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Behavior Styles in Franchising

August 13, 2012

By: Deb Evans

Developing Peak Performing Franchisees is a project that Joe Mathews and I have worked on since March. I can actually see a light at the end of the tunnel and I’m getting very anxious to have the work published.

One of my favorite chapters is Chapter 3: Understanding Behavioral Styles. The chapter explorers the behavioral differences of franchisees. In the early 1920s, an American psychologist named William Moulton Marston sought to create a mode that would allow him to predict and explain how normal people react to both situations and other people. To test the accuracy of his new theories of behavior, Marston needed to create a system of measurement. Incorporating some of Carl Jung‘s personality theories – including the concept of four distinct personality and behavior styles – Marston created an assessment tool that measured the following behavior characteristics:

  • Dominance
  • Influence
  • Steadiness
  • Compliance

From these four characteristics the DISC theory and assessment tool were named. Marston proved that those who possess similar characteristics also happen to speak, listen, process information, make decisions and produce results in similar fashion.

DISC has become one of the most widely used and universally accepted measurements to determine whether or not the skill people possess match what is required for a particular position. Franchise Performance Group believes DISC is among the best available tools to help identify and manage franchisee’s strengths and weaknesses and potential sources of conflict that typically arise between franchisors and franchisees.

DISC theory clearly shows that through consistent patterns of behavior, people essentially become typecast actors in their own movies, playing the same character again and again. Although people and events are not predictable, the way they interpret and respond to other people and events are, and can even be measured with a shocking degree of accuracy.

Here are the four typecast characters as Developing Peak Performing Franchisees describes them:

Action Hero

Action Heroes core strengths

  • Visionary: Results-oriented and goal focused. Seldom loses sight of goals or the big picture.
  • Decision Maker: Strategic, tactical, takes action.
  • Efficient: Always pushes for the quickest, easiest, simplest, and most efficient way to produce results.
  • Responsible: Strong leaders. Takes charge.
  • Implementation: Finds a way to make things happen. Very action-oriented.
  • Entrepreneurial: Multi-tasker, takes risks, involved (hands-on).
Comedian core strengths
  • Has creative problem solving ability. Will work to avoid conflict with franchisor and other franchisees.
  • Sees the big picture. Goal-oriented.
  • Consensus builder. Will work to influence other franchisees into his way of thinking.
  • Works well with others. Functions well on a team.
  • Easy to talk to, relate to.
  • Optimistic and trusting.
  • Outgoing, team builder.
  • Builds quality relationships.
  • Makes work fun.
Faithful Sidekick
Faithful Sidekick core strengths
  • Objectivity.
  • Very methodical and process driven.
  • Functions well within a structured environment. Will follow the franchise system.
  • Great listening skills.
  • Empathetic.
  • Team players, model franchisees.
  • Servant leaders.
  • Easy to talk to, relate to.
Private Eye

Private Eye core strengths

  • Objective and open to new information.
  • Very methodical and process driven.
  • Quality driven.
  • Functions well within a structured environment. Will follow the franchise system.
  • Great listening skills
  • Will find holes in the system. Brilliant at creating processes and procedures that plug the holes.
  • Diplomatic.
  • Highly analytic.
  • Very persistent, consistent.
  • Conscientious.
  • Democratic manager, good at soliciting feedback.

What style or styles do you most closely represent? What styles do your employees or franchisees represent? Do you adjust your style to match the styles of others?

A special thanks to our illustrator Mark Weber who did a superb job illustrating the core strengths of our characters.