In my last post, I wrote about Activator, who likes to get things started. In this post, we’ll talk about Achiever, an Executing Strength that likes to get things finished. Achievers are known for their strong work ethic and their intense drive to accomplish something tangible each day. With an Achiever, the balance between “workhorse” and “workaholic” is a fine line. They love being productive, though they may burn themselves out in the process. Achievers have a hard time feeling like they’ve done enough to take a break. They see the world in terms of what’s left to do, and less so by the work they have already completed.
Achievers are very task-oriented, and they appreciate having clarity around their responsibilities and deadlines. When I was a professor, one of my first TA’s was named Jasmine, and she was an Achiever. In fact, all of her Top 5 Strengths were in the Executing domain! She loved doing many of the things I don’t: creating our online site, entering grades, copying and organizing materials, setting up the room, etc. She was insanely reliable, and I knew I could always count on her to get everything done ahead of time and exactly as needed. In fact, I had to make sure not to give Jasmine too much to do, because I knew she would do it, even if it cut into the rest of her life.
When I work with Achievers, I have to remember that they are relentless in their drive to get things checked off the list. As long as I am clear about my expectations for the final product, I can trust that they’ll make it happen. It’s also important to help Achievers recognize their accomplishments and take time off, so they don’t get burned out.
Achievers get annoyed when task ownership isn’t clear and when others don’t follow through. They often wonder: why is it so hard for people to just do their jobs? Slackers drive them crazy, and it’s hard for Achievers to work in places where people aren’t held accountable for getting their work done on time. It also frustrates them when deadlines and priorities keep changing, because it makes it hard to get anything done. Further, nothing upsets an Achiever more than a micromanager. If you delegate something to an Achiever, you can rest assured they will get it done.
If you have an Achiever in your life, you may be amazed (or exhausted) by what they can accomplish in a day when they have time carved out to do it. Their superpower is following through and turning ideas into reality.
Do you need someone reliable to get something done and done well? Call an Achiever! Just make sure to give them a pat on the back afterwards, because chances are, they haven’t taken time to celebrate the fruits of their labor.
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