DiSC® - Interaction Between Styles: S (Steady) with C (Conscientious)

Posted by William Harshman on

In today’s blog, we look at someone with the primary style of S interacting with an individual whose primary style is C.

DiSC Steady with Conscientious

As an S (Steady) style, you thrive on giving support, maintaining stability, and enjoying collaboration.  To you, others with the C (Conscientious) style may appear:

  • Analytical
  • Reserved
  • Precise
  • Private
  • Systematic

The C is motivated by:  opportunities to use expertise or gain knowledge, and attention to quality.  Their priorities include:  ensuring accuracy, maintaining stability, and challenging assumptions. The C most likely prefers working in a stable environment where they can ensure reliable outcomes.  NOTE:  When it comes to PACE and PRIORITY, the C has a reserved, cautious, more deliberate PACE which is similar to that of the S.  The S will probably admire the C’s ability to work tirelessly toward an accurate outcome.  The C has a questioning, & skeptical PRIORITY which is also dissimilar to the S who has an accepting & warm PRIORITY.  (This difference may require what we call a little "STRETCHING" (flexing, adapting) from either or both parties when interacting.)  These two styles exist in different quadrants of our PACE-PRIORITY grid.  This might help you visualize (and be open to) the differences between the S and the C and what increased awareness might be required for successful interactions.

As an S style, suppose you work with a C style.  To the S, that C person seems overly focused on quality and accuracy, and frequently checks their work two or more times before being satisfied.  As an S style, are like a cooperative person who takes pride in doing your part to help the team, and may find the C to be too cautious and even overanalyzes big decisions.  Summary:  the C style is focused on precision and quality, and is less concerned with being “accepting & warm”. 

Let’s take one more step toward deeper, broader understanding of DiSC® and interactions.  As you see from the Everything DiSC® model above, where you lie within a given DiSC® quadrant provides further, unique descriptors for the 12 styles.  Mind you, these 12 styles are built from the original 4-quadrant model with which you are probably familiar.  So, it’s not like learning a new language.  You are simply adding some new “words” to your existing vocabulary. 

Interaction example:  Our previous DiSC® assessment revealed that our two interacting individuals are S style and C style, respectively.  As we learned in a previous blog, your actual, specific Everything DiSC® style is determined by two aspects; inclination and proximity.  Simply put, inclination is your location near or away from the center of the circular model.  You might think of this as intensity.  The closer to the center, the less intense.  The closer to the outer circle, the higher the intensity.  Proximity is your placement to the neighboring style.  So, in our example, upon closer examination, let’s assume that we actually have an Si (with a strong inclination and proximity to the neighboring i quadrant.  We also have a C (with a slight inclination and proximity to the neighboring D quadrant.  We refer to these 2-letter results as “blended styles”. 

SiWe know that the “pure” S style provides support, maintains stability, and enjoys collaboration.  However, the S’s closer proximity to the i quadrant shows up as people who are highly collaborative, like to involve others in making decisions, and are more concerned about building team spirit over individual accomplishment.  The Si tends to place a high importance of the needs of others, often setting aside their own opinions and needs.  The Si style usually comes across as cheerful and upbeat and tend to see the positive in most situations, encouraging other people’s ideas.  That “strong” inclination means they will have to expend MORE energy to stretch to behaviors outside their style.

CDWe know that the “pure” C style is about ensuring accuracy, maintaining stability, and challenging assumptions.  People with the CD style may come across as skeptical and determined in their focus on making sure things get done correctly.  Most likely, they won’t accept ideas without asking a lot of questions, and they like to uncover problems that could affect results.  That “slight” inclination means they will have to expend LESS energy to stretch to behaviors outside their style.  In addition, they also prioritize accuracy, and they focus on thinking logically to create the best solutions. They tend to avoid letting their emotions get in the way of making rational decisions.  Furthermore, those with the CD style also value getting results and tend to be determined to deliver quality outcomes efficiently. Most likely, they’re also willing to take charge of projects when necessary, and they can usually be counted on to keep things on track.

 HUMOR:  An S with a C on a Road Trip

 The S gets in their car and says, “Hop on in partner!  I hope the A/C is adjusted properly for you.  There are the controls if you would like to change it.  Do you have what you need?  I think I packed what you requested.  But don’t worry, if you think of something else, we can stop and I’ll grab it.  No problem at all.  I just want everything to go smoothly and for us to have a good time”. 

The C gets in the car and says (without a greeting), “I brought the map . . . hardcopy AND digital.  Do you have a full tank?  If you tell me what kind of miles per gallon you get, I can calculate our range and where we should stop for gas.  Based on my calculations, we should arrive in 3 hours 17 minutes.  Oh, I noticed your car needs washing.  Has it been serviced recently?” 

As ALWAYS, the key to effectiveness through DiSC® is understanding your and others’ styles and then using that knowledge for improved interactions.

If you would like a live, complimentary webinar (online) for your team or organization, please send an email to info@traininglocation.com.  If you’d like to purchase the DiSC®, visit  DiSC® Classic or Everything DiSC® at our website.  And, check out our products from The Ken Blanchard Companies as well.


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