Recall the basic DISCerning Communication Framework:
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Red Zone (D-Style): Dominance >>> Takes charge, decisive, wants to have own way.
Yellow Zone (I-Style): Inducement (Influence) >>> Free-spirited, creative, projects self-image.
Green Zone (S-Style): Steadiness >>> Supportive, self-sacrificing, avoids confrontation.
Blue Zone (C-Style): Conscientiousness >>> Cautious, insists on order, wants compliance.
Note: Unrestrained use of any style can produce negative outcomes.
Ways in which Trump has used his D to live out his I
- Apprentice persona. Cameo appearances in 12 films and 14 TV series. Talk show appearances.
- The Wrestle Mania publicity.
- Well-publicized life-style.
- Fierce defense of projected image.
- His Presidential campaign was a classic example of someone who wants freedom from rules and structure and has the capacity to use dominance to make it happen.
- The protection of his compulsive tweeting and refusal to curb off-the-cuff remarks are other tell-tale manifestations of unrestrained use of the DI behavioral style.
A powerful, unrestrained DI behavioral preference can be polarizing. How could such individuals be guided to get better results?
Key# 1: Start with the big picture and make it even bigger
Show how by subjecting to discipline, order and structure they get to play on an even bigger stage with more opportunities to express themselves. That is strategy Kellyanne Conway would have used to bring things like the teleprompter into play in the latter stages of the Trump Presidential campaign.
Key#2: Use image and esteem as a back door
This is very tricky because while wide-spread approval is valued, the opinion of “people who matter” to the individual is more important. Think “select opinion” not “public opinion”. The mass media might be far less influential than feedback from core constituents.
In order to change the behavior of a powerful, unrestrained individual with a preference for the DI-Style of behavior, you have to change the messages that are being sent by those who truly have their ears, have earned their respect or whose approval is being sought.
One criterion for identifying such individuals is to look for people who can help the person to achieve their objectives. Success is the only language that is understood and meeting personal objectives is all that matters.
Key#3: Withdraw support
Show strength by drawing a line in the sand and refusing to cross it. The potential loss of trusted support and valued approval can force the individual to reconsider their actions. Again, the key to transformation is through their inner circle and those that matter to them. Anything else is just noise.
Key#4: Start at the fringes
Ambitious plans designed to achieve significant change are doomed to fail. Work at effecting change in areas that do not impact firmly held views and which are out of the spotlight. Also, make it easy and comfortable for the adjustment to be adopted. The objective is to stack up mini-victories as evidence that adjustment is easy and can produce valuable results. Convert those mini-victories into meaningful change.
Key#5: Give them ownership of the idea
Carefully plant seeds related to the desired change in such a way that the individual has an Aha! moment. Quickly support their idea and roll out implementation.
The easiest route to buy-in is to relocate the source of the idea.
Shaming is risky because using embarrassment to drive change could prompt stubborn resistance. Shaming only works if it embraces enough people who matter to the individual. Their approval is what counts. Muting that encouragement is the path to transformation.
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Trevor E S Smith is a Director of the Success with People Academy home the SHRM-accredited Certified Behavioral Coach award (now enrolling next cohort) and the 3-D Team Leader Certification: Leading Difficult, Dominant and Diverse Personalities.
The Success with People Academy applies DISCerning Communication while improving Recruitment & Team Performance. It prepares Personal &Team Behavioural DNA Analyses and 360 surveys on the revolutionary FinxS Platform from Extended DISC.