Top critical review
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on October 24, 2010
I am saddened that Kotter would participate or endorse such a book, much less allow himself to show up as a co-author. Despite claiming the opposite, the book takes an antagonistic view to defeat and discredit those who one should seek to win over with buy in; it presents arguments to win a debate in the eyes of judges, not to win over those with concerns. Buy in should seek first to understand where those with reservations are coming from; not put them into sterotypes to be cut up. It claims to treat "naysayers" with respect, but the very sterotyping starts out in the wrong direction.
The book claims to show respect for the attackers. Calling them names; e.g. sterotyping those who are fearful themselves as "attackers", "fear mongerers" and "pompus meanies" hardly shows them respect. The responses to their points do not seem to be directed to bring them around, but rather to get others to side with you instead of with them. It presents a you vs. them approach. It should take an "us" approach.
The three principles are fine; i.e.
1. capture attention,
2. winning their minds
3. winning their hearts
Unfortunately, the book doesn't try to do that with the "attackers". It seems to me to seek to vanquish them with fancy footwork.
There are some good points about communication in the Appendix, but I can't recommend it to anyone on the strength of that alone.