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BPI Portrait of Desired Behaviours- Design Details Phase

Blog: Biz-Performance, David Brown

BPI Portrait of Desired Behaviours- Design Details Phase


  • Comprehensive profile of the ‘new work behaviours required within specific areas of the     organization. This profile provides a focus for the development of the supporting human resource strategies at a local level, by highlighting the gaps between current work behaviours of employees and those behaviours expected in the future.

Client Value

  • This deliverable provides a clear focal point for discussions, at a project-team and work-group level, regarding management’s expectations of new behaviours, and how they will impact on specific individuals and organizational units. It also helps to clarify the degree of effort that will be required to facilitate lasting behavioural change.
  • The ‘Portrait of Desired Behaviours’ is one of the critical parameters for developing Performance Support and Recognition strategies (as these strategies need to reinforce the desired behaviours).


The deliverable needs to be developed in a highly participative fashion as its successful implementation requires a high level of commitment among affected employees.
  1. Review the proposed process, human resource and technological design solutions.
  2. Develop a workshop format. Aimed at:
    1. Clarification of the degree of individual and team responsibility for the performance of specific job roles.
    2. Identification of best practices, internally and externally, with respect to the performance of specific job roles. (Refer to Best Practice Comparisons deliverable.)
    3. Specification of critical behaviours per job role, including the expected conditions for their performance (e.g. location; degree of support/autonomy, availability of resources and time parameters).        
    4. Identification of which behaviours represent a different way of working from the current reality.
    5. Identification of redundant current behaviours.
    6. Generation of suggestions/ideas for facilitating the development of new behaviours and the ‘letting go’ of redundant behaviours.   
  3. Conduct a series of workshops which provide opportunities for free and open discussions of the difficulties of change and how the change process can be facilitated and, potentially accelerated. A representative sample of employees should be included in the workshops.
  4. Develop a succinct outline of the findings, specifically focusing on the gaps between current expected behaviour and future expected behaviour. Include recommendations for how the gaps can be     effectively closed. For example, use the Portrait of Desired Behaviours as the basis for a local Competency Needs Assessment and the Performance Support and Recognition deliverables, building upon the high-level assessment completed earlier in the BPI initiative.



  • People sometimes become very defensive while working on this deliverable. Reasons     for this include emotional identification with the past/current way of working, lack of ownership of the reasons for change and a concern that they will not be supported in the change process. Openly discuss these issues.
  • Even though some may feel that this exercise is unwarranted, clearly identify the ramifications of different behaviours, particularly the way they assist or hinder the achievement of Critical Success Factors.   

Tactics/Helpful Hints

  • Include a mix of long-standing employees and newcomers in the process. This will     help inject energy and a diversity of views.
  • Do not treat the past as a problem or past behaviours as necessarily dysfunctional. Instead, consider them as understandable realities. This takes the sting out of change, and helps people see the future for what it is a different business reality that requires different ways of behaving.
  • The Behavioural Model provides a useful structure for the development of this deliverable, and for reporting its findings to all levels within the organization.


  • Use people who have experience in behaviour identification and modelling. Occupational     psychologists, ‘learning-design’ professionals and organizational-development specialists frequently have such competencies.

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