How do you boost performance in your organisation? Do you use incentives to inspire people to perform better? Or perhaps you rely on performance reviews to provide feedback, maintain accountability, and set new targets.

Sure, all these can have their place, but they also have their limits. Incentives don’t inspire everyone, and they can create a culture where people only perform if you give them special treats. Performance reviews can sometimes be harsh or not effective at all.

There is nothing wrong with holding people accountable, providing feedback, or encouraging them to perform better. But using these methods to boost performance is a flawed way of thinking. It is like rearranging the chairs on the Titanic.

Here’s the problem. People often see performance and flexibility as goals. Leaders want to find ways to improve performance and make the organisation more flexible. After all, performance is part of the holy trinity – performance, productivity, profit.

But performance and flexibility should not be seen or treated as goals. They are an outcome of other things. What other things?

They are the outcome of the capacity to handle change well. If you improve how people deal with change, you will, at the same time, improve their performance and flexibility. Whether changes are happening or not.

Developing the capacity to handle change well is all about change fitness and change readiness.

So if your goal is to develop more change fitness and change readiness in your organisation, one of the outcomes you will get is improved performance and flexibility. Once you understand how this process works, you realise it cannot be any other way.

How we do that

The most common way to manage performance is by setting performance targets and monitoring progress over time. You recognise people’s efforts and achievements when they meet new targets and provide training or mentoring when they don’t meet them.

This system works, but it has a severe problem – it doesn’t target the areas that build performance and flexibility. It motivates people from the outside, but it doesn’t target things that increase the capacity for improved performance and flexibility. We need to build performance capacity, not only manage performance.

We take a different approach. We need to increase people’s ability to follow the success pattern. To do that, we must target two areas – the individual’s change fitness and the organisation’s change readiness.

Together, these three areas – the success pattern, change fitness, and change readiness – build the organisation’s capacity to perform well in all areas and maintain a flexible response to the environment. The way we help you get what you want is to work together on these three areas.

But before working on anything, we need to know where you are already performing well. What do you need to strengthen and extend? And what you need to improve?

We find this out by asking the right questions, doing some assessments, and thinking about the findings. Once completed, we will sit down and discuss with you what we have found out. We will make some recommendations about what to do to improve your performance and flexibility. Most of the time, this can happen remotely, via Zoom.

If you decide to move ahead, we will coach and mentor you in how to do it. Our approach is to help you learn how to improve things yourself. So, click the button below and start a conversation with us.

Steve Barlow
Author: Steve Barlow

Steve heads up The Change Gym. He is a change readiness specialist. You can contact him at