A couple of weeks ago, FedUni’s Manager of Student Support, Marcus Probert facilitated our first official Leadership Development Workshop of 2014. Centred on Leadership Styles and Group Dynamics, participants explored the depths of their personalities, learning loads about themselves and how to interact with people who have different preferred styles.
The DISC assessment that we used has to be run by a registered Psychologist, but there are plenty of more basic versions online for free which still do the job – the 4 Birds assessment is a great place to start: This explanation and self-assessment questionnaire is a great place to start – it’s more effective if you skip the Bird descriptions until after you’ve done the questionnaire…
Were you surprised by what came out? Please bear in mind that this is a preference not a label – everyone has bits of all the Birds, and this should be used as a tool to work out how you work most effectively, and how you can adapt your style to work with other people rather than a list of your limitations!
So how can this help you interact effectively with others? Have a look at the Birds’ descriptions – if your colleague/friend/lecturer sounds like a bit of an Eagle, you know not to give them loads of detail – they want a headline and the expected results, then someone to make it happen. If you think they’re a Dove, you know they’ll want to get to know you on a personal level, so let them in even if this is a challenge for you (it is for me).
Your challenge (should you choose to accept it):
Think of someone you consider to have a different personality to you. (Could be a friend, relative, colleague – whoever). Looking at the descriptions, identify which Bird you think they best fit into (without pigeonholing them!).
Thinking about your style and theirs, talk to them in a different way than you usually would – it’s as simple as that!
If you’re comfortable with doing so, let us know how it went in the comments section – what Bird you and they were, what tips you followed, how you communicated differently and how successful it was.