HIGH5 Test VS CliftonStrengths Test: Systems Compared [2024]

Looking for a strengths test?

Both HIGH5 strengths test and CliftonStrengths are assessments that helped millions of people be at their best. So what sets them apart?


Clifton Strengths

What it measures


Talent themes

Time to complete

15 min

45 min

Development insights

What to watch out for

Career applications

Dedicated team report

Interpersonal analytics

360-degree peer review

Progress tracking

When comparing the CliftonStrengths system vs the HIGH5TEST system, we’re diving into a fascinating world of personality and strength assessment tools. Both systems have their unique approaches to helping individuals understand their core strengths and how to best apply them in their personal and professional lives.

In this article, we’ll look closely at each system, breaking down their methodologies, strengths, and potential applications. So, if you’re curious about how these two popular systems stack up against each other, keep reading to find your answers.

Tests Compared: The 20 Type vs. The 34 Type

When it comes to understanding personal strengths, both the CliftonStrengths and HIGH5TEST systems offer insightful approaches, but they do so in slightly different ways. Let’s break down how each system is structured and their main differences.

CliftonStrengths System: 34 Strength Themes

  • Structure: CliftonStrengths uses 34 distinct strength themes. These themes are unique and cover a broad range of personal abilities and traits.
  • Categorization: These 34 themes are further divided into four domains: Executing, Influencing, Relationship Building, and Strategic Thinking. Each domain encompasses specific strengths that relate to different aspects of personal and professional behavior.

HIGH5TEST System: 20 Strengths in 4 Domains

  • Structure: On the other hand, HIGH5TEST identifies 20 strengths, which are grouped into four domains. These strengths are developed to be universally applicable, ensuring they resonate with a wide range of individuals.
  • Categorization: Each of the four domains in the HIGH5TEST system contains five specific strengths. These domains and strengths are designed to reflect key areas of human behavior and capability.
  • Methodology: HIGH5TEST’s methodology combines a theoretical backbone for conceptual validity with a practical approach for real-life applicability. It involves identifying universal human strengths, translating them into practical strengths, and refining the model with big data.
  • Reliability and Accessibility: A unique aspect of HIGH5TEST is its commitment to reliability and validity by making the test freely accessible. This approach allows for a wide range of individuals to take the test, contributing to more precise and diverse data over time.


While CliftonStrengths offers a more granular view with 34 distinct themes, HIGH5TEST provides a more consolidated view with 20 strengths across four domains. Both systems have their unique way of categorizing and defining strengths, aiming to help individuals understand and leverage their personal traits for greater success and fulfillment.

Test Structures: Strengths Domains VS Strengths Domains

Let’s dive a bit deeper into how CliftonStrengths and HIGH5TEST organize their strengths. Understanding this will give us a clearer picture of what each system can tell us about ourselves.


CliftonStrengths is like a detailed map with 34 different landmarks. Each of these landmarks, or ‘strength themes’, represents a unique trait that someone might have. These traits are grouped into four major areas, sort of like neighborhoods on this map. Let’s take a look at these neighborhoods:

  • Executing: If you’re strong in this area, you’re the kind of person who gets things done. You’re practical, and you make things happen.
  • Influencing: Here, we’re talking about strengths that help you affect other people. If you’re strong in this area, you’re likely good at persuading and inspiring others.
  • Relationship Building: This is all about how well you connect with people. Strong relationship builders are great at creating strong bonds and teams.
  • Strategic Thinking: If you’re a strategic thinker, you’re good at looking at the big picture and figuring out the best way to go about things.


So, CliftonStrengths gives you a very detailed picture, showing you exactly where your strengths lie in these four key areas.


HIGH5TEST, on the other hand, is like a simpler guide. It focuses on 20 strengths, which are still plenty but a bit less overwhelming than 34.

These strengths are sorted into four domains as well, each containing five specific strengths. Think of these domains as categories that sum up certain types of strengths. They are:

  • Doing: Here, it’s about action – how you do things and get things done.
  • Thinking: This domain focuses on how you think, your creativity and problem-solving abilities.
  • Feeling: In this domain, it’s all about emotions and understanding how they drive you.
  • Motivating: Finally, this is the domain of motivation – what drives you to achieve your goals and why.


In HIGH5TEST, the idea is to give you a broad overview of where your strengths lie in these fundamental aspects of life. It’s more about understanding the big picture of your strengths rather than the finer details.

Both systems have their unique way of helping us understand ourselves. CliftonStrengths offers a more detailed, nuanced view, while HIGH5TEST provides a broader perspective.

Depending on what you’re looking for, either one could be really helpful. Have you ever thought about which kind of approach might suit you better?

How To Read the Results? Personal Strengths VS Personal Recommendations

Now let’s focus on what the results from the CliftonStrengths and HIGH5TEST systems can tell you about yourself. Both systems aim to help you understand your personal strengths, but they do so in slightly different ways.

CliftonStrengths identifies your top strengths from a list of 34 themes. Each theme describes a specific talent or trait. It’s like having a detailed list of ingredients that make up your personality.

The results give you a clear picture of where your natural talents lie. This can be super helpful in figuring out what kind of work or activities you might excel in.

The system also offers insights on how to apply these strengths in your daily life, both professionally and personally. It’s like getting a personalized guide on how to make the most of what you’re naturally good at.

The HIGH5TEST breaks down your strengths into 20 types, grouped into four domains. This approach is a bit broader and less detailed than CliftonStrengths, but it still gives a clear view of your strengths.

HIGH5TEST doesn’t just focus on what you’re good at; it also considers how these strengths play out in your interactions with others and how they align with your values and inner needs. It’s like getting a full picture of how your strengths fit into your life.

The test aims to empower you by highlighting your strengths and encouraging you to use them to achieve your full potential. It’s all about leveraging what you’re naturally good at in a way that benefits you and those around you.

In a nutshell, CliftonStrengths offers a detailed and nuanced look at your individual talents, helping you to understand and apply them effectively. On the other hand, HIGH5TEST provides a broader perspective, focusing on your overall strengths and how they contribute to your personal and professional life.

Both systems have their unique benefits, and understanding what they reveal can be a powerful step in your personal development journey.

How Many Strengths are in the HIGH5 Test?

There are 20 different strengths that HIGH5TEST will measure To provide more context, here’s information from a sample report that provides a detailed analysis of an individual’s strengths profile.

It categorizes strengths into four main areas:

  • Focus (Strengths 1-5): These are the individual’s most powerful strengths, crucial for success in both professional and personal life. Focusing on applying these strengths every day maximizes potential. Examples include Optimist, Analyst, Coach, Empathizer, and Brainstormer.
  • Leverage (Strengths 6-10): These are situational strengths, not as dominant as the top 5 but important as a support system. They include strengths like Philomath, Believer, Thinker, Strategist, and Problem Solver.
  • Navigate (Strengths 11-15): These strengths, such as Chameleon, Peace Keeper, Storyteller, Time Keeper, and Deliverer, might not come naturally to the individual. Learning to navigate situations that require these capabilities by leveraging the top 10 strengths is advised.
  • Delegate (Strengths 16-20): These are the least powerful strengths of the individual, like Catalyst, Focus Expert, Self-Believer, Commander, and Winner. They are not necessarily weaknesses but are less likely to bring outstanding results and are better delegated to others.


Each strength is accompanied by a detailed description, potential pitfalls if overused, actionable development ideas, and compatibility with other strengths.

The report highlights the importance of understanding how different strengths interact and the value of partnering with others whose strengths complement and balance one’s own.

What is the Difference Between StrengthsFinder and Cliftonstrengths?

When looking at StrengthsFinder and CliftonStrengths, it’s easy to wonder what sets these two apart. In reality, the difference is more about a change in name rather than a change in the core assessment itself.

Originally known as the Clifton StrengthsFinder, this assessment gained wide recognition and was featured in the well-known book “StrengthsFinder 2.0” along with other bestselling books. This tool has been widely used for personal and professional development, helping individuals to identify and play to their strengths.

In a move to refresh and rebrand, the name was changed to CliftonStrengths. Despite the new name, the assessment remains the same. The core purpose and methodology of the test haven’t changed; it still offers the same insightful evaluation of personal strengths through its 34 distinct themes.

How Accurate is the StrengthsFinder Test?

When discussing the accuracy of StrengthsFinder, now known as CliftonStrengths, it’s crucial to understand what sets it apart from other assessments and how its unique approach contributes to its accuracy.

At its core, StrengthsFinder is a psychometric tool. This means it’s not just any ordinary questionnaire; it’s a scientifically-developed assessment designed to accurately identify an individual’s talents.

The use of psychometric principles ensures that the results are not just random or based on surface-level observations but are deeply rooted in reliable psychological theory and research.

What makes StrengthsFinder stand out is its descriptive approach. Instead of just listing strengths, it delves into the behaviors that underlie an individual’s top five Themes of Strength. This approach provides a more nuanced and comprehensive understanding of how these strengths manifest in real-life scenarios.

By focusing on behaviors and how strengths are applied, the assessment avoids putting individuals into rigid categories. Instead, it serves as a platform for gaining new perspectives on one’s abilities and potential.

An interesting aspect of StrengthsFinder is that individuals don’t need to exhibit all the talents within a particular Theme for it to be identified as one of their top strengths.

This acknowledges the diversity and complexity of human talents and behaviors. It means that even if you strongly exhibit a few aspects of a Theme, it can still be recognized as a key strength.

This flexibility in the assessment allows for a more accurate representation of an individual’s unique talent mix, instead of forcing a one-size-fits-all approach.

Is the HIGH5 Test Free?

Yes, it is. This commitment to free access aligns with their mission to help as many people as possible discover and understand their unique strengths.

By taking the free test, you receive a report detailing your top five strengths and some insights into how you can leverage these strengths in your everyday life.

The availability of a free, comprehensive strengths assessment makes the HIGH5TEST an accessible tool for personal and professional development.

However, if you’re looking for more in-depth analysis and features, HIGH5 offers several paid options with additional benefits. Let’s break down these pricing structures to see what each one offers:

1. Full Strengths Report – $29/report
This option gives you a scientifically validated strengths test along with an extensive report. It’s like getting a detailed roadmap of what you’re naturally good at. You’ll see not only your top 5 strengths but also get insights into how to develop them, areas to watch out for, who your best partners might be, and how these strengths apply to your career.

There’s also a cool feature where you can collect one-time 360 feedback by inviting up to 10 friends and create up to 5 groups.

2. Full Report + Coaching Call – $69/report+call
This package includes everything from the Full Strengths Report plus a personal touch. You get a 30-minute call with a certified coach who will help you develop a personalized action plan based on your HIGH5 test results. This is great for those who want a bit more guidance on their journey.

By the end of the session, you’ll have clear actions identified to help you move towards your goals.

3. Full Platform Access – $96/year
For those who want to dive even deeper, this yearly subscription offers ongoing support and insights. It includes the Full Strengths Report, plus the ability to collect ongoing 360 feedback, and unlimited invites to friends.

You’ll get weekly insights on how to work best with others, unlimited analytics on group dynamics, and your unique contribution to any group. It’s like having a personal development toolkit at your disposal all year round.

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Download a team strengths activity (PDF)
Download a team strengths activity (PDF)