The Success Factor Modeling ‘SFM’ process is an unique approach to competency building originated and
developed by Dilts Strategy Group. The SFM process is designed to identify and apply the critical success factors
necessary to promote growth and development of emerging growth technology companies
The SFM process was conceived and based upon a set of principles and characteristics which are uniquely suited
to analyze and identify crucial patterns of values, behavior and interrelationships at the root of successful individuals,
teams and companies. These patterns are then transferred to new companies, increasing their chances for similar
success. Drawing primarily from the behavioral science of Neuro-Linguistic Programming, the SFM process is
founded upon a set of fundamental linguistic, cognitive and behavioral patterns and distinctions. The primary
approach of the SFM process has been to model effective and successful behaviors and the cognitive strategies
that drive them. The results of this analysis are then formalized into step-by-step procedures or techniques that may
be utilized to transfer successful skills and characteristics to other people and areas of application.
Perhaps the most important aspect of the SFM process is its emphasis on practicality. The SFM process
emphasizes interactive, experiential learning contexts so that the principles and procedures may be readily
perceived and understood. Furthermore, since SFM processes are drawn from effective human models, their value
and underlying structures are often intuitively recognized by people with little or no previous experience. With the
tools of the SFM process, it is possible to define and explore some specific models, principles and skills that will
allow entrepreneurs to be more successful leaders and managers. One of the strengths of the SFM process is in the
area of skill development and the creation of tools and techniques which support specific successful outcomes and
abilities. Dilts Strategy Group has applied the SFM process to identify the critical success factors employed by
successful entrepreneurs and emerging growth companies so that other companies may learn these strategies in
order to facilitate the same level of success.
In summary, the SFM process provides a system of knowledge and values, a methodology for applying knowledge
and values and tools to aid in the application of the knowledge and values that will help companies grow and
Training programs developed by the members of the Dilts Strategy Group involving the tools and distinctions at the
basis of the SFM process have been implemented in many major corporations and organizations throughout the
world including Fiat, IBM, Hewlett Packard, World Bank, American Express, The US Army, The State Railway
of Italy, Apple Computer, Xerox, Merrill Lynch, Mercedes Benz, BMW, and many others.
For instance, the methods and tools used by the SFM process have been applied to modeling and developing
leadership skills at Fiat Corporation in Italy. The results of this research is the basis for the books Visionary
Leadership Skills (Dilts, 1996) and Modeling With NLP (Dilts, 1998).
Similarly, at IBM, the SFM process was effectively used to create a program for applied systemic thinking skills for
the European Management Development Group. The SFM process was also successfully implemented at the State
Railway of Italy to create an extensive trainer education program.
In addition, SFM process was applied to create the design of ‘Tools for Living’, the behavior management portion
of the program currently used by Weight Watcher’s International.