Top leadership experts like John Maxwell, Dave Ramsey, Patrick Lencioni, and Michael Hyatt regularly talk about the critical importance of building trust, creating clarity, building teams, and holding others accountable.
They also recommend the DISC profile as an indispensable tool for building high performance organizations.
If you’re not familiar with the DISC, you may wonder what all the fuss is about. And even if you’ve taken a DISC assessment before, you may not have realized how powerful it can be in helping you reach your business goals.
This month we’re popping the hood to take a deeper look into the DISC and how leaders use it to create uncommon levels of effectiveness.
DISC: It’s All About Behavior
Some people refer to DISC as a personality test. But personality is a complex, multi-faceted construct. The DISC focuses on the part of your personality that is reflected in your behavior—how you act, react, and interact with others.
The four letters stand for four behavioral traits that are present to some degree in every individual:
Each of these characteristics exists on a continuum and can be observed by anyone who is attentive. You may have heard someone describe an employee as a “High D” or a “High I.” What they mean is that the individual has more of those traits than they do of the other three.
It’s the mixture and interaction of these four traits that make people behave in interesting and complex ways. Knowing someone’s behavioral profile can help you to understand them better and be much more effective at communicating with them and managing them to their strengths.
DISC: It’s How You’re Wired
People change. We are subject to many influences throughout our lives such as maturation and aging, trauma, success, societal and organizational expectations, and education—both formal and informal. But DISC behaviors do not change significantly over a person’s lifetime. Studies in human psychology have demonstrated over and over again that our fundamental behavioral preferences seem to be hard-wired and stable over time.
“DISC behaviors do not change significantly over a person’s lifetime.”
Of course, we can learn many new behaviors and create new habits (both bad and good). I used to say I was not a morning person, but through diligent intention have created a new normal of getting up earlier to start my day. But when I read my DISC profile, I recognize behavioral patterns that have existed for as long as I can remember.
Knowing how you are wired frees you to focus on your strengths, be aware of your weaknesses, and gain clarity around what is the best and most productive use of your time and energy.
DISC: It’s Built for Business
I admit it: I love all kinds of assessment tools. I believe Socrates’ dictum, “Know thyself,” I regularly refer to research from the Center for Creative Leadership, which says the number one predictor of leadership effectiveness is self-awareness. But not all people tools are created for the same purposes.
Some tools are built for measuring approaches to conflict. Other tools focus on the decision making process. Others predict roles in a team context. The tool we investigated last month measures traits correlated with sales success.
One reason I recommend the DISC for leaders and senior management teams is because of its usefulness in predicting and explaining behavioral patterns in a work setting.
hireMAX has developed expertise in distributing and applying assessments from multiple developers. The version of DISC we recommend has the highest accuracy rating in the industry. Because we represent more than one developer, we can customize solutions to your needs and always give you the tool that is right for your organization.
AUGUST 2016: This month only, we are offering a complimentary DISC assessment for readers of our newsletter and blog. Experience the accuracy and insights of DISC for yourself.
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