it so you can see where the strengths and limitations are and you can raise and lower different traits to perform better. Better yet, have us in for a day of assessment and training and we’ll help your team communicate, connect, and get to the pinnacle of achievement. See our different training workshops in the above menu under Training.
We have workshops for —
• Sales Teams
• Youth groups and parents
• Leadership and Management
• Your Entire Team
• Church Leadership
• Financial or Engineering Team
• Marriage Retreats
• Sports Teams
• any group of people
Every person can learn a lot more about themselves and others, and build systems for greater success.
Once you know your personality blend, move to Chapter 2 and begin understanding and practicing learning and speaking others personality languages. It will help you move further-faster and give you a better chance at success in all spheres of your life.
If you have any questions about personality or about our personality training workshops, please contact us at jody@WeAreCaris.com or use our Contact Page here. Don’t wonder through life bouncing off of people and things, find out why you do what you do and how to speak others personality languages!