What are the DiSC Personality Types?

DISC was theorized by William Moulton Marston his book titled The Emotions of Normal People.  Marston wrote that you could identify a person based on what he called “primary emotions” and their typical behavioral responses. The four behaviors are Dominance (D), Influence (i), Steadiness (S), and Conscientiousness (C). No one’s personality is made up of only one style. Rather, we are a blend of all of these styles with a certain style that we naturally feature more than others.

Dominance: The D Style - Fast-Paced/Skeptical

As the label suggest, most people that fall in this category have a dominant personality. Individuals with this style are:

  • direct
  • result-oriented
  • strong-willed

People with this style are likely to seek control of over situations and other people. They are highly skeptical and fast paced. Frequently, it’s noted that people with this style have little patience for people and situations that do not conform to their goals, beliefs, or preferences. As a consequence, they might become irritated or become argumentative more than the average person. They tend to be direct, if not blunt, with their opinions.

Influence (i) Style: Fast-Paced/Accepting

One of the best adjectives to describe this DiSC style is Outgoing. Individuals with this style are often found to be:

  • Lively
  • High-Spirited
  • Enthusiastic
  • Social

The largest behavioral difference that the i Style has is that they seek out social opportunities and generally talk more than the average person. Frequently, people in this style are very interpersonally positive. People of this style are often the first ones to a gathering and the last ones to leave. When asked to draw a picture that represents their style, this group frequently draws a martini glass to represent how social they are.

Steadieness (S) Style: Moderate-Paced/Accepting

People with the S Style are typically interpersonally warm. Frequently, they describe themselves as:

  • calm
  • peaceful
  • even-tempered

Patience is one of the largest differences that sets this style apart from the others. Frequently they are the counselors of any given group. They will listen patiently to what issues their co-workers or peers are experiencing, and they are generally interested in what others have to say. 

Conscientiousness (C) Style: Moderate-Paced/Skeptical

A person with the C Style is usually described as analytical. Along with being analytical, individuals with this style are:

  • private
  • accurate
  • reserved

People with this style will typically take more time on projects than others because they 1) want to understand as much as they can, and 2) ensure that any opinion or work they provide is accurate. They have a strong attention to details, and are frequently finding ways to be more systematic to ensure that they are being as accurate as possible.

What is your DiSC Style?

It’s important to note that Marston never created an assessment even though all DISC related tests lead back to his theory. We encourage new users of DISC to explore the Everything DiSC assessments that are published by John Wiley & Sons because they are validated and researched.