“Softly, Softly Catchee Monkey…”

Today I met up with a prospect who wanted help with their voice. They sat, quiet, gentle and unassuming. In doing my homework and reading their profile on LinkedIn beforehand, I had noticed they had won an award for continuing in their profession for 25 years – quite an achievement. And whilst this person wanted work on their voice, I concluded that they actually wanted to gain attention from others. They wanted to win engagement with people. They stressed that what they wanted was to develop warm, enduring relationships with fellow business people. They wanted to make more of a mark, an impact in their networking.

So who was I dealing with?  Thanks to DISC profiling, I immediately recognised who they were: High Ss.  High Ss are for example, the quiet manager who just gets on with the job, the kind PA who listens to people’s woes, the steady right hand Operations Director who plans, organises and structures your company to run so well, you don’t even notice how happy and comfortable the team are because they do such an efficient job. High Ss can become invisible and merge into the crowd. You only find out how valuable they are to you when they leave (and they are probably leaving because they don’t feel cared for). Then, too late you notice your loss.They’ve been the ones who knew what was happening, they were the ones that people confided in, they were the ones to let you know a storm was brewing because a member of your team was having an affair with the FD. Beware, ignore these people at your peril!

High Ss – Introverted and People Oriented

35% of the population


Security conscious




Dress: tend to be more casual – or one level below convention (or just untidy)

High Ss are likely to prefer quiet offices with orderly processes. They appear a little standoffish though friendly and unassuming on first acquaintance. You may not progress any further until they are satisfied that you care about them and their interests – which may take some time. And please don’t expect to make the sale immediately, these people need to take their time since they are reflective thinkers – a quick decision will be a ‘no’. They will put up with a great deal until something acts as the straw that breaks the camel’s back and then they will be extremely tenacious. They like to make progress in a thoroughly well thought through manner (organically) and like to consider all the angles first.

However much they may disguise it, they are sensitive to people’s feelings and dislike upsetting, hurting or disappointing people. They fear conflict and confrontation and are likely to be ‘avoiders’ to circumvent the upset. They need plenty of notice when there’s trouble so they’ll have had time to work out their position. They make great team players since they are aware of how others tick. They have one or two close friends and everyone else is kept at a distance. This may be fanciful though I have often observed that their faces tend to be round and poker faced.  They are sceptical and will need convincing.

To sell to them:

  • Make your approach quietly and calmly
  • Outline your solution slowly
  • Show you care about their circumstances
  • Be structured in your approach
  • Be prepared to go over your proposition time and again
  • Allow silences so they can think and deliberate
  • Suggest that you or your solution will reduce or eradicate conflict or risk

Show yourself to be tolerant, steady and persistent and concerned about them and their interests and they will gradually take to you.


About anrah

Anrah is a business development consultancy specialising in helping senior women in engineering and science, their teams and doctoral students increase 'presence', improve communication and generate impact to win stakeholder buy-in at the highest level.
This entry was posted in Four Stages To Influential Leadership and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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