How to Win Friends and Influence People

This is not a blog article about the best-selling self-help book by Dale Carnegie. It is, however, an article about how to understand the differences between your personality type and other peoples’ personality types… and use that knowledge to your advantage!

The DISC profiling system is a leading personality assessment tool, used by more than 40 million people to improve work productivity, teamwork and communication. As you become more aware of people’s DISC profiles, you are more likely to understand why they do the things they do. When you have a greater understanding of what makes you different to others, you can adapt your interactions in social and work environments to make more friends and get better results.

If you are not familiar with the meaning of the four letters: Dominance, Influence, Steadiness, and Conscientiousness, here is a quick overview:

disc-profilex600Dominance: Outgoing and task focused. Dominant people are goal driven, direct and competitive. Like Nike, their motto is “Just do it”.

Influence: Outgoing and people focused. Influential people are talkative, spontaneous and charismatic. Their motto is “Have fun doing it”.

Steadiness: Reserved and people focused. Steady people are stable, dependable, conservative and loyal. Their motto is “Do it together”.

Compliance: Reserved and task focused. Careful, logical, organise and diplomatic. Their motto is “Do it right”.

We tend to think individuals who score high in the same letter will get along well. There’s some truth to this, since a profile definitely reflects some deeply held values that can bring people together.

So let’s see how we can improve communication with people we may consider to be radically different from us. Being aware of our own and people’s DISC profile can help us tremendously at work (with our boss or our colleagues) and in closer relationships. With a greater understanding of the different behaviour profiles, we accept others as they are instead of judging or expecting them to be just like us.

How to Get Along with Dominant People

Someone whose personality is a high D loves challenges and may even thrive on hardship. They see the world as a battlefield and they believe they can win!

The D can be quite well intentioned, only their style is a bit brash. They want to reach goals fast and not waste time. They dislike incompetence. You have to prove yourself worthy and reliable.

Don’t mistake their strong will and their need for control of circumstances and their immediate environment for an unjustifiable pleasure of ordering other people around. The high D is usually success-oriented, not mean-spirited.

Once you realise that their tendency towards aggression, impatience and harshness is not personal, you have a better chance of getting on with high D people. High D people are the ones who motivate you and push you to succeed, albeit in a more critical and undiplomatic way. Take advantage of that!

How to Get Along with Influential People

High I people are the most enthusiastic and charismatic profile. People who score high in I are masters at winning people over. This doesn’t mean they are superficial, although they may appear a bit of a social butterfly to someone who is a high C or S.

People who are high I are energised by interacting with other people. They get their self-worth from the quality of their relationships, as well as from the wide range of people they can influence and persuade. Let yourself be charmed by their love for people, for being the centre of attention and facilitating communication. For them, popularity and social interaction is like the air they breathe.

They may be prone to lack follow-through and they may miss some details, but if you get infected by their joy of living, you will find them adorable. They are the life of the party and always lots of fun to be around!

Getting Along with Steady People

High S people like stability and strive for acceptance by their loved ones and within a group. In order to get on with them you have to be reliable and consistent. They have low tolerance of unpredictability and too much change makes them feel they may lose control over their lives or their environment.

People who are high S make extraordinary friends, as they value long-lasting bonds. High S individuals are usually principled and responsible and they appreciate the same qualities in their relationships. Once you realise they are not actually rigid or boring (as they may seem at first), but deeply dedicated to what is important to them, you will find enough reasons to admire them.

If you aim at slow, but sure accomplishments, this personality type is a treasure for you. They will stand by you and do their best to keep situations and goals in order and under control. What’s even better, is the S does this in a subdued way, unlike the D who may offend others and make relationships deteriorate. The S is your rock, they will hardly ever let you down!

Getting Along with Conscientiousness People

This profile is the most meticulous and detail-oriented. Such individuals are admirably task-focused and rigorous in their work. However, they can be insecure and indecisive about the best path to take or they may lose themselves in irrelevant details. C personality types are attentive, modest and respectful.

C personality types value predictability and they are admirably correct in most of what they do. You will enjoy deep conversations and probably be amazed at how much they know. Once you look past their reserve and their tendency to overanalyse or worry, you will discover an endearing person who can contribute a lot to your team and maintain steady and complex relationships.

Don’t be aggressive with high C people, treat them respectfully and help them become more outgoing. Once they get to know you well, they will disarm you with their well-hidden deep personality and their genuineness.

This profile has a love for gaining knowledge, but they may retreat too much in their thoughts or their books. Lead them out of their shells and you will find a very reliable and devoted friend!

By Peter Conna

Educator, Mentor and Business Growth Expert Peter brings a unique combination of intelligence, practicality and exuberant passion to add enormously to the success of client’s personal, business and financial lives. With over 25 years of experience in business and having coached over 2,000 individuals and presented to over 35,000 clients, his knowledge is enviable and enthusiasm infectious. Peter Conna, clearly one of the most experienced mentors and educators in Australia can also boast academic standing with qualifications including a Certificate IV in Coaching, Certificate IV in Real Estate, Diploma in Financial Services (Financial Planning), Bachelor of Business and Masters of Education. He is currently completing a Masters of Counselling. Driven by a strong sense of contribution, Peter enjoys hearing stories of success from his clients and the stories from the Make a Wish Foundation children he works so hard to support. His efforts to date have raised over $625,000 for the charity. He has recently created the eQ Foundation, a charity set to sponsor the education of over 1,000 children in developing countries this year. He is committed to helping individuals achieve outstanding results by providing integrity based mentoring and coaching.