Exploring the Influencing Domain of Strength

Using the Four Domains of Strength is one way to wrap your mind around all 34 themes. It breaks them up into easily digestible chunks, and helps you focus on them as four distinct “sets.”

While it isn’t necessary to be “balanced” – having near equal dispersion in each domain – it is helpful to know where the bulk of your Themes reside. When teams leverage the Strengths of each individual, employee engagement is higher and goals are more likely to be achieved.

According to Gallup, the eight themes in the Influencing Domain of Strength “help their team reach a much broader audience.”. These people can sometimes be categorized as those who step up, speak up and take charge. They may be able to “sell” the big idea of a group or organization to others. These people tend to show their value when you need your message/activity/cause to reach a broader audience, or meet a bigger goal. Obviously, everyone will influence differently depending on their other Themes. This can happen internally within their own team, or to external constituents. They tend to influence forward, often moving towards action and change.

The Influencing Domain of Strength


Watch as I teach the Influencing Domain of Strength, and briefly explain what each of these themes mean. Or, keep reading the script below.


People with the StrengthsFinder theme of Activator are most innovative and creative  when they are in motion. They can easily turn thoughts into action and they need this movement to get motivated and feel accomplished. I once met a man with this strength who said to me “If it takes any longer than 5 minutes, it’s a project…and I’m not interested”.

Often times their satisfaction is derived from getting multiple things started, but not necessarily in their completion. People with this strength are valuable to have on a team because they can easily break stalemates with their need to act and they are not hesitant to jump in and try anything once.

People with Activator put things into action- for them thinking is doing and doing is thinking.


People with the StrengthsFinder theme of Command have a presence. They are courageous, confident decision makers and often find themselves speaking on behalf of a group. With their steady composure, they are capable of stepping into chaos and helping others to make sense of it.

People with this strength are not afraid of confrontation. In fact they view it as a necessary part of a healthy process. I recently had a woman say to me ” I am very comfortable saying exactly what everybody wants to say… but won’t.”

People with this strength make great leaders and coaches because they push others to take risks and give them confidence. As powerful influencers, others are often compelled to follow their lead.

People with Command are courageous-they do what is needed, say what they mean and mean what they say.


People with the StrengthsFinder theme of Communication must express themselves and above all else they want to be understood. Some have a unique ability to effortlessly put their thoughts into words, while others choose to express themselves through art, personal style,  music or writing.

Oftentimes people with this strength communicate in a three-beat style. “First, I’m  going to say it to you this way. If you don’t understand me, not to worry because I’ll also tell it to you this way and let me say it just once more to make sure you got it.”

The strength of Communication is valuable on a team because these people are captivating and can easily hold the attention of others with the way they share their thoughts.Often they are not intimidated by presenting or being in front of a group.

People with Communication connect with the world through their unique form of expression.


Competition is a theme of strength that brings measurement to the table. Actually, we wish that this strength was called Comparison because it is indeed this notion of comparison that is ongoing and necessary for these people to feel motivated and accomplished.

The StrengthsFinder theme of Competition may or may not be concerning about winning, but undoubtedly comparison is a filter for many of their experiences. With this strength, people are constantly comparing and contrasting themselves against others in order to raise their own game. They want to know “ How am I doing? How are we doing? Who is around me that is doing it better and why?”

People with this strength are valuable on a team because they help others to see that measurement can be a catalyst for high performance, productivity and inspiration.

People with the strength of Competition need comparison to know where they stand.


People with the StrengthsFinder theme of Maximizer will not waste their time in the zone of average, but instead gain their energy from the relentless pursuit of the exceptional.  I once heard a woman say to me  “ I never settle. I am always looking for the best. The best degree, the best deal, the best job….even the best parking spot.”

On a team, these people inspire excellence and reveal the potential in others to achieve a level of success that simply did not exist before.

People with the strength of Maximizer have a knack for refining that which is already excellent.


People with the StrengthsFinder theme of Self-Assurance are confident in their own abilities, judgments and decisions. They are composed and demonstrate incredible resilience in challenging situations.

In fact, people with Self-Assurance often step into challenging situations because they believe they can have an impact and know exactly the course of action to follow. Think of Self-Assurance as someone having a deep rudder and big sail- this allows them to easily navigate those heavy winds of change and chaos.

People with Self-Assurance are valuable on a team because they infuse their own brand of confidence in others by encouraging them to be bold and take risks.

People with Self Assurance believe in their own abilities, and inspire others to do the same.


People with the StrengthsFinder theme of Significance want their efforts to be seen as important in the eyes of others and choose to be involved in lasting, meaningful work. They purposefully surround themselves with great people who are committed to great things.

People with Significance make specific choices around career, education and life experiences that underscore their need to make a marked difference in the world around them and to leave a legacy. They are calculated and precise with their choice to commit wholeheartedly. People with this strength will say “ I just won’t do it if it doesn’t matter.”

So pay attention to what it is that matters for this person with this strength as it will give you many points of understanding. For example, if a person with Significance disengages from the group, it may be time to re-evaluate the purpose or path.

People with Significance have a strong desire to live their life so that it makes a difference.


Woo is a social intelligence theme of strength that stands for Winning Others Over. But it is much more than that. Some People with woo enjoy the challenge of meeting new people, making a connection and developing an instant rapport.

These kinds of spontaneous interactions give them energy, motivation and deep satisfaction. In fact, they may seek out opportunities to navigate a social environment and will easily pick up on social cues and elements in most situations. Often when people first explore this theme of strength, they imagine a social butterfly or someone who works the room-that notion that “a stranger is simply a person I haven’t met yet”.

However, not all woo is extroverted like this. I recall a recent conversation with a woman who told me that her woo is ‘on’ when she is organizing events. A kind of social integration. She knows who should be there, who should sit together and who needs to meet in order to make it successful. She calls it her instinct to weave all the pieces of the social fabric together and then she fades into the background.

People with the StrengthsFinder theme of WOO come alive when they have an opportunity to plug into and connect with the energy of other people.

Your Influencing Themes

Do any of your StrengthsFinder themes fall into the Influencing Domain of Strength? How do they help you sell your ideas inside and outside of your organization? If you do not have any of these themes, what ways do you influence those around you?