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Just as sports players come to the sideline for rest and guidance, this blog is meant to provide you some insight and guidance as you explore your Strengths journey.

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  • Writer's pictureChad T. Ahern

Strengths Positioning: Command®

Updated: Sep 22, 2021

A soccer player challenging for the ball; the same way those with Command talents will challenge others to stand up or stand aside.
Confrontation as a pursuit of advocation.

Leaders, and colleagues, need to position people on work project teams effectively and efficiently to ensure work gets done and people stay engaged. A lot of leaders often spend too much time trying to guess where to put people because they don't have a point of reference.

What follows is a "scouting report" for those with Command® talents, as identified via the CliftonStrengths assessment.

If you are a leader or a colleague of someone with talents, consider how you can best position them in the context of your team and your projects. You can also use this as a discussion piece to find out how they see and use their Command® talents.

Each person with Command® talents operates differently. Make sure you're not missing out on their unique contribution.

Disclaimer: The following insights represent the author's opinions based on their understanding of the CliftonStrengths® themes. These are not statements created by or formally endorsed by Gallup®.

Scouting Report

Taking charge to protect the team, make decisions, and advocate for other team members.


Ways in which this team member can make a direct and immediate impact. Use these insights to consider where you place them on the team or in an organization.

  • Confrontation seekers. While many find confrontation uncomfortable and to be avoided at all cost; this is not the case for those with Command talents. They will actively seek out situations where tough decisions need to be made, and where the team needs to "take a (riskier) shot." Consider positioning these talented individuals in roles where they can take the heat for others -- whether that heat comes from external competitors, internal partners, or leaders higher up in your organization.

  • Clarity finders. Those with Command talents have no trouble calling out people or questioning data. Often, their brand of confrontation is about "cutting to the chase." There is no room for BS here. Consider placing these individuals in roles where they can gather insights and data from many others and then be given permission to make the best decision for the team (so long as the team is okay handing over the reins & decision making power).


Ways in which people with this theme might "overplay" their talents.

  • Over the top. Those with Command talents can come on strong, and only get stronger. They can easily intimidate others if they aren't careful. Be judicious in putting them in roles where they might lead quieter, thinking team members.

  • Aggressive vs. Assertive. There is a fine line between being aggressive and being assertive. Those with Command who become aggressive can be overly combative, dismissive of others, and will tend to plow head long into whatever decision they feel is right...regardless of whether they have others' support. Being assertive, allows them to stand up for what they (or the team) feels is right, calmly move forward with confidence, and (politely) put aside their detractors. Help your Command-talented team members recognize which version they embody and help them maintain a more assertive vs. aggressive approach.

Talent Combos / Position Modification

  • Strategic: "The Thoughtful Commander" - Like a defensive midfielder who can see the best option for moving the ball from one's own end of the field to the goal, team members embodying this talent combination will be more likely to consider multiple options and competing opinions. Yet once they determine the best way forward, they will pursue it with steadfast gusto to make it happen.

  • Developer: "On Field Coach" - when a soccer coach can't be present, a captain can often serve as an on-the-field coach. Those who embody the Developer + Command combo can often serve the same function in the workplace. This combo allows them to convey a steadfast belief (Command) in the abilities of others to become better than they already are (Developer).

  • Discipline: "Operational Backstop" - teams often lose their way when they abandon the carefully thought out processes that drove their past success. This is unlikely to be the case when a team has someone with Command + Discipline talents. These individuals are fantastic at assertively maintaining predictable order. They make sure that everyone takes the proper actions so nothing falls through the cracks.

Game Film

Check out these videos from Gallup to learn more

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