DISC Patterns Explained – Elevated DIS Pattern

Individuals whose assessment grading indicates an Elevated score in three of the factors – D, I & S (and comparatively lower Compliance) generally exhibit these tendencies:

The prevailing factor in the Elevated Dominance, Influence, and Steadiness pattern is that the compliance ranking is low. People with this profile have specific ideas about their goals and they will drive hard to achieve them. These individuals will be fiercely independent and willing to break rules or make new rules that are better suited for their means.

One such example of this kind of person is Oprah Winfrey.

Oprah was born into poverty but strove to accomplish great things. She became a millionaire at age 32 when her talk show went national. She changed talk shows and reinvented hers to include literature, self-improvement, and spirituality. All of this was on her own terms – sometimes directly in defiance of what the studio executives thought she should be doing. But because she is so driven, thoughtful, and influential with her audience, Oprah prevailed and produced television shows that she wanted to be proud of – ones that gave her audience what she thought was important.

Fortunately, because of their Elevated Steadiness factor, people with this profile will tend to be more thoughtful rather than impulsive which will be to their advantage. They will consider and choose their preference more wisely, thoroughly considering the best option for each individual situation. This was definitely the case for Oprah when she thought about her programming content. In interviews, she said she thought long and hard about the consequences of her decision to go against the grain and produce more positively oriented talk shows rather than shocking, or sensationalist shows like Jerry Springer’s. She also changed direction and refused to create programs that were scandalous or melodramatic like those produced in the 1980s by controversial and influential American television talk show legendary host, Morton Downey Jr., who pioneered the “trash talk show” format.

While being very thoughtful and taking a considerable amount of time in the planning stage.

Sometimes scheming around the rules to get to the result they want might be a great strategy in completing goals faster, to some, it may seem that the individual will go to any means to achieve their objectives.

Skirting rules at times might be ok if they are ineffective rules but remember, Elevated Compliance people will not appreciate this at all and will work hard to stop you. This might erode all the time you thought you were saving. Elevated DIS people are also fond of ramming home points using thoughtfulness and a high level of logic – even if it flies in the face of current policies and procedures. at others. They constantly question the rules, making sure that existing rules won’t stand in their way by using their high level of influencing skills.

Oprah is known for being thoughtful and sensitive. She has donated millions of dollars to causes and people all over the world. As her successes continue, she continues to give back to the community and to the world. Even on her shows, she brings up sensitive topics and discusses them. Oprah is a classic combination of the elevated dominance, influence, and steadiness factors.

Associated Sub-traits: Opposing Sub-traits

Necessary for adaptation:

D>c – Independence C>d – Cooperativeness

I>c – Self-confidence C>i – Accuracy

S>c – Persistence C>s – Sensitivity

Elevated DISC Patterns are Motivated by:

Individuals with the elevated DIS Pattern are fiercely independent, driven to succeed, and persistent. Therefore, these individuals will always want a significant degree of independence when given the freedom over their work responsibilities and job requirements. They will look for ways to excel, and for opportunities to help their team achieve success, but, having the Elevated D will cause them to be highly motivated toward their own ambitions and goals. They like the recognition and rewards for their efforts, but because of their elevated Influence factor and its associated need for building and maintaining relationships, they will not try to steamroll over other people in order to achieve personal success at the cost of peers, teammates, or the organization. In this regard, they are prudent, considerate, and thoughtful.

Oprah is a very modest woman who has obviously tempered her strong Dominance factor by having it exert itself in being fiercely independent rather than domineering or bossy. She runs her talk show and, now, her own network. Although she is very independent, she is also very loyal specifically an attribute of people with an elevated Influence factor. She has been known to take her entire staff on vacation to places like Hawaii to say “Thank you!” She is a very modest and thoughtful woman and uses her success and popularity to help others. This is a typical quality of Elevated Steadiness individuals.

The Elevated Steadiness factor is glaringly apparent in her exceptionally thoughtful efforts in South Africa where she built the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls. Winfrey dreamt of building a first-class school to nurture, educate and turn gifted South African girls from impoverished backgrounds into the country’s future leaders. Her dream became a reality in 2007 when this school opened its doors.

Most Elevated Steadiness factor individuals place a high value on education because of their thoughtfulness characteristic.

People with this type of profile will most likely work long hours, even over long periods of time to get the assignment or job completed. Due to their Elevated I, these people will tend to be open and trusting, affable and outgoing. They mix well with other people and are naturally curious and they have an interesting combination of assertiveness and patience that works particularly well in a corporate environment. Most of the time, they will appear easy-going but be warned, their river of determination runs deep. On the positive front, the strong undercurrents of assertiveness will sweep teams along, but in a friendly, jovial manner. Individuals with this profile are often thought of as good facilitators; however, they must make sure that they actually take on the role of a true facilitator, rather than centrally masking their determination to get things done their way in the aura of facilitation.

In a team environment, they will tend to be sociable by communicating and cooperating easily and skillfully with teammates, even in a highly political environment.

This doesn’t mean that they are group thinkers, however. They know what they like and do not like and have a strong sense of independence and direction. Although they won’t go into conflict for conflict sake, they will not shy away from it to standing up for what they believe by defending their views, team, or turf when pushed.

Oprah is very social and loves talking to new people. She is very friendly, personable, and an excellent facilitator. She usually is not aggressive, but it is clear to all that she is self-assured and confident. Oprah is bold, and she stands for what she believes in.

A good sense of responsibility is a primary strength for people with this personality type. Family, friends, and co-workers look to Elevated D, I, S individuals for direction and they can wear the mantle of leadership well. These individuals can be the bedrock of most organizations because they have a strong willingness to be proactive and take initiative while still being team players.

Possible Weaknesses of an Elevated DISC Pattern:

Unfortunately, as with all profiles that contain three elevated factors, internal stressors and the circumstances the individual is currently dealing with determining to a large extent, what characteristics and behaviors the individual will exhibit at any particular moment. What is lost in this type of profile (with the comparatively low compliance factor), from an influencing and trust building standpoint, is someone who demonstrates stable, consistent behavior? The Law of Consistency states that: “People are more willing to trust those who behave in a stable and predictable manner. A person who exhibits a high degree of consistency is often perceived as trustworthy, powerful, and intelligent.

Consistency has the effect of lowering the person’s defenses in favor of your ability to influence them.” Although they are well-liked by most people, they have to be warned of how true and powerful the Law of Consistency can be. When this law is ignored, it has the potential to instantly destroy an inordinate amount of leadership currency that the person might have gathered. With their high capacity for influence and a drive to get things done, combined with the need for people to like them, this type of individual might be tempted to break the rules or be overly influenced by the last person who walks into their office — managers who have this type of profile should especially be wary of this tendency.

Although they are usually able to make rational decisions in an objective manner, the low compliance factor in this profile suggests that they might tend to overlook policies and procedures, rules and regulations, which may get in the way of achieving their goals.

They might frustrate and seriously aggravate an Elevated Compliance person – especially if this person is forced to work with them.

If the Elevated Compliance individual also has an Elevated Dominance – what out – the fireworks will explode in team meetings causing the rest of the team members to back away from the conflict. Fortunately, the high steadiness factor balances out this tendency. That said, individuals with this type of pattern should always remember to consider their options carefully in the decision-making process before taking action or making decisions.

Another example of a person who used their DIS traits to the advantage is Nelson Mandela. He was an anti-apartheid activist and broke the rules for what he believed in. He was arrested and sentenced to life in prison. Four years after serving twenty-seven years in prison, showing his steadiness and using his Influence and Dominance, he was elected President of South Africa. He led his party to negotiations that led to a multi-racial democracy. As president, he gave priority to reconciliation. He had to fight an uphill battle to achieve what he believed in, including breaking rules to get there.

Sigmund Freud is another example of a person who used his DIS factors to his benefit. He was a very thoughtful man who brought new ideas to the world of psychology and neurology. He was very in tune with people and developed his theories of psychoanalysis from them. Freud was very sure of his theories and did not waiver from them. He modified them as he saw fit, but he stuck to his original ideas.

Contact details:


CEO, Indaba Global Coaching, LLC


Office:  727-327-8777

Founder DISCflex

Sample DISC Business Behavior Report

Leave a Comment