In our first blog about behavior styles, David talked about having a referral that just goes wrong. How many times have you experienced even an introduction or personal meeting that just seems to go wrong? I certainly know that I have had plenty of these. In fact, these types of occurrences confused me so much in the past, I just couldn’t figure out what had gone wrong. I thought I had done things right, and just figured that it was the other person.
You might not be as surprised as I was when I actually learned why these snafus were happening, and that in all actuality, it was up to me to make the changes needed to avoid these botched introductions and personal meetings.
You see, the problem wasn’t the other person, in many ways, the problem was me… my knowledge or lack of knowledge about behavior styles and how to effectively communicate with them was the actual problem. I am extremely high “D” when using the DISC system. Driven, dominant, task-based and very goal oriented. I appreciate being challenged seeing it as a chance to explain myself further, and when I challenge another, it means that I am interested in hearing more about what they are saying.
Once, I met a gentleman who represented a synthetic oil brand. I had just purchased a motorcycle, and as you can imagine, I wanted to properly maintain my new vehicle. I had a little history with mechanical things, and motorcycles in general, I was truly interested in learning more. I made a special point in asking questions. I did it just as I would have wanted it done, I asked challenge questions. I really didn’t get much of a response from the gentleman. Believe it or not, I was surprised when the following week an associate gave me feedback about what a jerk the gentleman had thought I was. He was so offended that he wanted nothing to do with the organization that I represented.
Now this story makes me laugh, laugh at my naivete, at my incompetence, I was trying to build a relationship, and instead had
deeply offended the individual that I wanted to build the relationship with. At the time, I did not understand that different behavior styles preferred interactions differently. being a high “D” meant that I preferred almost the opposite of what high “S’s” did.
A high “S’ is sensible, sensitive, steady, motivated by people, they dislike change and contention. “S’s” are team-oriented, patient, persistent and thoughtful. Another important factor, especially for people like me is that “S’s” (depending on where you find the numbers) make up the largest segment or over half of the population.
The most important thing to take from all of these articles is that knowing more about behavior styles helps us to build relationships more effective and that networking is about building relationships.
Good Luck and Good Networking