Have you ever seen someone at work and wondered, “How does that person get so much work done?” or, “They just keep working and working, doing more and more, do they ever slow down or get tired?” 

Maybe you find yourself making to-do lists and sticking to them, even on the weekends and vacation. That just might be the CliftonStrengths theme of Achiever.

This week we are going to explore the CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) theme of Achiever. Whether you’re an individual with Achiever or a leader wanting to empower your people to perform better, learning how to turn this talent into a strength will help you accomplish great things, no matter the situation.

People who are especially talented in the Achiever theme have a great deal of stamina and like to work hard. They are happiest and healthiest when they are being busy and productive. Someone with the strength of Achiever has a particular motivation, drive, and determination to achieve something with her time. 

Achievers add the engine to ideas.

One Achiever I know describes herself as a “finisher.” Another tells me that every day starts at zero. Every single day. Weekends, vacations, you name it. As Babe Ruth said, "Yesterday’s home runs don’t win today’s games."

  • Activator says "Let’s get this going”
  • Achiever says “Let’s get this accomplished"

When an Achiever is at their best, they gain momentum with accomplishing more and more work.

Achievers get stuff done.

At its worst - the raw and untamed Achiever can be bad at celebrating because they are moving on to the next task. Sometimes they have a tendency to burn the candle at both ends, and if they aren’t careful they can be focused on results over people.

Ways to feed (develop) your Achiever talent:

  • Get clear on timelines and goals so that you can measure and celebrate your progress toward success.
  • Since you enjoy completion, break the milestones and activities into smaller steps so that you can relish the feeling of accomplishment more often.
  • Try to partner up with other hard workers
  • Be sure to set a goal of celebrating with the team when you all complete an objective.
  • Try to avoid tasks where the finish line is not defined or constantly moving.
  • Try to opt out of situations without actionable items
  • Environments where accountability is lacking or where slacking off is celebrated might drain you.

Achievers in each domain

Being an executing theme, Achiever executes by checking things off the list. Achievers can influence others around them by example (high performers can set the pace) they can also help the team breaking a large goal down into smaller parts. Achievers build relationships by serving others - Achievers say "what can I “do" for you." They can add a dimension to strategic planning by turning ideas into achievable steps/milestones along the way AND by asking “what needs to get done?“

Coaching and Managing Achievers

Achiever is one of the most common themes in the world, so build up the Achievers around you by giving them freedom to run. Set the target and get out of the way, trust that they will hit the deadline. If you have Achievers on your team,  make sure your culture celebrates accomplishments. When the Achiever completes a task, show them you value their contribution by giving them another important task to accomplish - but be careful not to hand them busy work.

Some of the ways that coaches, managers, or coworkers create barriers for Achievers is by creating unnecessary red tape and stalling progress. Don’t keep your Achiever on the bench, put them in the game, an underutilized achiever will die a slow and destructive death in your organization. Focus on the progress your Achiever is making, don’t nit-pick the process - and don’t assume that “balance” for an achiever means downtime.

Do you have the CliftonStrength of Achiever? Do you work with someone who does? What are some things that make them stand out? Let us know in the comment section. 

If you’re interested in learning more about what makes you stand out the StrengthsFinder assessment is available here:


Have you ever had that feeling of being stuck in your personal life or at work? You find yourself working with people who don't understand you, doing a job that doesn't fit, and answering to someone who focuses on what you aren't rather than what you are? No matter how many "team building" exercises you do or "self-help" books you read, you still find yourself frustrated and stressed. 


Using a Strengths-based approach backed by Gallup, we help bring out the best in people resulting in higher productivitylower turnover, and a better quality of life. We help people and organizations use what they do well to overcome their biggest problems.

Gallup’s research has also shown people who focus on their strengths turn their potential into action. People who know and use their CliftonStrengths are:

  • 6x as likely to be engaged at work
  • 7.8% more productive in their role
  • 3x as likely to have an excellent quality of life
  • 6x as likely to do what they do best every day