"Have you slipped a DISC in sales"

By Michael Laing - Owner Apposite Management, Melbourne Vic, Australia

Why is it valuable for someone in a sales role to understand their DISC profile?

Why would you want to be able to flex the way that you deal with your customers? (we call it DISCflex!)

As an extension of that question, why is it valuable for sales people to be able to “dial up” or “dial down” different factors at relevant times?

Just to clarify for those that may be unfamiliar. DISC profiles are one of the best (and most widely used) profiling vehicles to assess a person’s behavioural tendencies.

The four primary DISC factors are:

  • D - (dominance) relates to control, power, and assertiveness.
  • I - (influence) is associated with social interactions, as well as the person's persuasiveness. It speaks to influencing flair, or the individual's tendency to be charming during interactions. Influence is also apparent in the person's confidence and a tendency to rely on their communication abilities to shape a situation.
  • S - (steadiness) denotes patience, persistence and thoughtfulness, as well as the person's need for attention to detail, when it is required, for action plans to be fleshed out and goals achieved.
  • C - (compliance) sometimes referred to as conscientiousness, correlates to a person's need for structure, order, and organization. It addresses the individual's desire to know and adhere to the policies, procedures and rules of order governing the situation.

Firstly, we know that matching a customer’s communication and behaviour style is a valuable trait so that any message has a better chance of getting through. It also helps build rapport with your customer.

Secondly, during the sales interview process you may need to flex your style at different stages. You almost become a chameleon as you adapt depending on where you are at.

Let’s look at the stages of the interview. Early on as you are building rapport and trust a dialled up “I” is probably needed. As you move into understanding the customers business and drilling down to establish specific challenges and needs moving to a more “S” and “C” profile is likely to be relevant. Once you have established needs and you start linking these to the features and benefits of your product or service moving back to more of an “I” profile is needed. Finally, as you move to the stage of asking for the order, your customers are usually looking for guidance on what to do next and comfort that they are making the correct buying decision so at this stage a higher “D” position is usually warranted. All this whilst ensuring that you are not over burdening high “D” buyers with too much detail or, alternatively, not enough to the high “S” types.

This is why a life in sales can be challenging but it is also why it is so enjoyable. Every person and every situation offers up different areas of focus and scenarios. You then have situations that involve two or more buyers in the one meeting all with different profiles.

So how do you become this “Chameleon” who can adapt to any given situation and customer and stay true to yourself.

Most assessment tools provide interesting and valuable information. You read it and when you absorb the information you may be asking yourself, "Now what?" How can you use this information to improve your performance, and possibly change and develop behaviours?

Based on your unique personal assessment results, using what we call the DISCflex Behavioural Assessment, INDABA Global has developed training programs to make sure you have the knowledge, tools, models, methodologies, theories, and ultimately the skills necessary so that you can easily adapt (dial up or dial down behavioural tendencies) in any given situation. In simple language, it means that after successful training you should be able to modify your behaviour at will, according to the situation you are facing. You can then examine yourself, your personality, and your behaviours more accurately than ever.

To find out more information on how DISCflex provides tools that will help you both understand your own profile and also learn how to “dial up” and “dial down” your behaviour, as needed, in any situation contact us or to make contact directly with Mike contact him.