Many of you already know the power of DISC as a communication tool, but do you know the other 80% of what else it can do?
DISC is a powerful communication tool, in part because it is simple to learn and to put into practice. Self-awareness of our behavioral style, coupled with the ability to identify styles of others, enables us to adjust to communicate more effectively.
The great news is we should continue to rely on DISC as a communication tool, but there’s even more we can use it for. Before we talk about the other uses for DISC, let’s look at how effective DISC is as a communication tool.
DISC as a communication tool
Communication, simply put, is the sharing of information from one person to another person or group. How we communicate comes in different forms. We do it verbally; face-to-face, virtually, or on the phone. We also do it non-verbally, whether it may be an emotion, gesture or an image. Written communication is another commonly practice form via email, letters, chat, or text.
People often provide clues to their styles in their body language; some have more closed and some have more open body language. We often consider using DISC in face-to-face communication, but even this is limiting to what it can do. DISC can help us be more effective in our communication, regardless of what type or combination we use by understanding our preferred style, as well as knowing the preferred communication styles of others. DISC helps us modify our style to communicate more effectively.
Communication is not always an interaction
Communication is not always an interaction. Not to be too technical, but communication and interactions are similar and different. Communication is the act of sharing information. It can flow in one direction or both. Think about the times you’ve watched a video as one-way communication; you’re receiving information, but you don’t have a chance to respond. On the other hand, two-way communication occurs when the flow can be in both directions. For example, you’re in meeting with your client.
Interactions encompass communication, but it focuses on the direct involvement between two or more people, where each other’s actions affect the other. For example, think of a conversation or a nodding of heads as a gesture of acknowledgement. How well we interact with others often determines our success in life.
We don’t interact the same way and these differences can create misunderstanding and conflict. DISC helps us be aware of how we tend to interact with others and how others prefer to interact with us.
DISC beyond a communication tool
A leader needs all the tools possible to be effective. Most of us spend our time managing people and handling conflicts. As leaders, are we taking advantage of our leadership strengths to communicate, influence, and motivate our team members? DISC helps us understand our preferred way of leading our teams. It doesn’t predict your success, but provides you a road map as a starting point to becoming a more effective leader.
Most of us agree that selling is a challenging profession. Some of us thrive in cold calling, while others find it draining. Others, find it easy and enjoyable completing their client follow-up. There are many aspects to sales that we are more comfortable and less comfortable with. As sales professionals, understanding how we negotiate and prefer to navigate the sales process can give us the competitive advantage we need.
These are just some of the more common examples of how to use DISC beyond a communication tool. Think about how you parent (parenting can be stressful!), how you manage time, how you work remotely, or how you recharge your energy. Essentially, DISC helps us to communicate better with others, but it also helps us to understand our behavioral strengths, our motivations, and our preferred ways of doing things.
The power of DISC is that it is more than a communication tool. Our ability to effectively relate, communicate, influence and motivate others is a crucial skill in building better interactions with our customers, prospects, colleagues, subordinates, managers, friends, and family members. The key is to use DISC and our DISC results as a starting point; your road map to making effective adjustments to be more successful!
What ways can DISC help you and your clients beyond communication?