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Clifton StrengthsFinder vs Fingerprint for Success

People who use their strengths daily are six times more likely to be engaged on the job2. Employees are looking for fulfilling work with opportunities for professional and personal development1. Assessment tools that measure performance can help employees better understand their own strengths and their colleagues’ strengths. And teams that focus on strengths every day have a 12.5% greater productivity rate2.

You’ve probably heard of the Clifton StrengthsFinder (now called CliftonStrengths). Since 19993 over 29 million people have completed this performance-based assessment. In comparison, Fingerprint for Success (F4S) has been gaining popularity since 2016 as an alternate assessment tool with online coaching. Unicorn teams such as Canva use F4S to learn about team motivations to build a healthy, strong team and work culture.

Let’s break down each tool’s features to help you choose the best solution for your team, company or business success.

What is the Clifton StrengthsFinder?

Clifton StrengthsFinder is a performance-based assessment that millions of people and businesses use. It helps to identify your team's unique talents, strengths, and abilities.

The Gallup Organization assessment is based on the work of psychologist Donald Clifton—the father of strengths-based psychology. Clifton's work focused on the idea that individuals are more productive and satisfied when they focus on their strengths rather than trying to fix their weaknesses. He believed that everyone has natural talents they can develop into strengths. It would only take proper education, training, and experience.

After his death, Gallup rebranded the assessment to StrengthsFinder 2.0 in 2007.

Since then, students, professionals, executives, entrepreneurs, and organizations have used the tool to assess their natural talents. They develop their strengths to live their best life personally and professionally. Coaches, trainers, and consultants often use this tool with clients. The assessment provides insights and recommendations to improve engagement and performance.

What is Fingerprint for Success?

Fingerprint for Success (F4S) is a people analytics and online coaching platform. F4S helps you gain a deeper understanding of yourself and your coworkers. This improves your performance and productivity in your personal and professional life.

AI coach Marlee, a smiling owl, is hugging a woman who is grateful for coaching

Michelle Duval, the company founder, has spent more than two decades researching the world's most successful business builders and entrepreneurs. Duval found that attitude and motivation drove workplace wellness, fulfillment, and peak performance. F4S now measures 48 core motivations and attitudes that drive employees to perform at their best and enjoy their work.

Since then, F4S has helped organizations in more than 190 countries. F4S has improved team building and wellbeing, professional development, and leadership development.

F4S results become a career guidance tool for team members in high-growth companies, accelerators, venture capital firms, universities, and enterprises. Employees use the tool to find greater fulfillment in their work and lives.

The first step in your F4S journey is to complete the online evidence-based assessment. After completing the test, you will receive a report outlining your unique "fingerprint" across 48 core motivations. Your motivations influence your communication, work style, and leadership style in your personal and professional life.

So once you have your free comprehensive motivation assessment. Now what? 

Most people need help understanding how to strengthen their skills. Lucky for you, the goal of F4S is to make coaching accessible to all. Enter Coach Marlee, the AI-powered coach who is ready to help you level up.

What are the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment features?

Some features of Gallup's CliftonStrengths 34 include:

  • An online questionnaire that measures your innate strengths and abilities.
  • A customized report that identifies your top five strengths. It also suggests ways to improve your performance.
  • A list of actionable recommendations and tips for using your strengths to achieve personal and professional goals.
  • An online dashboard that allows you to explore your strengths and receive feedback.
  • A mobile app that lets you access your results. 

These features help you understand your strengths and make the most of them.

How does the Clifton StrengthsFinder work? Is it a personality test?

The Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment is not a personality test, but a performance-based assessment. It works by having you fill out an online questionnaire that assesses your talents and abilities.

The assessment includes questions about your preferences, attitudes, and behaviors. These determine your unique strengths. After submitting your answers, you will receive a personalized report. It provides recommendations to improve performance and satisfaction in various areas of life.

How to take the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment?

You can take the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment on the Gallup website. But first, you have to buy a single assessment or a package for multiple people. Afterward, you will be directed to an online questionnaire. After submitting your answers, you will receive a personalized report detailing your top five strengths and recommendations to improve performance and satisfaction in various areas of life.

Suppose you took the assessment through a book. You could take the test online and read the report and recommendations using your assessment access code from the book. Also, CliftonStrengthsfinder has different test options. You can visit the website or book a demo to find out the best purchasing options for your team. You get a unique, one-time-use code to take the assessment and access your results.

How to read your results

You can read the results of your Clifton StrengthsFinder in the personalized report you receive after completing the assessment.

The report will include a detailed analysis of your strengths, such as:

  • Your CilftonStrengths profile, or talent DNA, comprising your top five strengths or talent themes. These signature themes are the most prominent strengths in your report. They reflect your unique combination of talents and skills. They fall under these categories:
    - Relationship building.
    - Influencing.
    - Strategic thinking.
    - Executing.
  • Suggestions for developing and applying your strengths in your work and personal life. These also include strategies to overcome potential challenges.
  • An interactive dashboard that visually represents your strengths and allows you to explore them in more detail.

How long is the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment?

The Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment typically takes about 30 minutes to complete.

During the assessment, you will be presented with 177 pairs of statements and asked to select the one that best describes you. There is a 20-second time limit for the statement pairs, but you can turn off the assessment timer if you have a reading disability.

The assessment consists of a series of questions. These assess your tendencies, attitudes, and behavior patterns in different situations. The questions are designed to identify your natural strengths or the activities that come most naturally to you. They bring you the greatest sense of fulfillment and satisfaction.

The time it takes to complete the assessment can vary based on your reading speed. It also depends on how quickly you can respond to the questions. But on average, it takes about 30-40 minutes.

Is the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment accurate?

Yes, the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment is accurate, according to Gallup.

Clifton StrengthsFinder has received positive feedback from many individuals and organizations. However, it has also received some criticism. HBR reported that the strengths-based development approach gives people a false sense of competence at work4. Some critics also argue that Clifton StrengthsFinder does not provide enough depth or specific guidance for personal or professional development.

What will my Clifton StrengthsFinder results look like?

Your results will highlight your top five strengths. These dominant talents are most likely to lead to success and satisfaction in your personal and professional life. The report will also explain each of your top five strengths. This includes their definitions, examples of how they can be used in various situations, and potential blind spots.

How can I access my Clifton StrengthsFinder results?

The Clifton StrengthsFinder results are typically delivered online through a secure portal. After you complete the assessment, you’ll receive a unique link to access your results. You can view it on your computer or mobile device.

Sometimes, the Clifton StrengthsFinder report may also be delivered in print. If you’re taking the assessment as part of a program offered by an organization, such as an employer or school, they may provide you with a printed copy of your report.

Can you access the report ongoing?

Yes, you can typically access your Clifton StrengthsFinder results on an ongoing basis. After you complete the assessment and receive your results, you’ll be provided with a unique link to access the portal where your results are stored. You can use this link to view your results at any time on your computer or mobile device.

However, access to your results may depend on the specific provider or organization where you purchased the assessment. Some providers may offer unlimited access to your results, while others may limit the length of time.

Do your results change over time or remain fixed?

Gallup reports that your results should stay the same for more than a decade.

However, while this seems true, your Clifton StrengthsFinder results are a snapshot of your strengths at a specific time. They may change over the course of your life. Many factors, such as personal growth, changing circumstances, and new experiences, can influence the development and expression of your strengths. 

Also, your top five strengths will likely remain relatively stable over time. You may also develop new strengths or areas of growth as you gain new experiences and perspectives.

Is there any coaching offered with the report delivery?

Yes, many providers of the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment offer training and development programs for individuals and organizations.

The specific training and development offering may vary by provider. This may include webinars, workshops, coaching, and other resources. Some providers may also offer customized training programs. This will be designed specifically for individuals or organizations, based on their unique needs and goals.

Can I invite my employees or team to take the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment?

Yes, you can. If you’re interested in using the Clifton StrengthsFinder for your team, you can contact the provider of the assessment and purchase licenses for a specific number of assessments. Depending on the provider, you may also have the option to purchase customized training and development programs to accompany the assessments.

Several providers offer the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment, which can be accessed through various tools and services. Here are a few options:

  • Gallup's official website: You can purchase the assessment on Gallup's website and access it through the secure portal.
  • Talent assessment providers: Several third-party providers offer the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment. Some offer it as part of a larger suite of talent management tools and services. These providers offer online access and support for administering the assessment to groups of employees.
  • Coaches and consultants: Some coaches and consultants who specialize in talent development and management may also offer the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment as part of their services, either online or through in-person assessments.

Fingerprint for Success features

Fingerprint for Success includes features such as people analytics, AI and human coaching. It can also help employers screen potential employees and build a healthy, engaged team.

How long is the F4S assessment?

The F4S assessment consists of 40 questions with a completion time of 15-30 minutes. You must rank each question's statements (options) based on how they apply to you in the workplace, and there’s no time limit for each question. Also, you’re not required to answer all 40 questions at once. Your progress is saved on the platform for when you return.

Is the F4S assessment accurate?

Yes, the F4S assessment is accurate and has been scientifically validated.

After 15 years of qualitative research, Duval founded F4S in 2016. She also carried out a formal study in 2013 using the Inventory of Work Attitude and Motivation (iWAM) methodology. The research looked into the motivations of the world's most successful entrepreneurs and business builders. F4S is now using the findings of this research to help individuals, teams, and businesses discover what motivates them and how to improve their performance.

F4S uses a crazy-accurate people analytics tool that collects behavioral and cognitive data to help you understand how employees think, act, and communicate. The assessment is based on more than 20 years of dedicated research and boasts up to 98% reliability.

What will the F4S assessment report look like?

F4S dashboard shows what motivates you at work

The F4S assessment examines 48 distinct motivational traits and how they affect you personally and professionally. After completing the free assessment, you will receive the report immediately.

The report highlights your unique motivational "fingerprint"— your assets, potential growth areas, and suggestions for improving. You'll learn to identify team members who speak a common language with you—those with similar motivations—and how to use your power of difference to collaborate better with coworkers. Also, you can take the free assessment as often as you like to track your development over time.

F4S also offers personalized insights and free AI coaching to you and your team. Understanding yourself and your team is important. It helps you determine which strengths and growth opportunities to prioritize to achieve your objectives. AI Coach Marlee provides customized coaching programs. This will help you and your team overcome personal and collective blind spots. And maximize your natural talents and strengths.

You'll get helpful, data-driven insights into how you work in a team and information about your intrinsic motivations. These insights help you identify similarities and differences among your teammates to collaborate more effectively.

F4S also offers self-paced coaching recommendations. So you don't have to pay to immediately improve team performance. Start for free and help everyone get closer to their personal and business growth goals.

If your team needs more assistance than AI Coach Marlee offers, F4S will pair you with an expert, compassionate human coach to help you achieve your big goals.

How can I access my F4S assessment results?

You must first create a free F4S account before taking the assessment. Then you can begin taking the assessment and answering the questions. After that, you can access your results and goals via your dashboard.

When you're done, you'll get immediate insights into your motivations, which you can access via your dashboard.

Your personal F4S dashboard tracks your progress. You can take notes about your coaching experience. This allows you to reflect on your experience. You can return to your results by logging into your account. Also, you can access your results via the web and mobile, making F4S a user-friendly platform.

Thanks to F4S, everyone can benefit from coaching. AI-powered coach Marlee offers free personalized online coaching to help you improve your self-esteem, emotional intelligence, and goals. You can complete them at your leisure.

F4S tracks your goals land how much time you spend with coach Marlee to celebrate your success

You can also book a human coach to take your coaching journey even further, whether you're an individual or a group.

Feeling unmotivated?

Find out how to unlock your motivation.

Can I invite my employees or team to take the F4S assessment?

Sure, you most certainly can! Your personal F4S dashboard also includes a 'Teams' tab. You can learn more about your team. You can switch between different teams or set up a new team from scratch.

F4S team culture shows this team is tolerant and inclusive

Overall, you'll gain a deep understanding of how your team operates. You can see your team's distinct motivational footprint, points of similarity and shared distinguishing characteristics among team members. Any differences that may pose challenges will become clear through the overview of your team's culture.

If you work in a department that evaluates job candidates, you can use F4S to find the most suitable candidates. F4S has a helpful tool for ranking talent based on critical success factors. These additional features also help with hiring, job satisfaction, and retention:

  • People Analytics: Managers and leaders can better understand, motivate, prevent conflict, and communicate with team members.
  • Benchmarking: Leaders can identify team gaps that jeopardize business goals. You can also identify opportunities for growth to improve team performance.
  • Coaching: F4S AI and human coaching assists you and your team in developing new skills. You can also improve existing skills and relationships. This leads to better team performance.
  • Culture Mapping: This feature assists you in analyzing your team's work style and motivations. This provides an invaluable analysis of what drives behavior at each of your offices around the globe.
  • Coaching marketplace (launching soon!): The F4S coaching marketplace will leverage the power of AI to match you with the best human coach based on your results. F4S has had a lot of success with mentor-matching programs. This includes software giant SAP. The marketplace will build on this proven F4S model to ensure a successful match.

What does the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment cost?

The cost of the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment depends on several factors. This includes the provider you choose and the number of assessments you purchase. It also includes services or resources you may want to access along with your assessment.

Here are a few rough estimates to give you a sense of the cost range:

  • Gallup's official website: The Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment is typically priced at around US$59.99 for an individual assessment.
  • Talent assessment providers: The cost of the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment through a talent assessment provider can vary widely, depending on the provider and the services you receive along with your assessment.
  • Coaches and consultants: Some coaches and consultants who specialize in talent development and management may offer the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment as part of their services, often for several hundred dollars or more, depending on the level of support and expertise you receive.

What does Fingerprint for Success cost?

F4S costs $0 for individuals and small teams of up to five employees. Everyone has free access to the comprehensive evidence-based assessment. You can also access AI-powered coaching programs for free. Small teams can use all teaming features for free.

If you have more than five employees, you will pay only US$9.60 per user to access these features. You can schedule an F4S demo if you're interested in human coaching or more in-depth, tailored enterprise packages.

Clifton StrengthsFinder reviews

Before investing in Clifton StrengthsFinder, you should read what others say about it. Here are some reviews that you might find useful:

  • I think that the Clifton StrengthsFinder is definitely worth attempting. I found it to be very accurate in terms of my strengths and weaknesses, and it was also helpful in identifying areas I need to work on. Overall, I think it's a great tool for self-improvement and would recommend it to anyone looking to do the same.
  • I bought the Strengthfinder book secondhand, not knowing that a code in the back of the book is required to take the online assessment and can only be used once. I reached out to Gallup to at least give me a discount code to take the assessment without losing double the money. They don't offer any discounts.

Fingerprint for Success reviews

F4S has resulted in significant return on investment for teams. Below are reviews from some teams:

  • F4S is a central component of our people growth strategy at Canva. The tool empowers us to harness our unique culture and optimize performance as we scale. - Cliff Obrecht, Co-founder & COO, Canva
  • F4S allows you to analyze a person’s characteristics and natural fallbacks. All subjectivity is removed so we can focus on employees’ growth & foster an environment of inclusion, support, and belonging.- Lorraine Longato, Business Innovation Strategist, SAP
  • F4S has been crucial for our Baraja teams. We have a debrief every time a new team forms, or we have additions to existing teams. It gives us direction for team composition, hiring, and conflict resolution. There are so many “AHA” moments. - Reshmi Buthello, VP of People and Culture, Change Management Expert at Baraja
  • F4S is an indispensable tool in any team’s arsenal. It is my most highly utilized and recommended business management tool with easy-to-understand insights. - Heather Wilde, Strategic Innovation Officer, AFWERX

Read more case studies.

Clifton StrengthsFinder coaching jobs

Yes, Clifton StrengthsFinder offers coaching jobs. Especially for individuals who are trained and certified in their approach and methodology.

The roles may vary from full-time employment to freelance or contractor positions. They may include responsibilities such as:

  • Facilitating workshops,
  • Providing individual coaching sessions, and
  • Helping clients apply the insights from their strengths assessment to their personal and professional lives.

To become a Clifton StrengthsFinder coach, you may need to complete a Gallup training program. Or take one through another organization. You must also pass a certification exam to demonstrate your knowledge and mastery of the strengths approach. You can check the Gallup website or other resources for information on available coaching jobs. You’ll also see the requirements for becoming a certified Clifton StrengthsFinder coach.

F4S coaching jobs

Do you want to work with people, teams, and businesses worldwide to help them succeed? Consider a coaching position with F4S.

F4S welcomes new online coaches who want to learn and apply the F4S coaching method regularly. F4S is always looking for coaches. Especially those who have worked with meta-coaching, the International Coaching Federation, and related methodologies. However, if you have a background in wellness, you are welcome to apply. This includes nutrition, life coaching, or personal training. You can easily transfer your skills.

Working with F4S has numerous advantages. These include competitive pay, a learning and development stipend, and flexible PTO.

Are you ready to get started? Learn how to become an F4S coach or join the global community dedicated to ushering in a new era of personal development.

Bottom line: Clifton StrengthsFinder vs Fingerprint for Success

Clifton StrengthsFinder and Fingerprint for Success are both helpful performance-based assessment tools. They measure the presence of certain strengths and support professional and individual development.

Both help you to turn your talents into strengths and improve your company culture. They help employers assess suitable candidates during the recruitment process. They also spot characteristics in employees. They use this information to improve team performance. Both tools also help employees assess their natural talents and develop their strengths for their personal and professional lives. Overall, both tools boost employee engagement.

However, Clifton StrengthsFinder believes that your strengths remain stable. They stay the same for over a decade throughout your adult life. F4S, on the other hand, believes that your motivations can change over time with proper coaching. That means you can turn your blind spots into strengths and develop yourself if you commit to personal development.

Clifton StrengthsFinder 34 is also a one-time survey product. You only take the test once, unlike F4S, which allows you to take the test on an ongoing basis.

Also, F4S is accessible to everyone. You can sign up and take the test for free. You don’t have to rely on an authorized assessment provider. You have to pay US$59.99 to access Clifton StrengthsFinder.

F4S also offers free personalized coaching. For Clifton StrenghtsFinder, you have to pay to get coaching; the price depends on the provider. F4S provides self-paced AI coaching programs that work around your busy schedule. Every week, sessions last about 15 minutes and have a big impact. Your team can set a target to achieve their goals between 4-9 weeks.

Help your team make career progress and achieve business goals today with the free F4S assessment.


  1. Bernard Marr. (2022). The 5 Biggest Business Trends In 2023 Everyone Must Get Ready For Now. Available at: https://www.forbes.com/sites/bernardmarr/2022/10/03/the-5-biggest-business-trends-for-2023/?sh=651fe1344217
  2. Susan Sorenson. (Date unknown). How Employees' Strengths Make Your Company Stronger. Available at: https://www.gallup.com/workplace/231605/employees-strengths-company-stronger.aspx
  3. Gallup, The History of CliftonStrengths. Available at: https://www.gallup.com/cliftonstrengths/en/253754/history-cliftonstrengths.aspx
  4. Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic. (2016). Strengths-Based Coaching Can Actually Weaken You. Available at: https://hbr.org/2016/01/strengths-based-coaching-can-actually-weaken-you 

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