What exactly constitutes a 'team'? There are many definitions of this term, some broad, some narrow. In fact, DISC can be used to provide useful information an almost any group of people, regardless of their situation. Nonetheless, it will be useful at this point to describe exactly what we mean by the term.
Probably the easiest way to approach a definition of the term 'team' is to describe some of the factors that all working teams have in common:
These three elements help not only to define a 'team', but also to measure how effective it is. Does the team work towards its remit? Do the members interact well? Is the team capable of producing the required results? It is questions of this kind that DISC can help to answer.
Before we move on to look in more detail at the workings of teams in DISC terms, it will be useful to consider the team in the wider context of the organisation.
No team works in isolation. The team will also need to deal with outside forces, some positive, some negative, if it is to function with any purpose. Even in an isolated team (for example a very small business), there is a need to interact with customers, clients, suppliers, accountants, tax professionals and many others.
Most commonly, though, the team is not isolated - it works within the umbrella of an organisation, and that organisation defines its role and its expected results. This means that a team will normally have to work within the structure of that organisation, and limits somewhat the activities it can pursue. However, it does grant the advantage of structuring and formalising the points of interaction between the team and its external contacts within the greater organisation.
This concept of the 'team within the organisation' is useful in considering the workings of an individual and specific team. In reality, an organisation rarely functions as a cohesive whole - it can in fact be considered simply as a collection of interacting teams (some formally defined, others less so). As we apply DISC to teams, it will often be necessary to refer to factors outside or external to the team, or inherent in the organisation as a whole. Such references can be read as referring to other teams within the organisation, and it is often possible to formally define and analyse these teams themselves, to gain a greater understanding of their dynamics.
We have already commented on the number and variety of team-building and team assessment tools and theories available today. The DISC behavioural profiling tool provides an approach that (so far as we can determine) has not been used, or at least formalised, before. What are its advantages?
Most of the team theories at work today look at teams in a general way, providing models and ideals - a task they perform admirably. With DISC, however, we can interpret and analyse interactions within a specific team composed of specific individual members.
Team building with DISC
Explore the theory behind modelling teams using the DISC technique.