My name is François, and I’m an introvert.
Introverts are often commercialized into people who “are shy, have low self esteem and are stuck up.”
But these are all negative connotations that need to be destroyed. We are simply misunderstood.
Therefore, if you’ll be willing to give me a chance, I can explain why…
It is an unfortunate fact that the human race has degraded people from being “human beings” to “human doings.”
Let’s say you’re at one of the wine expos in Johannesburg – because South Africa has some of the best wine in the world – busy mingling with the winemakers and the Jozi jetset. So after introducing yourself, what is the follow up question that comes to mind?
“What do you do?”
Don’t get me wrong, it is important, but the truth is that behind all our daily doings, we’re flesh and blood. We have emotions, feelings, family, hopes, dreams, and therefore need to change our mindset.
Socrates was right!
It is my belief that the first step to unravel challenges in any situation is to understand yourself. Once you do that, you can appreciate others and ultimately enjoy, strengthen and level up in your relationships.
One of the tools I discovered to help me better understand myself is called the DISC assessment behavior tool based on the DISC theory of psychologist William Moulton Marston, which centers around four personality traits which are Dominance, Influence, Stability and Compliance.
This tool not only improved our marriage, but it helped us to better understand each other’s behavior (the how) and driving forces (the why).
There are four areas to each of our behavioural styles:
Dominance – How we solve problems.
- Solves new problems in a more deliberate and organized manner.
- Thinks through new problems very carefully before acting.
- Solves new problems quickly and more assertively.
- A more active and direct approach to obtaining results.
For example, when I drive, I am already busy planning the route that I’m driving, because when Andrea asks me why I’m not turning left onto the highway, she expects an immediate answer.
Influence – How we interact with people.
- Meets new people in a gregarious, and socially assertive manner.
- Talkative, interactive and open, even with new people.
- Doesn’t trust anyone.
But didn’t you just say that you’re an introvert?
Yes I did! And that’s why I get so excited about it!
When we spend time with family and friends 99% of the time we are less than 5 around the table, but Andrea is usually the first to give me a subtle nudge and call a time out.
Stability – How we pace ourselves.
François & Andrea
- Prefers a routine and predictable environment.
And that’s why we’re both accountants.
Compliance – How we follow procedures.
François & Andrea
- Adheres to rules, standards, procedures and protocols.
- Excercises some of the highest quality control interests.
We are naturally cautious and concerned for quality, but we like to be on a team that takes responsibility for the final product, therefore we enjoy knowing the rules and can become upset when others fail to comply with the rules.
All four areas of DISC form part of our behavioral style. People tend to only latch onto one part i.e. François is a high S or Andrea is a high C, and they forget to take the other three parts into consideration as well.
Next we will have a look at our driving forces, where I will explain why we do what we do.
Your top driving forces create a cluster of drivers that move you to action.
My top four are as follows:
This is how you I apply the above in the workplace.
I thrive in an environment filled with chaos where I compartmentalise issues to keep the momentum flowing. I can focus on the task at hand regardless of my surroundings. I have the ability to instinctively notice and respond to people in need, and I look for ways to help people have positive experiences.
I have the desire to ensure that policies are fare for everyone, and I’m energised in any position in which advancement is based on continuous learning. I will complete tasks and projects without the need for public recognition.
To me documentation of the process is just as important as the results.
If we look at my beautiful wife’s driving forces on the other hand:
Andrea is able to isolate personal issues and focus on professional productivity. She may choose to see the world in pieces, not as a whole. Andrea is willing to help without focusing on what she receives in return. She values the process and people more than the end result.
Andrea prefers proven methods to accomplish everyday tasks, and insists that rules and regulations are followed by all. In those areas where Andrea has a special interest she will be good at integrating past knowledge to solve current problems.
She may attempt to help an individual or group overcome adversity, as she is patient and sensitive to others.
Thanks again for reading! I’d love to hear from you. If you’d like to find out more on how you can also get your DISC profile, drop me a mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org.