The enemy of change is complacency

Written by Vernon Cheung

September 30, 2015

By Stefan Stern

A Sense of Urgency by John P Kotter pinpoints the key to managing change in businesses.

John P Kotter, emeritus professor at Harvard Business School, is perhaps the world’s number one guru on managing change. His most famous book is probably Leading Change (1996), which introduced his eight-step methodology for running change programmes.

But this slimmer volume makes it into the classic category, because it lifts out the single most important element of his analysis. Without a sense of urgency all attempts at change are doomed.

Kotter says that change, once more of an episodic phenomenon, has now become a continuous one. “With continuous change, creating and sustaining a sufficient sense of urgency are always a necessity,” he writes.

The enemy of urgency is complacency. It is a slippery foe because it is both a thought and a feeling. Facts are not enough to shift it. “It is possible to see problems and yet be astonishingly complacent because you do not feel that the problems require changes in your own actions,” Kotter writes.

But urgency does not mean panic or hyperactivity. Kotter suggests that leaders need to display what he calls “urgent patience”: persistence and unrelenting purposefulness, not an unthinking call for immediate action. Transmit a sense of (intelligent) urgency and things will change for the better.

Please fill out your details and we will ensure to keep you updated with a weekly bulletin on the latest blog articles we have to share!

You May Also Like…

Beginner’s guide to crypto investing

Beginner’s guide to crypto investing

In the world of cryptocurrencies, time moves at an extremely rapid rate. In order for you to become familiar with this popular form of investment, learn crypto innovations and the many ways on how to invest, you first need to master the basics.

7 Top Marketing Tips and Trends

7 Top Marketing Tips and Trends

The pandemic has taught us that the future cannot be predicted. Everything is uncertain, especially when it comes to business. However, by conducting research and taking a look at the market, we can see when new marketing trends arise.

Want success? Here’s how to succeed through networking

Want success? Here’s how to succeed through networking

How do you get your great idea – your BHAG – from a lightbulb moment to reality? It’s no longer just about what you know, it is about WHO you know that is going to make the difference – and that all depends on how well you build your business network.