The Sideline Blog

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.

Gallup®, CliftonStrengths®, and the 34 theme names of CliftonStrengths® are 
trademarks of Gallup, Inc. All rights reserved.

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  • Chad T. Ahern

Talents & Burnout: Relator®

We recognize that communities throughout the United States are working hard to address longstanding, systemic racial inequality and injustice. Even as we join in the efforts to support such initiatives, we also believe continuing to share perspectives via this #talentswithoutburnout series can help people better understand one another as unique, talented individuals who should be celebrated and supported, regardless of their skin color or national origin.




"People exceptionally talented in the Relator theme enjoy close relationships with others. They find deep satisfaction in working hard with friends to achieve a goal."

- Gallup CliftonStrengths® Themes Quick Reference Guide -

Burnout Concerns

Times of change and challenge can put strains on even the deepest social networks. For those with Relator® talents this can often mean they need to invest significant emotional & mental energy to keep their close networks intact. In this vein, consider the following as possible burnout pressures:

  • A company reorganization could mean people are relocated within the building or across the nation. Similarly, a change in company priorities might mean teams are disbanded and reassembled in new configurations. Both these case could mean limited contact with familiar co-workers.

  • Our current COVID pandemic's "social distancing" practices has put literal space between all of us. For those with Relator talents, this distancing is likely limiting their ability to get together socially to maintain relationships. This separation also has the potential to leave Relators feeling unmoored and disconnected.

  • Too much of a "good thing" could also impacting them. Normally, time with family (deep relationships) is a good thing, but most healthy relationships also require a certain amount of time apart (separation makes the heart grow fonder). Constantly being around family members may be fraying those relationships.


Addressing Burnout

Those with Relator® talents are critical in times of change and challenge. They can often provide the "social glue" that helps teams stick together to accomplish grand goals. To help them avoid burnout and keep them contributing their best, consider assisting them:

  • In outlining and defining work-life integration practices. Establish shared team expectations around what the workday does and doesn’t look like could help alleviate feelings of trying to balance all their relationships and time all at once. This action could be particularly important to those with families or those serving as the primary caregiver to an elderly family member.

  • Find a balance in using Zoom calls to connect with colleagues from whom they might be feeling disconnected. Too many calls might mean too much time away from family. Too few, they could start to feel like they are missing out on the lives of their colleagues.

  • In prioritizing webinars or calls where they might already know someone. Asking them to develop brand new relationships – particularly deep relationships – may just be one request to many among the existing stress of just trying to keep existing relationships going.

As with coaching any individual, their combined set of talent themes will effect how their Relator® talents show up, and how to best manage them. As a beginning, next time you check-in with them, try asking,


Who are you feeling most connected with right now?

Who are you missing most right now?


Photo by Naassom Azevedo on Unsplash


Gallup®, CliftonStrengths®, and the 34 theme names of CliftonStrengths® are trademarks of Gallup, Inc. All rights reserved.

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