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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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  • Chad T. Ahern

Talents & Burnout: Activator®



"People exceptionally talented in the Activator theme can make things happen by turning thoughts into action. They want to do things now, rather than simply talk about them." - Gallup CliftonStrengths Themes Quick Reference Guide

Burnout Concerns


Moments of great change can bring out the best in Activators, with their boundless energy and undying need for action. This same need for action can also drive them toward burnout in moments of change when they:

  • Aren't able to start new projects due to cuts in funding, team workforce, or physical resources.

  • Attempt to engage with others who might still be looking for more guidance or information on how best to proceed; particularly when the whole world of work is being reinvented.

  • Being told to “hold on” because decisions haven’t been made yet.

  • Try to "activate" too many initiatives all at the same time.

In each of these scenarios, their impatience can lead them to either burnout by trying to push forward regardless, or disengagement because they give up trying to move the unmovable.


Addressing Burnout


As we look to define and develop our new world of work, one of the most important ways you can engage and enliven those with Activator talents is to give them roles where they can play a dual role of "guinea pig" and "initiator."

  • ​Engage them to test run new work protocols, web platforms, etc. while also asking for them to record feedback and lessons learned to share with others so the tools can be improved.

  • Invite them (when safe and appropriate) to be the first to try new mixed-location working arrangements. Ask them for insights on tools or approaches that seem to work well.

  • Encourage them to start finding new ways to accomplish work.

  • If other members of your/their team need more information before launching a larger initiative, encourage those with Activator talents to start looking for the information. Getting them in action will feel more natural than sitting around waiting.

As a leader or manager, one of the simplest questions you can ask right now of those with Achiever talents is,


"What can I help you start today with the resources and people we (still) have available?"


Photo by Dayne Topkin on Unsplash

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