Understanding the "S" Style

Posted by Bill Harshman on

This is the 3rd in a series of individual blogs increasing your understanding of the four DISC styles – ONE at a time.  Our focus here is on the “S” style which stands for Steadiness.   Before we begin, let’s remember the rules:  There is no perfect style AND everybody has some degree of all 4 styles: Dominant, Influence, Steadiness, Conscientiousness.

            DISC Model                       DISC:  Pace & Priority                        

As referenced in a previous blog, your DISC style is determined by two aspects:  PACE & PRIORITY.  The model above helps explain this important concept.  Simply put, DISC helps you decode the needs, preferences, and priorities of people.  The spectrum for the aspect of PACE goes from one end consisting of descriptors such as faster-paced, active, assertive, and bold.  The other end of the PACE spectrum consists of descriptors such as smoother-paced, deliberate, thoughtful, moderate, calm, and careful.

The other aspect of PRIORITY consists of one end of a spectrum including people-oriented, accepting, receptive, and agreeable.  The other end of the PRIORITY spectrum consists of task-oriented, questioning, logic-focused, and challenging.  Where you lie on these two aspects of PACE & PRIORITY helps determine (decode) a person’s DISC style.

When we look at someone with a strong “S” style, we see that they are moderately-paced (dissimilar to a “D” or an “I”), and people-oriented (dissimilar to a “D” or a “C”).  A HIGH S prefers stability, predictability, and systems.  They would rather be a team player than the team leader.  The above chart shows clearly where they are placed in the 4-quadrant DISC model.  Other words which help you understand the high “S” style include, but are not limited to:  reflective, deliberate, reserved, gentle.  The “S” style tends to be both interpersonally warm and have a lower level of outward energy.  Some “S” styles  refer to themselves as calm, peaceful, even-tempered, patient, humble, tactful, and/or accommodating.

If you have a higher/stronger “S” style (Steadiness), you are motivated by Support, Stability, and Collaboration:

Strengths as a co-worker may include:

  • Accommodating others, consistent performance
  • Team player, patience
  • Calm approach, good listener, humility

Limitations MAY include:

  • Overly accommodating
  • Tendency to avoid change
  • Indecision

Improve effectiveness by:

  • Speaking up
  • Request clarification
  • Seeking the balance between group harmony and a more assertive task orientation

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


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