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Strengths and Blind Spots for Each DISC Style

Updated on March 13, 2010

Using The DISC Model to Understand Your Team Members

When you work with other people, your personality style will interact with their's in some pretty predictable ways. As you build a team, these interactions can have a major impact on team effectiveness. Everything from what job requirements feel comfortable to us to who we work with best is heavily influenced by our personality style blend and our knowledge of how to control it.

The DISC Human Behavior Model provides great insights into our behaviors and interactions that make building a team and working in a team environment much more predictable and manageable. Understanding these patterns will assist leaders in the hiring process, in assigning work responsibilities, and in resolving conflict.

This lens provides a brief overview of the probable strenghths and possible blind spots of each of the four main personality styles.

Photo courtesy of www.sxc.hu

Remember This Important Point...

...Everyone is a BLEND of all four DISC traits. Most people have at least two strong traits: one primary and another secondary.

Use this information to better understand people.

Don't use this information to "put people in a box."

Making the Most of This Lens

You will get the most from this lens if you focus on understanding the needs of different people rather than on their behaviors.

When people work in an environment that meets their needs, they will usually perform at a higher level for a longer period of time. So, if you are the leader, let people work on tasks and in environments that meet their needs (at least as much as you can). If you do this well, you will get better results.

If you are looking at this lens for yourself, look for opportunities to work in ways that use your strengths and minimize the demand for you to work in your blind spots. This effort will help you to stay excited and energized about what you do. If you're looking for specific insights in this area for yourself, I recommend that you complete an DISC personality test (either a full report or a mini report), and then use the access code at the Career Interest Explorer to identify and research different career options that might fit you best.

Remember that everyone (including you) is a blend of the four primary behavioral styles. For simplicity, this lens focuses on only the highest trait in each person's blend.

Beware of making absolute statements. In conversation, I say that people tend to_____, generally_____, or often do_____. In the interest of simplicity, I left most of those qualifying statements out of this lens.

So, read through this lens for an overview and then bookmark it for later reference.

I wish you much success as you apply this information. I've included a link list with links to some of my other related lenses.

Check the sections of this lens that represent your secondary styles as well for even more insights to improve your results. (For a complete picture of your behavioral style blend, complete a DISC personality test.)

Just for reference purposes, I have included the DISC Model overview here.

For more detail see these lenses:

The DISC Model

Connecting With People

Probable Strengths of People With The Dominant Personality Style

Outgoing and Task-oriented

People who are primarily outgoing and task-oriented have the Dominant personality style.

They generally have the following strengths:

  • They make decisions quickly.
  • They tend towards fast action.
  • They make things happen.
  • They are willing to take calculated risks in pursuit of a big goal.
  • They are comfortable confronting poor performance issues.

They tend to work best in roles that provide:

  • The opportunity to make independent decisions.
  • Challenging goals.
  • A fast work pace.

Possible Blind Spots of People With The Dominant Personality Style

  • Speaking or acting in a way that comes across as rude or aggressive.

  • Ignoring people issues in pursuit of completing a task.

  • Speaking in a bottom-line fashion that does not communicate everything they are thinking. (Can lead to confusion and miscommunication.)

Probable Strengths of People With The Inspiring Personality Style

Outgoing and People-oriented

People who are primarily outgoing and people-oriented have the Inspiring personality style.

They generally have the following strengths:

  • They have a high energy and enthusiasm level.
  • They think freely and creatively.
  • They interact comfortably with many different people.
  • They make friends easily.
  • They can be highly persuasive.

They tend to work best in roles that provide:

  • The opportunity to interact with people.
  • Public recognition of their accomplishments.
  • Freedom and flexibility from rigidly defined rules.

Possible Blind Spots of People With The Inspiring Personality Style

  • Losing track of time because they were talking with people.

  • Not listening to what others have to say.

  • Getting off-track from task completion or overwhelmed with details in the process of completing a task.

Probable Strengths of People With The Supportive Personality Style

Reserved and People-oriented

People who are primarily reserved and people-oriented have the Supportive personality style.

They generally have the following strengths:

  • They are sensitive to the needs of people.
  • They have a relaxed approach to work.
  • They like to help people.
  • Once they get started, they will follow-through to completion.
  • They are incredibly loyal.

They tend to work best in roles that provide:

  • A steady work pace.
  • The opportunity to support others.
  • Clear work patterns and instructions.

Possible Blind Spots of People With The Supportive Personality Style

  • Getting "run-over" by others because of fear of confrontation.

  • Not taking action because of not knowing "how" to do something.

  • Worrying so much about how people will feel that they lose focus on the desired goal.

Probable Strengths of People With The Cautious Personality Style

Reserved and Task-oriented

People who are primarily reserved and task-oriented have the Cautious personality style.

They generally have the following strengths:

  • They are often good at data collection and analysis.
  • They notice details.
  • They anticipate problems before they happen.
  • They are good at creating structure, rules, and procedures.
  • They think critically and logically.

They tend to work best in roles that provide:

  • The opportunity to evaluate information before taking action.
  • Limited exposure to risk.
  • Clearly defined roles and responsibilities.

Possible Blind Spots of People With The Cautious Personality Style

  • Getting so focused on analysis that they fail to take action.

  • Worrying so much about what could go wrong that they miss opportunities to take calculated risks.

  • Ignoring people issues (feelings) and approaching team/relationship situations from a purely logical standpoint. (Makes them seem cold and uncaring.)

What do you think? What else would you like to see? Comments? Suggestions?

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