Your Natural DISC vs Your Adaptive DISC

by | DISC Assessment, DISC University

When you look at a DISC personality assessment report like the one pictured below, you see each category has 2 scores associated with it.

disc assessment natural behaviors

The colored bar indicates our natural behavior, or how we act when we don’t think about the way we are acting. The gray bar designates our adaptive style preferences, or how we act when we perceive the need to change our behavior due to outside influences.

Out of all the personality assessments, the DISC profile stands out for its ability to differentiate between a person’s Natural and Adaptive behaviors. These differences are pivotal for individuals and organizations aiming to harness these insights for personal growth and team dynamics.

Natural DISC Scores:

These scores reflect an individual’s most authentic self — how they naturally react in comfortable environments without the pressure to conform or adjust. This aspect of the DISC assessment reveals the inherent traits that an individual consistently exhibits, offering a window into their stable behavioral tendencies over time.

Adaptive DISC Scores:

In contrast, Adaptive DISC scores demonstrate how individuals modify their behavior in response to their perceived demands of a situation or environment. This score is crucial in understanding how someone adjusts their natural tendencies to meet external expectations or challenges, which can be particularly useful in professional settings where adaptability and flexibility are prized.

Why Both DISC Scores Matter:

Together, Natural and Adaptive DISC scores provide a dual perspective on behavior that is critical for comprehensive personality assessment. While the Natural score offers a baseline of behavior, the Adaptive score reveals how effectively an individual can stretch beyond their comfort zone — a key factor in personal development and effectiveness in diverse situations.

Applications of DISC Scores in Real Life:

For professionals, understanding the gap between these scores can guide leadership development, conflict resolution, and team dynamics. It can aid in recognizing when an individual is under stress (as indicated by a significant deviation from their Natural score) or when they are effectively adapting to new challenges.


By exploring both Natural and Adaptive DISC scores, we gain a complete picture of a person’s behavioral style. This knowledge not only enhances self-awareness but also improves interpersonal interactions in both personal and professional contexts.

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