Cherishing an Activator bias

19th April 2017

The ways in which we most naturally think, feel and behave as true individuals are such a dominant part of us that they are always evident. But because our natural talents are such a natural part of us, they might be harder for us to identify and appreciate than they are for anyone else. Time & again I work with fab folks and teams who struggle to articulate, demonstrate or recognise their own talents let alone those of others.

This is due partly to our polite  ‘don’t show off culture ‘ (for ref I don’t see a gender bias here) , gents are often as meek as the women blowing their talent trumpet but more often down to our lack of investment in personal reflection.  There’s also something in the culture of task/outcome – we appear to value getting stuff done over the way we get stuff done.

If I had a pound for every coaching session where folks talk about talents as weaknesses or faults I’d have cleared the shelf in Sainsbury’s of Lindt chocolate bunnies!

Its incredibly normal and common for folks to parcel up unique and valuable talents as ‘ oh that’s just how I do things ‘ .


So let's address the balance, let me talk about my well developed Activator talent.

I have no problem in identifying my Activator talent; heck it romps at pace all over my professional & personal life and has done since I was a young girl.

Activator is one of the 34 talent themes developed by Donald.O.Clifton who describes those talented in the Activator theme as ‘ being able to make things happen by turning thought into action, they are often impatient, speaking and acting quickly.

I cherish this talent, its what gets me out of bed, keeps me glass half full, helps me be as productive as I am and allows me to muscle in on the action! I have a strong inner voice urging me to get going, move quickly, not miss out or avoid stagnation. I am very comfortable with change and risk (heck what’s the worse that can happen!) and love to roll my sleeves up and help in practical way – just don’t expect me to read instructions….

I’ll even share that I have a tiny tattoo stating ‘ deeds not words ‘ so strong is my bias to getting stuff done.

My Activator talent means I love to help others make a start, I’m great at having your back too! I use a plain speaking and positive approach to tackling new tasks and experiences


Let’s remember though that a natural talent is often unchecked or untrained and only becomes a useful Strength with work – like all my talents I work on deploying Activator talent in a controlled way (I don’t always succeed) and have developed an understanding of how to regulate it and  play nicely with those  who take a steadier pace . I’m great at seeking out those who truly complements this talent (props to all the Arrangers out there).

My top 5 talent themes are: ‘Activator – Intellection – Learner – Strategic – Relator’

When did you last take the time to think, really think about how you’re approaching your work and how you might squeeze more satisfaction out of it? Hmm I thought so!

We all need a little help discovering our greatest talents. I can help you uncover your Strengths through effective 1 on 1 coaching and team discovery sessions.

Take care – Angie