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Common Business Ground with DISC

Common Business Ground with DISC – Talk to the right Persons in the right Moment

“It’s over, I have the high ground!”

Well, like I did, a lot of other Star Wars Fans also immediately think of that one Scene between Anakin and Obi Wan when thinking about “Ground”.
Well, luckily (or not), we are here today talking about Business Ground and about finding common ground without lowering someones position.

People in powerful positions often like to play them out. They like appreciation and praise for their role and their achievement. Like our parents used to do when they tell about their away to school or work. Ha, gotcha.
Influential decision-makers like to exaggerate when it comes to their own efforts to achieve these positions. Whether this is deserved or not rarely plays a role. Whether hard work is the real reason plays even less of a role, and mostly isn’t.

Regardless of how your counterpart got into this position, it is now your job to pick him up, convince him, and reach a mutually successful agreement at the appropriate level. Always remember, the decision maker rarely has to work off the following tasks after giving the order. So it is all about reaching a decision in your favor, but especially in favor of your project team on the customer side. They are honestly not always on the decision makers side and certainly also pursue their own goals.

Okay, the mission is clear, but how do you find out what kind of person the decision maker is?

You use on one of the oldest methods of mankind, your gut feeling and your knowledge of human nature.

And if this won’t do the trick, you use a  common famework called DISC.
The DISC evaluates people with a certain amount of question and assigns a certain amount of points per color. Each color has its meaning and represents certain traits and characteristics that apply to these people. It is important to know that every person always has every color, but that these are distributed differently.


What colors and characteristics are there?

Greator did a really good job in explaining the different colors and their predominant characteristics. Take a look at their great article about the DISC model.
I hope it’s okay to rent this illustration. Why always reinvent the wheel, when there is already good content out there.

Shout out to Greator and their impressive content.

disc types

There is one great challenge of course. I think we all agree, that you can’t just do a quick test like this with everyone before starting the real meeting.

Would be a bit too much, right?


So what do you do?

Well, you get used to certain patterns and to traits that can be clearly assigned to a color or a scheme. In addition, there are already empirical values from which one can profit very well.

For example, it has already been shown that managing directors are more likely to be in the red region, which should probably not be very surprising in terms of character traits.

Those who are sales people with heart and blood are probably more likely to be predominantly yellow.

Strategic, planning positions such as finance and purchasing are more likely to be in the blue region.

Green is mostly seen as the peace-loving, sympathetic complement to the other colors. These are often customer service representatives or customer success managers.


Surely this will not work, that’s all nonsense, isn’t it?

I understand the skeptical attitude. No one likes to be pigeonholed or squeezed into a scheme.

There is actually a lot of haze in this whole framework, and of course a lot of all this is specifically designed so that the criteria have to fit together.

Nevertheless, it is still a good guide, or rather reference, to roughly assess the people around you. And a rough assessment is sometimes worth its weight in gold when one’s own knowledge of human nature is not very extensive and also lacks a distinct degree of empathy.

Never forget that the self-assessment of a person is never completely true. This is also a clear truth for you.
You think you know yourself, but it’s always your weaknesses that bring you down. So get feedback to find out where you may be acting strange or even wrong and see what is appropriate and what is not.

You can never please everyone, but you can position yourself as a neutral and comfortable speaker without offending anyone with your words and losing your chance to gain a great new customer.


What more?

Be careful. This can fastly switch to a very manipulative lane of consulting.

This is an accessible framework, which should support meetings, workshops and conversations.
You should never think that you can manipulate your counterpart with this. You should never do that anyway.

The framework is meant to support a pleasant and productive atmosphere. It shall help to address all participants in the room appropriately.
If a more direct way is appropriate for a manager, it does not have to be appropriate for sales, marketing, service.

Ensure a targeted approach and pick up all contact persons in a way that suits them best.

This isone of the arts of suitable moderation and communication.

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