It’s not uncommon to read through the results of your DISC assessment and disagree with some of it.

But that doesn’t mean your report isn’t accurate.

Our coaches here at Balanced WorkLife have a bit of experience with folks who want to argue over the content of their DISC reports.

And I was one of them.

My coach’s advice?

Show it to your best friend, your mom, your significant other.

Basically, someone who knows you well and will tell you the truth.

My coach then told the story of a client who read the first few pages of her report and literally tossed it aside in a huff. Her fiancé asked her what the problem was and she replied, “This DISC thing got me all wrong.” So he looked through the report and ended up laughing out loud.

In his opinion, the assessment was spot-on.

Seems that we don’t always see ourselves the way others see us.

And just one of the many things that DISC does is to help us see ourselves as others see us. This is valuable stuff, even when some of  the results are not what you want to hear.

Not What I Wanted To Hear

Learning that others may see me as nondemonstrative, hesitant, or unconcerned was a shocker. And when I’m under pressure? Well, during those times, I’m perceived as possessive, detached, stubborn, and insensitive.


I’m Not Inflexible…. Am I?

But after a bit of reflection (because, as my DISC will tell you, I’m big on reflection) I began having flashbacks to times in my life where I displayed behavior that could label me as stubborn, inflexible, or overly-cautious.

Not only did I realize that there were times that others likely viewed me in the not-so-complimentary ways listed above, but I also saw how their judgments affected our future interactions.

Just a few of the examples that flashed through my mind:

  • A former boss asking for immediate feedback on a new idea. I stared at him, my cautious, & calculating nature considering the impact on operations while I tried to stammer out an organized response. When I failed to rave with excitement, he decided I was uninterested. A few more such interactions, and he stopped coming to me with his ideas.
  • My long-ago announcement to my husband that if he wanted to go to the movies with me that night, I’d need to know by noon so I could “prepare.”  While he now understands that I’m thrown off by spontaneity – and does his best to fulfill my request for prior planning – sometimes he’ll announce, “I’m going to the movies in an hour.” And off he goes.
  • The time I alarmed a group of software engineers during a meeting on implementation details. They realized mid-stream that making a high-level change would fix one problem we were having, but they were oblivious to the problem it would create on my side of the fence. Faced with this unexpected change, I freaked out and resisted their proposal with everything I had, displaying possessiveness and stubbornness that defied logic. They requested a different Program Manager for their next project.

Sometimes self-awareness really stinks. Going back through these experiences felt like my very own episode of “This Is Your Life.” But without the contrived tears.

So Now What?

The benefit of going through this process is that insights from your past can guide you in the present. As a result, I now make an effort to express myself more openly, or maybe say “I’ll need to think about that a bit” when feeling pressed for an opinion, or to notice that I’m resisting change solely because I’m averse to change.

So, in the event that you’ve disagreed with portions of your DISC assessment, give it another go. Take another look or share it with a friend. A really good friend.

One who won’t upset you when they laugh out loud.


Image courtesy of Ashley Sturgis