Individualization – The CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) Talent Theme

The CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) Responsibility Talent Theme is a unique theme in the Gallup CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) group of talent themes.

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

Over the next few weeks, we will be taking some time to look through your CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) Talent theme. Let’s deconstruct each theme and dig in to uncover some insights on what each of these talent themes are about.

This week, we will be looking at the talent theme of Individualization. You may either have Individualization yourself or you may know someone else with the talent theme of Individualization. 

What makes up a person with Individualization? How are they different from the rest of us? Let’s find out!

The Gallup Organization defines people with the talent theme of Individualization as those who notice and appreciate the unique characteristics of each person. Think of them as a casting director. They use their intelligence about people to strategically position them to do what they do best. And what happens when these people do what they do best together is the equivalent of a beautiful blockbuster film coming together. The perfect dream team will be formed. 

The Power of Individualization

People with the talent theme of Individualization are intrigued by the unique qualities of each person. They have an inner instinct which tells them how people who are different can work together harmoniously. They keenly observe other people’s strengths and draw out the best in them. 

They also have a special talent that allows them to pick up on each person’s style, motivation, thoughts and how they build relationships. As a result, they are naturally able to create productive teams. 

What The CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) Individualization Theme Loves

They love to identify special qualities of other people and they are pretty good at it too! They have the eyes to hone in on a certain person’s interactions and it helps them figure out their strengths. 

They also love being able to customise their approach to each person after understanding them on an individual scale. They usually do this by having a one-on-one conversation with someone and learning more about their interests and dislikes. After which, they put this newly gained information to good use. They love putting together productive teams after seeing the different talents of everyone. 

What The CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) Individualization Theme Hates

Those who have the talent theme of Individualization do not like generalising people. They strongly dislike categorising others into certain ‘types’ or ‘groups’. Labels are a no-no for them as they like to believe that each person is made differently and they all have a different purpose when put to a team. They also hate obscuring what is special and distinct about each individual. 

Individualization’s Basement Behaviours

When individuals with the talent theme of Individualization push their talent too hard, others may find it hard to understand them for various reasons. Here are 3 examples.

  1. Individual > Group – There may be times when people with the talent theme of Individualization face difficulty prioritising a whole group over an individual. They may get too involved with identifying a single person’s unique traits that they miss out on seeing the bigger picture and working towards the group’s goals. 
  2. Group > Individual – On the other hand, they may also have the tendency to completely miss out on making people-based decisions. They could get too involved with forming the ‘perfect team’ that they end up hurting others’ feelings in the process of trying to find a person who suits a certain function. 
  3. Unable to synthesise – While there may be people with the talent theme of Individualization who can pick out the unique traits of a person, some may face the difficulty of transferring that skill into actually forming a group. They may see other individuals for who they are and know what is special about each of them but they may not know how to use that information to eventually make a productive team.  

Individualization’s Best Contributions

Alright, so we know what makes them tick and what they’re like on their bad days. Let’s find out what they’re like on their best days. 

As we’ve learned, people with the talent theme of Individualization are extremely good at honouring the special traits of each person they meet. They also tend to be able to share their appreciation for the qualities the other person has. 

They are also able to customise their approach to each individual accordingly. Maybe they would have a proper conversation with that person, or maybe they would prefer to observe them in a large group setting. This helps them to learn more about the other person in different situations. Upon learning their strengths, a person with Individualization can shine some light on other people’s talents and build a stronger group. 

They can also easily identify how someone can use their talents. This helps them foster partnerships in a new group where members will be able to complement each other. They are good at encouraging others to maximise the power of their talents and follow their dreams. 

These individuals understand that true diversity can be found in the subtle differences between each individual – regardless of race, sex, or nationality. As such, they use their instincts to form teams made up of people with distinct talents. The teams that evolve are often strong teams that operate like Swiss army knives, filled with individuals with diverse strengths and capabilities.


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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