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Performance leadership: managing for flexibility

John Wilkes (Director at Performance Leadership Ltd, Oxford, UK)
George Yip (Professor at China Europe International Business School, London, UK)
Kevin Simmons (Vice President at Capgemi Consulting, London, UK)

Journal of Business Strategy

ISSN: 0275-6668

Article publication date: 6 September 2011




Many multi‐business companies apply one performance management approach to all their businesses despite differing needs. This study proposes a flexible approach to managing performance that allows for variation across businesses and over time.


Based on a study of over 100 consulting projects in performance management and interviews at 15 major organisations.


The best way to simplify performance management is to recognize that it has been approached from the dimensions of people and process for years. The people dimension considers how to get the best out of people and the way they interact with each other. The process dimension is about formal mechanisms for executing strategy and tracking the more quantifiable aspects of performance.

Practical implications

An insightful framework to help companies develop the right kind of approach to managing performance.


Based on unique and extensive consulting experience and research data. Distinguishes between performance per se and the process of managing performance. A new framework that combines people and process dimension for selecting the right approach to managing performance.



Wilkes, J., Yip, G. and Simmons, K. (2011), "Performance leadership: managing for flexibility", Journal of Business Strategy, Vol. 32 No. 5, pp. 22-34.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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