Case Study:


via Mark Hutchison

Managing Director
I first found out about Performia from Linda Steele, a lovely business coach whose experience and opinion I respect. I had previously tried many different types of recruitment methodologies, technologies and numerous recruitment agencies with underwhelming results.

My business plateaued 10 years ago and I was unable to break through. I know now after reflection and understanding of what I know now, that the reason for the plateau was that I had the wrong recruitment strategy and also not holding the team accountable for their results.

I started working with Performia in September 2018. At the time the business was in a difficult position and we had a toxic team culture. In less than 18 months, the company has grown by 50%, with its position having improved significantly financially.

We have rebranded, launched a new brand and have become the number 1 brand in the marketplace. As a result of this we have been able to increase our Google ratings to over seventy 5-Star ratings.

We have done all of this with nearly the same number of staff, perhaps a couple more after having made changes to the team.

I had an intuitive feeling that there was something broken in multiple areas but couldn’t quite find the driver of the brokenness.

After completing some internal team evaluations, Performia was able to identify objectively, the driver behind a lot of the toxicity that was leading to a low results culture. Everything that Performia had said, made sense. 

I completed the Performia training one month after initial introductions. The training brought a level of importance to me to handle this part of myself. The lessons I learnt over 10 years of stagnant growth was that I had the wrong people for 10 years. I was set about changing that. We grew every single month since.

My confidence had increased and I felt that if I can achieve these results with the limited knowledge I have, imagine what I could achieve with more refining.

Performia was a recruitment coach and mentor to me. Lots of people give you systems and leave you with it. It’s clear that the Performia system requires analysis, evaluation and a significant amount of wisdom to make it work effectively.

If it was as simple as having a test where the computer would choose who you should hire, then every business owner would be doing it. You have to do the work and like anything, you will get good at an area that you invest your time in.

Consider a person who wants to be a professional – whether it is a professional athlete, basketball player, copywriter, dancer. Let’s say that they need to invest 10,000 hours to be a professional, but just because they did the 10,000 hours it doesn’t mean they will make the A Team or enter the Olympics.

But if you had a coach tweaking your performance you have a very high probability of success. Professional coaching is required on this platform.

Humans are not made out of the same mould and require a degree of nurturing. The Performia system is built around nurturing the client even when they fall down and scrape their knee.

The coach is not necessarily someone who measures you to run faster. They are there to genuinely encourage you to do better. While you might not become a hiring genius in the first 12 months, you are going to need the support far more in the beginning and become more like the coach later.

That is where Performia has differentiated itself. They don’t say they will do it all for you and they don’t say they will leave you with it. They have provided a healthy balance of challenge and support.

Currently I am hands-on with the hiring and developing the team. There are things you can impart that you have learnt over many years and things you cannot. Some knowledge is intrinsic within you and sometimes you know if something is going to work or not.

The hiring process also sets and uplifts the culture which is the job of the Managing Director and General Manager. I’ve seen companies grow big and fall over because hiring is handed over to people who don’t have the wisdom or vision of what the organisation should look like and feel like.

Setting culture is a very sensitive and intricate process and in the hands of an untrained person it is much more risky. If HR is highly trained and well skilled with the right training, and the people running the area are extraordinary people who genuinely understand the culture, they could bring the right people for consideration, but they might miss people who could be outstanding that don’t appear to meet the requirements.

Handling the recruitment function does take time and whilst I don’t enjoy admin, I do my best and I’m very confident. I measure results and have no fear in hiring people.

I’ve gained confidence in finding people who were better than the previous person. It is a constant process of gaining enough confidence of not taking prisoners when it comes to under-performance.

Staff will manipulate leaders if there is a lack of self-belief and low confidence in knowing how to hire.The process can require candidates to fill out questionnaires that could take 1-2 hours. You do ask a lot from people to do that but I find that good people are still applying.

My challenge as a medium size business owner is that I can’t afford to pay high salaries to attract candidates. I’m having to get people who are willing to work in a family business and still perform at their best. I am fishing from a difficult pool but being able to use a very specific criteria to differentiate between the many candidates.

The usual way would have been to search resumes and waste a lot of time as opposed to searching for specific things that the process identifies. The process allows a busy Managing Director to manage the hiring amongst other responsibilities.

About Lifewood

Integrity and honesty are the cornerstone of the Australian-owned Lifewood business.

Lifewood staff are handpicked by founder, Mark Hutchison, for their integrity, competency and customer focus. We have full time quality assurance staff in our production factories; our installers are accredited Lifewood installation technicians; we have our own delivery drivers; and a flooring engineer to maintain and monitor the longevity of the boards.

Everything is in-house. Lifewood staff are required to be fundamentally good people – it our job to enhance the lives of our customers. Customers will feel safe and reliant on our highly refined business systems, from helping you choose the flooring product right for you, to precision measuring, and smooth delivery and installation. All peace of mind, no surprises.

We offer exclusive and patented products, backed by Lifetime warranties. The Lifewood guarantees are not matched by anyone in the industry. In our revolutionary Stabilised Solid timber flooring, we offer an extensive range of colours, species, finishes, board sizes and installation methods.

You can visit our large, award-winning timber flooring Perth showroom with professional experts in flooring design and manufacture, who will guide you through easy decision making.

All our timbers are responsibly sourced, and we plant trees for every floor we sell. We design floorboards for the Australian climate and environment. Trust in your lifetime investment …. trust Lifewood.