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BLUF:
Took the DISC profile again after two years and my results have changed. Is this common?

Detail:
Took DISC two years ago and was 5-5-4-3 (inspirational). Retook as part of having my whole team profile themselves and am now 4-5-4-3 (counselor).

Have any of you taken DISC multiple times and had your scores change?

The profiler asks one to answer according to your behavior "at work."

Could the change in result be based on modifications I have made to my behavior/communication style in a new company and new role?

Which profile do I share with my team? Do I share both?

Any thoughts would be appreciated. Happy Holidays everyone.

Thanks,
Ari

bug_girl's picture

It's not at all uncommon for measures to change--and in particular, a small change like this one.  I was certified to administer both the Strong and the MBTI, and those commonly change as people are put into new situations and develop/use new strengths.

I would say it's evidence that you have some flexibility in your style--and that's a good thing! If it changed to 1-1-1-7, then I'd be concerned :)

There is a lot of argument about whether there is one "true" personality type in MBTI--my personal opinion is that while we all have tendencies that are strong and comfortable for us, we can learn to be flexible, and that isn't a bad thing.

Small adjustments in your dominance score maybe means you've learned when to pull back and not use role authority.  If you got different instructions between taking the assessments, that often affects scores. 

These scores are also a framework for us to conceptualize thinking about something really squishy--human behavior. People with the same DISC scores are NOT the same! (I know, duh, but it's worth mentioning.)

There may be folks here that have DISC certification; hopefully they will weigh in as well.

Caveat: If you are an introverted person that consistently has to be social and extroverted, or a high C that has to toss out all the rules and go with the (messy) flow all the time, that will be stressful.  And over time, consistently working against your type will take a toll.

 

tlhausmann's picture

Several years ago, I took a personality inventory more detailed that DISC and DISC was merely a component of the overall instrument.

The detailed report showed natural versus adapted tendencies. While the shift was not dramatic the lesson learned for deeply analytical types is that we must adapt our communication styles to communicate effectively with folks who have different tendencies.

Even Spock raised his eyebrows to communicate when doing so was "irrelevant."

stephenbooth_uk's picture

 The results of any behavioural/psychological/psychometric will change over time.  Depending on the sensitivity of the test it might change from day to day.  You may get slightly different results according to how much sleep you had the night before, the level of stress (eustress or distress) in your life when you take the test or even what sort of journey you had to the test venue. 

Over time we all change, we learn new skills and adapt to new roles which need different behaviours.  DISC tests how you behave when you're not thinking about how to behave.  Another way to express "how you behave when you're not thinking about how to behave" could be "habit".  If you are in an environment or role that tends to enforce or reward certain behaviours (which may not be your habits) those behaviours could become habit and as such influence your DISC score.  The figures you quoted show that your D score has slightly reduced, perhaps you're in an environment that has toned down High-D behaviours so your behaviours overall have been shifted to a slightly lower D and that has been reflected in your DISC score?

Stephen

--

Skype: stephenbooth_uk  | DISC: 6137

Experience is how you avoid failure, failure is what gives you experience.

 

mukamal's picture

Thanks for the input.  My new company is definitely less accepting of straight "High D" behavior, so I think I must have modified my base style to work best here.

--Ari

flexiblefine's picture

...but how much of a change is likely to happen with time in a new position or new organization?

I took the DISC assessment yesterday, and my D was 1. Does that part of my profile suggest that I am ill-suited for management, or would my profile change as I move into (and become accustomed to) a position with more authority?

flexiblefine
Houston, Texas, USA

stephenbooth_uk's picture

 Flexiblefine,

you've probably heard a saying about if you want to understand someone walk a mile in their shoes.  Give it a try.  Look at the behaviours of someone of someone whose sucess you admire, ideally someone who is a layer or two above you in your company and in the sort of job you think you might like to be in in 3 - 5 years.  Think about what behaviours make them effective and contribute to their success.  Look at your own behaviours and note key differences.  Pick a key difference, start with one you think isn't all that different, and think about how to address it.  The end result here isn't to becoem a clone of the person (or people, most likely there's a number of people who fit the criteria and so you can look for common behaviours) but to try to emulate their strengths.  What can you do to be more like the pereson whose success you admire?  What tools or resources do you need?  Is there someone you know who could help you as a mentor or trainer, or who might be able to introduce you to a mentor or trainer?  Come up with a development plan for yourself and work the plan. 

One of the recommendations of "The rules of work" is that if you want to move up in an organisation you should display the behaviours of people above you in the organisation.  Another way to look at it is from the film "Picture Perfect" (a rom-com starring Jennifer Anniston) where the CEO of the company Jennifer Anniston's character works for tells an anecdote about when the boss of the company he first worked for said to him about how he dressed for work, "Dress for the job you want, not the job you have.  Do you really want to be the janitor?"  This actually hooks quite well into a number of the MT casts around how you dress for work, decorating your desk &c.  If the people a couple of levels above you all dress in suit, shirt and tasteful tie with shoes polished to a high shine, and you don't, then that is behaviour (and how you dress if definitely a behaviour) you need to emulate if you want to move up to that level.

Don't try to do everything at once, remember the saying about eating an elephant, one bite at a time.  Set yourself goals that you can achieve in a short period of time, aim to achieve them in that time then look to the next goal.

Stephen

 

--

Skype: stephenbooth_uk  | DiSC: 6137

"Start with the customer and work backwards, not with the tools and work forwards" - James Womack

 

flexiblefine's picture

I suppose I'm partly also wondering whether some of my embarrassingly low D is due to my situation at work -- or at least my perception of it.

I'm a one-man web team at work, and we do so much more online than we did before I started in this job. I've been in this position more than eight years, and I came aboard with the hope that I would eventually build a team. I have a "director" title, but nobody reports to me. (I do report to a VP, so the title isn't all deception.) I think I see myself as being on the bottom of the totem pole because I have no directs, rather than being two steps from the top. I've also had a variety of experiences over the years where my suggestions and opinions, even and especially in my area of expertise, don't carry any weight. If I feel powerless, wouldn't my profile reflect that?

As for wardrobe, I have actually been working on that. If I'm going to move up, I should stop wearing the "developer uniform" of twill pants and a polo shirt. Changing weather has given me a good opportunity to be better-dressed without making an out-of-place change. I'm dressing more like the VPs across the hall than I used to, and that's not a bad habit to get into.

There's a lot more to personal development than appearance, and I'm working on those things too. I should formalize things a little more, as you suggest, even if I never show the plan to anyone.

flexiblefine
Houston, Texas, USA
DiSC: 1476

mattc's picture

I have taken the DISC profile several times and it usually is pretty steady over time. However, significant life changes and/or events can change your profile as you learn to adapt to the new situation. It can even change your natural style. After doing some research about it, I found that this is normal and actually to be expected.

The other factor to consider is your knowledge of DISC. Usually taking a profile comes with some form of education about DISC, making it easier for you to influence the results. I am not saying you do this intentionally (you could), but that because of your knowledge and the way you like to see yourself, you might answer a question slightly differently than you would without knowing anything about it. 

I am doing some research on DISC because my company is looking to use DISC for hiring and placement purposes (probably in combination with other stuff). Here is one of the more recent pages I found about DISC Assessments and hiring, as a lot of the info out there is either boring or old... or both! I contacted those guys and they were pretty cool and helpful. I am sure they would be able to give you a more scientific answer to changes in the profile results...