Updated: Aug 15
Put in the simplest terms, group culture is "the way we do things".
Just as individuals have unique styles, groups also tend to develop their own style or cultures. This culture is an informal combination of behaviours, values and attitudes that most people in the group take for granted.
Although not everyone agrees with or flows with, the culture, most group members feel the pressure that culture exerts to act in a certain way. DiSC does not address all elements of culture but it helps you understand many important priorities, needs, goals, fears, emotions, and behaviours within your culture.
Why is group culture important?
Group culture has a large impact on the behaviour, attitudes, and satisfaction of each group member. people who fit into the culture often feel right at home in the group. But for other people, the culture leads them to feel like strangers in a strange land. The environment makes them uncomfortable.
Culture also has implication for the group as a whole. It affects such things as the pace at which work gets done, how outsiders are treated, the attention paid to details, or risks that the group takes. These in turn influence the success of the group meeting its goals.
Where does group culture come from?
It is important to recognise that group culture is not simply formed by the average, or most frequent, DiSC styles of the group members. A number of different factors determine the group culture. These may include:
The DiSC style of the group leaders
The most pronounced styles within the group
The type of work the group does
The historical culture of the group
The cohesion or tension within the group
The goals and mission of the group
These are just some of the factors that help shape group culture. Understanding the origins of your group culture may be important if you hope to change it.
How can Everything DiSC help you explore group culture?
When a group take any of the Everything DiSC assessments, additional reports are available which collate the data from each person's results and provides information about the potential group culture. There are two reports available, the Facilitator Report and the Group Culture report. Both of these provide the same information, with one big difference - the Facilitator Report provides top-line information about the style of each person in the group by name whilst the Group Culture report is anonymised. The former is particularly helpful for trainers and facilitators to have information about all of the DiSC styles in one report.
Both reports provide a group map, information about how DiSC styles may be influencing the culture of the group, information about how to recognise the culture of the group, issues to consider. For smaller groups, the Facilitator Report also provides bonus pages including a quick reference chart that lists the primary styles in each DiSC quadrant (this page will not appear if there are more than 16 people in a single DiSC quadrant) and a Group Map with names for groups of 26 or fewer.
Full sample copies of both of these reports are available from the Downloads area of our website.
For more information about how understanding DiSC can help you understand the culture of the group you are working with, please feel free to contact us.