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Giving DiSC as a graduation gift

4 min read

Have you considered gifting a DiSC assessment to a recent graduate? I just did that. Here’s what I discovered about giving DiSC as a graduation gift, and why I recommend it as a unique and practical gift for recent graduates.

I have a young friend who received both their high school diploma and associate’s degree this year. I selected Everything DiSC Workplace®, a research-backed assessment that is great for someone encountering DiSC for the first time. I thought they would find the results interesting, and that it would be something we could talk about when they came to visit.

Note: There are many DISC assessments on the market. I’m writing only about Everything DiSC products here. Read about the various DiSC/DISC assessments.

Photo of graduate with parent. DiSC assessments make a great graduation gift.

5 reasons Everything DiSC makes a great graduation gift

#1. Everything DiSC uses nonjudgmental language.

I had read about how “adolescence defines a critical period for the personality development of young adults.”1 I didn’t want to present my friend with anything that was negative or that put stress on their self-concept. Fortunately, Everything DiSC uses nonjudgmental language.

The 20-page profile report makes it clear that no DiSC style is better than others. It also reminds us that everyone is a mix of all four styles. (See more cornerstone principles.) The language in the report is personalized and positive, even when discussing limitations. Because it is developmental rather than just descriptive, the report offers strategies for stretching into other styles when needed, while explaining that this will take more energy than your natural tendencies.

#2. Adaptive testing ensures greater accuracy.

My friend didn’t take the assessment right away and I was a little worried that they thought it was a stupid gift. When I asked them about their results, however, this is what they had to say:


“It’s elaborate. Usually you get a vague outline that’s just enough to be applicable.”


They felt the Workplace profile was quite accurate, and much more explicit and useful than other assessments they’d taken.

Some people might worry that an 18-year-old might not have enough self-awareness to get an accurate result from a personality test. That’s why I’m glad Everything DiSC uses computerized adaptive testing. It ensures greater accuracy than other assessments by adding questions when a preference is not clear from prior test answers.

I didn’t need to worry about this young person feeling unsure. Their dot ended up on the outer edge, indicating a strong inclination to this style. When we talked about that, they said, “Whatever I am, I’m very aggressively that.” Knowing them, I think that’s true.

#3. DiSC gives you tools for relating to others.

Like everyone I’ve ever known to receive their results, my friend spent a long time looking at their own style and talking about that. But they preferred the portion on how they relate to others. This is an area that can be a struggle for them and we talked about their roommates’ possible styles and how they might communicate better with them.

A good portion of the DiSC profile digs into how the recipient might better relate to all the styles. There are sections for each style that explain:

  • How you might react to that style
  • How people of that style may seem to you
  • The motivations for their behavior
  • How to connect with people of that style when you need to be more effective, when problems need to be solved, or when things get tense

Reading through the priorities, motivators, stressors, and fears of each style reminds us how diverse personalities are and that not everyone shares the traits that feel natural to us.

#4. DiSC provides a common language and prompts discussions.

My friend and I chatted for some time about our own styles and the styles we think their parents might be. I wonder if their additional preference for Action might reflect their mother’s strong i preference and might not appear in an assessment taken 10 years from now or not at their mother’s computer.

We both admitted how we sometimes act from the more maladaptive side of our styles. The profile made this type of conversation much less preachy than it might have been if I tried to talk about these issues without the DiSC context.

#5. DiSC helps graduates position themselves for what’s next.

Self-awareness is so important to transitioning to post-college life, whether someone is stepping into a career, continuing their education, starting a family, or taking any other path.

Graduates applying for jobs or degree programs will find much to reflect on in their DiSC profile. They can learn to better articulate their strengths and stressors, think about what kind of work environment would align with their priorities, and glean positive language to articulate the type of person they are.

Here’s what my friend had to say about getting a personality test as a graduation gift:

“It’s great. This will help me with writing a resume, with how to pitch myself. It gives you good solid adjectives.”

Is DiSC a good gift for graduates?

I’m happy that I gave this gift. It gave my friend a new tool for navigating post-graduation life, and it helped us have a really meaningful conversation. Since we have very similar styles, it also helped strengthen our bonds. We had several “Oh, I know. Isn’t that the truth?” moments.

If you want to give DiSC as a gift, for any occasion, Everything DiSC Workplace is our recommended starter profile. The recipient will learn their DiSC style, priorities, and strengths in an easy-to-understand report. Despite its title, it’s not just for the workplace. This profile provides insights that the recipient can use in all parts of life.


1Adolescents’ Personality Development – A Question of Psychosocial Stress, Frontiers in Psychology, December 2021


Kristeen Bullwinkle

Steeped in Everything DiSC since 2010. Strongly inclined CD style. Leadership style and EQ mindset: resolute. Believes strongly in the serial comma.

Certifications from Wiley:
Everything DiSC, The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team

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