What an Office Space Tells Us About DISC Styles

If you had the chance to design your ideal office space, what would it look like?

Would your office space be organized with a high-tech, filing system? Do you envision a large corner office on the top floor, complete with an oversized desk? How about thinking completely outside the box, and working remotely in a shady straw hut on a tropical beach?

BS 4 office spaces illustration.jpgWe can't escape our DISC Style

First, take a look at your own office space. Your ideal office space is often a reflection of your natural behavioral style. Your DISC style identifies your preferences; including settings you respond positively toward and feel most comfortable in. In reality, we don't usually have full control of our office space, but we still find ways to make it our own.

We can't escape our DISC style, which helps us to identify DISC styles of others. When observing the office spaces of others you can gain insight into their preferences. Think about your highly social co-worker who has haphazard piles of stuff (including uneaten food and opened drink bottles) everywhere, but always creates space for you to come in and chat. Do you know someone who has pictures of family, pets, and friends everywhere? How about the coworker who organizes their stacks of papers into 90 degree angles, or there is hardly anything on their desk, but their phone and laptop? Do your coworkers' offices reflect their behavioral style?

D-Style's ideal office space

Office Space D style.pngThe D-style's office reflect their competitive tendencies to be highly efficient and the best. The roomy space exhibits their preference for being task-focused and in charge. D-styles want to make a statement; imagine a large desk and an impressive chair prominently placed. The largest corner office on the top floor, with the best views, suits the D-style. The recent stand-up desk concept is a great way for D-styles to multi-task, by staying active while working. They also prefer luxurious, high-tech items for their office, such as the latest plasma screen or laptop. However, there's no emphasis on additional seating because they don’t want anyone to get comfortable and stay for long.

As fast-paced multi-taskers, they will focus only on essential items, like their phones and computers, for maximum productivity. They may have a blue-tooth headset to free up their hands to do something else. The desk will be arranged so everything is within easy reach and non-essential items are likely to be tossed. The most likely personal items displayed are ones showcasing their “greatness,” maybe awards, certificates, and a degree.

I-Style's ideal office space

Office Space I style.pngI-styles dream big. They will focus on an entire office building or large setting to increase their ability to interact with others. For example, a round desk in the middle of the office is an open invitation to come in and chat, or a common break room in the middle of the offices. The focus is likely to be on open seating to encourage all to mingle, or even a fun location like a shady hut on the beach. They may also have that stand up desk to stay active and break up routine. Doors are not essential or always open.

They will have personal pictures galore and personal touches. They will excitedly display their awards and certifications or pictures of themselves climbing a mountain or finishing a race. Organization and neatness will give way to clutter because they just don't have time or inclination to take care of those details. You may even see a white board for those spontaneous ideas or inspiring thoughts!

S-Style's ideal office space

Office Space S Style.pngS-styles will think beyond themselves and envision a perfect office space that's inclusive for everyone. They consider thoughtful amenities like daycare, snack centers, and comfy common areas. They can spend more time working and less time running around the city to get things done.

S-styles, like the I-styles, are more likely to have round tables to collaborate as a team. However, S-styles will prefer to keep the round table in the common area so they can retain privacy in their offices when they need it. There will likely be an assortment of photos, but unlike the I-style who will have self portraits, the S-style will display photos of kids, pets, family and friends.

C-Style's office space

Office Space C style.pngC-styles prefer to focus on the processes and tasks. They view their office as a contained area where they will feel most comfortable. C-styles will give a lot of thought to planning it. The private space will be efficiently organized and neat to maximize productivity and manage paper data. Ideally, the desk will be large enough to accommodate several monitors and allow for additional work space. There needs to be shelves and cabinets to organize all the paperwork and efficiently access the data. The door is essential and will be used when privacy is required. Do you know a person who has extremely neat piles of papers stacked at 90 degree angles?

Learn More About Extended DISC

Using office spaces to identify DISC styles of others

Work is hard enough, so whenever possible, we arrange our work setting to feel more comfortable and motivating. Does your work space reflect your own DISC style? If not, consider arranging it so you feel more inspired and comfortable.

If you're a manager, consider the office spaces of your employees. Can you motivate your employees further by helping them make adjustments to their space? For example, locating their office to a quieter area or providing a round table can create happier employees who are likely to thrive and work more efficiently.

Finally, think about the next time you walk into someone else's office space; take a look around. You may have information to quickly identify the DISC style of the person and make the appropriate adjustments to be more successful in the interactions.

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