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All 3 of Donnas co-workers agreed, they admired her drive and determination to get projects done, but she had a way of rubbing them the wrong way at times.
Donna, a graduate of the Wharton School of Business stands about 5-foot 1 with short brown hair and would remind you of Sandra Bullock. She speaks fast, with a matter of fact tone of voice, appearing arrogant at times.
At work, Donna is so focused on completing her projects she has no idea her co-workers admire her at all and definitely is unaware she rubs anyone the wrong way at times.
In short, Donna is completely unaware of how others perceive her in the workplace.
Do you work with a Donna? Maybe you can relate to her.
Here’s the thing, the vast majority of people have very little insight into how others really perceive them.
In this chapter, you're going to learn how to understand yourself and others better which will help you build rapport faster.
We’ll help you answer questions like why do you get along with some people so well, yet clash with others instantly? Why is it so easy to predict some people’s behavior, while others completely puzzle you?
The key to unlocking these answers comes down to understanding personality types.
By the end of this chapter you’ll have a better understanding of why you make certain decisions, how to build more effective personal and professional relationships, and instantly save 5 years of interpersonal frustrations in less than 60 seconds by taking our free personality quiz.
When it comes to building rapport, understanding your personality is one of the most overlooked aspects of this subject.
Think about it for a moment, if you don’t have a good idea about yourself, how will you know how others really see you? The most skilled business people in the world have mastered themselves and how others perceived them in the workplace.
If you're like Donna, struggling to understand your personality, where do you start?
At the very basic level of understanding your personality type, all you need to do is ask yourself 2 quick questions.
First: Are you more outgoing or more reserved?
Second: Are you more task-oriented or more people-oriented?
With these 2 answers, you'll have the building blocks of your personality type.
Before we jump into your personality type, let’s take a quick look at how the brain itself plays an important role in your personality.
The theory of left-brain right-brain dominance is based on your preferred type of thinking.
Someone who is more left-brained dominant is considered a more logical, analytical, and objective thinker. They also tend to have strong math and logic skills.
Someone who is more right-brained dominant is considered a more intuitive, thoughtful, and subjective thinker. They also tend to be more creative.
To take things one step further, we created the theory of front-brain back-brain dominance which is based on your preferred way of interacting with people.
Someone who is front-brained dominant is naturally extroverted and prefers to interact with people, while they tend to lose energy when spending long periods of time alone.
Someone who is back-brained dominant is naturally introverted and prefers to spend time alone. They tend to lose energy when they have to interact with people or crowds for long periods of time.
If you look closely at these 2 theories, you'll notice that the brain is divided into four quadrants and is the blueprint for DISC.
What exactly is DISC anyway?
DISC is a behavioral model based on universal personality characteristics that are grouped into four specific quadrants.
DISC acts as a framework to determine what personality style you are most dominant in.
It’s important to understand that although you're more dominant in one of the four quadrants, your personality can be a combination of multiple quadrants, which is commonly referred as your unique personality BLEND. We'll discuss this in more detail later.
Your dominant personality type heavily influences not only how people perceive you, but also your personal habits, your communication style, leadership style, and even how you interact with friends, family, co-workers, and teams.
Free Personality Assessment
We encourage you to "experiment" with our Free Personality Quiz to get an idea about your base personality.
An Overview of DISC's 4 Personality Styles
Dominant Personality Style:
She is: Task-Oriented and Outgoing
Coworkers describe her: as Dominant, Driven, and a Doer
Donna is Focused on: Getting the job done - just do it! Overcome opposition and achieve her goals! Winners never quit... quitters never win!
Her Basic Needs: are Challenge, Control, and Choices
Her Outlook on Life: She should lead or be in charge
D types can be very self-sufficient, relying on their natural abilities and talents to get them through difficult situations... They are never satisfied with the status quo. They are constantly looking for new and better ideas and ways of doing things.
Influencing Personality Style:
He is: People-Oriented and Outgoing
Coworkers describe him: as Inspirational, Influencing, and Impulsive
Ivan is Focused on: you! If we will continue in the same direction and stay motivated, there is no end to the success and fun we can have.
His Basic Needs: are Recognition, Approval, and Popularity
His Outlook on Life: is To persuade others to their way of thinking
High I 's are very friendly. They seem to talk to or wave at everyone they see. No one is a stranger to them. After you have interacted with them for five minutes, you’ll feel like you have known them all your life.
Calculating Personality Style:
He is: Task-Oriented and Reserved
Coworkers describe him: as Competent, Cautious, and Careful
Charles is Focused on: Making sure things are done in a correct manner. Provide quality and ensure long-standing relationships.
His Basic Needs: are Quality Answers, Excellence, and Value
His Outlook on Life: is To be conscientious and consistent
The C type is usually extremely gifted. They are very bright and have a high capacity for intellectual achievement. They know how to take a big project and break it down into little components.
Supportive Personality Style:
She is: People-Oriented and Reserved
Coworkers describe her: as Steady, Stable, and Supportive
Susan is Focused on: All for one and one for all. If we all work together, we can make a great team. Working together we can do it!
Her Basic Needs: are Appreciation, Security, and Approval
Her Outlook on Life: is To provide necessary support to help get the job completed
An S type is very orderly and efficient, preferring to know that things are running smoothly...They prefer the standard, tried and proven way of doing things... One of their mottos is, 'Working together we can do it.
Free: Quick Guide to Understanding DISC
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As you just learned about Donna and Ivan's personalities, they're also the main characters in the book First Impressions for the Business Professional – Why Some of Us Excel and Most of Us Fail?
Feel Free to download Chapters 1 & 2 that audiobook absolutely free and uncover how they navigated their careers in the business world.
Understanding Advanced Personalities with DISC
Now that you understand the basics of the 4 quadrants of D-I-S-C, it’s time to start learning about unique personality blends.
What is a personality blend anyway? In a nutshell, it breaks down your personality within all 4 of the quadrants. Believe it or not, DISC is made up of 41 unique personality combination blends.
To get a better understanding let's analyze my personality blend.
As you can see, I'm a dominant D type personality, however, I'm also a high C and an above average I.
This makes my unique personality blend a D/IC.
- Primary Drivers: Intense, Cognitive Interaction for Creative Solutions
- Individual Gifts: Quickness in Response, Risk Taker
- Value to the Organization: Spontaneity, Challenging the Status Quo
- Ideal Environment: Meetings with Open Discussion that are Fast-Paced and Bottom Line
- Fears: Routine Activities with No Variety
- Response Under Pressure: Determined, Quick, Intense, Impatient
- Blind Spot: Understanding that Slower Paced Styles Need Time to Process Information
- Complementary Team Members Needed: S, I/SC, S/D, I/S
A few well known unique personality blends
Considered one of the best actors on the planet. His unique personality blend of a D/I has enabled him to play dynamic likable leadership roles in a number of great films like Remember the Titans, American Gangster, Antwone Fisher, and Training Day.
Considered one of the best actresses on the planet. Her unique personality blend of an I/S has enabled her to play dynamic likable roles in a number of films like Charlie's Angels, Vanilla Sky, and My Best Friend's Wedding.
Considered the People's Princess, Princess Diana's unique personality blend of an S/C enabled her to connect very easily with people at every level and didn't allow her Royal status to get in the way, as much of the Royal Family was completely disconnected from the common person. In her Charity Work, you can see her caring for children with HIV/AIDS, making the point in 1989 that the virus wasn't as dangerous as much of the world believed at that time.
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What About the Myers Briggs Personality Assessment?
Generally, in Corporate America, Myers Briggs is considered the standard for personality assessments. We've discovered DISC is a much more practical business tool to quickly and easily understand yourself and others better. Check out this article on DISC vs. Myers Briggs. It outlines why DISC is a much more practical tool.
For a quick history on Myers Briggs, check out this video.
On an episode of TruTV’s Adam Ruins Everything, Adam explains that in 1943, writer’s Isabel Briggs Myers and her mother, Katharine Cook Briggs decided they were going to create a personality handbook although they had no scientific training themselves. They decided to base their training on Carl Jung's book, Psychological Types which wasn’t based on science either, just Jung's experiences with different people over the years. The 2 ladies took Jung's original 8 personalities and doubled them to 16, making it much more complicated to remember. Who can really remember 16 personality types anyway? In 1944 they published The Myers-Briggs Type indicator handbook. Amazingly this book isn’t based on science at all.
DISC, on the other hand, was created by Harvard Ph.D. William Moulton Marston. Dr. Marston is credited with creating the first functional lie detector polygraph in 1922. In the 1920’s he studied the behavior of the general population and in 1928 he published his findings in the book Emotions of Normal People. In his book, he reveals his human behavior model of DISC for the first time.
Keys to Building Rapport Faster Based on Your Personality
- Know your personality style inside and out
- Understand your personality strengths and weaknesses
- Clearly, understand your blind spots for particular personality styles and learn how to adjust to them so they feel more comfortable around you which will enable you to build rapport faster
- Understand which personality styles compliment you best so you can maximize your team's environment - which will certainly ensure that you build rapport faster with them.
Now that you have a better understanding of your personality, it’s time to dive into chapter 2, understanding what your body language is really saying.