Writing This paper will allow you to examine your strengths and develop a plan for moving forward. I. What Do You Do Best? · Of all the things you do wel

Writing This paper will allow you to examine your strengths and develop a plan for moving forward.

I. What Do You Do Best?

· Of all the things you do wel

Click here to Order a Custom answer to this Question from our writers. It’s fast and plagiarism-free.

Writing This paper will allow you to examine your strengths and develop a plan for moving forward.

I. What Do You Do Best?

· Of all the things you do well, which two do you do best and why?

· Which activities do you seem to pick up quickly and why?

· Which activities bring you the greatest satisfaction and why?


· What are your top five Signature Themes as identified by the Clifton STRENGTHSFINDER? Which theme resonates with you the most and why?

· Based on your Signature Themes, what should a manager/supervisor know about working with you and why?

· Based on your Signature Themes, what should a co-worker know about working with you and why?

· How can a manager/supervisor help you with your strengths more within your current role and why?

III. Celebrating Successes

· What was your most significant accomplishment in the past 12 months?

· When do you feel the most pride about your work?

·  How do you like to be supported in your work?

IV. Applying Talents to the Role

· What things distract you from being positive, productive, or accurate? 

· Which talents do you have that could benefit the team if you had better opportunities to use them? 

· What steps could be taken to ensure you have an opportunity to apply your natural talents to your role? 

· Submit a 5-page paper double spaced

· Include a cover page and a reference page (not to be included in the 5 pages of paper content)

· Use the questions and bullets above as the framework and outline of your paper.

· Please provide at least four (4) scholarly references to support your paper in addition to the STRENGTHSFINDER text.

· All references should be used as in-text citations. 

· All work must be completed in APA format. 

· You MUST submit your paper to the Smarthinking tool for review prior to submission. This eBook is licensed to Daryl Trembath, daryl@ournet.net.au

1330 Avenue of the Americas
17th Floor
New York, NY 10019

ISBN: 978-1-59562-024-8

Gallup Strengths Center version July 2015
Copyright © 2007, 2015 Gallup, Inc.

All rights reserved, including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form.

Gallup®, Clifton StrengthsFinder®, Gallup Press®, Q12®, StrengthsFinder®, and the 34
Clifton StrengthsFinder theme names are trademarks of Gallup, Inc. All other trademarks
are property of their respective owners.

The Q12 items are Gallup proprietary information and are protected by law. You may not
administer a survey with the Q12 items or reproduce them without written consent from
Gallup. Copyright © 1993-1998 Gallup, Inc. All rights reserved.

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Table of Contents

Donald O. Clifton

IMPORTANT Information About Taking Clifton StrengthsFinder

StrengthsFinder: The Next Generation

PART I: Finding Your Strengths — An Introduction

PART II: Applying Your Strengths

The 34 Themes and Ideas for Action


VFAQ (VERY Frequently Asked Question)

This eBook is licensed to Daryl Trembath, daryl@ournet.net.au

Donald O. Clifton

Inventor of the Clifton StrengthsFinder® and recognized as the Father of Strengths-
Based Psychology by an American Psychological Association Presidential


This eBook is licensed to Daryl Trembath, daryl@ournet.net.au

IMPORTANT Information About Taking
Clifton StrengthsFinder

Your ebook retailer will provide you with your unique, one-use-only access to
take the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment that is included with this book. To
take the assessment, visit www.gallupstrengthscenter.com.

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The Next Generation

In 1998, I began working with a team of Gallup scientists led by the late Father
of Strengths Psychology, Donald O. Clifton. Our goal was to start a global
conversation about what’s right with people.

We were tired of living in a world that revolved around fixing our
weaknesses. Society’s relentless focus on people’s shortcomings had turned
into a global obsession. What’s more, we had discovered that people have
several times more potential for growth when they invest energy in developing
their strengths instead of correcting their deficiencies.

Based on Gallup’s 40-year study of human strengths, we created a
language of the 34 most common talents and developed the Clifton
StrengthsFinder assessment to help people discover and describe these talents.
Then in 2001, we included the initial version of this assessment with the
bestselling management book Now, Discover Your Strengths. The discussion
quickly moved beyond the management audience of this book. It appears that
the world was ready to have this conversation.

Over the past few years alone, millions of people have participated in
StrengthsFinder and learned about their top five themes of talent — and Now,
Discover Your Strengths has spent more than five years on the bestseller lists.
The assessment has since been translated into more than 20 languages and is
used by businesses, schools, and community groups in more than 100 nations
around the world. Yet when it comes to creating strength-based families,
communities, and workplaces, we still have a lot of work to do.

Over the past decade, Gallup has surveyed more than 10 million people
worldwide on the topic of employee engagement (or how positive and
productive people are at work), and only one-third “strongly agree” with the

“At work, I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day.”

And for those who do not get to focus on what they do best — their
strengths — the costs are staggering. In a recent poll of more than 1,000
people, among those who “strongly disagreed” or “disagreed” with this “what
I do best” statement, not one single person was emotionally engaged on the

In stark contrast, our studies indicate that people who do have the
opportunity to focus on their strengths every day are six times as likely to be
engaged in their jobs and more than three times as likely to report having an
excellent quality of life in general.

Fortunately, our research also suggests that having someone at work who
regularly focuses on your strengths can make a dramatic difference. In 2005,
we explored what happens when managers primarily focus on employees’
strengths, primarily focus on employees’ weaknesses, or ignore employees.
What we found completely redefined my perspective about how easy it may be
to decrease the active disengagement, or extreme negativity, that runs rampant
in organizations.

If your manager

The chances of your being actively
disengaged are:

Ignores you 40%

Focuses on your


Focuses on your


As you can see from these results, having a manager who ignores you is
even more detrimental than having a manager who primarily focuses on your
weaknesses. Perhaps most surprising is the degree to which having a manager
who focuses on your strengths decreases the odds of your being miserable on
the job. It appears that the epidemic of active disengagement we see in
workplaces every day could be a curable disease . . . if we can help the people
around us develop their strengths.

What’s New in StrengthsFinder 2.0?
Our research and knowledge base on the topic of human strengths have
expanded dramatically over the past decade. StrengthsFinder 2.0 picks up
where the first version left off, and it is designed to provide you with the latest
discoveries and strategies for application. The language of 34 themes remains
the same, but the assessment is faster and even more reliable. And, the results
yield a much more in-depth analysis of your strengths.

Once you have completed the online assessment, you will have access to
personalized reports and tools, including the comprehensive Strengths Insight
and Action-Planning Guide that is based on your StrengthsFinder 2.0 results.
This guide features an in-depth dive into the nuances of what makes you
unique, using more than 5,000 new personalized Strengths Insights that we
have discovered in recent years.

Going far beyond StrengthsFinder 1.0’s shared theme descriptions, which
can be found in Part II of this book, these highly customized Strengths Insights
will help you understand how each of your top five themes plays out in your

life on a much more personal level. For example, even though you and a friend
may both have the same theme in your top five, the way this theme is
manifested will not be the same. Therefore, each of you would receive entirely
different, personalized descriptions of how that theme operates in your lives.
These new Strengths Insights describe what makes you stand out when
compared to the millions of people we have studied.

The guide also includes 10 “Ideas for Action” for each of your top five
themes. So, you will have 50 specific actions you can take — ideas we culled
from thousands of best-practice suggestions — that are customized to your top
five themes. In addition, the guide will help you build a strengths-based
development plan by exploring how your greatest natural talents interact with
your skills, knowledge, and experience. And the new website includes several
other resources you can use to learn more about your strengths and the strengths
of others.

While learning about your strengths may be an interesting experience, it
offers little benefit in isolation. This new book, assessment, website, and
development guide are all about application. If you want to improve your life
and the lives of those around you, you must take action. Use the personalized
development guide to align your job and goals with your natural talents. Share
this plan with your coworkers, boss, or closest friends. Then help the people
around you — at work and at home — develop their strengths. If you do,
chances are you will find yourself in a much more positive and productive

This eBook is licensed to Daryl Trembath, daryl@ournet.net.au

Finding Your Strengths — An Introduction

This eBook is licensed to Daryl Trembath, daryl@ournet.net.au

The Path of Most Resistance
At its fundamentally flawed core, the aim of almost any learning program is to
help us become who we are not. If you don’t have natural talent with numbers,
you’re still forced to spend time in that area to attain a degree. If you’re not
very empathic, you get sent to a course designed to infuse empathy into your
personality. From the cradle to the cubicle, we devote more time to our
shortcomings than to our strengths.

This is quite apparent in the way we create icons out of people who
struggle to overcome a lack of natural talent. Consider the true story of Rudy
Ruettiger, the 23-year-old groundskeeper at Notre Dame’s stadium, who was
the protagonist of the 1993 movie Rudy. At just 5’6″ and 165 pounds, this
young man clearly didn’t possess the physical ability to play big-time college
football, but he had ample “heart.”

Rudy worked tirelessly to gain admission to Notre Dame so he could play
football there. Eventually, after being rejected three times, he was accepted at
Notre Dame and soon thereafter earned a spot on the football team’s practice

For two years, Rudy took a beating in daily practices, but he was never
allowed to join his team on the sidelines. Then, after trying as hard as he could
for two seasons, Rudy was finally invited to suit up for the final game of his
senior year. In the last moments of this game, with a Notre Dame victory safely
in hand, Rudy’s teammates lobbied their coach to put him in the game. In the
final seconds, the coach sent Rudy in for a single play — and he tackled the
opposing team’s quarterback.

It was a dramatic moment and, of course, Rudy became an instant hero.

Fans chanted his name and carried him off the field. Ruettiger was later invited
to the White House, where he met President Bill Clinton, Colin Powell, and
football legend Joe Montana. While Rudy’s perseverance is admirable, in the
end, he played a few seconds of college football and made a single tackle . . .
after thousands of hours of practicing.

The inspirational nature of this story actually masks a significant problem:
Overcoming deficits is an essential part of the fabric of our culture. Our books,
movies, and folklore are filled with stories of the underdog who beats one-in-
a-million odds. And this leads us to celebrate those who triumph over their
lack of natural ability even more than we recognize those who capitalize on
their innate talents. As a result, millions of people see these heroes as being
the epitome of the American Dream and set their sights on conquering major
challenges. Unfortunately, this is taking the path of most resistance.

A Misguided Maxim?
“You can be anything you want to be, if you just try hard enough.”

Like most people, I embraced this maxim at a young age. Along with
thousands of other kids, I spent a good chunk of my childhood trying to be the
next Michael Jordan. Every day, I practiced shooting hoops for three to four
hours. I went to basketball camps each summer and tried in every way possible
to be a great player. No matter how hard I worked at it, though, becoming an
NBA star simply wasn’t in the cards for me. After giving 100% of my effort for
more than five years, I couldn’t even make the junior varsity team.

Embracing the “You-can-be-anything-you-want-to-be” maxim isn’t
something we outgrow. Similar scenarios play out in the workplace every day.
A star salesperson thinks she can be a great sales manager with enough effort.
She interviews other managers to gain insight, reads every book on

management she can find, and stays late every night trying to get the job done
— at the expense of her family and even her health. Then, a few years into the
job, she realizes that she doesn’t have the natural talent to develop other
people. Not only is this a waste of her time, but chances are, she could have
increased her contribution even more if she had stayed in the sales role — a
role in which she naturally excelled. Yet if we want additional income, status,
or responsibility, most organizational hierarchies force us into a very different
role — instead of allowing for an entire career of progression within a
specific role that fits our talents.

What’s even more disheartening is the way our fixation on deficits affects
young people in the home and classroom. In every culture we have studied, the
overwhelming majority of parents (77% in the United States) think that a
student’s lowest grades deserve the most time and attention. Parents and
teachers reward excellence with apathy instead of investing more time in the
areas where a child has the most potential for greatness.

The reality is that a person who has always struggled with numbers is
unlikely to be a great accountant or statistician. And the person without much
natural empathy will never be able to comfort an agitated customer in the warm
and sincere way that the great empathizers can. Even the legendary Michael
Jordan, who embodied the power of raw talent on a basketball court, could not
become, well, the “Michael Jordan” of golf or baseball, no matter how hard he

This might sound like a heretical point of view, especially for those of us
who grew up believing the essential American myth that we could become
anything we wanted. Yet it’s clear from Gallup’s research that each person has
greater potential for success in specific areas, and the key to human
development is building on who you already are.

The following real-life example from Gallup’s economic development
work in Puebla, Mexico, provides a basic yet powerful illustration of what can
happen when people focus on their natural talents.

Hector had always been known as a great shoemaker. In fact, customers
from such far-off places as France claimed that Hector made the best shoes in
the world. Yet for years, he had been frustrated with his small shoemaking
business. Although Hector knew he was capable of making hundreds of shoes
per week, he was averaging just 30 pairs. When a friend asked him why,
Hector explained that while he was great at producing shoes, he was a poor
salesman — and terrible when it came to collecting payments. Yet he spent
most of his time working in these areas of weakness.

So, Hector’s friend introduced him to Sergio, a natural salesman and
marketer. Just as Hector was known for his craftsmanship, Sergio could close
deals and sell. Given the way their strengths complemented one another,
Hector and Sergio decided to work together. A year later, this strengths-based
duo was producing, selling, and collecting payment for more than 100 pairs of
shoes per week — a more than threefold increase.

While this story may seem simplistic, in many cases, aligning yourself
with the right task can be this easy. When we’re able to put most of our energy
into developing our natural talents, extraordinary room for growth exists. So, a
revision to the “You-can-be-anything-you-want-to-be” maxim might be more

You cannot be anything you want to be — but you can be a lot more of
who you already are.

The Strengths Zone

Over the past few decades, Gallup has studied how talent can be applied in a
wide variety of roles, from housekeepers to chief executives and from clergy
members to government officials. We’ve researched almost every major
culture, country, industry, and position. The good news is that we have found
great examples of heroes who are soaring with their strengths in every single
role. Across the board, having the opportunity to develop our strengths is more
important to our success than our role, our title, or even our pay. In this
increasingly talent-driven society, we need to know and develop our strengths
to figure out where we fit in.

That being said, across all areas we have studied, the vast majority of
people don’t have the opportunity to focus on what they do best. We have
surveyed more than 10 million people on this specific topic, and
approximately 7 million are falling short.

What happens when you’re not in the “strengths zone”? You’re quite
simply a very different person. In the workplace, you are six times less likely
to be engaged in your job. When you’re not able to use your strengths at work,
chances are that you:

dread going to work

have more negative than positive interactions with your colleagues

treat your customers poorly

tell your friends what a miserable company you work for

achieve less on a daily basis

have fewer positive and creative moments

Beyond the world of work, there are even more serious implications for
your health and relationships if you’re not in the strengths zone. And Gallup’s
research has shown how a strengths-based approach improves your

confidence, direction, hope, and kindness toward others.

So why isn’t everyone living life with a strengths approach? One big
problem is that most people are either unaware of, or unable to describe, their
own strengths . . . or the strengths of the people around them.

Your Themes of Talent
“Most people think they know what they are good at. They are usually
wrong. . . . And yet, a person can perform only from strength.”

— Business guru Peter Drucker (1909-2005)

In the mid 1960s, my late mentor and the Father of Strengths Psychology,
Don Clifton, realized that we already had countless “languages” for describing
what’s wrong with people. In addition to the informal labels used by the
people around us, the field of psychology has the DSM-IV, a manual of
disorders described by one leading psychologist as “a bloated catalogue of
what’s wrong with people.” The world of business has myriad competency
models, most of which are oriented toward describing what isn’t working
(even though these labels are often veiled as “areas for improvement”).

To initiate more conversation about what’s right with people, in 1998,
Clifton assembled a team of scientists and set forth the ambitious goal of
developing a common language for talent. This team wanted individuals and
organizations to have very specific terms for describing what people do well.
So we mined our database, which at the time contained more than 100,000
talent-based interviews, and looked for patterns in the data. We examined
specific questions that had been used in our studies of successful executives,
salespeople, customer service representatives, teachers, doctors, lawyers,
students, nurses, and several other professions and fields. Through this

process, we were able to identify 34 themes of talent that were the most
common in our database. We then developed the first version of the Clifton
StrengthsFinder assessment to measure these distinct talents.

These 34 themes represent our best attempt at creating a common language
or classification of talents. By no means did we capture everything. There are
hundreds of even more specific themes we did not include in this
classification. However, we wanted to keep this language manageable so it
would be easy to use with work teams, families, and friends.

What StrengthsFinder actually measures is talent, not strength. As an
aside, we named it “StrengthsFinder” instead of “TalentFinder” because the
ultimate goal is to build a true strength, and talent is just one of the ingredients
in this formula. The assessment doesn’t ask about your knowledge — there are
no questions about your formal education, degrees, or résumé. Nor does it ask
about your skills — whether you’re able to perform the fundamental steps of
driving a car, using a particular software package, or selling a specific
product. While these are important, we have discovered that knowledge and
skills — along with regular practice — are most helpful when they serve as
amplifiers for your natural talents.

When you take the assessment, you have just 20 seconds to respond to
each item. It’s quick because we found that instinctual, top-of-mind responses
are more revealing than those you’d give if you sat around and debated each
question. Essentially, the instrument is attempting to identify your most intense
natural responses, which are less likely to change over time.

A Recipe for Strength
Although people certainly do change over time and our personalities adapt,
scientists have discovered that core personality traits are relatively stable

throughout adulthood, as are our passions and interests. And more recent
research suggests that the roots of our personality might be visible at an even
younger age than was originally thought. A compelling 23-year longitudinal
study of 1,000 children in New Zealand revealed that a child’s observed
personality at age 3 shows remarkable similarity to his or her reported
personality traits at age 26.1 This is one of the reasons why StrengthsFinder
measures the elements of your personality that are less likely to change — your

Knowledge, skills, and practice are also important parts of the strengths
equation. Without basic facts in your mind and skills at your disposal, talent
can go untapped. Fortunately, it’s also easier to add knowledge and skills to
your repertoire. You can always take a course on understanding basic
financials, just as you can always learn how to use a new software application.
Building your talents into real strengths also requires practice and hard work,
much like it does to build physical strengths. For example, if you are born with
the potential to build large biceps, but you do not exercise these muscles
regularly, they will not develop. However, if you do work equally as hard as
someone without as much natural potential, you are likely to see much greater

But adding raw talent is a very different story. While it may be possible,
with a considerable amount of work, to add talent where little exists, our
research suggests that this may not be the best use of your time. Instead, we’ve
discovered that the most successful people start with dominant talent — and
then add skills, knowledge, and practice to the mix. When they do this, the raw
talent actually serves as a multiplier.

This brings us back to Rudy Ruettiger, a classic example of hard work
offsetting a lack of natural talent to reach a basic level of competence. While
Rudy might have scored a perfect 5 on a 1-5 scale for investment (the time he
spent practicing and building his knowledge and skills), let’s assume he was a
2 on the talent scale. So his maximum potential for building strength in this
area was only 10 (5 x 2), even when he scored as high as possible on the
investment scale. And it is likely that Rudy had teammates for whom the
inverse was true — they were a 5 on talent and just a 2 on time invested,
which is clearly a waste of talent. And once in a while, you see a player like
former Notre Dame great Joe Montana, who had abundant natural talent
combined with hard work and the right developmental opportunities. This
combination of a 5 in both areas — which yields a total score of 25, compared
to Rudy’s score of 10 — is what can elevate someone to an entirely different

Even though we recognize that everyone is different, all too often, we give
only surface attention to this crucial insight. It is relatively easy to describe our
acquired expertise, but most of us struggle when asked to describe our natural
talents. If you find it difficult to name all of your talents, take a step back, and

you’ll see that talents often have something in common — a theme — that
connects them. Some talents — like natural tendencies to share thoughts, to
create engaging stories, and to find the perfect word — are directly connected
to communication. That’s what they have in common — their theme. So to
begin thinking and talking about them, we can call them Communication talents.
Other talents — such as natural dependability, sense of commitment, and
avoidance of excuses — have a responsibility theme, so we identify them as
Responsibility talents. This theme language gives us a starting place for
discovering our talents and learning even more about our potential for strength.

Managing Weaknesses
In any occupation or role, it’s helpful to know your areas of lesser talent.
That’s especially true if the demands of your job pull you in that direction, as
your lesser talents can lead to weakness. As you study the descriptions of the
34 themes, see if you can identify a few areas in which you are clearly lacking
in talent and have little potential to create a strength. In many cases, simply
being aware of your areas of lesser talent can help you avoid major

Once you’re able to acknowledge, for example, that you are not great at
managing details, it opens several doors for working around that lesser talent.
The first question to ask yourself is whether it’s necessary for you to operate in
your area of lesser talent at all. If it’s possible for you to simply avoid doing
detail-oriented work, by all means, move away from this area. Of course, most
of us don’t have the luxury to simply stop doing necessary tasks just because
we aren’t naturally good at them. When you must attend to details, you might
need to establish systems to manage your lesser talent and keep things on track.
If maintaining your daily schedule is a detail you dread, there are several
options, ranging from a day planner to an electronic calendar.

Another strategy is to partner with someone who has more talent in the
areas in which you are lacking. For example, the Includer theme is an area of
lesser talent for me. People who have this talent are great at making sure that
everyone feels involved and part of any team effort. On the contrary, I will rush
to assemble a group without considering everyone involved, and in many
cases, this results in people feeling left out. So I have learned to partner with
my colleague, Amanda, who leads with her Includer. She helps me think about
including people I would not have otherwise considered. In several cases, this
has helped us uncover people’s hidden talents and build a stronger team.

Blind Spots
It is also essential to try to become more conscious of any “blind spots” that
are caused by your talents. For example, those of us with strong Command may
not realize the damage left in our wake as we are pushing to get things done
each day. Or people with dominant Consistency talents might focus so much on
keeping the steps uniform that they ignore the overall outcome or goal.

So while our talents primarily serve to keep us on track, they can at times
derail our pursuits. In Part II, you will find 10 Ideas for Action for each of the
34 themes. Many of these action items will help you when you are on the
lookout for blind spots that can result from your dominant talents. The key is
for you to be aware of your potential and your limitations.

The New Assessment, Website, and Development
Analyzing millions of StrengthsFinder interviews has allowed us to refine the
assessment into an even faster and more precise second version. We’ve also
been working to glean more advanced insights from the hundreds of items we

collect as you take the assessment.

Even though the 34 themes help us describe a great deal of the variation in
human talent, they do not capture many nuances of unique personalities. While
you and a few friends may each have Learner among your top five themes, the
fine points of those talents and how they are expressed vary a great deal from
person to person: One of you may learn from reading several books each
month, while someone else learns primarily from doing, and yet another learns
from an insatiable curiosity and Googles everything.

To help you think about your own talents at a more specific and
individualized level, we have added more than 5,000 Strengths Insights in
StrengthsFinder 2.0. Based on unique combinations of your individual item
responses during the assessment, these insights will give you an in-depth
analysis of how each of your top five themes plays out in your life. Unlike the
shared theme descriptions from StrengthsFinder 1.0, which are the same for
everyone, the descriptions in your StrengthsFinder 2.0 report will be
customized to describe your personality.

To create these highly tailored theme descriptions, we compare all of your
responses on these 5,000-plus Strengths Insights to our massive database and
then build your theme descriptions based on what makes …

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