UK Athletics performance director Dave Collins has warned athletes they risk losing their funding if they failed to meet expectations.
Collins himself was criticised for not being present at the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne where the four home countries under-performed.
He took the decision because his appointment gave him no influence in the selection and administration of the four home country sides competing, where national officials jealously guard their home patches.
However Collins, with half of his coaching staff present in Australia, constantly monitored the achievements and failures of the English, Northern Irish, Scottish and Welsh teams.
Collins, after just over a year in his post, is deter-mined UK Athletics will achieve the targets designated at future global championships.
And he has sent a strong message to those expecting to continue receiving lottery funding.
"I operate a system which focuses on producing podium and top eight places in World and Olympic Games," said Collins who, like many, was shocked by the embarrassing performances of British male sprinters at the Games.
"Athletes are completely aware of the consequences and the public can rest assured that any athlete who underperforms is under threat."
The tough-talking former Royal Marines officer insisted: "Athletes will not be permitted to operate in a comfort zone and we do not fund mediocrity.
"We now have a system that sets targets that need to be achieved by any athlete fortunate to be in receipt of public funding. We always debrief our athletes on their performance."
And it appears some of them are likely to hear some harsh home truths and possible exclusion from monetary benefits when attending their interviews.
Collins said: "There will be some who, at this debrief, must face the stark reality with regard to funding and their future performance."
But he believes the gold medal successes of notably Christine Ohuruogu in the 400 metres and Lisa Dobriskey over 1500m, plus some quality showings by several other up-and-coming athletes, does lend hope for the future.
"At the Commonwealth Games there were many promising performances and some notable steps forward by a number of young athletes," said Collins.
"However, there was a generally poor medal haul, indicative of the current weakness in our sport - together with several instances of significant and unacceptable under-performance.
"We are in the early stages of a complete rebuild. We know there is still a lot that needs to be done alongside changes that have already been made - changes that are already starting to take effect in some areas.
"Changing systems takes time, however. Consider other British sports such as swimming or cricket. Both have shown positive signs of recent growth after a relatively poor period.
"I hope that this clear statement of purpose - something I have already said and what I have been doing since I came into the job - will reassure those who have expressed concern.
"I also hope that this reassurance will enable the media to focus on our achievements as well as our failures.
"I would hate to think that those athletes whose hard work and commitment has achieved results are over-shadowed by the weaknesses of others."