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What is DISC?

DISC is a practical model that helps you understand people’s behaviour. It indicates how you act, not who you are. It reflects how a person comes across when communicating with those around them. This is both verbal and non-verbal. The following is measured:

  • How to deal with problems and challenges (D of Dominant);
  • How to convince others of your opinion (I of Influence);
  • How to deal with changes and tempo changes (S of Stability);
  • How to deal with established rules and procedures (C of Conformism).
DISC model: test with 4 colours

It is about the behaviour we show to others. All styles are present in someone to a greater or lesser extent and say something about their behaviour. DISC is also not right or wrong. But, some behavioural styles are more effective than others in certain situations, though.

What is a DISC analysis?

Is it DISC test or DISC analysis? It is often mistakenly called a DISC test. This implies that someone could pass or fail and that is not possible. This is why we prefer to speak of a DISC analysis. With this analysis, you get a balanced result of the scores on each DISC style and a person gains insight into the level of each of his (or her) DISC scores.

A DISC analysis provides insight into:

  • The different behavioural preferences;
  • How a person appears to others in behaviour;
  • What the strengths and development points are;
  • How a person can increase his or her effectiveness.

What does a DISC analysis measure?

By what do you recognise the DISC styles in practice? For that, it is good to first know what exactly is measured for each DISC style in the behavioural analysis and whether you score high or low on a style.

The D style measures how a person responds to problems and challenges. A D style likes to solve problems and face challenges.
The higher the D; the more assertive, the more goal-oriented and the more inclined to want to control the environment.
The lower the D; the more accommodating a person is. A low D is more accommodating and relaxed and will not want to put his or her stamp on everything.

The I style measures how a person influences and convinces others of his or her views or ideas.
The higher the I; the more a person will influence others through verbal and non-verbal persuasion. The greater also the confidence in others.
The lower the I; the less someone will sell their ideas, but present more factually without fuss. The more sceptical and less likely the other person will be taken into confidence.

S style measures how a person reacts to changes and tempo changes and how easily a person adapts to them.
The higher the S; the less flexibility this person has to adapt to change and the slower this person’s pace is.
The lower the S; the higher the pace. This person adapts faster to changes.

C style measures the extent to which a person conforms to rules and guidelines established by others.
The higher the C; the more inclined a person is to follow established rules and procedures and less likely to take risks.
The lower the C; the more a person is inclined to step outside the box, act autonomously and challenge existing rules.

Want to know more about DISC and how DISC came about?

What can you use DISC for?

DISC is a method that allows you to understand a person’s observable behaviour with their environment. With a DISC behavioural analysis, you visualise a person’s scores on each of the 4 DISC styles. The analysis shows the level of scores on each of the person’s DISC styles. The applications of a DISC analysis, also known as a DISC test, are numerous. Here are some ideas of what you can use DISC for.

  • Gaining insight into a person’s DISC styles
  • Improving mutual cooperation from DISC
  • Team development and team building from DISC
  • Connecting with others from DISC
  • Increase mutual understanding from DISC
  • Learning to sell better through DISC
  • Awareness of how a person comes across to others
  • Learning to communicate better with others through DISC
  • Giving feedback more effectively from DISC
  • Composing complementary teams with DISC
  • Awareness in career coaching from DISC
  • Individual coaching from DISC
  • Resolving conflicts through greater understanding from DISC
  • Recruitment from DISC
  • Managing employees more effectively
  • Et cetera
DISC scores illustrated - What is DISC?

The disadvantages of DISC

In our opinion, a DISC analysis is best used as a supporting tool and not as a stand-alone instrument to make far-reaching choices. For example, by hiring or not hiring someone based solely on a DISC analysis, you are missing the point.

However, it is valuable to use a DISC analysis in addition to hard criteria such as education and work experience and doing a reference check. This way, you can specifically test what preferred behaviour someone shows and see to what extent this will be effective in the job.

Can a DISC score change?

The results of a DISC analysis do not encompass an eternal truth. The behaviour a person displays in his or her work environment can indeed change. For example:

  • If someone is convinced that the work environment requires different behaviour. There are limits to the extent to which the person can and wants to adapt. The greater the adaptation compared to the basic behavioural style, the more effort and energy it takes for this person.
  • The basic behavioural style, i.e. a person’s unconscious behaviour, can also change over the years. This depends on what a person experiences in his or her life.
  • A subsequent stage of life a person enters can also affect the behaviour a person displays.

Don’t worry, you’re not tied to anything. Feel free to look around our DISC portal.

FAQs about DISC

What is DISC?

DISC is a model that offers insight into people’s behaviour. It shows how a person behaves and comes across in communication, both verbal and non-verbal. Four behavioural styles are measured: dominance, influence, stability and conformism.

What is a DISC analysis?

A DISC analysis is not a pass-or-fail test, but gives a balanced result of the scores on each DISC style. It provides insight into behavioural preferences, how someone comes across to others, strengths and areas for development, and how to increase effectiveness.

What does a DISC analysis measure?

A DISC analysis measures how someone reacts to problems and challenges, how they influence and persuade others, how they react to changes and how they deal with rules and procedures. It distinguishes between higher and lower scoring styles.