Security Awareness Blog

Book Review - John Kotter's "Leading Change"

I just finished reading John Kotter's amazing book Leading Change, a resource I absolutely recommend for anyone involved in the world of security awareness. John Kotter is one of the world's leading experts on culture change with over 30 years experience in this field and a graduate of both Harvard and MIT. His book takes you through a strategic eight step process on how to create change in organizations, with the last step ultimately resulting in change of culture. Just like Cialdini's book Influence, what I loved about Kotter's book is he brings real world stories to every step. Some key things I took away from the book include:

  • Change behaviors first, then culture.
  • True organizational change is measured in years, in some cases decades.
  • Creating a sense of urgency is the critical first step to change.
  • No single person can do it alone, you need the commitment of a guiding coalition.
  • How you communicate that change is critical.
  • The need for short term wins for long term change.
  • The need for both strong leadership and strong management.

While many of us may not have the strategic resources to do everything the book describes, it helps to better understand the issues and steps involved. What is so amazing for me is how this book brings all these pieces together in a simple to understand format.




Posted December 4, 2014 at 12:34 AM | Permalink | Reply

Cheryl Conley

Thanks for the great review. I just purchased based on your bullet "The need for both strong leadership and strong management"
I've always felt there was is difference in management and leadership.

Posted December 4, 2014 at 2:59 AM | Permalink | Reply


Then you will love this book, as it really discusses the different between management and leadership, and how they both apply to changing culture. Real eye opener for me