John Kotter Discusses His New Book, “Change”

Adam Torres interviewed Dr. John Kotter, Chairman and Founder of Kotter International, Inc., on Mission Matters Business Podcast.

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Dr. John Kotter’s mission is to help organizations adapt to an increasingly volatile and uncertain world with speed, intelligence, and agility.

How did your journey of helping organizations begin?

Dr. Kotter originally planned to pursue a career as a physicist—it’s what initially took him to Boston to pursue a degree at MIT. But decades later, a completely different path rests behind him—one that began its convergence during his doctoral studies at Harvard, where the foundation was laid for his passion for educating, motivating and helping people. 

Since then, his award-winning articles in The Harvard Business Review have broken reprint records(an article he published in 2012 won the McKinsey award for the world’s most practical and groundbreaking thinking in the business/management arena) and his books have reached millions through more than 150 foreign language editions in addition to its original run. Today, his expertise is proffered through the consulting firm that bears his name, Kotter, and his latest book, Change

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Tell us about your book, Change, and what readers can learn from it.

The idea for the latest book springs from a project started five years ago at the consulting firm, focusing on the role of brain science and human nature in running an organization. If we understand brain science, the project posited, we can see why people struggle with change. The book breaks down the ways in which companies try to adapt, from developing new strategies to executing digital transformations. As any great book does, it also includes some cautionary stories of failure from which lessons can be learned. 

“If you’re dealing with a bad situation that involves change,” Kotter says, “(the book) gives you a framework and science behind how you can make it happen better, faster, wiser, and more advantageous.” As a result, he notes, readers will take away insights on fundamental ways to adapt to a rapidly changing world. 

Tell us about Kotter.  How does it help clients?

Kotter guides, educates and inspires its clients to provide excellent leadership and execute intelligent business strategies. The firm mobilizes people to take advantage of strategic opportunities, transform their operations, and build significant revenue. Primarily, Kotter works with companies in industries that have traditionally remained highly regulated or static, from high-tech to low-tech brands, both retail and B2B. 

What’s next for you and your company?

Kotter plans to launch new educational offerings in a virtual environment that can be accessed from the office and from home, whichever participants prefer. The author is also planning to publish more books, including one called The Life You Lead, about how to accept and cope with difficult situations.

To learn more about Kotter’s Consulting and Learning & Development, visit www.KotterInc.com.