Once upon a time, a clan of meerkats lived in the Kalahari, a region in southern Africa. After years of easy growth, a drought has sharply reduced the clan’s resources, and deadly vulture attacks have increased. As things keep getting worse, the harmony of the clan is shattered. The executive team quarrels about possible solutions, or whether they need to change their systems at all. Suggestions from front-line workers face a soul-crushing response: “That’s not how we do it here!”
This book distills Kotter’s decades of experience and award-winning research to reveal why organizations rise and fall, and how they can rise again in the face of adversity.
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Praise for That’s Not How We Do It Here!
“This unique parable shows us how we’re safer in changing times when we innovate!”
Spencer Johnson, MD / Author, Who Moved My Cheese?
“A meerkat falling prey to the unexpected attack of a vulture doesn’t keep many leaders up at night. But the unanticipated assault of a new competitor, or a fundamental shift in the operating environment, can evoke an almost paralyzing fear in the most successful organizations. This simple parable of furry mammals facing the challenge of adapting to threat offers real insights into the journey so many of us must make. Brilliant!”
General Stanley McChrystal / author of Team of Teams and co-founder of the McChrystal Group
“John Kotter does it again. His use of metaphor in ‘That’s not How We Do It Here!’ helps readers distill down to the fundamental requirements for a high performing organization: tapping the hearts and minds of team members in service to a compelling purpose. Leadership enables this, and in doing so unlocks tremendous creativity and potential.”
Leigh Morgan / COO, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
“As rapid external changes are forcing the utility sector to adapt or fail, NB Power has embraced Kotter’s dual operating system to accelerate change that benefits our customers by igniting the energy and skills of employees company-wide. It works. And not just for meerkats.”
Gaëtan Thomas / President & CEO, New Brunswick Power