My first week on the job, Alan sat down with me to tell the story of Group Dynamic. Its past, present, and the future he sees for it. He did this, as you may recall, to ensure I was a good fit.
We discussed the core values of the company and agreed to come back to the questions, “Does this person (meaning myself) WANT to do this job?” and, “Can this person DO the job?” After four weeks, we returned to those questions and, thankfully, both agreed the answers were “yes.”
Did the on-boarding process stop there? No – alongside our conversation about values, skills and abilities, Alan took the time to set me up with a personalized DiSC assessment. He sent me a link to the assessment and allowed me some time to review the profile before we discussed it.
He then sent me details of our combined reports, showing the differences between Alan and me. From how we communicate to how we handle conflict, this Comparison Report gave us both insight into how we could work better together.
What’s the point of doing this for a brand new employee? We were able to begin communicating in ways that would build upon our mutual trust right from the start, leading to healthy conflict, increased commitment and accountability.
These four equally-important ideas build the groundwork for results, as illustrated by Lencioni’s Five Dysfunctions of a Team.
Through the assessment, I learned that Alan and I are, in fact, very opposite when it comes to how we communicate, how we like to be seen (or not to be), and how we face the giving and receiving of criticism.
Seeing that my S-type personality mostly wants to keep the peace, Alan feared I may not provide critical feedback for his work. Likewise, seeing that Alan is a strong Influencer-type worried me that his more assertive personality would, in ways, “bulldoze” mine.
It has been useful to us both, keeping the DiSC assessments in mind throughout our work and communications with each other.
Although it may be too soon to delve very deeply into a team DiSC assessment with a brand new staff member, it may be beneficial for them to do it individually so that you, as a leader, can communicate effectively with them right from the start.
I was fairly certain that Ashleigh was an “S,” and so I was thrilled at the way she pointed out some sloppy work on my part during one of our first meetings. I had been concerned that I might not create the atmosphere for her to feel safe doing so, but this early work helped set the stage.