Porosity: Opening to Change

August 2016
By Annette Templeton, Director of Research, and Andrea Lipton, Director of Learning and Development

OVERVIEW

Porosity is a measure used in several fields, including metallurgy, earth sciences, and engineering. In some cases, it’s measuring the size of the pockets of physical space within a material; in others, it’s a measure of absorbency or of the ability for liquid to flow through a substance. The word porosity stems from the Greek word poros, which means “passage,” or how well something lets things through. This is why the Research Institute at Ferrazzi Greenlight chose porosity to refer to the measure of a person’s ability to open themselves to change intellectually and, more important, let it through so that it affects their behavior.

Traditional change management models use a measure similar to porosity when they assess people’s psychological readiness to change, but this activity does not consider the element that our work on the ground has proven critical to achieving the desired result of change and making it stick: people’s behavioral readiness to change their actions and habits so that they align with a company’s shifting go-to-market strategies.

Traditional change management models use a measure similar to Porosity when they assess people's psychological readiness to change, but this activity does not consider people's behavioral readiness to actually change their actions and habits.