Ep. 31: The 5 Most Common Strengths

  SUCCESS Talks podcast on Stitcher

Is it better to work on your strengths or weaknesses? Josh and Shelby debate that topic in this week’s episode as they dive into Gallup’s StrengthsFinder Assessment, a test of personal talent that identifies areas where your greatest potential for building strengths exists. Based on a 40-year study of human strengths, Gallup created a list of the 34 most common talents; the five most common reported strengths are:

  • Achiever: One with a constant drive for accomplishing tasks
  • Responsibility: One who must follow through on commitments
  • Learner: One who must constantly be challenged and learning new things to feel successful
  • Relator: One who is most comfortable with fewer, deeper relationships
  • Strategic: One who is able to see a clear direction through the complexity of a situation

Whether you work on your strengths or weaknesses, one thing’s for certain— you can’t be good at everything. But that’s the challenge many face when you’re in business for yourself. You end up wearing many hats and doing a little bit of everything because there is no one else to do it. Amanda Brinkman, who is chief brand and communications officer for Deluxe Corporation, has seen this problem firsthand.

“When you focus on your strength, especially as a business owner, you’re putting your best foot forward and focusing on things that are really going to grow your business,” Brinkman says. For the past two years, Brinkman and Deluxe have been documenting small businesses across the United States for its Small Business Revolution movement and exclusive web series.


  • Josh argues it’s better to work on your strengths or natural talent because you’ll make further progress with your growth
  • Shelby argues it’s better to work on your weaknesses because it negates complacency and forces you to step out of your comfort zone
  • Amanda Brinkman shares why it’s critical for us to work on our strengths
  • Tips for asking others to help you identify your strengths

Favorite Banter From This Episode:

Josh: “If your weakness is a must-have skill that other skills are built upon, then it’s probably something you should work on.

Shelby: “Like putting on pants, that’s probably an essential skill in order to be successful and do other things.

Josh: “Well, if you’re in the YouEconomy, you could figure out a way to work pantsless. Sans pants.”


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Every week on SUCCESS Insider, SUCCESS.com’s Shelby Skrhak and SUCCESS magazine’s Josh Ellis will discuss the latest trends in personal empowerment, entrepreneurship and career development. We’ll dig into books, ideas and news you’ll want to know about. We’ll chat with special guests, including authors such as Dr. Henry Cloud, industry experts such as Shawn Achor, business leaders such as Kendra Scott and listeners like you.

Find complete SUCCESS Insider archives at SUCCESS.com/successinsider.

Find more SUCCESS podcasts at SUCCESS.com/podcasts.

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