Bill Hackos, PhD
Vice President, Comtech Services, Inc.

While preparing for our upcoming Best Practices Conference and Innovator’s Forum in Seattle this month I’ve been reading a number of books about change. I thought I would let you know about the best of them in case you want to prepare for the conference or if you can’t make it to the conference this year.

The theme of the conference comes from the book by Malcom Gladwell, The Tipping Point, originally published in 2000. Gladwell’s book is about the nature of change. Why do changes occur? Most of the changes at work and in society are unplanned and unmanaged. This is a fascinating book. Understanding the nature of change is valuable both in coping with changes and in initiating changes in your organization as well as in society as a whole.

The Gladwell book is not a handbook for change management. For step-by-step help in implementing change, I have found two books by John P. Kotter, Leading Change, published in 1996, and The Heart of Change, published in 2002. Both books go through Kotter’s eight-step process for implementing change. The first book is a tutorial, describing the steps and the mistakes that managers commonly make. The second book consists of a set of case studies for each of the steps.

Daryl R. Conner’s book Managing at the Speed of Change, published in 1992, gives managers advice about how to survive change in organizations that are changing faster and faster. With Conner’s book, you will learn why some managers prosper while others fail and how you can be one of the prosperous ones.

All of these books are available in business sections of the larger bookstores, as well as Have fun reading!