Objectives: This exercise will help participants practice receiving feedback without comment, see the value of all styles, and show their appreciation of other styles.
Prerequisites: Participants should already know each other fairly well.
Materials: QuikDiSC cards
Time required: ~60 minutes
- Separate cards into piles with no duplicates, or as few as possible.
(You can also make additional cards using Everything DiSC priorities or descriptions to add management, sales, and leadership traits. If the group is trusting of each other, you can also add characteristics seen as more negative.)
- Place card piles into hats or buckets so every four or five people have a set of cards to draw from.
- Ask each group to go around their circle taking turns pulling a card out of the hat and placing it in front of the person they think best exemplifies the characteristic on the card. Ask that recipients not respond or only say “thank you” when they receive a card.
- After cards are distributed, allow a short time for participants to discuss how well these match or don’t match self-perceptions and perceptions of others in the group.
- Ask each person to exchange a card with another based on a characteristic they’d like more or less of. Example: Ava feels that she overuses or relies too much on being self-assured. She describes a time this kept her from sufficiently preparing for a presentation. She asks Aaron to swap for his generous card and explains that she is aware that she's been overly focused on her own project and would like to be more generous with her resources. Aaron asks her to be more specific about what she means by resources.
- If the group has high trust levels, you can also ask participants to go around the circle and choose a characteristic they’d like another person to express more often.
- Some groups might want to discard cards that don’t seem to fit any of them. If they do this, have them discuss how this absence might affect a team project.
- End the exercise by revealing which colors represent each style and how many people had more than one color in front of them. Why might that be? (We’re all a blend of all four styles. We might express one style more than another when in this group. A group might be missing a style so the person who simply displays it most got the card. It’s dangerous to pigeonhole someone based on only knowing their DiSC style.)
- Ask participants to share how it felt to accept the cards given to them and not make a comment. How is feedback normally given and received in their group? How can the group help each other strengthen the expression of the characteristic they chose in step 5?