Completer Finisher

Objective   To correct mistakes and ensure that important details are not overlooked.


With an eye for detail and always striving to reach the highest possible standards, Completer Finishers are adept at areas of work which require careful follow-through, close concentration and a high degree of accuracy, such as proofreading or checking figures.

Within the team, Completer Finishers may be relied upon as “quality control”, catching mistakes – of omission or commission – which might otherwise threaten to spoil the end product or outcome. This can be especially important for work which falls between the responsibilities of two people or teams.

Motivated by an internal anxiety to get things right, Completer Finishers need little external impetus in their quest for perfection. Given their own high standards, they hold themselves accountable and are unlikely to hand work over to others, for fear that someone else may not bring the same care and attention to the task.

Potential weaknesses

Completer Finishers ‘finish’ in terms of adding polish to work, rather than finishing it off. Whilst they might be called in at the end of a task to apply a finish to the work, they may struggle to keep to deadlines, because they place more importance on getting something right than on getting it done in time.

The anxiety that drives the Completer Finisher can also work to their detriment, leading them to commit to an unmanageable workload and potentially letting the team down. Since the anxiety operates internally and may not be expressed, the team may not be aware until the last moment that a deadline is going to be missed. Equally, Completer Finishers expressing excessive worries may lower team morale.

Completer Finishers can pursue finer details to the point of fussiness or “splitting hairs”. Whilst these qualities might be useful at the end of a project, they are likely to prove an unwelcome distraction when the team is trying to determine an overall plan or direction. They might also be dismissive of others in the team for what they see as a more cavalier or sweeping approach.

Non-negotiable weaknesses

Whilst Completer Finishers may be admired for their perseverance in getting every little detail right, this tendency shouldn’t be allowed to spill over into obsessive behaviour.

Team Role compatibility

Completer Finishers are likely to work well for Resource Investigator, Shaper or Plant managers – each of whom may need help with handling details. A Completer Finisher manager leads by raising the standards of others in the team, but may struggle to manage an expedient Resource Investigator who values excitement and innovation over detail.

How to handle


Clarify priorities to help them manage workload. Allow them adequate time to complete work thoroughly and carefully.


Overload them with work or set unrealistic deadlines. Don’t make light of their anxiety about getting things right.

Optimum working environment

Completer Finishers work best in an environment conducive to concentration and where they are given adequate time to check things through.

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