TTI’s DISC is a career test that is a very common and very useful career development test that many companies and career coaches use to get a better idea about the personality of potential and current employees. Through a series of questions, this half-hour test is able to tell a great deal about the person you are.
One of the most useful features is the inclusion of the “Adaptive” vs. “Natural” Behavior Test Graphs. These show the differences between the work environments you would choose to work in, versus the one you may currently be in. Often, if you find yourself hating your job or not fitting in in your workplace, these graphs accurately point out exactly why that is.
Graph 1 – Adapted Behavior
The first graph that you will see is the one that represents your adapted behavior test scores: the way you adjust to fit into your environment. The Personal Insights Profile career test booklet that helps interpret your DISC behavior test results says that this first graph illustrates “the behavior you exhibit in your ‘focus’ environment.” This means that it displays the behavior you project to others when you are focused on doing so. This may be in your workplace, or in an interview, or especially during your first few weeks at a new job. It may or may not be the same as your natural behavior.
Graph 2 – Natural Behavior
The second graph you will see is the one that represents your natural behavior test scores: the way you are at your basic style. This illustrates your behavior when you do not have the energy to mask or alter it, or when you are totally at ease and don’t feel the need to change the way you are perceived. The booklet says that this graph “will seldom change significantly because [it] represents the ‘real’ you.”
So, Why Do I Hate My Job?
These two graphs, and the differences between them, provide very telling insights as to why you might not like your job. If your “Adapted Behavior” graph is drastically different from your “Natural Behavior” one, it shows just how much your natural behavior is being masked. If the two graphs are very dissimilar, it is clear that you are acting like somebody you are not in order to fulfill the demands required by your job. You are like a square peg being forced into a circular hole – and the friction that results is represented by the differences between the bar graphs. You just don’t fit in to the tasks and responsibilities of your job.
For example, my natural style (Graph 2 on the DISC results) shows that I am a high “I” and “D”, and low “S” and “C”. If I don’t fit in, and don’t like my job, Graph 2 will show a completely different pattern and values than Graph 1. This shows the dissimilarity between where I should be working and where I currently am working, because who I am being forced to be is very different from who I actually am.
Chances are, if I were working a job I hated, my Adapted Style behavior would show that I have a very high “C” value. Compared to the quite low value in my Natural Style behavior, there is a great deal of disparity, exhibiting just how much I am having to mask who I naturally am in order to fit in at my current workplace.
To flesh it out a little more with myself as an example: my highest characteristic is “I”, meaning I am an “Influencer” (more on the specific types in a later blog post) and that I am sociable, convincing, optimistic, inattentive to details, and tend to work best with a high degree of people contact and a freedom from control and detail.
But if my Adapted Style graph showed that instead of “I”, my “C” characteristic was very highly valued, then it would show that I’m forced to suppress my sociability for a quiet and removed work environment, strained to be less optimistic and more objective and analytical, made to be very conscientious of detail when I am not naturally predisposed to do so, and required to work with a low degree of people contact but with a special emphasis placed on control and detail.
Clearly, these two types are very different. It is obvious that if I am working in a career best suited to a “C” personality, and I am so strongly an “I” person, I am not going to like my career very much.
The DISC Is a Very Useful Career Development Tool
The DISC Career Test will tell you a lot about who you are and the ways you can be the most productive while still enjoying your job. It will show you if you are adapting too much to fit in with your job, and if so, what work situation would better suit the person you naturally are. It is tremendously important you take the DISC test, so that not only can you avoid working someplace you hate, but are able to find someplace that your unique personality will thrive. It is vital to note that the DISC career test is particularly suited as a preemptive tool, before a job is sought or accepted, because it will show with great clarity whether or not this job would force you to mask who you really are. However, it is just as helpful when taken with regard to a concurrent job, to highlight reasons you may be thriving in or hating your job. If the disparity of the graphs is too great, then it may show that hiring a career coach would be enormously helpful in determining a new direction for your career.