Is Your DiSC Profile S? Learn More About Your Personality

By way of introducing myself, I might as well start by talking about my DiSC style, which is S. What do we know about people with an S style? It really comes down to one word: Harmony, but that really is an all-encompassing thing. A person’s need for or desire to create harmony is about everything from harmonious collaboration with a team, creating a calm work environment, and even harmony in one’s personal life.

This desire for harmony manifests itself in many ways for a person with an S style. They tend to be very forgiving, allowing people to make mistakes and not make a big deal about it, because the “greater good” or harmony of the team is of larger significance than correcting someone. Helping others to feel good about themselves helps us to feel good, and to create a feeling of wellbeing in a team. We tend to be patient with others, wanting to see the good in everyone, even if past behaviour might lead you to believe you shouldn’t, S’s really want to overlook the bad, to maintain the good. Which, as you might have guessed is both a good thing and a bad thing. Avoiding conflict does not solve the issue, but being unforgiving is also damaging. Balance in all things is key. The S style is often known as the peace-maker in the group, wanting to make sure everyone is heard, offering support to team members, and avoiding having to battle or argue with people as it’s not only exhausting but antithetical to their main goal of harmony and peace.

When people with this style experience conflict or confrontation, they tend to dwell on it after the fact to try to get closure on it. They may beat themselves up over things they said in the heat of the moment. This can cause stress for the S style. S’s like to feel prepared so that they can be as polite and harmonious in their response as possible. When pressured to give a response without time to prepare, they may worry after the fact that they have said something to offend someone, wishing they had chosen better words so that the other person understands what was said in the manner it was meant. All this come back to the S’s desire to keep things calm and peaceful, to make sure everyone is happy within the group.

People with an S style are intuitive, compassionate, and have a strong understanding of social cues. This is their super power. They use body language to make everyone around them feel calm and happy. For example, they will nod when others are talking to give encouragement and to acknowledge they are listening, they will laugh at jokes that aren’t funny to save someone’s feelings, they will emulate the other person’s body language, tone, et cetera so they feel heard and understood. S’s expend a lot of energy trying to protect, understand, and cater to other people’s feelings. Being eager to please and overly accommodating can be problematic though. People with an S style will often hold back for fear of what others will think when they should be honest, or they qualify their statements rather than being bold and sure of themselves. They do this so they don’t come across as forceful, but what it actually does is make them seem unsure, or hesitant. When people of this style don’t stand up for themselves and talk about what they want, think, feel, or have accomplished they often do not get heard, their needs go unmet, and they don’t get the credit they deserve. People with an S style tend to downplay their own success to make others feel better. All in the name of harmony which was the original goal of the S person, but in trying to achieve that they can undermine their own needs.

Even worse people think they lack confidence and power. People with an S style aren’t really interested in power, it can be uncomfortable for them, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have great ideas. They just don’t want to control or dominate people. It is an instinctual thing to avoid, not a conscious choice. However, that doesn’t mean an S style person can’t be a great leader, they just find different ways to lead that are comfortable to them, and learn to be assertive when delegating tasks.

Ultimately, people with the S style should not feel like their natural tendencies are wrong, but to tap into that inner voice that says, ‘I feel differently about this’, ‘I feel I am being attacked’ or ‘they didn’t acknowledge my achievement too’, and speak up. You can still be tactful, and strive for peace while at the same time showing others that despite your people-pleasing tendencies, you are confident in yourself, capable of speaking up when necessary, and ready to engage in conflict that is productive, rather than avoiding it.

Only by understanding our own needs and making sure they are a priority, can we truly be of support and create harmony with the people around us, particularly those of different styles. Even though harmony is a big need for S people, we, in a sense, create false harmony by ignoring the problems, down playing the issues, or not speaking up for ourselves. Don’t sacrifice your own needs or allow your achievements to go unnoticed just to please others. Ultimately, it is important with any style to be self-reflective, acknowledge how your own natural tendencies are a positive asset to your team and your own work, but also how they can cause problems, and work to turn those negatives into positives.

 

 

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