After graduating from Penn State I followed my major and became a middle school art teacher. In my classroom I witnessed students responding more favorably to instruction if my message was tailored to their specific communication style.
This peaked my interest. During my 7 year career as a teacher I identified four different communication styles and I worked on quickly recognizing which students spoke which language. By identifying the language that resonated with each student, I learned to change the emphasis of our discussion to one of the following:
- Why they were required to complete an assignment and what was in it for them.
- The fun they would have while completing an assignment.
- How proud I was of them as they looked out for and helped the other students complete their assignment.
- Providing a thorough understanding of the processes, guidelines and rules that governed the assignment.
When I left teaching for a career in sales, I quickly discovered that my prospects fell into the same categories as my students, most of them seeking an answer in only ONE of four areas:
- What’s the bottom line?
- What enjoyment will I get from using the product?
- How will it benefit my employees and clients?
- What’s the process for utilizing the product?
I found that I could recognize my prospect’s language within a minute. I edited my presentation so it emphasized one of each of the four areas. If the prospect was a bottom line person, the majority of my presentation for them targeted how successfully applying my product would increase their numbers. When I recognized their language was about taking care of others, the majority of what I presented to them discussed benefits and employee moral. Within a couple months, I was amazed to discover that my sales numbers were at the top of the list with reps who had 20 or more years of sales under their belts.
Two years into my sales career I attended a seminar on DISC Personality Styles. To my amazement I found that the principals of DISC were exactly what I’d been playing around with for nine years! I soaked up everything they presented. The one disappointment I had was that they spent no time addressing how to recognize other people’s personality styles. Nor did they discuss utilizing DISC for greater communication in sales, management or relationships. Unfortunately that still seems to be the case with many people who speak about DISC. To me, they’re only touching the surface of what DISC can do.
When I had my daughter I was able to be a stay at home Mom for 5 years. I loved every minute. My plan was to go back to teaching when she went to school so we’d have the same schedule. When I realized that, if I was in my classroom, I wouldn’t be able to be a room Mom or chaperone field trips, etc. I started looking for a position where I could control my schedule and still make a pretty decent income. A friend of mine suggested insurance sales and while I wasn’t too excited about it I decided to give it a try.
I applied my DISC skills and did very well. I worked about 20 hours a week by appointment only and was available to participate with Jess in all her activities. It was perfect. Several years later I broke away from the company and started my own financial services firm. It was pretty scary to do that but within 6 months we were in the black and I never looked back.
Owning my own company gave me the opportunity to train my reps the way I wanted. I developed my managerial skills and, you got it, wrote a sales training program utilizing DISC.
A decade later I co-founded a title company. My partner handled the office, while my job was to bring in the clients. A title company’s clients are realtors and lenders. Realtors bring the buyers and the sellers to the title company. Lenders refer clients who are refinancing their home.
Managers of real estate offices and mortgage companies often give a title marketer a 30 minute block of time during their sales meetings to present the services of their title company. Rather than talk about my company for 30 minutes, I chose to hit the highlights of our services in 5 minutes and spent the remaining 25 minutes teaching the realtors or lenders DISC and how to use it to grow their business. In the first 5 minutes of my talk I’d lead them through the fact that it’s easy to relate to someone whose personality style is similar to yours, and challenging to relate to someone whose personality style is opposite yours. We’d agree that in our experience, when it comes to couples, opposites attract. I would then get their agreement that they often related easily to one spouse far better than the other.
I would then ask the room, “What if the spouse you don’t relate to very well is the decision maker?” “How often have you left a couple thinking it went great only to find out later they went with someone else?” At that point I would have their complete attention. Everyone in the room had experienced those moments. I taught them how to relate to the spouse whose personality was opposite of theirs. They loved it. The realtors and lenders who applied my suggestions often found their businesses grew which meant the volume of business at the title company grew also. It was a win-win situation.
My marketing presentations led to requests for DISC workshops followed by invitations for key note speaking engagements. Many of the people who attended my workshops and speeches had been exposed to DISC, but it was rare that they had been exposed to applying DISC for sales and success.
As more and more people were exposed to my program, I began receiving requests for personal coaching. That motivated me to acquire the Human Behavior Specialist Certification in DISC from Dr. Robert Rohm in Atlanta. His teaching mirrored my philosophy about DISC: understanding your personality style is the beginning. Applying DISC for better communication is key.
As I coached individuals on DISC I realized that some people had a strong desire to succeed but had a serious hurdle to overcome obstacles such as low self-esteem or other long standing fears. I began seeking something to help me help them.
A good friend introduced me to Dr. Bradley Nelson’s Emotion Code program. It was exactly what I needed. As I became both Emotion Code and Body Code Certified I learned to identify and clear trapped emotions and negative thoughts that hold many people back from confidence and success.
A few years later I was introduced to Dr. Kent Rosengren’s Body Based Mindfulness program which added the ability for me to identify and help release the subconscious beliefs that can sabotage our efforts. I learned that many of these beliefs are formed prior to the age of 5 and we often don’t even know we have the belief or that it is quietly killing our dreams and our goals.
Working individually with clients is now my life. My clients are adults, children and pets. The work is so rewarding. I love helping clients overcome the challenges they face: in business, with their health, with relationships. Pets are often rescue animals whose traumatic life prior to their new home has left them with a bad habit. When I clear the trapped emotions that drive the habit, the habit tends to disappear.
You might think all this would be enough but I’m adding one more tool to my toolbox – Qigong for healing. Master Chunyi Lin’s Spring Forest Qigong spiritual healing program teaches how to recognize energy blocks in our body, open our energy channels and balance our body’s energy. With Qigong, healing on a physical, emotional, mental and spiritual level can begin. I now have the Level 3 certification and my Qigong practice has me feeling healthier in all four of these areas. Many of my clients are embracing the concepts and seeing improvement also. It’s very likely that if you work with me I will suggest a gentle Qigong movement you can add to your life also.
Technology has never been a favorite of mine but with wonderful support I’ve learned how to utilize VOIP technology which has enabled me to work with clients worldwide. My clients say their sessions are enlightening, goal-oriented, and full of exposure to new concepts that work. I feel the proof of my ability is in the success they achieve.
I focused on the Energy and Abundance component of Meredith’s work. My ability to move forward in my life, work and relationships has been amazing.
My negative thoughts and old “go to” bad habits are gone, in fact, I can no longer conjure up the negative thought pattern of my past after spending time working with Meredith and the Body Code process.
If you are looking for results – true, lasting results – don’t hesitate to give Meredith a try. Keep an open mind and trust that Meredith has the key to unlocking the trapped emotions that have been blocking you from living life to your full potential.
– Ellen S., Hershey, PA