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Activator: Let's Go!

I love watching my daughter play Coco the Crash Bandicoot. That spunky blue haired ponytailed girl is always fully revved and ready to win the race. As she begins each race you’ll hear her say, “Let’s go!” She just might have the Activator strength as one of her top five Clifton Strengths.

I recently wrote a blog about the Achiever strength, but don’t confuse it for Activator. Though they may sound like they have a lot in common, activators are all about getting things in motion and getting the team going. They believe that the worst decision is no decision at all.

Imagine being at the starting line with your cleats dug in, waiting for the whistle to go off or a driver revving its engine in anticipation of the start of the race. Activators are forward moving and they like to bring others with them.

While others are waiting, thinking it through, and further collaborating, the activator doesn’t want to miss the opportunity to make it happen.

My friend, Danny, has the activator theme in his top 5 strengths. He is a catalyst for getting ideas off the ground. For instance, once he got the idea of writing a book, he published it within a couple of months. He talked about going back to school and then he was. I could see a lot of energy in him toward starting activities.

As a strengths coach, I am always trying to guess people’s strengths. I see people’s talents and their potential for developing their strengths. As people, we are at our best when we are leveraging our strengths.

I imagine Will, from the movie Iron Will, having the activator strength. Iron Will is about a boy whose Father dies and he makes a decision to run in a dog race. Once he makes that decision he can’t wait to get started. The result that is pushing him to do it is to save the family farm with the money he will make. He doesn’t stop to think about all of the negative things that can happen along the way. His desire is to seize the moment and not let this opportunity pass him by.

What I love about Will is that an activator influences others by pushing them to move forward. Will is the catalyst between the main characters of the movie. He sees this moment of hope and snatches the opportunity. He saw this as a way to move forward, and in the process he moved others forward. He gave his mom hope that they wouldn’t lose the farm. He gave the other runners hope as well, as he pushed them toward the finish line.

Activators learn by doing. In the doing they grow. They jump at opportunities. They don’t wait.

Activators have the “never put off until tomorrow what you can do today” mindset.

If you are on a team, you definitely want an activator on your team to rally the team and get things started. After all, tomorrow may be too late.

All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty. Proverbs 14:23


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