Kotter’s Change Model

Kotter’s Change Model

Kotter’s Change Model

Harvard Business School Professor, John Kotter, in 1995 published his lifetime work “Leading Change” which codified the Kotter change model. He created a model that could handle greater complexity than Lewin’s Change model and address change resistance. Kotter designed his model as an 8-step process to follow consisting of step by step instructions on how to implement change. Starting with creating a sense of urgency to spark the movement. Then the goal is to form a powerful coalition to build political support. Next, create a vision to establish a clear goal and then communicate the vision to align the organization. Following,  remove obstacles to empower the change and create short-term wins to build momentum. Lastly, sustain acceleration to demonstrate the success of the change, and institute the change so that it becomes part of the culture.

The introduction of Kotter’s change model represented the next era of change management. Furthermore, it created an opportunity to engage hard to sway employees. Using a coalition-based team that influences formal and informal leaders to enact the change. Lastly, it provides the user with a robust checklist that any manager can apply. Conversely, the Kotter model is a top-down model. The model fails to engage all levels of the organization that are impacted by the change. It can also be used as a fear-based model by attempting to create a sense of urgency. In addition, the process gives the impression of being mechanical and robotic that doesn’t come across as authentic.


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