Beyond succeeding as a performer, Rihanna’a star has blown up in the past few years with her Savage X lingerie line and Fenty beauty line. The main reason for her success can be attributed to maximizing her greatest strength on the balcony, which is just what successful leaders and CEO’s do. GallupⓇ has interviewed countless Forbes500 CEO’s and consistently discovered that there is no single CEO strength. The key to success is when leaders and CEO’s make the most of their strengths.


In Rihanna’s case, she is living out her IncluderⓇ to its fullest. Even on her website, she says in big bold print, “my vision for Savage X has always been inclusivity.” Through her art and businesses, she seeks to makes everyone feel welcome.



Includers rebel against exclusive groups because they make people feel left out. Rihanna has witnessed first-hand how the fashion and makeup industries cater to selective clientele and employ the same hundred models or so over and over again. Instead of perpetuating this exclusionary tradition, she has thrown out conventional practices in favor of inclusivity! Rihanna markets to everyone! She has gained many loyal customers by offering a plethora of lingerie sizes and makeup shades. She also includes clients in her process and casts fans from all walks of life in her fashion show, especially people that never thought they had a chance to model. This is incredibly empowering to Rihanna and her customers, and signals her IncluderⓇ on the balcony.


On the flipside, the IncluderⓇ basement also welcomes everyone, especially the people that perhaps should not be welcomed. For an IncluderⓇ, the worst day of their life is cutting someone out of their circle or firing someone. The need to make people feel welcome overrides the need to self-protect or create healthy boundaries. For years, we have seen this play out between Rihanna and Chris Brown. From club appearances together to Rihanna playing his music on promotional posts for her brand, Chris Brown’s physical assault on Rihanna and one-time restraining order has not kept them apart. Many of Rihanna’s fans are disappointed in her, but understanding an IncluderⓇ’s nature can help us empathize.


Innately, an IncluderⓇ would typically feel bad, possibly guilty, for excluding someone from different circles, this case being the public outcry to boycott Chris Brown after his assault of Rihanna. An IncluderⓇ, like Rihanna, may feel compelled to, just like she does with her business, push past people’s traditional exclusionary expectations in favor of including and valuing those who are ostracized, like Chris Brown. This sheds light on the ultimate IncluderⓇ paradox of valuing one circle over another circle. Does Rihanna alienate her circle of fans or her one-time, possibly sometime love, Chris Brown? And, in true IncluderⓇ fashion, Rihanna does her best to welcome both, her fans and Chris Brown.


An inclination to not exclude toxic people can play out in work relationships, too. I have witnessed one IncluderⓇ leader decline firing one employee caught stealing money from the organization and a second employee caught skipping work and drinking on the job. I’ve even seen a different IncluderⓇ leader keep an employee on after they defecated in a public office space! That can certainly make for a stinky IncluderⓇ basement!


So, if you are or know an Includer, support your/their need to welcome everyone. That is where they shine! But, if they need support in creating boundaries for very real reasons, know they will greatly need help because it goes against their nature. Instead of blasting the IncluderⓇ, like many of Rihanna’s fans, offer support. Pairing with DisciplineⓇ can be helpful in establishing healthy boundaries. Partnering with CommandⓇ can be helpful in pushing forward in tough circumstances. (Check out the CommandⓇ post on George Washington and Donald Trump for more info.)


If you are an IncluderⓇ, how has it made you successful? How do you manage the basement? Please share below.


Please know the National Domestic Violence Hotline can help victims and survivors of domestic violence. Call 1-800-799-7233 or visit Chat with an advocate immediately.


Clifton StrengthsFinder® is a registered trademark of Gallup, Inc. The non-Gallup information you are receiving has not been approved and is not sanctioned or endorsed by Gallup® in any way. Opinions, views, and interpretations of Clifton StrengthsFinder® are solely the beliefs of Stronger Not Harder.