Confessions of a High “C”

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November 8, 2010
It is not easy always living by the rules and for someone like me who has a DISC personality profile with a Conscientious or Compliance factor off the charts, it can be downright cumbersome just to cross the street sometimes. The actual definition of a high "C" factor is:

People with high "C" styles adhere to rules, regulations, and structure. They like to do quality work and do it right the first time. High "C" people are careful, cautious, exacting, neat, systematic, diplomatic, accurate, and tactful.

When people ask me what a High "C" personality means, I always use the following example: 

When the red man (or hand) is showing on the crossing signal, it is almost impossible for me to cross the street. If there is no little green man walking, it causes me physical and mental pain to step out into the street. Why?  Because those are the rules and I always follow the rules. I don’t go in the express grocery line with even ONE extra item (even if it is a small as a pack of gum), I don’t call in sick at work if I am not actually sick, I am quiet in the library and I go to the dentist every 6 months. Yes, it is an affliction that can make life challenging at times because I have to tell you that it is not unusual for me to be the ONLY one following the rules in certain situations. More than one friend has left me on the curb alone to wait for the little green walking man because they have dodged traffic and crossed the street without me.

Yes, it can be lonely being a rule follower, but the truth is that in many ways it makes life easier. I don’t have to deal with people sending negative energy my way for not following the rules, I don’t have to keep track of the lies I have told for fear of getting caught, I have passed that trait onto my children which makes them much easier to get along with and I sleep well at night. 

Every once in awhile I really want to break the rules when I find them to be illogical or when they don’t really feel like "rules" at all upon closer inspection.  For example, when I signed up for a recycling pick up, I read the pamphlet closely and it seemed to me there were an awful lot of rules around what to recycle and what they could not take. I never knew there were so many different kinds of plastic, for example. On the first pickup date, I was very careful to sor
t through everything I had to make sure it all complied with the rules. Once I did that, I realized that I could not possibly get it all in the little orange bin so I ended up actually trashing some my recyclables just to make sure I followed the rules. As I drove down the street that morning, it occurred to me that all of the other homes had extra bags in addition to the little orange bin and the every type of plastic, paper and cardboard were represented. After observing this for a few weeks, I decided that the information on the pamphlet I received were really more of "guideline" rather than the rules.  Guidelines, I can work with and now we have enough recycling to fill multiple bags.

Which brings me all the way around to the topic of your Indianapolis job search and Indianapolis staffing.  My point? There are rules about your job hunt and then there are guidelines. Rules of the job search are simple and logical:

  • Show up for your appointments
  • Don’t be late
  • Be professional
  • Tell the truth
  • Do your best

Guidelines are all around HOW you follow the rules. There are so many avenues and resources for identifying and pursuing job opportunities – there is no hard and fast rule about which one to use. There are many ways to interpret what it means to be professional and it is important to understand what that means for each and every interaction you have during your job search. Telling the truth may seem obvious, but how you spin your answers and your stories in your interviews can ruin a great opportunity if you are not honest.  "Do your best" may mean different things on different days; we all have our good days and bad ones. One tried and true rule of the job search (and most anything you ever do) is that you will NEVER get back more than what you put into something.

It does not matter if you are high compliance or not, when you are in your job search, you still have to follow the rules and do your best to interpret the guidelines. Self awareness is of great value in your job search so you know what to expect of yourself and how to best manage the various aspects of your personality. It is worth the time and money (within reason) investment to conduct and review a personality assessment of yourself as part of your job search preparation. is a website I have used over time for reference materials and they have some suggestions for some free and paid personality assessments you can take. Take a look and then you also might consider working with a recruiter, like those at That’s Good HR, for more personal coaching and preparation for your job search.

Best of luck in your search and remember, be true to yourself, understand the rules of the game and the follow them. Don’t cross the street if the green man is not walking.