Leading from Your WHY: Knowledge and Utility


Leading from your Why? Knowledge and Utility

Our online self-assessment, called the 12 Driving Forces, measures your Why. Your results will tell you why you do what you do. It measures motivation (and strength) behind your behaviors, using 6 different motivators.

Those motivators are….

  •             Knowledge
  •             Utility
  •             Surroundings
  •             Others
  •             Power
  •             Methodologies


So let’s start with Knowledge. Have you ever noticed that some people, seek knowledge relevant and useful to their current situation and typically they want to apply that knowledge immediately. Where other people seek to expand their understanding and knowledge in everything. They literally want to know everything about everything. Those are the two continuums of Knowledge.

On one side of the Knowledge continuum is Instinctive. Instinctive people are driven by past experiences, intuition and seeking specific knowledge when necessary. And the other side of the knowledge continuum is Intellectual. Intellectual people are driven by opportunities to learn, acquire knowledge and to discover truth.


So let’s look a bit deeper at Instinctive individuals and how they view knowledge. They gather specific knowledge for specific situations. They’ll take the “try and apply”  to figure things out instead of doing extensive research.

The value these individuals bring to your team is that they are comfortable jumping into projects before needing to spend too much time researching. Instinctive people have a high level of intuition and tend to be experts in their fiel

Instinctive people can feel stressed when they are required to do extensive research before taking action or making decisions. Another stressor for  Instinctive individuals are people who come across as a “know-it-alls”

What can happen in extreme cases of people who are driven by knowledge in this way is that they miss facts and figures and make mistakes because they are missing valuable knowledge or information.

A key to interaction with someone with the Instinctive Driver is to focus on ways to quickly discover and apply specific information while integrating past experience as it applies to current situations.


So now let’s talk about the other end of the continuum of Knowledge and that is Intellectual people who are driven by opportunities to learn, acquire knowledge and the discovery of truth. Intellectual folks love continuous learning, they are great at problem-solving, they will dive in to research, and they have a tremendous appreciation of knowledge for the sake of knowledge.

The value these Intellectuals bring to your team is objectivity in all areas, they are the go to person for information, they can easily play the devil’s advocate, and they provide the voice of reason, and they can bring creative solutions to the team.

Intellectual people can feel stressed when they do not have the ability to learn something new, when there is an emotional or subjective argument with no rational justification that can feel very stressful for someone who is driven by knowledge in this way. And they can also get stressed by people who use intuition over facts.

What can happen in extreme cases of people who are driven by knowledge in this way is paralysis by analysis, they can get stuck. They can also focus on knowledge, leaving other priorities neglected, they can come across as know-it-alls, and they can’t act until all the information is known.

A key to interaction with someone with the Intellectual Driver is to engage them in a thought-provoking conversation focused on opportunities to learn and advance their understanding.


So now let’s talk about Utility. You are either Selfless or Resourceful so let’s talk about these two continuums.


Selfless individuals are driven by completing tasks for the sake of completion, with little expectation of personal return. They focus on accomplishing tasks just for the sake of accomplishment, these individual do things for the greater good and they focus on the process and the people more than the end result.

Their value to the team is that they value people for who they are versus what they can provide, they will not sacrifice quality and caring for utility and efficiency and they want satisfaction for others.

Stressors for Selfless people are being asked to make solely objective decisions, focusing solely on the return, vs. the people and another stressor is people that are unrealistic about time frames.

In extreme situations Selfless people can be taken advantage of, they can be seen as “wishy-washy” and they can be perceived as non-results-oriented, or even lacking ambition.

A key to interaction with someone with the Selfless driver is to provide freedom to complete a task list without focusing on parameters or deadlines.


And the other end of the continuum of Utility is Resourceful. Resourceful people are driven by practical results, maximizing both efficiency and returns for their investments of time, talent, energy and resources.

Resourceful individuals want a return on their investment, they can be extremely focused on productivity and efficiency as well as results. And Resourceful individual are all about achieving & exceeding goals.

The value they bring to your team is their creative application of resources, they are goal-driven, they focus on ROI, they identify areas of waste or inefficiency.

Stressors for the Resourcefully Driven person are wasted resources and inefficiency, putting time and energy in without results, people who waste time and can’t make decisions.

In extreme situations the Resourceful person can be a workaholic, their focus on results may cloud their judgement or even stress relationships and lastly the highly resourceful person can be seen as impatient and uncaring…ouch!

A key to interaction with someone with the Resourceful Driver is to demonstrate efficiency and practicality while emphasizing how a use of resources could conserve time and materials.

These are four of the drivers of leading from your Why. If you are wanting to grow professionally and understand your WHY, you need to take our 12 Driving Forces assessment. We are offering a 10% discount to anyone who reads this blog or listens to our podcast and reaches out to us take the assessment. Just mention you read or heard about it on the Help For Leaders Podcast/Blog to receive your discount when you contact us. You can fill our our contact form on our website, shoot us an email or pick up the phone and give us a call. We’d love to help you learn about your Why and how it can enhance your communication.

You can listen to our full podcast episode on this blog topic here or you can check us out on Youtube.