How Do Your Holiday Shopping Habits Reveal Your DISC Style?

Earlier this month we shared some common myths about the DISC framework and what your Christmas tree reveals about your DISC style. Today we are taking the DISC one step further -- how do your holiday shopping habits reveal your DISC Style? If you have already participated in a DISC Assessment, think about your preferred style. Now think about your Christmas shopping ritual. Are you a planner? Do you purchase gifts throughout the year? Do you hesitate in making decisions? Do you shop around for the best price? All of these behaviors are reflected in your DISC profile.


Let’s break them down.

The task-oriented D-Style makes quick decisions. This person is not going to shop around. Window shopping? Forget it! They will spend as little time as possible looking for a gift. A large department store caters to the D more than a small boutique. If they can make one stop and get everything at once, they consider this chore efficient. The results-driven D is focused on completing the task, and that might include having someone else do this task for them. Tip if you are on the receiving end of a D shopper: Tell them exactly what you want. Model, color, size, SKU number, the more details, the better!


The I-Style shopper is less task-oriented, and you will see this in their shopping strategy. Shopping is a social activity. They will schedule an entire day with friends “to go Christmas shopping.” This day includes lunch and lots of browsing. There may be a list of items to purchase, but there is also room for impromptu additions to the gift list. The I is known for thoughtful or funny gifts and the gift may be based on a shared experience. Tip if you are on the receiving end of an I shopper: Be sure to let them know how much you appreciate the gift. And loves to feel accepted.


Our introverted and people-oriented S-Style lean toward handcrafted or homemade gifts and consider each purchase with much thought. Christmas shopping is not a hurried, last-minute operation. The S will begin the process months in advance by drafting a list of all the people they plan to purchase a gift for and ideas of what to get them. They may even have been keeping a list of possible gifts as they notice them throughout the year. The S will avoid chaos and crowds. The steady and methodical S is a creature of habit and may frequent the same stores year after year. Don’t be surprised if you receive a gift from the same shop this year! Tip if you are shopping with an S-Style: Be ready to offer a second opinion on any gift they purchase that day!


Just like the C-Style’s Christmas tree was meticulously planned and decorated, their shopping will be equally detail-oriented, organized, and scheduled far in advance to avoid crowds. They are similar to an S-Style in their list-making and lack of spontaneity, however their tendency towards research before a purchase distinguishes them from an S. A C-Style will consult Consumer Reports and safety ratings and compare models and pricing. If you receive a gift from a C-Style, it will not only be practical and of high quality, but it will be perfectly wrapped and labeled. Tip if you are purchasing for a C-Style: Consider practical and technical items like gadgets, tools, or non-fiction books.


While you may recognize yourself or a family member in one of these descriptions, we want to remind our readers that people aren’t the letters of the DISC. Most people communicate and behave according to multiple styles and the situation. This framework helps us understand how we naturally prefer to behave and communicate so that we can adjust and adapt to improve our relationships. Now that’s a gift that gives year-round!


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