Integrative Paper: Comparing and contrasting the concepts of IKM and Kotter
1. Stage one: Establishing a Sense of Urgency
in our fast paced world, things and environments change rapidly. In order to meet the needs and demands of an ever changing marketplace, organizations also need to change and adapt very quickly. With success hinging on the ability of the institution to analyze, predict and adjust in order to meet the market demands and successfully cope with rapidity of change (IKM, pg 7) "establishing a sense of urgency" as explained by Kotter would be critical (Leading Change, pg 35). To influence anyone or any organization to move towards any type of behavior requires the three critical factors of direction, intensity and persistence directly related to the motivation necessary to realize the urgency of the situation and the need for change (IKM, pg 111). Determining the significance of the problem as related to urgency, impact and growth tendency would necessitate potentially shifting priorities and establishing the level of urgency needed to motivate the organization to move towards change (IKM, pg 386). Even though all indications reveal a need for organizational change, fears associated with the unknown, shuffling of positions, or changing of established routines could lead to resistance and the subsequent absence of initiative and urgency to move in the direction of organizational improvement (IKM, pg 486). When urgency is lacking, the intervention of an external change agent (IKM, pg 484) or consultant may be required to provide an outside perspective and real numbers associated with flagging bottom line reducing the chance of continued complacency (Kotter, pg 44). Similarities exist between both texts in relation to the role of crises and its ability to catch the attention of leadership (Kotter, pg 45) and the idea that "organizations seldom undertake significant change without a strong shock from the environment" (IKM, pg 490). Crisis as related to charismatic leadership has proven to drive change and in the case of Johnson and Johnson CEO James Burke, also avoid disaster (IKM, pg 430). One area of disagreement lies in the fact that while speed of change is mentioned several times in IKM, Kotter mentions the problem of lack of patience and doesn't confuse urgency with speed and quite the contrary indicates the extended periods of time necessary to implement meaningful and lasting improvement (Kotter, pg 5). In review of both texts many similarities exist with the common them being the importance in understanding the need for change with little in the area of urgency with respect to IKM.
2. Stage two: Creating the Guiding Coalition
For any change effort to be successful buy in from the top must take place. Going farther in this premise, Kotter advocates that without this "sufficiently power guiding coalition" leading the way "sooner or later, countervailing forces undermine the initiatives" (Leading Change, pg 6). IKM agrees that "any program that lacks managements support and commitment has only a slim chance of success (Pg 502). When creating the guiding coalition one cannot underestimate the advantage of charismatic attributes of visionary thinking, ability to communicate the vision, conviction, extraordinary behaviors and self confidence (IKM, pg 430). While the advantages of teams is clearly outlined in detail by IKM, Kotter goes farther by discussing the importance of teams comprised of top leadership and those that truly posses position power and the authority to drive change (Leading Change, pg 57). Added advantages associated with leadership driving change are associated with the position they occupy and as observed by IKM the fact that "managers have access to power and can use their power to coerce nonmanagers to change in the direction they desire" (Pg 481). While Kotter emphasizes the necessity of top management and numbers of others with the...
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