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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Criticism is misdirected
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...
Published on Nov. 20 2011 by J. Lebo

versus
12 of 16 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Who Set Light to the Platform?
Another "expert" on change management offers the following scenario:
If you were on a North Sea oil platform it is very unlikely that you'd jump 40 feet into the icy water just because someone said you should. If the platform were on fire, on the other hand, you'd probably jump without having to be told.
So, if you want to make a change management programme...
Published on May 18 2002


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Criticism is misdirected, Nov. 20 2011
By 
J. Lebo (Toronto, Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Leading Change (Hardcover)
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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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lead change... in the right direction. A Must Read for Change Agents., Feb. 19 2012
This review is from: Leading Change (Hardcover)
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
8. Anchor new approached in the culture

The book details each of the 8 steps in a way that creates tangible actions for any leader or change management consultant. The process provides a great road map so that others can get on board the change process. The book is an easy read, and makes a great deal of sense!

Charmaine Hammond
[...]
Author On Toby's Terms
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12 of 16 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Who Set Light to the Platform?, May 18 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Leading Change (Hardcover)
Another "expert" on change management offers the following scenario:
If you were on a North Sea oil platform it is very unlikely that you'd jump 40 feet into the icy water just because someone said you should. If the platform were on fire, on the other hand, you'd probably jump without having to be told.
So, if you want to make a change management programme successful, just frighten people by demonstrating that they have more to lose by staying put than they do if they "jump".
Sound familiar?
Isn't Kotter's recommendation to establish a sense of urgency by analyzing competition and identifying potential crises another version of the same strategy?
The problem is that we know that people under threat/stress become LESS flexible, LESS creative, LESS willing to take risks. In short, they are in the worst possible state to successfully implement a change management programme.
So what price the "burning platform" strategy - by any name you care to give it?
This is the sort of book that appeals to a certain type of executive because it allows them to blame everyone else when their change programme fails. Whast it doesn't tell them is that "command and control" management is the root cause of fiascos like BPR, "burning platforms" and the like.
With all due respect this is a blueprint for failure.
Definitely one to avoid like the plague.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended, April 24 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Leading Change (Hardcover)
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 the Remick book, "West Point: Jefferson: Character Leadership..." when you finish Kotter's "Leading Change".
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5.0 out of 5 stars A TOP GUN BOOK, March 5 2004
By 
This review is from: Leading Change (Hardcover)
If you match Peter M. Senge Fifth Dicipline together with this book, you have a very good idea how to upgraded management.
Keep reading !
Robert
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4.0 out of 5 stars How to lead change, Oct. 26 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: Leading Change (Hardcover)
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. When an organization hires and retains only those who have made the commitment to do their best regardless of the circumstances, then complacency is never a serious problem and the leader does not need to falsely impose a sense of urgency. I recommend this book, and suggest Optimal Thinking: How to be your best self is read along with it. We are integrating Optimal Thinking into our company (mission statement and culture) and moving away from the old paradigm of managers and employees to the new optimized paradigm of corporate optimizers.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Change and Change Again!, July 1 2003
By 
"tagreacca" (Modesto, CA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Leading Change (Hardcover)
John Kotter has been around for ever it seems and his work is still valuable to the field of leadership and change. The style is highly readable and held my interest as I slogged my way through three texts for a doctoral class in leadership. The topics are valuable and provide current insight into both successful efforts and organizational failures. I liked the work and plan to buy other works of his as a result.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Definative Book of Leadership and Change., June 8 2003
This review is from: Leading Change (Hardcover)
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. In fact, its title, "Leading Change," may be a misnomer. This book is about leading implementation and execution -- regardless of the type of initiative. Together with Ulrich, Zenger, and Smallwood's "Results-Based Leadership" and Fogg's "Implementing Your Strategic Plan," this is the best book ever written on leadership and implementation. In fact, as a strategy consultant, I find myself recommending this book to clients again and again. It is the book I wish I had written. Overall grade: A/A+.
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5.0 out of 5 stars How To Make Change Happen, April 15 2003
By 
Ryan V. Armasu "rarmasu" (Centennial, CO) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Leading Change (Hardcover)
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 . You need to remember the 8-step outline of the process and use the book as a reference when more detailed guidance is needed. I have succesfully used dr. Kotter recipe for change many times over in my career. Also, check out his articles in the Harvard Business Review with further details on the strategies of change as well as further insights into how to align others with your change vision.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Book is Better Than His Seminars, Dec 18 2002
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This review is from: Leading Change (Hardcover)
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 somewhat improvised. His "Book is Better Than His Seminars".
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Leading Change
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