Last week I had the pleasure of attending the Bud to Boss and Ultimate Communicator training camps when they were in Washington, D.C. You might assume that because my company, Briefings Media Group, puts on the seminars, I’m too biased to review them. Fair enough. I’d probably assume the same thing. But I didn’t attend the camps with the intention of “reviewing” them—I was there to participate—so I feel I was able to remain objective.
I will say this: Both trainers (Steve Johnston for Bud to Boss and Kimberly Sellnow for Ultimate Communicator) were excellent. They were engaging, knowledgeable, insightful and, quite honestly, a lot of fun. They were thoroughly prepared to respond to attendees’ real-life work dilemmas, but they were also very adept at getting the rest of the group to share their insights and thoughts as well. Although I research and write about these topics on a daily basis, I still felt like a good amount of the information was new to me—or at the very least, presented in a new light. Multiple people at both camps told me that they thought it was the best training experience they’d ever had. Long story short: If I ever have the opportunity to attend one of our training camps again, I’m jumping on it.
OK, OK, enough touting. I really want to share one new-to-me topic that was brought up in both seminars: the DISC Model of Human Behavior. I was familiar with other personality tests, but I enjoyed learning about the DISC Model because it’s not as clunky and complicated as something like Myers-Briggs, so it’s pretty easy to figure out, remember and actually use.
You can take a free online DISC assessment, but we did a simple exercise in which we evaluated ourselves on two spectrums: how outgoing vs. reserved we were and how task-oriented vs. people-oriented our priorities tended to be. For me, that simple exercise seemed to be pretty accurate. You end up in one of these quadrants:
If you lean toward being outgoing and task-oriented, you’re a Dominant type. If you lean toward being outgoing and people-oriented, you’re an Inspiring type. If you lean toward being reserved and people-oriented, you’re a Supportive type (that’s me!). If you lean toward being reserved and task-oriented, you’re a Cautious type. All four types have strengths and weaknesses. All four have something unique to offer at work.
What was best about the exercise, however, was that it didn’t end with simply understanding your type and how that affected your work. That’s important, yes, but it’s not enough if your goal is to be a strong manager or communicator. You have to understand how your team members’ types—which you can often guess with a good amount of accuracy, if you’re paying attention—affect the way you would best interact with them. It was fascinating. There were a few attendees who had done DISC assessments at their workplaces, but the training didn’t go beyond identifying their types. Those people expressed how much more useful it was to be able to understand things like this: “OK, so my boss is a Dominant type. That means I should approach her like this …” or “OK, so this employee is a supportive type. That means he thinks about issues like this … and needs me to do this …”
Of course, the DISC assessment and accompanying discussion was just a small part of the training, but it was one of my favorite aspects. Bud to Boss also covered topics like performance reviews, coaching, being persuasive, listening better, dealing with resistance to change and lots more.
If you’re interested in attending one of the upcoming Bud to Boss Training Camps, you’re in luck. We’ve got events all over the United States this fall:
- Sept. 10-11 in Boston.
- Sept. 13-14 in Tulsa, Okla.
- Sept. 18-19 in Chicago.
- Oct. 1-2 in Philadelphia.
- Oct. 16-17 in Baltimore.
- Nov. 8-9 in Charlotte, N.C.
- Nov. 12-13 in Austin, Texas.
- Nov. 15-16 in Milwaukee.
Register today! I promise you’ll enjoy it and benefit from it!