Neil Webers

Motivated by keeping track of performance: Nike Fuelband as my new best friend

Last summer, I was pleasantly surprised with the gift of a Nike Fuelband. Ever since, this has been my new BFF. And it has increased my friendship with existing friends! How come? It offers me information, it offers me a goal, it offers me a communication tool.

What is it? It’s a gadget. Take a look here at what it is and what it does. To me, it’s a great motivation for putting in that little bit extra. Just take the stairs once more, clean up some stuff around the house, park the car 300m further away…

You can set your own goal and be your own motivator – make it challenging but not too challenging.

I know…, Nike should pay me for this type of enthousiastic appraisal of their product. Ever since I had it, I’ve enthousiasted at least 5 other people to go and buy one. And what happens after that, is actually another motivator! Now, social pressure or social motivation comes in. Cause you can challenge each other: how many points do you score a day? What’s your average goal and do you usually reach it? One of my friends started a Facebookgroup (called ‘1000 ways to reach your Fuelpoints’) in which we share what amounts to how many points: for example: Cooking for 7 people / 100 min / 975 points – or: Biking/25 min/6,5 kms/ 550 points – or: Hospital stairs (6th floor, 180 steps) up: 56 fuel – down: 48 fuel.

I think the Fuelband is the living proof of some Performance Behavior principles: how clear goals and continuous feedback on where you stand towards this goal can give you more information about clear behaviours that will lead to this goal. And how this knowledge itself and the continuous feedback motivate you to show more of these behaviours. And also how communication and even some competitive edge can drive you to higher achievements. It makes it more tangible, easier to talk about, and more fun!

Categories: Behaviour, performance Tags:

How are boardroom behaviour and organisational performance linked?

August 8th, 2013 No comments

Sir David Walker’s Review of Corporate Governance in UK banks and other financial industry entities was requested by the UK government as the vehicle to understand what prompted the financial crisis and how a repeat can be avoided in the future.

Crelos and partner the Tavistock Institute of Human Relations were among the main contributors to the Walker Review as expert psychologists, social scientists and organisational consultants working with and consulting to senior boards across industries. Drawing on our expertise, Sir David identifies a clear link between board behaviour deficiencies and poor business performance and suggests a series of reforms.

What is the impact beyond the financial sector?
Sir David’s review has repercussions beyond the financial sector. The FRC, custodian of the Combined Code, proposed revisions to the Code with a view to publishing a new version in May 2010. The revisions include a greater focus on board behaviours, new principles Read more…

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Does your behavioral style influence sales performance?

July 15th, 2013 No comments

Do groups or offices work better if there is an appropriate mix of individuals with different behavioral styles? What is a behavioral style in the first place?

Let’s answer the last question first. The focus of behavioral styles is not so much on personality, values, or beliefs, but on what you say or do. How you tend to act in response to problems, people, places, and procedures gives us a good idea of who you really are. One of
the most popular methods to measure behavioral style is the DISC model, which classifies individuals based on the four dimensions (see table) of Dynamic, Inspiring, Social, and Correct.


Should your office blend individuals with varying behavioral styles?

It seems obvious that an office staffed completely by high I’s would risk productivity unless output was measured by spoken words per minute. Given that individuals with high D characteristics are high risk takers, it makes sense that having a high C around would provide needed balance. In general, arranging work groups with complementary behavioral styles is thought to be more Read more…

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Feedback is hard to digest? People handle negative feedback poorly, especially the bosses.

One of the pillars in the Behaviour Management aspect of Performance Behaviour is of course continuous feedback. As we define and concrete goals and KPIs, we strive for continuous feedback on the current status on these KPIs on different levels in the organisations. At the same time, we want to treat behaviour as a KPI. Desired behaviours can thus be compared with current observed behaviours, and this gap can form the basis of feedback on all levels in the organization. Sounds pretty simple, right? But, then of course, we realize that behaviour and feedback on behaviour will always remain a ‘sticky subject’. Lately I was reminded of this when I read the summary of the dissertation of Jana Niemann who promoted on the topic. Her conclusion is that negative feedback regularly fails to improve performance, because people often react adversely when they receive negative feedback, that is, they experience negative emotions or they blame the feedback provider for the negative feedback. Also, she found that power, distrust, and u Read more…

Categories: Behaviour, Leadership Tags:

Performance interventions

June 2nd, 2013 No comments

Selecting the Best Interventions

Only after careful analysis of performance can the performance technologist take the second step in the HPT process: intervention selection, design, and implementation. This phase continues the systematic approach of HPT in order to identify and apply the most effective, efficient solutions and increase performance to the desired levels.

Is the cause of the performance problem a lack of information, resources, or motivation? Is it a problem for a few individuals, a department, or the entire organization? Is it an issue with a work process or the workplace environment? A comprehensive analysis will often reveal that opportunities for performance improvement are rarely confined to one realm of performance. As the various causes of performance problems are determined, the appropriate targets of performance interventions should all but reveal themselves.

Both Gilbert’s Behavior Engineering Model and Langdon’s Read more…

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Human behavior engineering model

May 20th, 2013 No comments

In 1978, Thomas Gilbert published Human Competence: Engineering Worthy Performance which described the Behavior Engineering Model (BEM) for performance analysis. This model consists of three Leisurely Theorems that:

  1. distinguish between accomplishment and behavior to define “worthy performance”,
  2. identify methods for determining the “potential for improving performance (PIP)” (Chyung, 2002, p.2), and
  3. describe six essential components of behavior that can be manipulated to effect performance (Gilbert, 1978, p.83).

Determine Worthy (Desired) Performance

The first step to using the BEM invloves identifying desired or “worthy” performance. This level of performance is characterized by behavior (B), or what a person does, and accomplishment (A), the outcomes of the behavior.

Effective solutions must address both of these factors of performance. For example, an intervention may change an individual’s behavior, but if the desired outcome or accomplishment does not result from that changed behavior, worthy performance Read more…

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Performance management – a manager’s biggest personal challenge

May 15th, 2013 No comments

Talking to people about their performance, behaviour or attendance is probably the most challenging task that a manager or supervisor has to complete.


The outcomes of these discussions will usually be about people:

  • having a clearer understanding of management’s expectations of them
  • better aligning their behaviour, attitudes, attendance and performance to the organisation’s needs and cultural expectations
  • developing better capability and knowledge to do their jobs
  • accepting that they are personally accountable for their actions Read more…
Categories: Behaviour, Leadership Tags:

Performance, behaviour and job demands

May 13th, 2013 No comments

Organisations are made up of people and people emit behaviour. Thus we take the view that business is behaviour. We think that you can see performance as the overlap between the actual behaviour that a person emits and the behaviours that the job demands.

performance and the adaptability gap

In other words, performance is driven by behaviour. This means that we need to adopt a behavioural approach if we are to have the best effect on performance.

Behavourial science

The evidence for the principles of Behavioural Science has been Read more…

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The impact of performance targets on behaviour

April 15th, 2013 No comments

At present, most organisations use performance targets for influencing the behaviour of their employees. The results these organisations obtain are not always the ones expected as there are critical issues associated with the use of performance targets. In particular

sales environments are currently experiencing great transformations (e.g. the complexity of sales roles is increasing, team selling is now a critical sales capability as well as relationship selling, and customers are becoming more and more demanding). Most of these transformations are not being reflected in the type of performance targets and rewards that managers use

to motivate their sales people. Most sales performance measurement and incentive systems still focus on the maximisation of product sales to meet short-term sales targets, and they assume that sales people Read more…

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Leadership Behaviour Impacts Performance

March 15th, 2013 No comments

High performance leadership teams understand that their collective and individual behaviour casts a positive or negative shadow across the entire organization. And since employees tend to take their cues on what is important and how to behave from their leaders, negative behaviour at the top creates negative behaviours far down into the organization, adversely impacting performance and productivity. Whether the leader- ship team is aware of it or not, their behaviour casts a powerful shadow far into their organization. And actions speak louder than words! People watch the behaviour of their leaders for clues as to what is accepted and what is not. When the leadership team says one thing and then behaves differently employees Read more…

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