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A Sense of Urgency Hardcover – August 5, 2008
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Top Customer Reviews
Every organization needs to change, that is commonly understood and the subject of endless books, including those by John Kotter. We have become complacent in our approaches to change management as every one of those books deals with change as a process, an event something that happens and then happens again at a latter date. This gives executives the belief that there is a change management recipe, based on principles like the burning platform, communication, and executive sponsorship. That recipe has lost its meaning and its time for use to change the approach to change management.
I recommend this book to any executive, manager, team leader, and concerned professional as a way for them to lead and create results in a powerful way. The book is easily read over a weekend, a couple of airplane rides, etc. The charts and tools are clearly presented and actionable. Overall a must read part of any management library.
Why? Because change has lost its potency. It's become routine and we have lost sight of its fundamental roots. Change and enterprises have become internally focused, concerned with themselves, their processes, their investments etc.
Kotter reminds us that the root of success involves sense of Urgency. Urgency is the highly positive and focused forces that give people the determination to move and win now.Read more ›
As a follow-up Kotter has written A Sense of Urgency. In this 2008 book he clearly makes his point in the six page preface and the first three chapters that take up 61 of the 196 total pages of primary text. That is all you need to read to benefit from his VIP's [short for very important points].
Here are some of the VIP's:
*The single biggest error people make when they try to craft change is they do not "create a high enough sense of urgency among enough people to set the stage for making a challenging leap into some new direction." [viii]
*Our biggest challenge is complacency. "We underestimate its power and its prevalence." 
*Our second biggest challenge is a false sense of urgency. "A false sense of urgency is pervasive and insidious because people mistake activity for productivity." 
*To increase a true sense of urgency, "create action that is exceptionally alert, externally oriented, relentlessly aimed at winning, making some progress each and every day, and constantly purging low value-added activities--all by always focusing on the heart and not just the mind. 
To create a real sense of urgency I entreat you to go forward and do likewise. What is your first step to create a real sense of urgency in your congregation or other ministry setting?
As I read this book, I was reminded of recent research conducted by the Gallup Organization indicating that 29% of the U.S. workforce is engaged (i.e. loyal, enthusiastic, and productive) whereas 55% is passively disengaged. That is, they are going through the motions, doing only what they must, "mailing it in," coasting, etc. What about the other 16%? They are "actively disengaged" in that they are doing whatever they can to undermine their employer's efforts to succeed. They have a toxic impact on their associates and, in many instances, on customer relations. These are stunning statistics. How to explain them? Reasons vary from one organization to the next. However, most experts agree that no more than 5% of any given workforce consists of "bad apples," troublemakers, chronic complainers, subversives, etc.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Book came in great condition and was at an amazing price. Can't beat this.Published 18 days ago by B. Jones
I believe this book challenges you to reevaluate how you drive your team. You may do many things right this helps you think through the urgency in your organization.Published 21 days ago by Stephen Wolff
After reading Kotter's Leading Change, I decided to buy this book to get a better grasp of step one in change management. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Robert Kirk
I think the book covers the most strenuous problems that business leaders find of which non-business people hardly see. Great book.Published 3 months ago by Mr Jeffrey Buttigieg
Book is extremely well written. Points made are thoughtful and easily understood. Should be mandatory reading for every American.Published 4 months ago by Karl W. Merritt
This was an interesting read. I've only read first few chapters so I can't really comment on it.Published 5 months ago by love cruise ships
John Kotter does an excellent job expounding on the most important and critical first component of initiating change: instilling a sense of true urgency in your actions and those... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Rob Galbraith