Competition – The CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) Talent Theme

A guide to understanding the CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) Competition talent theme

Understand your CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) Talent Themes over the next few weeks. We are going to deconstruct each talent theme and give you insights into what each of these talent themes are about. This week, we will be looking at the talent theme of Competition. You may either have Competition or you may know someone with the talent theme of Competition. 

The Gallup Organization defines people with the talent theme of Competition as those who will work hard to excel as they have a deep aspiration to be the best of the best, especially so when placed in comparison with others. Competition gives them room to outperform their peers and the opportunity to win. 

The Power of Competition

People with the talent theme of Competition will find their world rooted in comparison. When they look around, they will find themselves instinctively aware of other people’s performance. A strong sense of comparison develops and this gives them space to compete. In turn, their competitive spirit leads them to the possibility of winning, which is what matters to them and what drives them the most. 

Their natural “let’s-win” spirit can help to elevate a team’s achievement level by cultivating a collective aspiration to be the best.

What The CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) Competition Theme Loves

People with the talent theme of Competition love to stimulate themselves and others to always achieving a higher standard of performance. They love to measure their progress against not just the performance of others around them, but also their own personal records. 

They love any form of measurement scales in competitions as these enable them to track their placing against competitors and growth. They revel in contests and winning first place in competitions. 

They also love having other competitors in their arena as it fills them with an invigorating spirit and pushes them to do even better. 

What The CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) Competition Theme Hates

People with the talent theme of Competition absolutely hate it when they lose. 

They cannot stand coming in second place since they are always striving to be the best in whatever they put themselves to work at. 

Competition’s Basement Behaviours

When individuals with the talent theme of Competition push their talent too hard, others can find it hard to keep up with them. Here are 3 negative behaviours of these individuals: 

  1. Sore loser – When people with the talent theme of Competition do not win the first place in contests, they may get their feelings hurt. This will be especially true if they had put in all their effort into winning and still lost. 
  2. Confrontational – If the competition or contest meant a lot to them, losing may trigger a confrontational response. This usually happens due to emotional exhaustion, especially so if preparing for the competition meant taking a toll on their bodies mentally or physically. This causes them to be more susceptible to having a bias judgment on the results of the competition, which may result in the onset of a confrontational response.
  3. Not a team player – These feelings of negativity from coming in second or losing their first place in a competition could result in a sudden halt of their cooperation when they are in a team. They may no longer look forward to working together and could use some time to mourn their loss. 

Competition’s Best Contributions

People with the talent theme of Competition are naturally driven and motivated by the thought of being in first place. They are always seen pushing themselves to be the winners of any contests or competitions that may come their way. 

Their spirit of Competition can act as a basis for influence and positively impact the lives of others around them. Their “lets-win” attitude serves as a model for people around them or for people they work with. They grab the attention of others and encourage others to think that they can achieve their goals too.  

As such, this spirit of Competition serves as a form of inspiration for everyone around them. Their competitive nature can also stimulate others to strive for higher levels of performance and productivity. 

When placed in a team, their spirit of competitiveness encourages others to push their limits and perform their best together.


StrengthsAsia has helped many individual and corporate clients all throughout the region in identifying and maximizing their talents, in driving engagement and increasing motivation in their work and life.

If you want to learn more about the 34 talent themes or discover how you can apply your talent themes in the areas of your work and your life, feel free to reach out to us here. 

Reshma is StrengthsAsia’s content writer and research contributor. She enjoys spending her time writing anything from poems to screenplays, and everything in between. She also finds joy in reading novels, baking and catching movies with her family. Participating in creative activities helps her find inspiration and new ideas for her work.

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