One of the authors that has had a real influence on my thinking about change and bringing change has been John Kotter. Beginning with Leading Change I’ve found myself returning over and over to his 8 stage process of creating healthy change. In fact, it’s rare that I’m in a consultation that doesn’t connect somehow with the need for change…healthy change.
Step one of the 8-Stage process is establishing a sense of urgency, a great challenge for many organizations due to a frequent lack of a shared appreciation for the need for change. How to move through this stage and on to stage 2 (creating the guiding coalition) is very often a deal breaker for many. No doubt that is at the heart of his newest book, A Sense of Urgency.
What’s happening in your organization? Is there the need for change? I found this statement in the introduction very compelling:
A big reason that a true sense of urgency is rare is that it’s not a natural state of affairs. It has to be created and re-created. In organizations that have survived for a significant period of time, complacency is more likely the norm. Even in organizations that are clearly experiencing serious problems, devastating problems, business-as-usual can survive (p. 16).
How has your organization made it through this stage? Or have you? I found very interesting Kotter’s statement that "the number-one problem they have (organizations that become stuck) is all about creating a sense of urgency — and that’s the first step in a series of actions needed to succeed in a changing world (p. 15).
Want to read along? You can order your copy RIGHT HERE.