Over the next several weeks, we’ll dive into each of the 34 strengths of the CliftonStrengths assessment. Read about the Activator and Strategic strengths below. For an overview of the CliftonStrengths Assessment, read our introductory blog post.


Are you good at making things happen by turning thoughts into action? Do you find yourself asking “when can we start” when faced with new projects or tasks? Are you a self-starter who can take action quickly once a decision is made? If so, you might be a natural Activator!

Activators are catalysts who get things started and are often impatient for action. Their energy is contagious, and they can be a “jump starter” for teams who just need to get going.

You might be an “Activator” if you identify with any of the following statements:

You are: impatient with inactivity

You bring: a catalytic sense of urgency

You need: less discussions, more action

You love: initiation, instigation

You hate: waiting, wasting time


Faced with any scenario, do you quickly spot relevant patterns and issues to find the best route moving forward? Can you create alternative ways to proceed through your creativity, imagination, and persistence? If so, you might be naturally Strategic!

People with strong Strategic talents have the ability to sort through clutter, see patterns where others don’t, and envision alternative scenarios by asking “what if this happened?” This allows them to see, plan, and prepare for future situations. This is not a skill that can be taught — it is a unique way of thinking.

You might have Strategic as one of your top talents if any of the following resonate:

You are: willing to consider all the possibilities so the best isn’t missed

You bring: creative anticipation, imagination, persistence

You need: freedom to make mid-course corrections

You love: seeing a way when others assume there is no way

You hate: doing things the way we have always done them

Want to find out if you have Activator and Strategic as your top Strengths? Complete the CliftonStrengths for Students assessment by contacting strengths@iit.edu.

Uncovering Talent with CliftonStrengths: Activator and Strategic