Stressful Situation: How Different Behavioral Types would Respond

Hope stared at the computer screen.  She’d received bad news from IT that an app the entire team relied on was not functioning, and would probably not be for at least 24 hours.

Von, holding his characteristic large mug of coffee (no creamer, no sugar) strolled by Hope’s desk and noticed her blank expression.

“What’s up, Hope?”

Hope glanced up, enjoying the smell of the coffee briefly before saying, “The XYZ App is down, probably for at least 24 hours.”

“That’s not good,” Von sympathized.

“No, it’s not. I just let the team know.”
“I can just imagine the reactions,” Von said with a grin. “Let me guess.”

Hope smiled. She and Von had been through DISC training, so they could better relate with their colleagues.  Each person in the office tended to respond and behave in certain ways based on the stimulus of the moment. Hope and Von found it much easier to adapt their responses because of a better understanding of where people were coming from.

Von continued:

I bet Matt said something like,

This is NOT good news. It’s vital for this technology to work, especially during the busiest season of the year!

And Cindy said,

Here’s what I found out when I called the technician.

Hope laughed. “So far so good.”

Heather was the cheerleader, right?

It’ll be all right. We’ve worked through problems before. Chin up.

“For sure!”

And Brian said, “How can I help? What can I do?”

“Bingo!” Hope responded. “It’s really amazing how our team has different reactions when something like this happens.

Von added. “It’s discouraging news regardless, but at least you know none of these people are wrong in their reaction and how to adapt to each one.”

“Yes,” I’m still trying to figure that out.”

“Let’s think about this,” Von said.

“For Matt, he is quick to react, but he also does take the lead well. He just isn’t as careful about how he will come across.  He will want very basic info and to know someone is working on it.”

Hope said, “I was thinking something like,

Matt, I agree! I have the top IT folks working on it and will give you an update every three hours until it is resolved.”

For Cindy, I’m just going to thank her for the information.

“Sounds good,” Von replied.  “Since Brian asked how he could help, maybe you could give him some type of task to do? “

“Yes,” Hope said. “He could notify the other departments about what is going on and collect any questions for me so I don’t keep getting interrupted.”

“And, you can send Heather out to buy pizza for everyone.”

Hope laughed. “That’s a great idea.”

“Teamwork,” Von said.  “This’ll be a lot better than everyone arguing and complaining!”

“Yes indeed,” Hope replied. “It sure is a help to understand the differences in how people respond and behave. It kept me from just blowing up and storming out of the office today.”

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