Sure-Fire Ways to Irritate Each of the Four DISC Personality Types

  1. What are the four DISC personality types?
  2. How to irritate the Dominant personality type
  3. How to irritate the Inspiring personality type
  4. How to irritate the Supportive personality type
  5. How to irritate the Conscientious personality type

What are the four DISC personality types?

Here’s a quick description of the strengths and weaknesses of each DISC personality type:

Dominant

The dominant person is direct, forceful, strong-willed and proactive. 

Dominant people like to do tasks quickly, and are always interested in taking action, especially when the action is bold and decisive.  They like to be in charge and as a result may be poor subordinate workers. They enjoy working towards and achieving goals. They are focused primarily on the future.  They are naturally task-oriented and tend to think only later about how the people involved might be affected.

Their possible weaknesses include being insensitive, being too pushy or forceful, and being too blunt for the comfort of other personality types.  They may also think they’re often (or always) right, and it’s hard to convince them to change once their minds are made up.

Inspiring

Inspiring:  The inspiring person is enthusiastic, outgoing, ideas-oriented, and fun.

The inspiring person is talkative; they enjoy expressing themselves and persuading others.  They are natural-born salespeople.  They like to perform and are drawn to the spotlight.   They love brainstorming and collaborating with other enthusiastic people who display vision and share their passion for ideas.

Their possible weaknesses include talking too much, and struggling to compete projects once their initial enthusiasm has worn off. They find it difficult to maintain focus on one idea for a long time.  They also find details challenging; they know that details are important, but struggle to get them exactly right.

Supportive

Supportive:  The supportive person is patient, diplomatic, flexible, and empathetic.

The supportive person is energized by feeling that they’ve helped someone.  They love to contribute behind the scenes, away from the spotlight.  They need to know that they’re more than just a number, and so they thrive in collaborative environments.  They are energized by doing practical jobs that they feel confident in completing.  To a supportive person, trust is everything, and when they feel trusted and appreciated, they perform at peak levels.

Their weaknesses may include avoiding conflict, and not speaking their minds (especially about controversial topics.  Since they don’t enjoy engaging in conflict, they may struggle with feelings of bitterness, or hold grudges over real or perceived sleights.  When they feel badly treated, they may become stubborn and display a ‘quiet will of iron.’

Conscientious

Conscientious: The conscientious person is detailed, accurate, thorough, and precise

The conscientious person is energized by doing a task thoroughly and well. They desire the time and quiet necessary to focus on doing a perfect job.  Detail and data appeals to them, because data is predictable and consistent; people are not!  Conscientious people naturally create structure, order and process, and are very interested in building a detailed plan that will produce quality results.

Their weaknesses may include being too picky.  They spot what’s wrong before they see what’s right in most situations.  They may try to exert inappropriate control over others, especially when they’re under stress.  Since they strive for quality results, they may become bogged down in detail.  Striving for perfection in every aspect of a task matters a lot to them, whether the task matters or not.

How to irritate the Dominant personality type

The Dominant person is irritated by:

  • Having their time wasted. Time is the Dominant person’s most precious commodity. Sitting in traffic, sitting through (to them) pointless meetings, and dealing with people who are unprepared are major irritants to them.
  • Someone trying to take control from them, Dominants want to be the alpha in charge of the situation. When someone tries to take this role from them, they are irritated.
  • Being forced to be too transparent. Dominants are careful about how much they disclose about themselves. They like to be in control of the situation, and don’t like being pushed into sharing more than they are prepared to discuss.

The Inspiring person is irritated by:

  • Being forced to follow an inflexible process. Inspiring people hate process. They are intuitive and want to make it up as they go.  Being forced into a process is a major irritant to them.
  • Being socially rejected. Inspiring people prize themselves on their ability to get people to like them. When others clearly don’t like them, they are irritated, troubled and upset.
  • Having their freedom curtailed. Inspiring people are all about freedom. They value spontaneity and want to do what they want to do, when they want to do it.  Limit their freedom and they get mad.

The Supportive person is irritated by:

  • Being forced into a conflict that they didn’t seek or want. A Supportive person lives much of life avoiding getting into conflict or causing offense to others. When they are pushed into a conflict situation, they are very troubled and upset by it.
  • Having to think and plan the distant future. Since the Supportive person thinks primarily of the present and the past being pushed to think of the future is something they don’t enjoy.  They don’t like planning, and resist discussions about the distant future.
  • Being forced into public situations. Supportives prefer to work behind the scenes.  They don’t like having to speak in public or be the center of attention.  When they are called out in a group, they are not happy.  If asked to give a speech, they may not sleep for a week prior!

The Conscientious person is irritated by:

  • Not having enough information. The Conscientious person is a planner. When they feel starved for information, they are not happy.  They want to know everything there is to know related to the project.
  • A job poorly done or incomplete. The Conscientious person prides themself on their competence. Their worst fear is to be called out for doing a poor job.  When others do a poor job, or just don’t finish it, it drives them crazy.
  • Process and structure being ignored. They value process very highly. When others ignore their carefully laid out process, they are not only irritated, but take it as a sign of disrespect.  They feel personally offended by their rules being ignored.

In summary:

All four DISC personality types are irritated by different behaviors.  If you want to irritate them, here are the sure-fire ways to do it:

The Dominant person is irritated by:

  • Having their time wasted
  • Someone trying to take control from them
  • Being forced to be too transparent

The Inspiring person is irritated by:

  • Being forced to follow an inflexible process
  • Being socially rejected
  • Having their freedom curtailed

The Supportive person is irritated by:

  • Being forced into a conflict that they didn’t seek or want
  • Having to think and plan the distant future
  • Feeling like they are ‘just a number’

The Conscientious person is irritated by:

  • Not having enough information
  • A job poorly done or incomplete
  • Process and structure being ignored

Additional resources

Thanks for reading this article on Sure-fire ways to irritate each of the four DISC personality types.  Below are additional resources from Professional Leadership Institute, the global provider of online human resources and leadership tools:

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