What Is The DISC Personality Test?

Medically reviewed by Karen Foster, LPC
Updated July 2, 2024by BetterHelp Editorial Team

Have you heard of the DISC Personality Test and wondered how it’s different from other personality tests, such as the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator? If so, you’re not alone. Thousands of people have taken this test, and it’s considered one of the most popular personality assessments available.

The DISC model is a personality assessment framework developed by psychologist William Moulton Marston, which categorizes individuals into four distinct DISC styles: dominance, influence, steadiness, and conscientiousness. By taking a free DISC assessment or DISC test, individuals can gain valuable insights into their behavioral tendencies, enhancing self-awareness and interpersonal dynamics through a free personality evaluation.

Keep reading to find an exploration of the DISC personality test, the four primary traits of the DISC assessment, and ways you can use information from a free DISC personality test to boost workplace collaboration.

DISC personality test: What is it?

Created by psychologist William Moulton Marston in 1928, the DISC Personality Test has since been used to assess employee and teamwork capabilities in a work setting. It is a behavior assessment tool that measures an individual’s preferred behavior style. The DISC test helps organizations and companies better understand team personalities, which may lead to increased productivity, greater cooperation, fewer conflicts, and increased profit. 

The DISC Personality Test aims to help people evaluate themselves and work well with their peers, colleagues, friends, and family. It differs from Myers-Briggs in that it focuses on behavior rather than emotions.

Getty/Halfpoint Images

The four DISC personality types

The DISC test consists of four basic personality types: Dominance, Influence, Steadiness, and Conscientiousness.

Dominance (D)

People with this style tend to be direct, decisive, and results-oriented. They are motivated to get things done quickly and prefer challenges that require them to take action. In a team, a person with a dominant personality may act as a leader and take charge of the situation.

For a person with a D personality, it may be challenging to slow down and pay attention to the wants and needs of others. To avoid appearing vulnerable, they might have difficulty displaying their sensitive side.

Working with someone with this personality type may help you be brief, on-point, and direct with your plans or discussions. They tend to focus more on finding solutions than deeply assessing problems.

Other characteristics of a D personality:

  • Accomplish tasks successfully

  • Accept challenges, take action, and provide excellent input and outcomes

  • Self-confidence and determination

  • Skepticism and lack of concern for others

  • Independence

Influence (I)

People with an I personality tend to be outgoing and friendly. They are often found at the center of any social gathering or team project, as they enjoy being around people and thrive on building relationships. An I personality will likely excel in leadership roles as they are highly persuasive and can motivate others.

Focusing on extended periods may be challenging for a person with an I personality. As a result, they may need help following through on tasks or researching facts. They thrive on the bigger picture, embracing new ideas and inspiring teams with enthusiasm and energy for projects.

A person with this personality type can be a great teammate, as their contagious enthusiasm inspires others to be their best. They are typically very open to collaborating and helping those around them find success. With their charismatic and positive attitude, they can quickly bring life to any project.

Other characteristics of an I personality:

  • Demonstrate optimism and trust

  • Take action and work with enthusiasm

  • Driven by social recognition

  • Motivated by social peers and groups

  • Fear losing their influence on others

  • Accepting disapproval can be challenging


Steadiness (S)

People with this style are social creatures who thrive on community involvement. They tend to be optimistic and trust their peers, taking action when they feel the approval of those around them. Driven by social recognition and motivated by the opinions of their peers and groups, Steadiness types have an underlying fear of losing their influence or acceptance of others.

For a person with an S personality, it may be challenging to accept disapproval or failure, and they can feel a sense of betrayal when let down by someone in their social circle. They also prefer a controlled environment and may fear change. They may need help with unclear expectations or a lack of feedback from those around them.

Working with this personality type can be rewarding. Steadiness types value relationships and collaboration, offering genuine support and feedback to those around them. They enjoy structured work and strive to meet team goals. 

Other characteristics of an S personality:

  • Cooperative, collaborative, and appreciative of sincere recognition

  • Consistent, calm, stable, inclusive, and patient

  • Drawn to overly give support that may frustrate others

  • Indecisive and doubtful about change

Conscientiousness (C)

People with a C personality tend to be more analytical and organized. They have a good eye for detail and will often take extra care to ensure their work is of the highest quality. They enjoy working in structured environments and can often take on a managerial role, ensuring that tasks are completed on time and to a high standard.

For a person with a C personality, delegating tasks can be challenging, as they are often perfectionists and find it hard to let go of control. They also tend to be cautious and critical of their work, which may lead to overanalyzing their efforts. However, C personalities can be great at problem-solving. They will step back to analyze all available information before making decisions.

C personalities are also often resistant to change or trying new tasks, as they prefer the convenience of a set routine. They are often motivated by the need to show their expertise in specific fields and tend to gain knowledge from opportunities presented to them.

Other characteristics of a C personality:

  • Prioritize accuracy and high quality

  • Don’t accept criticism well

  • Fear of being incorrect

  • Value personal growth

  • Show stability and reliability

  • Are driven by knowledge rather than rewards

Why take the DISC personality test?

Employers often use the DISC Personality Test to help determine job compatibility and potential team dynamics within an organization. It can help individuals to understand their strengths and weaknesses better when interacting with others. The test may help them identify areas of improvement and capitalize on skills they already have. 


One way the DISC Personality Test can be helpful is to enhance managers' performance. Managers are often responsible for keeping their team in a tight-knit relationship to keep the business running efficiently. A good leader tends to yield a more productive team, a comfortable work atmosphere, and better outcomes. By understanding the team's personalities, strengths, and weaknesses, managers can figure out which tasks should be assigned to whom. As a result, work can be done effectively and efficiently with better results.


The DISC Personality Test can also benefit employees by improving their self-awareness. By understanding their unique personality, employees can better identify how to achieve personal goals and drive greater productivity. With the insight they gain from taking the test, employees can adjust their behavior or change certain habits that could help them reach a higher level of success in their professional and personal lives.


Individuals not currently in the workplace may want to take the DISC Personality Test as a self-development tool. Understanding their personality type can help them make better decisions when choosing a career path that fits their strengths. By studying results, individuals might identify the type of job or roles they may be suited for when making long-term decisions about their future.

What does it mean for the whole team?

By having all teammates take the DISC Personality Test, managers and employers can better understand how their employees work together. Identifying personality traits and preferences allows teams to work more efficiently by recognizing how group mates interact and communicate. Managers can use this information to assign tasks that align with each employee’s strengths strategically. This increase in productivity can help the entire team reach their goals faster and create a better work environment.

Getty/MoMo Productions

Taking the DISC personality test

Taking the DISC Personality Test is straightforward. All you need to do is answer a series of questions honestly that will ask about your behavior in certain situations and how you work with others. Remember, there are no right or wrong answers — just pick the option that best describes you. Afterward, the personality profile can help you understand how to work better with others and improve your communication skills. It's also important to note that personality types can change over time as people go through different life experiences and transitions, so retaking the test in the future may be beneficial.

Discover more about your personality with therapy

If you want to gain a deeper understanding of your personality, consider contacting a therapist. They can help you explore your personality type more in-depth, identify patterns and behaviors, and develop coping strategies. A therapist may also provide insight into your career path or personal relationships that you may not be able to gain from a personality profile.

Online counseling can be convenient if you're tight on time and can't make it to a therapist's office. You can schedule online counseling sessions at any time of day that works for you and even get help outside of regular business hours. Studies indicate that online therapy is just as effective as in-person sessions. 

With online counseling, you can get the support you need without leaving home. With BetterHelp, you have flexible ways to connect with your therapist, including phone calls, video sessions, and in-app messaging.


The DISC personality test is a tool to gain insight into yourself and others, allowing for better communication and understanding of relationships. It can also be valuable in the workplace to help identify strengths, weaknesses, and areas of potential within a team or organization.

A therapist can provide insights into your career path and personal relationships not attainable through a personality profile. You can connect with a therapist from your home with online therapy from BetterHelp.

Navigate personality traits with a professional
The information on this page is not intended to be a substitution for diagnosis, treatment, or informed professional advice. You should not take any action or avoid taking any action without consulting with a qualified mental health professional. For more information, please read our terms of use.
Get the support you need from one of our therapistsGet started