the driving force

*the driving force (behind someone or something )

the person or a thing that motivates or directs someone or something. (*Typically: be ~; become ~; serve as~.) Making money is the driving force behind most businesses. Ambition is the driving force behind Tom. Love can also be the driving force.
See also: driving, force

the driving ˈforce (behind something)

the person or thing that makes something happen: She is the driving force behind this new road safety campaign.
See also: driving, force
References in classic literature ?
I think we may say the same of all the habits and aptitudes that we acquire in all of them there has been present throughout some instinctive activity, prompting at first rather inefficient movements, but supplying the driving force while more and more effective methods are being acquired.
Chair of Habitat for Humanity, Cannon Dr Shannon Ledbetter said: "Liza has been the driving force behind our charity for almost three years, leading us through some difficult challenges and forging strong relationships.
The Ali brothers were the driving force behind the Khilafat Movement, which was concerned with the fate of the Caliph in the Ottoman Empire, but got entwined with the merging mass-based struggle for Indian freedom from British rule, of which Gandhi was the driving force.
The move will see the company hiring up to 30 recruitment consultants and administrative staff during 2012 - tripling the size of the Driving Force workforce from 15 to 45.
The move will see Gap hiring up to 30 recruitment consultants and admin staff during 2012 - tripling the size of the Driving Force workforce from 15 to 45.
Summary: DUBAI - assessment for 2010, as part of the corporation's commitment to high performers and belief that they are the driving force behind enhancing a company's performance.
Mike was the driving force behind the proposal for the very first festival and has been the artistic and organisational linchpin ever since.
BARRY HAYLES has been the driving force behind many of Plymouth's good results in 2007, and his suspension this afternoon will hit Argyle hard.
The successful marriage of tradition with innovation has been the driving force behind BDC's success in assisting thousands of Canadian entrepreneurs for over 60 years.
Judy Wieder, the driving force behind editorial content and vision at LPI Media, left her position as corporate editorial director on March 22.
Of course, the driving force should be the accomplishment of the institution's medical goals, but real estate should be aligned to those goals.
If too much fresh water from the observed increase in sea-ice melting reduces the salinity (and thus the density) of this water, the volume of water that descends is reduced and so is the driving force.
It is now imperative for businesses to be able to navigate a vast labyrinth of multi-venue, multifaceted law," says Paul Smith, a partner at Eversheds and the driving force behind the Web guide.
Katie Maxwell of Aztec was the driving force behind this program.
The League initiated this pilot project, designed to provide inmates, their children and caregivers resources and support, and was the driving force behind the Louisiana Correctional Institute for Women's first "Families Rebuilding Families" Conference.