Paula Gardner, a business psychologist working with Supermums.org, discusses how you can use DISC to plan your Salesforce career.
DISC is a long established method of testing personality and behaviour that has been around since the 1950s. Personality tests have come and gone in that time, and everyone has their favourite, but DISC remains established and in common usage. While it may not have the fun element of some tests (are you a bunny or a shark?), it is pretty easy to understand and, lucky for us, there are a number of free DISC tests that you can take to find your own profile. My favourite is https://www.123test.com/disc-personality-test/ which shows you a proper breakdown of all the four DISC elements in your personality.
First, let’s take a look at what DISC does. Using a questionnaire it will assess your own particular make up of four main traits: D, I, S and C (hence DISC).
The first two types are the extroverts. It’s important to note that being an extrovert isn’t about being loud or the centre of attention. Extroverts get their energy from other people. If they are down they will gravitate towards other to refresh and replenish their energy.
D – Dominance. High Ds like competition, challenges, moving forward. They are task orientated, decisive, and can often be straight talking, impatient and overly keen on getting their ideas across. They appreciate reaching goals, tangible results and often enjoy working at a fast pace.
I – Influence. High Is like to persuade people, to rally people around an idea or goal. They can be charismatic and are usually warm and trusting: the life and soul of the office. These people like collaboration, and are great networkers. They are the eternal optimists!
Now the introverts. Once again, this isn’t about how quiet you are. Introverts need to be on their own to recuperate their energy. You can get loud introverts as much as you can get quiet extroverts.
S – Steadiness. People with high S are steady, reliable and like to work at their own pace. They enjoy collaboration and working within a group, and value loyalty and openness.
C – Conscientiousness. People with high C are, as the name suggests, conscientious. They’re often good with detail and go that extra mile to make sure the job gets done properly. They love learning and the opportunity to work in a stable and objective way, analysing and giving their input.
Of course, we are all complex individuals and every one is a mix of these four elements. If you do the test at https://www.123test.com/disc-personality-test/ you’ll be able to see your own make up and then check back to see which Salesforce careers are great for your personality type.
High Ds make great leaders as they’re keen to push things forward, so project manager seems an obvious choice to take advantage of these traits. You’ll be responsible for making sure that things happen on schedule, and your task orientated focus will help with that. Similar skills are needed by Salesforce Consultants and Business Analysts where you’ll be looking at the overall big picture and how Salesforce can help drive the business forward. Your straight talking ability may help clients really understand how and where they are missing out and what they could doing to grow.
This ability to see where the organisation needs to go may also be useful as an Architect, as you can see the big picture and what needs to be in place to make that happen. You’ll see this as a challenge and want to create the right architecture to deliver results.
Once again, Is would make great project managers as they have great people skills and often inspire others to get the job done – as we know, a lot of project managing involves getting the buy in from everyone involved and Is are perfectly suited to do that.
Their people skills will also serve them as a consultant, helping them build relationships with a variety of clients, Marketing, which is all about people, is an area in which they can really excel. You’ll have the ability to take data and actually see the big picture of how this applies to people…and how that can be used within marketing campaigns.
S people are driven by relationships, so once again project managing is an option You’ll the type of project manager who really keeps in touch with everyone, making sure that they have what they need to get the job done. Admins are also team focused, as everything you do will be about helping your team reach their targets, so being an admin may really suit you if S is your main driver. You’ll enjoy that interaction and feeling of fulfillment of being part of something.
Cs really come into their own Salesforce. With high attention to detail, you get fulfillment from doing a job well so could literally step into any role. The best choices however might be a developer, where you can really get dirty and creative in your own precise way, or Business Analyst, where your objectivity will be a key skill to help pull meaning out of data.
What about sales?
Interestingly, sales is a role where every type can excel. Ds will be motivated by a strong sense of competition so will do well in environments where they have targets or even challenge their colleagues. Is have the ability to talk to almost anyone, a wonderful skill in sales, and their networking skills mean that soft selling through networks suits them best.
S types will really listen to what the customer wants and make them feel valued, so an environment where you can get in front of and build relationships with clients really works well for S types. Finally, Cs, although they introversion may make them initially shy away from a sales role, have the ability to really focus on details and solutions. Given the right setting, Cs can show rather than tell clients. This can often result in more sales that someone who doesn’t know their stuff as well so if you’re a C, don’t leave sales off your list.
What if you’re a mixture of all four?
Then great, pretty much everything is open to you!