- Gallup Theme Thursday Webcast Series
- Season 5, Achiever
- The CliftonStrengths themes at the top of your profile are the most powerful and give you the greatest chance for success. Join us as we discuss Achiever.
Join Jim Collison and Maika Leibbrandt as they talk about your Achiever talent theme -- helping you unlock the power of truly understanding yourself through how you get things done, influence others, connect with people and think critically -- on this Theme Thursday Season 5 webcast.
NEW for Season 5: Below is a full transcript of the conversation, including time stamps. Full audio and video are posted above.
Jim Collison 0:00
Hi, I'm Jim Collison and live from the Gallup Studios here in Omaha, Nebraska. This is Gallup's Theme Thursday, Season 5 -- 5 -- recorded on June 26, 2019.
Jim Collison 0:20
Theme Thursday is a Gallup webcast series that dives deep into the CliftonStrengths themes. And this season based on the CliftonStrengths 34 report one theme at a time and today's theme is Achiever. If you're listening live, join us in the chat room or you can send us your questions via email: coaching@Gallup.com. Maika Leibbrandt is our host today. She's workplace consultant, here at Gallup. Maika always great to see you. Welcome back to Theme Thursday.
Maika Leibbrandt 0:42
Thanks, Jim. Gosh, I'm so happy we're finally back.
Jim Collison 0:46
Yeah, it's good to it's good to get going. And it's good to be back here. But although folks may be, we know from Thursday, folks may be listening to this year or two or three later. And I want to welcome you to Season 5 as we do this. So let's jump in, Maika.
Maika Leibbrandt 0:59
Talent is a pervasive thing. This is going to be accurate a forever, or at least for a long time. Today, and in Season 5, if you're not familiar with this, so far, they're shorter. So we have 20 minutes to talk about some highlights from the entire CliftonStrengths 34 report specific to Achiever. So to start off, we're going to go through all of Season 5 in alphabetical order like we have in the past, to start off with Achiever, our first alphabetical talent. Really, if you possess a lot of Achiever talent, all that means is that you work hard. The Achiever theme describes a set of talents that all kind of cluster around completion of tasks. So Achievers tend to have a great deal of stamina and kind of forward-moving energy. Is that Is that a fair representation, Jim, of Achiever?
Jim Collison 1:45
Yeah, I think so. Yeah, how might this Achiever notice this talent in their life?
Maika Leibbrandt 1:49
Yeah. So this is something as a question that I'm glad you asked, because I stole it from what I discovered when we were doing our StrengthsExplorer series, this idea of what can we spot? And so with children, even before they're old enough to take a CliftonStrengths assessment, we talked about the concept of strengths spotting as being a habit we should cultivate, I think it's pretty important to do that with adults as well. So when I'm answering this question, I'm asking myself, gosh, what could I take a picture of? Or what's the, you know, the filmable behavior that might be associated with this? Or how does this talent show up outside of you know, a person? With Achievers, you might see a lot of checklists, you might see that they start their day at zero. And evidence of that might be the way that they talk about what they have to do during the day, it starts out from this assumption that they haven't yet had had a win unless they've completed something. You might notice an extra boost of energy when something is completed, you might notice a drive to keep going until you can mark it off, really that I mean, that looks like resilience that looks like energy that looks like almost the ability to have quite a bit of stamina. And to keep going until you have reached the point where something feels complete. You also might notice that they count up, rather than counting down. One of my very best friends has Achiever in her Top 5. And I asked her as we were training for a half marathon together, like do you count the number of weeks that we have left to go? Or you know, in a long run, do you count -- I've got five more songs is typically how I think about getting through my my runs. I don't have Achiever, and she said, "Absolutely not." With with her high Achiever, it's always about I've made it six miles today; I'm going to make it seven miles tomorrow. And thinking about even even in the middle of a workout, being able to say, instead of I have three to go, saying I've got seven down already. So that idea of really completing and forward-moving progress,
Jim Collison 3:46
Maika, that's an interesting thought, when we think of that idea of glass half-full or glass half-empty, based on each one of the themes in the sense of counting up versus counting down for Achievers, I never really thought of it that way. But that positive and negative -- the positive being when I'm in that flow, it just seems like I want to get there, as opposed to I need to get through this. So I don't know, maybe we can add that piece. And one of the new pieces on the 34 report is to talk about blind spots. And so what potential blind spots might hold Achievers back from excellence.
Maika Leibbrandt 4:17
Yeah, and you know what, it's important to realize these blind spots are not a diagnosis. There's no scientific guarantee that you would ever even encounter the blind spot that we suggest could be present within your theme. But it is our responsibility as talented human beings to understand how might that theme be perceived by other people? And how might that theme keep us from being our very, very best. So there might be something within the theme itself that prevents you from reaching world-class, reaching that real that sweet spot of of excellence. For Achiever specifically, it's important to realize that that kind of stamina can be hard to keep up with. I used to think that this was a joke. And the more I think about it, the more I think I've got about 15 years of sort of informal data and research to back it up, that it seems Achievers actually need less sleep than people who do not have Achiever. And I think a lot of that has to do with the energy boost that they gain from completing something. In many ways it feels like putting a mint in your mouth or getting that extra cup of coffee or having a little bit more sleep that re-energizing is is sort of what happens to Achievers when they reach completion of something. That can be difficult to keep pace with. So that's important to I think be sensitive to when you're working with people who don't have Achiever. That ability to go it alone, to be your own battery, to give yourself that own recharge could also lead you to isolation. And so that's one of the things in fact that I took from our full 34 report is that idea that you probably are fine being the engine, driving the work, completing and getting excited about that. It might also mean that you're going to be fine on your own. And there might be situations where you need to collaborate.
Jim Collison 6:14
What what roles do Achievers play on a team? Or what can they -- roles can they play?
Maika Leibbrandt 6:18
So I think a powerful page in our CliftonStrengths 34 report is page 21, where we start to look at each theme as it's represented within its leadership domain. If you want to learn a whole lot more about leadership domains, tap into Season 3 of Theme Thursday, where we go through all of these. Achiever lives in the executing domain. And within that domain, it's it's different from a few other executing themes. Think about the theme of Responsibility is hey, I do it because other people are counting on me. Maybe the theme of Deliberative, still in that executing domain, is I do it because it's safe well-thought-out decisions. Discipline, again, to contrast that would say I do it to create or further order and structure. Achiever's going to say, I do it because I'm delighted by the doing or because I'm delighted by doing my to-dos. That sounds like a fun song that could happen there. So it's different than some of those other executing themes where it truly is about the progress toward completion. And I think that that's an important idea to think about when you ask the question, Jim, of what role does it play in a team in partnership, Achiever can increase the pace of other people, can help others complete more tasks, or in I think, in some cases, and this will be a fun contrast. Today, we're also going to take a break, do a little bit of a mid show, and then record Activator. So I'll just do a quick contrast there. Achiever's about the crossing the finish line; Activator is about starting up at the starting line. So sometimes the role that Achiever can play in a team is helping people really follow through on outstanding commitments that haven't yet reached completion. They derive energy and enjoyment from work itself. And so they can make executing a delightful, enjoyable thing.
Maika Leibbrandt 6:19
Maika, that section's I think going to become my quick quickly my favorite part of what we do, there's so much packed in if you miss that you might want to just stop -- not listening live. But if you're listening to the recorded version, go back and listen to that again, as it Maika really works through how this fits in each with the domain. There's a lot packed into that. But Maika that's going to become one of my favorites. Any clues advice on communicating well, with Achiever?
Maika Leibbrandt 8:45
I think don't gloss over or talk around the tasks at hand, make those front and center. Achievers are going to make sense of the world through what can and has been completed. Ask an Achiever what they've done today, offer some celebration and some validation of that because they derive a good deal of credit. And I think they make sense of their own space in the world by looking at what they've done.
Jim Collison 9:13
And this might seem like a counterintuitive question, but what can what might inspire or motivate someone with Achiever?
Maika Leibbrandt 9:19
You mean counterintuitive, because they might not need it? Exactly. We all need it. We all could use some inspiration, motivation. I think makes making sure and this is true of everybody, but especially in some of these executing domains, have clear expectations, not just of what needs to be done. But what does success look like? So clean that completion equals excellent. How can you make those those expectations so clear, so salient, so obvious that completing a task equals success, so that might mean that you have to curate or, or map out or strategize your definition of success so that it's about what needs to be done. I also think a great way to motivate somebody with Achiever is to offer some autonomy or to offer them peers and partners who are going to also work very hard. You might demotivate this might be another way to say how could you demotivate an Achiever is slow them down or give them people around them that they feel like they constantly have to be bringing up? Yes, they are a pacesetter. But they'll also run faster when they're when they're running with other hard workers. It's also important, I think, to motivate and inspire an Achiever by offering some clarity of the role that they play within the team or within the group. So how can you hold them responsible for driving hard, driving fast, driving far?
Jim Collison 10:41
What What can achievers do to practice this and this is really an idea that's embedded into this new 34 report, but to practice this talent every day?
Maika Leibbrandt 10:49
So here's one idea, you could make your progress visual, use a planner, use a tracker, use a whiteboard, be able to somehow replay the highlight reel that you have in your head about what you've completed. Fill your world with that in a visual way. Another idea is perhaps have some designated progress partners that you share your current state with every day. This kind of accountability of somebody who's also counting up throughout the day, can create a shared bond. And it doesn't have to be somebody who has Achiever, just somebody who knows how your brain works and appreciates it.
Jim Collison 11:26
Maika, I'll bring up a visual aid just so folks know, my 34 report, right here, I printed it out I like to write you could download it and keep it as a PDF, make it available, write your own, keep your own notes. But I've been spending as we go in because Woo is my favorite theme. I've been spending time going through making notes, taking things, writing those. And I think this idea of practice, right, this aiming, just becomes so important in what we're doing. So speaking of practice, what can we do with any of our CliftonStrengths, right to get better or stronger.
Maika Leibbrandt 11:56
So this is where this is going to work for you if you have Achiever, and it's going work for you if you don't, talent multiplied by investment is how we get to strength. And I think very often, we get too distracted by talking about naming things over and over and over again, or even naming potential ways they could go wrong. And we fail to really, really invest in that talent. And today's opportunity is to stop whatever you're doing right now, unless you're driving. And simply notice more about how your own strengths regardless of what they are, are operating in your life. That is an investment, that is a way to start to springboard into that higher expectation of real excellence. So right here right now is our last three minutes of our of our podcast and we're calling it talent-mindfulness. All right, let's go, inhale. Exhale, be right here with me, I'm going to take you through some guided mindfulness around your very talents, this is going to be different at the end of every single podcast for Season 5. If you need to need to ditch us, you can, but I encourage you to stick around because it's going to be worth it. Right now, we're recording this at the end of June. So today's mindfulness exercise is a midyear review. Think about the past six months that you've spent in your job, in your family, in your community, on this planet. When was a time during those six months that you felt especially proud? Remember where you were, remember what it felt like, maybe even think about what it smelled like, what were you hearing? Who was there with you? When during those six months, did you experience a feeling of power? Maybe a time you physically took up just a little bit more space. Now let's let's think about the next six months. Finish this sentence in your head. In the next six months, the most promising thing about me is …
Maika Leibbrandt 14:26
I'm excited for your next six months. These are amazingly important questions, you are powerful. There's something about you you should be incredibly proud of. We need you to fill that space, fill the space and maybe hold a space for the power of others as well. Thank you for joining and thinking about Achiever. Thank you for filling the power that you bring to the table. We will catch you on our next podcast. If you're joining live, you can wait just a little bit and we'll be cutting this and editing it and starting the next one. I'm going to hand it back to you, Jim.
Jim Collison 15:02
Yeah, no, Maika, I'm really excited about that. Let me just give a few instructions on that that mindfulness that we do. Take a second and don't listen to it like you would normally listen to a podcast, don't just listen through it. Maybe listen to it and stop it and spend some time kind of thinking through each one of those questions. When you're listening live, that's that's maybe a little difficult, these are quick enough that we can kind of get you to that you can go back to the recording and do it again. But I think we'd really like you to spend some time kind of stopping and listening let it being quiet. This may be a time that you need to get away for all 34 of these are you need to kind of get away and imagine these things. Maika, as you were talking about that that power, you know, I immediately kind of went to the summit and the opportunity you and I had in that too. I don't have Achiever, I have Arranger, Activator that looks like it sometimes. Just very very different cause I don't have to get things done. Right. It's different for but that was still a kind of a result for me in a lot of ways. And it made me smile. Like for a second just for a second. You know, we've had you and I have both had a crazy week already coming off and it was just a good right it was just a great reminder. You know, Maika reminds us to as you're also listening to this if you want to review these talent-mindfulness exercise, feel free to share the question I offered on social, like, and we'd like to hear about, we'd like to hear from you on on what you're thinking. Maika, what would you add anything else to that?
Maika Leibbrandt 16:33
in the post-show, I will. No, no, thank you. There's probably some gratitude for going through that. It's It's not easy to like listen to yourself, and it's so incredibly important that we do that.
Jim Collison 16:47
Yeah, yeah. And we're excited to do it well, with that we'll remind everyone to take full advantage of all the resources we have available at the Gallup Strengths Center just gallupstrengthscenter.com. Send us your questions or comments. You can easily email them to us if you'd like firstname.lastname@example.org. Don't forget we make these available in just about every form you can to download it, listen to it like a podcast, watch the YouTube videos available in so many different ways. If you need any instructions on how to do that, or help with that, coaching.gallup.com and we'd like to have you join us both on Instagram @strengthstalk there and on Facebook at facebook.com/groups/calledtocoach all one word, and we'd love to continue the dialogue there. Want to thank you for joining us today or listening to us today, however you did that, with that we'll say, Goodbye everybody.