Work Traits


A motivation for use is especially helpful in startups, where there’s limited time and resources available.
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What does a motivation for 'use' mean?

Being motivated for 'use' means you’ve been known to rub your hands together and say, “Let’s get into it.” That’s because your high motivation for use means you prefer to jump into a project—even if you haven’t planned how to do it.

You have a strong preference for getting straight into action. You trust yourself to figure out resources as needed and make use of whatever is immediately available to you. 

You gain your best understanding from experimenting and doing things, and you’re always quick to implement tips and insights from coaches, mentors, and other trusted advisors. On your team, you’re known for getting things done, but you can also struggle to delegate tasks—which can lead to bottlenecks.

We call it: Use

Your level of desire to just start, get into active ‘doing’ in new tasks and projects.

The difference between a thought and a decision is the immediate action you take.

Ed Mylett

Leaders who are motivated for use

Orville and Wilbur Wright

Orville and Wilbur Wright

The Wright brothers were relentless with their belief that humans could fly. “I am convinced that human flight is possible and practical,” Wilbur Wright told the Smithsonian Institution.

While their various aircrafts obviously required some planning, eventually they needed to put their ideas into action, take a leap of faith, and attempt flight. They were the very definition of having a high focus on use.

Their daring and dangerous pursuits of flight were ultimately successful, after building seven different aircraft that completed 2,200 gliding flights and 158 powered flights. They’re proof that sometimes you learn the most when you just take action and test your ideas.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (better known by her initials AOC), is a U.S. representative respected by many for her affinity for action—especially when it comes to addressing issues she’s most passionate about, such as immigration, equality, and the environment.

She’s vocal about her frustration with lifelong politicians, bureaucracy, and red tape, and believes many issues need to be acted on sooner rather than later. 

“We don’t have time to sit on our hands as our planet burns,” she’s said about climate change, proving she wants to roll up her sleeves and jump into action. Like many political figures, she’s polarizing. But, there’s no denying that she has a motivation for use.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
Illustration of an author known for a certain trait

Thor Heyerdahl

Norwegian adventurer and explorer, Thor Heyerdahl, had a theory that people from South America would have been able to reach Polynesia during pre-Columbian times.

He could have invested endless hours into researching, hypothesizing, documenting, and more. But instead, he decided to take action and learn through his experience. 

Despite the fact that Heyerdahl had no sailing experience (legends claim that he couldn’t even swim), he decided to make an actual voyage from Peru to Polynesia on a raft built only with tools and materials that would have been available to pre-Columbian South Americans. His expedition was successful, and he recorded his journey in the documentary Kon-Tiki, which won an Academy Award in 1950.

The benefits of use

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You’re quick to take action, which means you’re efficient, productive, and able to achieve results.

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You aren’t one to sit idly or wrestle over decisions. You make timely decisions and don’t cause unnecessary delays.

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Your ability to throw your weight behind your decisions without much debate makes you appear bold and inspiring to others.

The blind spots of use

illustration of a blind spot of a trait


Since you don’t invest much time in planning or details, you could appear impulsive and rash to your team members.

illustration of a blind spot of a trait


Your affinity to take action on your own means you can struggle to delegate tasks to other people.

illustration of a blind spot of a trait


Jumping into action without hashing out a strategy or securing resources can be somewhat risky.

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How to have a motivation for use

1) Let go of perfection.

Perfectionistic tendencies don’t mesh well with a motivation for use. If you want to prioritize action, you need to value progress over perfection. 

So, stop over-analyzing with pros and cons lists and other tools and just get started. Even if your first run at something isn’t polished, at least you’ve established a starting point you can work with.

2) Set deadlines and limits.

One way to push yourself into action is to set expectations from the outset. How much data or opinions will you allow yourself to solicit before making a decision? What’s your deadline for moving forward?

Determining these self-imposed restrictions will help force you into taking action, when you would otherwise deliberate endlessly.

3) Tune out the naysayers.

Jumping into action requires a high degree of trust in yourself—and that’s something that can be quickly sabotaged if you listen to critics and naysayers.

Tune out those criticisms and learn to trust yourself. You’ll feel that much more confident with experiential learning, without any external approval and encouragement.

4) Imagine worst-case scenarios.

This tip can seem discouraging on the surface, but it can actually be great motivation for stopping deliberating.

We have the tendency to make failure a do-or-die thing in our own minds, when in reality, it’s not that detrimental. Ask yourself, “What’s the worst that can happen if I test this out immediately?” The answer will likely surprise you, as well as encourage you to take action.

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