Social Styles

February 23, 2017 | Filed under: Selling, Speaking, Success

Research indicates there are four types of people. The Social styles identified by Dr. Merrill (driver, analytical, amiable, and expressive), were an excellent beginning for me. But I found them a little restrictive, and as I evaluated individuals noticed some additional distinctions. I color coded the social styles, red and black, and use cards suits to remember them. Red is for emotion, black for no emotion. The card suite means give us clues to their motivation and values. Each suit has some characteristic that give us hints as to motivation.

Fundamentally, you can classify people by two major characteristics.

Internal or External reference pattern: How much people express themselves gives a hint as to whether they process and value internal or external criteria. If they express a lot of emotion they are externally motivated. If they keep emotions controlled they are generally internally motivated. Therefore, Black is cold, Red is emotional. Red is more externally motivated. Black more internally motivated.

Pace: How fast the individual acts, thinks and process information and thoughts gives us a hint as to their social style. Are they quick to make decisions or slow? Use multiple steps, or intuitive process? Fast or slow paced?

Based on these two characteristics, we can code styles. In addition each style has a number of common characteristics.

Spade (Black): limited and controlled emotions. Consider “cold”. Quick to make decisions, and fast paced.
• Get to the point immediately
• Bottom line driven
• Does not have time for relationships
• Time is valuable
• Likes to achieve
• Driven to succeed
• Enjoys options & results

Club (Black): limited and controlled emotions. Internal decisions, but needs data and statistics. Slow paced.
• Methodical decisions
• Needs proof, data, & statistics
• Numbers driven
• Needs multiple validation
• Wants respect
• Be accurate
• Will take time to be correct

Heart (Red): External reference point, likes emotion and relationships. Slow to make choices and decisions.
• Wants to make friends
• Takes your time
• Build the relationship
• Very emotional & feeling oriented
• Wants to be accepted
• Social proof & guarantees
• Slow to make decisions

Diamond (Red): External reference points, and shows emotion, Shines in the spot light.
• Fast paced
• Quick to make decisions
• Enjoys the process
• Likes adventure and fun

Each of the styles has a primary value that motivates them.

Spade Value: Must win, hates to lose.

Club Value: Must be right, cannot be wrong.

Heart Value: Enjoys the relationship, hates to be disliked.

Diamond Value: Fun, hates boredom.

Here are a few statements, that will influence each of the styles:


• Only you can make this decision

• The bottom line is……….

• If you don’t do it, others will be ahead of you


• Look at what X magazine says about the product

• Here is the data on you need to make a decision

• You don’t want to make a mistake


• You will be part of our team

• We will walk with you hand in hand

• Don’t be left behind all alone


• This is an exciting and dynamic event

• What will you do with all the saving, Hawaii?

• What else is there to do, stay home?

Appealing to the various styles is a key to Sales Mastery.

Article Source:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *