What Is DISC?

DISC assessments – or DISC tests – are based on observations over thousands of years of human development. DISC has been utilized as a behavioral assessment by businesses, organizations, trainers, and individuals since the 1920’s to help better understand people. The principles of DISC are simple, easy to apply, and easy to understand, allowing several applications for this behavioral tool.

Human beings are complex creatures with the ability to navigate through life using an myriad of emotions, actions, and reactions that define who they really want or need themselves to be. Understanding DISC can help you better understand why people do what they do; it also provides a new perspective on how we behave when compared against our own needs and wants.

DISCover Your Personality Type

The DISC model provides a way of understanding how people interact with the world around them. There is no one size fits all personality, and the DISC personality styles help to understand that there isn’t just one type of person out there – everyone has different ways in which they operate based on their preferences. DISC is an acronym that stands for the four main personality profiles: Dominance, Influence, Steadiness, and Compliance.

D

Dominance

People with a high D personality type are typically risk-takers and self-starters.

C

Compliance

C personalities are described as perfectionists, and place great value on being accurate.

Graphic of DISC

I

Influence

People with a strong I personality thrive being around people and are the life of the party.

S

Steadiness

S personalities are often described as a rock. They seek out stability and routine in life.

DISCover Your Personality Type

The DISC model provides a way of understanding how people interact with the world around them. There is no one size fits all personality, and the DISC personality styles help to understand that there isn’t just one type of person out there – everyone has different ways in which they operate based on their preferences. The letters of DISC stand for Dominance, Influence, Steadiness, and Compliance.

D

Dominance

People with a high D personality type are typically risk-takers and self-starters.

I

Influence

People with a strong I personality thrive being around people and are the life of the party.

Graphic of DISC

S

Steadiness

S personalities are often described as a rock. They seek out stability and routine in life.

C

Compliance

C personalities are described as perfectionists, and place great value on being accurate.

Benefits of DISC Assessments

Organizations embracing DISC assessments may benefit from improved communication, less misunderstanding and conflict, shorter meetings, more effective teams, better cooperation, increased productivity, improved employee retention rates, and improved financial performance. Key areas where DISC is particularly useful: developing leaders, hiring and placement, team development, student development, and talent management.

    woman taking DISC test at work
    Woman with DISC certification

    PeopleKeys DISC: Validated & Reliable

    At PeopleKeys, we are committed to providing DISC assessments and other behavioral tools that you can rely on. To honor that commitment, we adhere to the highest industry standards for validating the accuracy of our products.

    All of the products and assessments we offer are based on thorough research and testing in the field, with technicians in our offices, and through independent agencies. You can be confident that our DISC products offer accurate results, and produce information that will make a positive impact in your business, studies, career, organization, or personal life.

    DISC: Unlocking Human Potential

    PeopleKeys has been successfully unlocking human potential worldwide for over 35 years, and offers a customizable suite of online behavioral solutions. Our online DISC assessment not only allows you to discover your personality style, but is a highly reliable and valid tool for enhancing communication, strengthening relationships, improving workplace dynamics, and building stronger teams. There’s no better way to understand more about your personality or how it affects your day-to-day life.

    Group of professionals using DISC profiles

    The Power of DISC Assessments

    Corporate businesses, organizations, agencies, institutions, and trainers around the globe trust PeopleKeys. We are your single source for comprehensive solutions customized to meet your DISC assessment, training, and technology needs.
    Four styles of DISC

    Understanding DISC Styles

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    applying DISC at work

    Applications of DISC

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    History of DISC

    History of DISC

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    Frequently Asked DISC Questions

    How much does DISC cost?

    PeopleKeys offers several different products based on your needs. We also offer volume discounts based on the amount you purchase.

    Our DISC Personality Profile starts at $35. Our 4D Report – the most comprehensive and thorough personality assessment on the market today – consists of DISC, TEAMS, Values & BAI, starts at $76.

    Volume discounts are tiered and start at 15% when purchasing 10 assessments. Contact us to learn more about volume pricing.

    What does a DISC profile tell you?

    The DISC profile is a system for understanding yourself. It will help you figure out your personality style, strengths and limitations in different areas of life like work or relationships with others people – all the way down to how well each type can communicate its point-of view!

    DISC profiles are made up of four basic personality traits that shape every person. It’s the “color palette” for your unique style blend, just like how painters can create infinite new colors by mixing together primary hues to make their own masterpiece on canvas or paper.

    How long does a DISC test usually take to complete?

    On average, an online DISC assessment test takes about 10-15 minutes and results are instantaneous. A paper DISC test takes approximately 15-20 minutes due to additional time needed to manually score the results.

    Do I need to be certified in DISC?

    The short answer: no. Certification is not required to administer or interpret DISC. PeopleKeys DISC Reports are self-explanatory and can be used as a standalone tool for personality analysis.

    Adding Certification in Behavioral Analysis to your credentials will show you have an in-depth understanding of people and their predictable behavior as to why they do what they do. At the end of the course, you will have a deeper appreciation for DISC theory and application.

    Can DISC personality styles change or are they static?

    One’s DISC style will likely change in three ways:

    • Environment – When you think about your personality style in different situations, it probably differs in some ways from when you’re at work to when you’re at home or out with friends. This is true of most people. It’s important when taking a DISC test to think about a specific environment when answering the questions instead of answering them in a more generalized way. This is the best way to see the differences in your style between environments.
    • Stress – When assessed during times of stress or when you are uncomfortable in a particular environment, your DISC style results will reflect that stress and uncertainty. This can cause unique patterns in the graphs, such as overshifts or undershifts. When assessed again at a less stressful time in that environment, your graphs are likely to change.
    • Time – It’s not uncommon for one’s personality style to change over time, as we learn, grow, change, and increase our behavioral intelligence and self-awareness. If you take a DISC personality assessment periodically, you may notice differences in your style over time and in different environments.

    Is DISC culturally consistent?

    The DISC Personality Assessment itself is culturally consistent, as the basic elements of personality are present in all cultures. However, the way these elements are viewed may be different from culture to culture. For example, Dominance may be revered in one culture but looked down upon in another. However, the Dominance trait is still present in one’s personality and measurable with a DISC assessment.

    Who developed DISC theory?

    The DISC theory, researched by Dr. William Moulton Marston at Harvard University is a method of identifying predictable actions and personality traits within human behavior. Marston narrowed these predictable personality traits into four DISC personality types: (D) Dominance, (I) Inducement, (S) Submission, and (C) Compliance.

    While the core principles of the DISC model remain the same as when founded by Dr. Marston, today’s presentation of the DISC model incorporates advancements in psychology measurement and theory, as well as more contemporary terminology and descriptions for the four behavioral styles.

    Want to learn even more about Marston? Visit this page.

    What is the difference between DISC and Myers-Briggs (MBTI)?

    The DISC instrument and the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) are highly recognized assessment tools to predict human behavior, personality, and temperament and enhance communication. Both instruments are widely used today in organizations around the world.

    Probably the most critical point to keep in mind is that these two instruments are not mutually exclusive. Organizations or individuals can use these assessments in tandem for an in-depth and multi-faceted glimpse at human behavior. Both psychometric tools are highly validated. For many years, MBTI was the standard in psychometric testing. However, over the years, the DISC psychometric test has grown in popularity, especially for business applications, for a few reasons:

    • The MBTI takes about 30 minutes to complete and contains approximately 90 questions. The DISC assessment test can be completed in half the time, approximately 10 to 15 minutes, and includes only 24 questions.
    • DISC is less complicated than MBTI, which makes it easier to remember, understand and apply. People often remember at least their primary DISC style of D, I, S, or C, even years later, while it’s less likely to remember your MBTI combination after much time has passed.
    • One can become trained and certified in DISC theory and application in less time.
      You could take a DISC assessment online and read the comprehensive report on your style with no training and still gain an in-depth understanding of your personality style, communication style, and predictable behaviors. The MBTI would be more challenging to understand without some training or guidance.
    • DISC is easy to apply in day-to-day scenarios at the workplace or home and with colleagues, friends, and families. Others’ styles are more straightforward to predict with DISC than MBTI, allowing you to adjust your style to create better communication with those around you.
    • DISC is simpler for young people (8+) to understand and apply with family and friends.
    • DISC focuses less on theory than MBTI and focuses more on practical application.
    • MBTI focuses on behavioral dichotomies that illuminate the ways we think internally.

    DISC focuses on predictable behaviors (why we do what we do, act the way we act, and react the way we react).In the end, preference is up to the user. What traits are they trying to gauge? Do they have time for training or have someone who can explain the test? Do they need something more straightforward? How much time do they have to take the assessment and go through the results? What is the application? These questions will often guide you either towards the MBTI or the DISC personality test as your psychometric test tool.

    Can you tell me more about people with high values in opposing quarters (I & C or D & S)?

    Your DISC graph may consist of opposing values (i.e., D-S or I-C). Most combinations of styles are referred to as “style blends” because each DISC type blend tends to shape or modify the other expressed styles.

    For example, when a C is blended with an S, you often find a more measured and deliberate person. They are perfectionists that hold others to a high standard. When a C is blended with a D, you often find a person who can make quick decisions when presented with information. They are still perfectionists but also place a high value on acting quickly and efficiently.

    Sometimes, opposing styles don’t blend. Instead, the individual will find that they move from style to style depending on the situation. The I-C will have the ability to research, analyze, and study but can quickly turn around and present their findings to others with great verbal skill. The D-S will want to move swiftly and decisively, while another part of them wants to slow down and spend some time thinking.

    Opposing styles are usually a learned or adaptive response to the environment or an experience. For example, a high I style will learn to be more analytical after losing a big account due to a spelling error. A high S will learn to be more assertive as the oldest sibling after his/her parents pass away.