Leading Change

Why Transformation Efforts Fail. by John P. Kotter

Editor’s Note: Guiding change may be the ultimate test of a leader—no business survives over the long term if it can’t reinvent itself. But, human nature being what it is, fundamental change is often resisted mightily by the people it most affects: those in the trenches of the business. Thus, leading change is both absolutely essential and incredibly difficult.

Perhaps nobody understands the anatomy of organizational change better than retired Harvard Business School professor John P. Kotter. This article, originally published in the spring of 1995, previewed Kotter’s 1996 book Leading Change. It outlines eight critical success factors—from establishing a sense of extraordinary ...

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