DISC is Like an Instruction Manual for People
People are different and different people respond differently to the same stimuli. It’s not that there is a wrong or a right way but rather that it’s important to understand the differences between people. DISC is a powerful tool that you can use to:
- Manage People Better by understanding their strengths, weaknesses, how to communicate with them and motivate them
- Manage Yourself Better AKA Self Leadership by knowing what makes you different to other people and what blindspots you have that are holding yourself back. (To find out your Leadership Strengths and Blindspots take the fun Boss SuperPower Quiz)
- Recruit Better by finding people who are naturally suited to the job and avoiding people with the wrong temperament for certain roles. (For a step by step process to use a DISC assessment to avoid bad hires and pick the most suited job candidates see this article).
- Job Search Better by knowing what roles you are suited for, identifying and communicating your strengths and weaknesses (see how this works with this free resource: The Job Seeker Skill Finder) AND (See article: What Recruiters Do with Personality Tests)
- "Manage" Your Boss Better by understanding your boss better (PS If you're unhappy or not progressing in your job this is usually a sign that something is going wrong in your relationship and communications with your boss - I have a free mini-course to help you improve this with Better One-on-Ones with your Boss) and
- Have Better Personal Relationships by understanding the people around you and how to communicate with them so they understand you
My personal experience is that having a tool like DISC is a vital life skill, because whether you are working with yourself, colleagues or personal relationships, people are different. And understanding these differences is the key to success and avoiding failure. There is more on these topics below:
DISC is a behavior model to help you to understand different types OF People to:
- Understand the natural tendencies of different types of people
- Know how you can be better understood,
- Understand what motivates different people so that you can encourage them to do what you want and
- Increase employee engagement.
DISC can also give you insight into your own natural tendencies. This explains how you are different to most other people and how you are similar to some types of people. DISC underlines what your strengths are and what natural tendencies might be holding you back.
The DISC TEST is Based on 4 Quadrants
DISC has 4 behavior quadrants. There aren’t good behaviors or bad behaviors. There aren't bad DISC quadrants and good DISC quadrants. Each DISC quadrant has tendencies that can be strengths as well as weaknesses. If your default behavior style is not compatible with someone then you are not likely to understand them, nor they you. It is similar to speaking a different language. The DISC behavior model is not the only model but we use it because it is validated, it has elegant simplicity and the theory converts well into practical applications.
Why is DISC Important in Business?
You can choose your friends but in business you have to be effective with all types of people, even if you do not naturally match their type.
- DISC behaviour differences can manifest into flawed communications, dysfunctional relationships and conflict.
- A business that uses the strengths of different behavior types will be much more successful than a monoculture. (Managers make the mistake of hiring people like themselves. Don't hire people like you, hire the right people for the job)
- The DISC behaviour model can inform you about your natural leadership style and how to adjust your leadership style to get better management results
- Each behavior type has some tendencies which can be detrimental to business if they are not managed.
Are you a manager looking to find out your management strengths, reveal blind spots and get customised management strategies to be a better boss? For less than the price of a single session of a business coach you can be comprehensively assessed in under 30 minutes. Get a professional DISC for managers profile here.
How does DISC support Managers?
Understanding DISC is so important in managing people that it is one of the Foundational Skills. Some of the Foundational Manager skills include: Performance Communication, Delegating, Developing Employees because these managers need to master these skills to become good managers. Manager Foundation uses action oriented steps that any manager can use with any member of staff. But it is more effective to adjust your interactions to the individual. The DISC model provides a simple but effective behavior model. Using behavior models with the Manager Foundation management techniques is an incredibly powerful combination.
Managing employees is a complex job - people are different and what works for one employee doesn't work for everyone else. Are you a manager looking to find out how to motivate your employees, discover their strengths and be warned about their risky negative tendencies? Find out your employees DISC profiles here.
Tip: Regular, high quality one-on-one meetings with your employees are the ideal forum for you to get to know your staff and to build great functioning relationships between bosses and employees. Plus, do one-on-ones right and not only can you can take care of almost all your management responsibilities in one go but they will also deliver you to manager Nirvana. And because functional relationships are so important to work happiness and productivity I made a mini-course on one-on-ones (including a one-on-one form that you can use to make notes about your employee's DISC styles) which will show you 3 Easy Steps 2 1 on 1's. What I expect you'll find is that you already know some of the content on some type of level but maybe you're not putting it into practice. This will help. This is essential for new managers and helpful for experienced managers.
DISC in recruitment
We all know that different types of people are more suited to different types of jobs. But interviewing alone doesn't give you a deep insight into the strengths, weaknesses or behaviour tendencies of job candidates. Candidates are on their best behavior and it's too late to discover problems after hiring them. Psychometric tests aren't a replacement for an interview process but rather skilled recruiters use them to reveal potential problem areas. Because hiring the wrong person is one of the biggest mistakes that you can make as a Manager. Recruiters can use DISC assessments to pick the right person for the job. Interviewing provides qualitative information and a DISC assessment is a great qualitative complement.
Are you recruiting and don't want to end up with the huge financial, time and emotional cost of a bad hire? Get another "expert" perspective. Best of all these tests can't be fooled by "best behaviour".
Tip: To read more about how to use psychometric profiles in recruiting, read this article. (Contains a step by step process, when to do testing, what to do when candidates don't match)
Super User Tip for Recruiters: Get help with DISC plus other recruitment resources such as: Hiring Checklist, Interview Questions and Answers, How to Avoid Bad Hires by registering over here. (Free Trial available)
DISC for Job Seekers (and self leadership)
DISC is a powerful tool for Job Seekers because:
You can use DISC to find the job that is right for you.
- If you feel you have skills that are under utilised and if you find parts of your job that you dislike and struggle with then this is a sign that you're in the wrong job. The first part of a job search is determining what job to look for and when I do career consulting I've found DISC to be a great shortcut to reveal what types of jobs suit people.
You can use DISC to strengthen your resume and get more interviews
- A resume is meant to describe and sell you so that you can get an interview. A DISC assessment is a great way to scientifically determine and describe who you are and what you are good at
You can use DISC to Interview better and get job offers
- Knowing your value proposition and how you compare to the general population is a powerful way to interview success. When I do interview coaching I use your DISC assessment to make an answer to the "Strengths and Weaknesses" interview question that blows the socks off interviewers. Many recruiters will put you through a psychometric test. If they know your profile and you don't you'll be at a disadvantage. You can find out what recruiters do with your Psychometric test and how to prepare for it over here: http://managerfoundation.com/blog/what-recruiters-do-with-your-personality-test
Tip for Managing Upwards (aka Managing your Boss):
Understanding your bosses DISC profile will improve your relationship with your boss and allow you to meet more of your bosses needs with less effort. Knowing your bosses DISC profile will improve your communications with your boss. This is good for you, your boss and the organization. Find out more in Managing Upwards.
PS: Your boss is the key to progressing in your career and having a happy working life. I recommend starting with improving your communications. This will:
- Get your achievements recognised
- Make sure you are working on the right things
- Make sure you aren't wasting your time on things your boss doesn't want and
- Get you work that you enjoy and are good at
DISC Behavior Models, Not Just for Business:
I personally believe DISC is a life skill with the ability to improve almost every aspect of your life. Whether this is getting people to listen to what you are saying, improving your relationships with family, friends, partners or even strangers. Signs that DISC is relevant for you include:
- Naturally getting on well with some people but not with others;
- People not listening to what you say or not acting on your requests;
- Not getting on well with your boss;
- Relationships with peers and employees not working as well as they should;
- Not knowing what of your natural tendencies may be holding you back.
DISC assessments - a good place to start:
To put DISC into action I recommend starting with a DISC assessment. A DISC assessment will establish an individual's DISC profile. I suggest that managers do an assessment for themselves as well as get team members assessed. Doing your own assessment will identify your leadership style, strengths and weaknesses. Assessing team members will give you insight into your employees motivators and employee strengths and weaknesses. Doing both assessments will inform you about the relationship dynamics.
Putting DISC behavior models into action:
A DISC assessment is a good starting point but it doesn't tell you how to: improve your communication skills, have better relationships or how to get better employee performance and productivity. The resources that Manager Foundation provides are specifically targeted at putting the very powerful DISC theory into practical use. There are three starter level courses which are:
- DISC101 Introduction to DISC. DISC for everyone: Using DISC in everyday life for better communications and relationships. More...
- DISC102 DISC for Managers. How to use DISC to adapt your management style for better management results and employee motivation. More...
- DISC103 Dynamic, everyday DISC. DISC is powerful but getting someone to take a DISC assessment can be impractical. DISC assessments also don't show you how to adapt your everyday communications. This module includes a technique that you can use to: 1. Dynamically identify someone's DISC profile. And 2. Adjust your communications while you are speaking or corresponding. More...
Where to get your DISC assessment:
There are many online resources for DISC assessments of varying quality and price. We recommend to look for a DISC assessment that is: Well established, certified, up-to-date, accurate, helpful and complete. We also like having the option for a qualified consultant to explain what the DISC assessment means to you and how you can put it into action. Because too many times we've seen people do DISC assessments and then put them in their drawers, never to be seen again. To save you the time evaluating all the different options we've tested many and can recommend one that fits all the criteria. We've negotiated a bulk purchasing deal to make this price competitive.