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Posts Tagged ‘personal development’

DISC Holiday Gifts – Books That Help People Help Themselves

Monday, November 28th, 2011

It’s that gift-giving time of year again, and a great time to use the insights provided by DISC to help you choose the perfect books as gifts for the people on your list. Show your appreciation and support with a book that can help a co-worker or employee to improve in key areas to communicate better and raise their team’s productivity. Give your spouse the knowledge and tools to improve their performance and reduce their stress by giving a book that directly addresses specific areas targeted for improvement.

We at Data Dome have organized a selection of practical, targeted books and grouped them according to the specific skills and behaviors they were written to address. We have a section for development-oriented books as well as an entire selection just for addressing sales skills and behaviors.

To find just the right book for your friend, spouse, co-worker, employee, or even yourself, just visit the Data Dome Bookstore. We’ve organized an extensive list of recommended readings based on the many varieties of report results that are provided by our best assessment tools. You will find books on Coaching and Development – both for Personal Development and Team Development, as well as a book list for Sales Skills and Knowledge. Simply go to either page and look for the link to the section that fits the diagnosis or area of improvement that is the best match for the area the recipient wants to improve. For example, in the Sales section we have recommendations for First Meetings/First Impressions, Overcoming Objections, Prospecting/ Pre-Qualifying, Closing and much more. Or venture into the Development section where you’ll find links to recommendations for topics as diverse as Low Assertiveness, High Self-Control, Dislike for Structure, or Sparking Creativity – in fact, our book recommendations cover the spectrum of Working, Relating, Thinking and Decision-Making.

All transactions are made through our associate account with Amazon so your buying experience and delivery options are safe, secure and reliable.

These books and our assessment tools are a valuable resource for coaching and mentoring, as well as for personal development. We at Data Dome wish you and yours a safe, happy, and healthy holiday season and a New Year filled with growth and improved productivity and communication.

DISC Profiles and Stress: The Energy Crisis

Friday, October 15th, 2010

It was a little over a year ago that we discussed five ways leaders who understood DISC profiles could reduce stress amongst their employees. For many companies the climate is even more stress-inducing today: cutbacks have forced companies to ask for even higher levels of productivity from the employees that remain, workers are being asked to take on responsibilities of those who are no longer there – constantly adapting from their natural DISC behavioral style.

Occasionally stepping away from one’s natural DISC behavioral style is usually not a big deal, in fact it is commonplace to see some variance between a person’s natural and adapted DISC profiles. Taking on a new behavior once in a while might actually be a deliberate strategy or a welcome change of pace, but long-term sustained adaptions that push an individual away from their natural DISC style can be trouble.

Maintaining an exaggerated state of adapted behavior takes energy – the person is essentially stepping on the mental gas to keep themselves in a behavioral pattern that doesn’t come naturally. This constant depletion of energy can express itself in numerous ways: irritability, poor morale, aggressiveness, “shutting down”, even physical manifestations – headaches, susceptibility to illness, etc. Unfortunately even with these changes of mood and morale it can still be difficult for an untrained observer to pinpoint causes in manner that provides information for mitigating the stressed behaviors. In the case of high S’s this can be further exacerbated by their reluctance to make waves. The stresses can build and build if the high S provides them no outlet – the situation becomes a powder keg of pent up frustration waiting to explode.

DISC profiles are a great way to see beyond the surface and recognize when there are large gaps between adapted and natural DISC styles. The greater the gap the more energy the individual is expending to reach the adapted behavior. If all four DISC behavior categories are adapting above the line then the person may be feeling forced to be “all things to everybody” – a constant state of crisis. Understanding the DISC profiles gives you a tool to diagnose the situation and take steps tailored to the individual’s causes of stress as indicated by their behavioral profile.

For a quick understanding of what stresses out people with certain DISC profiles check out our previous observations in The World According to DISC: Stress Someone Out in Style and The World According to DISC: The Low Side of Stress Styles.

Understanding DISC Profiles: Productive or Procrastinating?

Friday, September 17th, 2010

Everyone procrastinates from time to time, but do all DISC profiles procrastinate the same way?

The person with a high D DISC profile is associated with adjectives like decisive, strong-willed, goal-oriented, and bold. Many things that others might allow to become subjects of procrastination, the high D won’t because of a behavioral bias toward decisive action. If something is not moving toward a goal it is likely to be dismissed, or delegated to another to accomplish. If it is moving a goal forward then it will probably be acted on immediately – the fear and doubt which may cause others to stall on a task isn’t usually a problem for the bold D. However, if a high D is avoiding something due to an emotional conflict or a misalignment with personal motivations, he or she is more likely to displace the task with other activities than to stall out and do nothing.

A person whose DISC profile indicates a high I is associated with words like flamboyant, gregarious, pleasing, political, enthusiastic and superficial. Distraction is often more the cause of lapses in productivity for this individual rather than procrastination, however, if a task requires working alone, in seclusion, or is something that is perceived of as not fun or popular, then it is far more likely to be avoided by the high I. When confronted with an undesirable activity the high I will often seek comfort through interaction with others, which can cause a losing track of time – a form of unintentional avoidance. The high I will almost always procrastinate when it comes to chores like giving people bad news or disciplining others – they avoid things that might cause the other person to have a negative reaction to them.

Words like persistent, patient, modest, predictable and resistant to change are associated with the high S DISC profile. That means an S is more likely to resist activities that disrupt familiar routines or threaten the balance of established relationships. The high S person can be very productive if the routine of activities aren’t prone to rapid change or disruption, she thrives on steadiness not chaos. Procrastination brought on by emotional stress or intimidation may not be outwardly obvious – the high S can have a relaxed, even phlegmatic demeanor – they are unlikely to rebel vocally against an undesirable task, so a manager may not realize they have given the high S an assignment that is distasteful. Of the four categories, the high S is the most susceptible to procrastination – slipping into the mindset of hoping that the situation will go away if ignored, or that “time will solve the problem.”

The high C DISC profile is associated with perfectionism, meticulousness, and being strict about rules and procedures. The high C is typically very disciplined and detail oriented – tasks that other DISC styles might avoid because they seem dry, procedural or tedious, may actually be well-suited to the high C. Additionally the high C may have a lower empathy for procrastination by others because it can threaten processes and carefully architected systems. When the high C falls off in productivity it is more likely to be because they have let perfectionism get in the way than because they are avoiding a step in the process. Unlike the high S, when faced with a task that breaks compliance with procedure, the high C is likely to express the displeasure.

Understanding the DISC behavioral tendencies of your team can be vital to balancing strengths and unlocking better communication so that procrastination is minimized and productivity is improved.

Ask the Expert: North of the Border, Adapting above the Line

Saturday, May 22nd, 2010

Art Schoeck was recently asked the following question via our Ask the Expert form:

** I recently completed a DISC assessment that I found to be very insightful; however, on the Success Insights Wheel my Adapted Behavior was “non-placeable.” My Adapted Behavior was just above the line in all categories. Other than telling me that it is “rare,” my assessment administrator didn’t have any further insight. Can you help me understand this? I would love to know why my Adapted Behavior is “non-placeable.” **

Art’s answer:

When all points are above the line, it usually indicates that an individual, at the time of completing the assessment questionnaire, feels a need or desire to act as “everything to everybody”. That is, the individual’s behavior is adapting to an elevated level across all DISC categories. In essence, they are trying to be all of the descriptors around the wheel at the same time. This indicates a lot of pressure and may stem from a temporary situation or role being played. That is why it is “Non-placable”.

This result with adapted marks being all “north of the border” is not as rare as it once was. Many organizations are trying to make do with less people: With fewer employees doing the work of what used to be many more, they are required to cover more ground, and so we are seeing more shift into this adapted behavior of actually trying to be everything to everybody. This is also appearing amongst candidates during the job application process – as the job hunt and economic stresses linger on, some candidates begin to feel desperate and express that via a willingness to adapt behavior in this all things to all people manner. When encountered it is often necessary to apply further diagnostics to better understand the situation and the impact on behavioral style.

In a workplace scenario, if an individual’s Success Insights Wheel showed adaptive behavior that was above the line on all categories, a worthwhile next step would be to review the behavioral job description to determine if the subject and the supervisor agree on the role the individual should be playing and the commensurate behavioral expectations. This would involve a customized and personal interaction facilitated by a Certified Professional Behavioral Strategist.

What’s your question?

Data Dome founder and member of TTI’s prestigious International Faculty, Art Schoeck, often receives questions through our Ask the Expert form. We try to answer questions here on this blog that are representative of common questions regarding DISC and other assessment tools. Do you have a question about DISC? If so please submit it via the Ask the Expert form. Although it may not be possible to answer every question individually, we will be using the “Ask the Expert” category of this blog to answer the DISC-related questions most important to our readers.

Holiday Gift Shopping? Browse the Data Dome Bookstore!

Wednesday, December 2nd, 2009

Are you ready for gift-giving Dominance?
Got someone on your list you want to Influence?
Do you possess the Steadiness of a seasoned holiday shopper?
Is Conscientiousness the key to picking the perfect gift?

Give the gift that can really make a difference!

We are pleased to announce the return of the Data Dome Development Bookstore – a selection of suggested readings targeted to specific development and self-improvement goals.

Got a friend with low energy? We can suggest a book for that!

Is your sibling too assertive? The right reading may be just the ticket!

Are you trying to find the perfect gift for someone low on optimism, high on the need to be liked, or maybe lacking in self-reliance? Wouldn’t you like to know the books a good coach would recommend for each of these situations?

And don’t forget about your own New Year’s resolutions… Some smart reading could put you on a productive path to reaching your goals!

We have recommendations in forty targeted categories of development: Learn the right books to help tackle the “too highs” and the “too lows”.

For books for everything from building assertiveness to learning patience, visit Recommended Reading for Coaching and Personal Development and give the gift that shows you care.

And don’t forget the sales pros on your list! Visit Reading for Sales Professionals and browse our recommendations for strategic and behavioral development made specifically with the salesperson in mind.

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