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Leading Change [Hardcover]

John P. Kotter
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)

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Hardcover, Sept. 1 1996 --  
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Book Description

Sept. 1 1996
John Kotter’s now-legendary eight-step process for managing change with positive results has become the foundation for leaders and organizations across the globe. By outlining the process every organization must go through to achieve its goals, and by identifying where and how even top performers derail during the change process, Kotter provides a practical resource for leaders and managers charged with making change initiatives work.

Needed more today than at any time in the past, this immensely relevant bestselling business book serves as both visionary guide and practical toolkit on how to approach the difficult yet crucial work of leading change in any type of organization. Reading this highly personal book is like spending a day with the world’s foremost expert on business leadership. You’re sure to walk away inspired—and armed with the tools you need to inspire others.

Published by Harvard Business Review Press.

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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Harvard Business School professor Kotter (A Force for Change) breaks from the mold of M.B.A. jargon-filled texts to produce a truly accessible, clear and visionary guide to the business world's buzzword for the late '90s?change. In this excellent business manual, Kotter emphasizes a comprehensive eight-step framework that can be followed by executives at all levels. Kotter advises those who would implement change to foster a sense of urgency within the organization. "A higher rate of urgency does not imply everpresent panic, anxiety, or fear. It means a state in which complacency is virtually absent." Twenty-first century business change must overcome overmanaged and underled cultures. "Because management deals mostly with the status quo and leadership deals mostly with change, in the next century we are going to have to try to become much more skilled at creating leaders." Kotter also identifies pitfalls to be avoided, like "big egos and snakes" or personalities that can undermine a successful change effort. Kotter convincingly argues for the promotion and recognition of teams rather than individuals. He aptly concludes with an emphasis on lifelong learning. "In an ever changing world, you never learn it all, even if you keep growing into your '90s." Leading Change is a useful tool for everyone from business students preparing to enter the work force to middle and senior executives faced with the widespread transformation in the corporate world. 60,000 first printing; $100,000 ad/promo; dual main selection of the Newbridge Book Club Executive Program; 20-city radio satellite tour.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

After trying an endless array of quick fixes and other panaceas, executives struggling to stay in business in a rapidly changing world are finding it necessary to consider more fundamental reasons for their lack of success. Kotter (The New Rules: A Force for Change, Free Pr., 1995) now offers a practical approach to an organized means of leading, not managing, change. He presents an eight-stage process of change with highly useful examples that show how to go about implementing it. Based on experience with numerous companies, his sound advice gets directly at reasons that organizations fail to change, reasons that concern primarily the leader. This is a solid, substantive work that goes beyond the cliches and the consultant-of-the-month's express down yet another dead-end street. With its clear demonstration of the hard work necessary to lead change, this important work stands with Michael Hammer's latest, Beyond Reengineering (see review above). Highly recommended.?Dale F. Farris, Groves, Tex.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
BY ANY OBJECTIVE MEASURE, THE amount of significant, often traumatic, change in organizations has grown tremendously over the past two decades. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Criticism is misdirected Nov. 20 2011
By J. Lebo
The comments that rate this book poorly are missing the point. Fear, threats, etc. are not part of Kotter's method. He provides guidelines; it's up to you to adapt them to your specific purpose. The harsh critics lack the creativity to apply Kotter's general tactics to their specific situations.

This book is taught at the best business schools because it works. I use it all the time because it works. Ignore the out-of-context babble about burning platforms and just read the book. It is effective, common-sense stuff, applicable to EVERY change initiative.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Small businesses, entrepreneurs and authors can learn a lot about why some changes just don't work for them. Author John P. Kotter is a change management expert, and his book Leading Change offers some great insights that can help any business move through change with more ease. First we need to understand what gets in the way of an effective change process:

Kotter says that businesses fail with their change processes because:

- They allow too much complacency

- They fail to create a powerful and effective change guiding coalition

- They underestimate the power of vision

- They under communicate the vision- communication is actions and words

- Permitting obstacles to block the new vision

- Failing to create short term wins

For businesses, authors and entrepreneurs, it is important we don't become complacent in our work, always endeavor to be innovative, and passionate. It is the passion and innovation that helps you solve business challenges, and that people remember you for. Ensure that you have a vision, know how powerful a vision is and communicate it, and communicate it some more. Don't let obstacles or shiny objects get in the way or your plans and vision. Always find the short term "win wins", they fuel the next step in the journey. Also, bring people along with you! These indivduals become champions for you, your business and your vision.

Kotter also talks about the 8 step process to effectively lead change:
1. Establish sense of urgency
2. Create the guiding coalition
3. Develop vision and a strategy
4. Communicate the change vision
5. Empower employees for broad based action
6. Generate short win wins
7. Consolidate gains and produce more change
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5.0 out of 5 stars Eight-stage process for transformation programs Aug. 17 2002
John P. Kotter is Professor of Leadership at the Harvard Business School. He has written several books and articles on general management and leadership issues. This particular book builds on his 1995 Harvard Business Review-article 'Leading Change: Why Transformation Efforts Fail'.
The book is split up into three parts. In the first part - The Change Problem and Its Solution - Kotter discusses the eight main reasons why in many situations the improvements have been disappointing, with wasted resources and burned-out, scared, or frustrated employees. Each of these eight errors are discussed in detail, using simple, clear examples. "Making any of the eight errors in common to transformation efforts can have serious consequences." But Kotter argues that these errors are not inevitable. And this is why Kotter has written this book. "The key lies in understanding why organizations resist needed change, what exactly is the multistage process that can overcome destructive inertia, and, most of all, how the leadership that is required to drive that process in a socially healthy way means more than good management." In Chapter 2, Kotter discusses the reasons why organizations (can) need changes and improvements. Although some people suggest otherwise, Kotter believes that organizations can implement change successfully. "The methods used in successful transformations are all based on one fundamental insight: that major change will not happen easily for a long list of reasons." Kotter introduces an eight-stage process for creating major change.
This eight-stage process is discussed in Part Two of this book:
(1) The first stage of the process involves the establishment of a sense of urgency, which is required to overcome complacency.
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3.0 out of 5 stars CHANGE - EASIER SAID THAN DONE! July 19 2001
Whether in business or on a personal level, nothing puts people on edge more than change, whether it be for the better or worse. Change means taking an individual(s) out of their secure environment and imposing a new set of rules, disciplines or policies that are unknown to them. Generally, people fear most what they do not understand, that which is new and set apart from the normal routine of things. Implementing change in the workplace, particularly if you are a large corporation, can have a dramatic impact on employees, productivity and motivation.
In this book, the author points out the most common mistakes in effecting change and offers eight steps to overcoming the barriers to change. While the book is well-worth reading, the reader should be made aware that the author does not tell you what specific changes need to be made. Much of the information here is not new and can be found in a variety of other similar books, reports and reviews and for that reason the star rating of the book dropped significantly.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Leading change
Kotter is very famous in managing change. He's also got a consultancy firm that specializes in managing organizational change. Read more
Published on Dec 22 2010 by HR
4.0 out of 5 stars Well done
"Leading Change provides great insight that will help any organization/leader in the quest for sustained change in the workplace. Read more
Published on Dec 17 2008 by Domenic Paolucci
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended
One of the great books on self help practical leadership that has come out in recent years. You can complete your philosophical knowledge on leadership of character by going on to... Read more
Published on April 24 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars A TOP GUN BOOK
If you match Peter M. Senge Fifth Dicipline together with this book, you have a very good idea how to upgraded management.
Keep reading !
Published on March 5 2004 by Robert Laflamme Promaintech inc.
4.0 out of 5 stars How to lead change
Kotter's eight-step formula for leading change provides some practical and valuable strategies, but it does not get to the core of the problem. Read more
Published on Oct. 26 2003
4.0 out of 5 stars Change and Change Again!
John Kotter has been around for ever it seems and his work is still valuable to the field of leadership and change. Read more
Published on July 1 2003 by "tagreacca"
5.0 out of 5 stars The Definative Book of Leadership and Change.
I have to question the seriousness of any manager who hasn't read this pivotal book. It has established itself as the definative book on leadership and change. Read more
Published on June 7 2003 by Robert G. Barnwell
5.0 out of 5 stars How To Make Change Happen
This is the best book I've read dealing with how to lead a major change project. Abundant in useful information, concise, complete and logical, it really is a gem of a book . Read more
Published on April 14 2003 by Ryan V. Armasu
4.0 out of 5 stars Book is Better Than His Seminars
A must and easy read for anyone looking for a step by step way to lead change in any organization. Great book but I was dissapointed on his seminars which are very boring and... Read more
Published on Dec 18 2002 by Eduardo Dominguez
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent resource or organizational change
I goofed. I submitted a large proposal for a new product to my superiors before reading this book. It was shot down, and now that I've read Leading Change, I know why. Read more
Published on Aug. 26 2002 by PJY
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