Summit Team Building

Strength Deployment Inventory® at a Glance

strength deployment inventory

Welcome to this introduction to the Strength Deployment Inventory ® (SDI®) for team building and conflict resolution. The SDI is a powerful tool that can help individuals and teams understand their motivational value systems, as well as identify strengths and weaknesses in team dynamics.

What is the Strength Deployment Inventory®(SDI®)?

The Strength Deployment Inventory® (SDI®) is a personality assessment tool that provides insights into individuals’ core motivations, values, and behaviors. It measures how people react to conflict, their strengths, and how those strengths can sometimes be overused, affecting their interpersonal relationships. It is used to improve communication, teamwork, and conflict resolution skills.

Understanding SDI

Understanding the SDI® requires an understanding of the Relationship Intelligences (RQ) , which posits that people’s behaviors are motivated by their values, which are shaped by their experiences. RQ explains that understanding individuals’ values and motivations can help teams build better relationships, enhance communication, and promote effective conflict resolution.

Administrating the Strength Deployment Inventory®

Administering the Strength Deployment Inventory® is a straightforward process. Participants complete a questionnaire that asks them to rank their agreement with various statements related to their motivations and values. The results are then plotted on a graph, which illustrates the participants’ motivational value systems.

Interpreting the results of the SDI is crucial in understanding how to use it for team building and conflict resolution. The graph plots individuals’ motivational value systems on three axes: people, performance, and process. The position of each individual on these axes can provide insights into how they interact with others, what motivates them, and their communication style.

Team Building and the SDI®

Using the SDI® for team building can be highly beneficial. By understanding each team member’s motivational value system, individuals can appreciate their unique strengths and contributions to the team. Identifying the team’s collective strengths and overdone strengths can help create a more cohesive and effective team. For example, if the team is highly assertive-directing, they may struggle to collaborate effectively with a more altruistic-nurturing team member. Understanding these differences can help the team appreciate each other’s perspectives and find ways to work together more effectively.

In addition to team building, the SDI® can also be used for conflict resolution. By identifying the root cause of conflict, individuals can work together to create win-win solutions that address everyone’s underlying motivations and values. For instance, if two team members are in conflict because one prioritizes performance over people, while the other values people over performance, understanding these differences can help the team develop a solution that balances both values.

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Limitations of the Strength Deployment Inventory®

While the SDI® can be a powerful tool, it does have limitations. Understanding these limitations and addressing them is crucial to using the SDI® effectively. For instance, the SDI® is a self-assessment tool, so individuals’ perceptions of their motivations and values may not align with their actual behaviors. Additionally, the SDI® does not account for situational or environmental factors that may influence individuals’ behaviors.


The Strength Deployment Inventory® can be a valuable tool for team building and conflict resolution. By understanding each team member’s motivational value system and how it affects their behavior, teams can develop better relationships, enhance communication, and resolve conflicts effectively..

How Summit Can Help

Summit has certified facilitators of the SDI® tool and would love to talk with you about how we can utilize the SDI® training workshop as a way for your team to grow in effectiveness, promote healthy team engagement, and more effective communication and collaboration. Contact Us to start the conversation!

Scott Kress

Scott Kress is an accomplished climber and adventurer. He’s completed the 7 summits and skied to both the North and South Pole. His storytelling based on his adventures is captivating, but what sets Scott apart is his ability to weave his stories together with his 20+ years of leadership and team development education and experience. Scott is the president of Summit Team Building, and is passionate about helping teams grow and companies flourish.

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