An explorative research study on Disc® patterns and attributes displayed by information technology (IT) project managers operating within the Gauteng province in South Africa

Mynhardt, Ruan (2015-04)

Thesis (MBA)--Stellenbosch University, 2015.


ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This explorative research was done on 86 DiSC® patterns, 46 of which were completed by male Information Technology project managers and the remaining 40 by female Information Technology project managers, in order to understand which were the most prolific DiSC® patterns amongst the sample. The research showed that the creative profile was the most observed, closely followed by the perfectionist pattern. This was due to the preference of the Information Technology project managers to operate within either the dominance domain for the creative pattern or the conscientiousness domain for the perfectionist pattern, which was valid for both genders. Based on the attributes, a pattern closely resembling the objective thinker pattern also became apparent. The objective thinker pattern attests to the high score gained in the conscientiousness domain as well. Interestingly, there was very little difference between male and female project managers’ preferences in terms of patterns, domain and attributes. The research showed that the creative pattern drives quick decisions, the perfectionist pattern focuses on quality, and the objective thinker pattern is founded in logic. The research does not guarantee a ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution; however, it did reveal that based on the sample data, conscientiousness must be considered when recruiting, assigning or even up-skilling individuals to become Information Technology project managers. Where a candidate shows a strong preference towards the steadiness or even the influence domains, caution should be taken and time invested to ensure that the individual would be suited for the role. To manage project time constraints, the creative profile was recommended. To manage cost, the perfectionist and objective thinker patterns was recommended, as the focus on quality and facts could aid the project definition and execution. Where quality was a concern, the perfectionist and objective thinker patterns were put forward as recommendations. Any of the creative, perfectionist or objective thinker patterns profiles were recommended for overall project execution. The research also found that based on the needs of the project a combination of the creative and perfectionist or objective thinker may lead to better results.

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