Explaining Intuitive Agility With The Hartman Value Profile

Jay Morris shares with us how Intuitive Agility (IA) enables leaders to mentally step out of a chaotic situation to engage their intuitive competence and confidence in order to achieve extraordinary results. It is knowing something without conscious reasoning. 

This approach to work emerged while using the Hartman Value Profile (HVP), an assessment tool that looks at leadership judgment. My first introduction to the tool occurred during my initial interviewing process at Yale New Haven Health in 2008 when I applied for the position of vice president of talent development and succession management. The HVP was developed by Dr. Robert S. Hartman, who pioneered the field of formal axiology, the study of values and judgment. Dr. Hartman was nominated for a Nobel Prize in 1972 and was a close colleague of Dr. Abraham Maslow. 

Intuitive Agility is the total integration of the body, mind, and soul. This integration is critical in leading through dangerous and ambiguous situations. It requires that leaders recognize their intuitive competency to lead themselves and others effectively. This concept has broadened over the past twelve years while collaborating with Dr. C. Stephen Byrum, a student of Dr. Hartman at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Another colleague, Holly Hughson, CEO at H2Consult, based in the United Kingdom, coined Intuitive Adaptation, which I connected to Dr. Hartman’s work.

The HVP is divided into two parts, which are the work-side and the self-side. The work-side refers to how we behave when working. The self-side refers to our personal life outside of work. Each part includes intrinsic, extrinsic, and systemic dimensions. On the work-side, the intrinsic dimension addresses people, the extrinsic dimension addresses tasks, and the systemic dimension addresses the strategic. On the self-side, the intrinsic dimension addresses talents and gifts, the extrinsic dimension addresses titles and roles, and the systemic dimension addresses external distractions. 

Most leaders and organizations focus primarily on work-side dimensions taught in school and reinforced in performance metrics. When leaders can align people, tasks, and strategy, organizations are positioned to get short term results. However, the work-side dimensions alone are not sustainable if not properly aligned with the self-side dimension. 

Unfortunately, most leaders are not formally trained to lead, nor are they taught how to apply interpersonal skills. Intuitive Agility integrates the intrinsic, extrinsic, and systemic dimensions on both the work-side and self-side dimensions, thus enabling the intuitive capabilities to develop and thrive. Western culture tends to focus primarily on the cognitive and physical attributes, with minimal attention on the intuitive. Individuals who are able to apply their intuitive skills intentionally are at a distinct advantage over their peers because they are applying their body, mind, and soul. The HVP provides a profile for leaders to see their intuitive agility competencies and create personal development plans to grow and enhance Intuitive Agility.

Intuitive Agility enables intuition to actively reside in the workplace while operationalizing intuition and recognizing that in a world where things are moving at warp speed. The body and mind alone will not allow organizations to rise to the level where technology is heading. God forbid when the day comes when we are totally dependent on machines to dictate our way of life, allowing the design to govern the designer. Intuitive Agility is a way to free the intuitive skills to operate in the same way that would enable our bodies and minds to operate in the physical world. When this happens, leaders are able to access information that is beyond the rational mindset. Think about it. Have you ever had a hunch or an idea, but you trusted it and the situation worked out, sometimes beyond your wildest expectations? That was not an accident. Doctors and nurses have often shared experiences with me in which their gut instinct deviated from the outcomes predicted by research and data, and the situation resulted in better than expected results. Years of experience and observation store factual information that resides in the brain, which is accessible to the intuitive, but unfortunately, it is not found in spreadsheets or financial updates. This is the heart of Intuitive Agility. It is recognizing there will be times when the mind cannot accurately comprehend a situation and another resource is needed.

Intuitive Agility is the actual demonstration of intuition amid chaos. The HVP is a tool that enables individuals to identify intuitive behaviors needed to develop intuition, such as areas of self-care, value of work, self-worth, self-criticism, personal values, assertiveness, and stress. Individuals who focus exclusively on work-side activities eventually risk their health and success. Over the past twelve years, I have found that only about 8% of leaders understand and take the time to learn how to live and enjoy life. Many leaders realize this when it is often too late in life.

Intuitive Agility recognizes that leaders need an intentional, meaningful, balanced approach to their work and personal life to effectively lead others and themselves through the chaos and challenging times. The HVP, when taken seriously, is a tool that enables leaders to develop their leadership and Intuitive Agility competence. IA not only creates personal balance but also aims to build a deeper connection with others. For many leaders, this is out of bounds thinking, given that many leaders are told to leave their personal lives out of work, which is near impossible. The vital key to this shift is not the brain but the heart. Intuitive Agility is a vital key to bringing innovation, joy, and productivity back into the workplace.

By Jay Morris, PhD., VP Education & Executive Director, Yale New Haven Health

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