DISC is a behavioral model developed by William Moulton Marston in 1928. The DISC model describes the four behavioral styles as Dominance (D), Influence (I), Steadiness (S), and Conscientiousness (C). However, what we know today as behavioral styles was initially introduced by Marston as “primary emotions” with associated behavioral responses. The same was mentioned in his book “Emotions of Normal People”.
Marston observed several people and began to notice incredible similarities among them. Although each one looked physically different, there were great similarities in how they acted. Methodically, he jotted down all the similarities and summarized the following four ways people generally acted:
- Some people were forceful, direct and result-oriented
- Some were optimistic, fun and talkative
- Some were steady, patient and relaxed
- Some were precise, accurate and detail oriented
Marston also found that some people had characteristics of two or even three of the behaviors, but one behavior seemed to be the strongest. He also concluded that if we become like the person we are talking to, maybe we can be more effective in our communication and interpersonal relationships.
Since the time of its inception, DISC model has undergone several changes and modifications which has contributed to its development. Overtime, DISC became a universal language of observable behaviors. Scientific research, too, has validated these findings.