Immunity to Change is not so much a book about resisting change as it is a book of one's identity. The authors' claim is that the reason we are resistant to change is because change challenges one's current identity and that going through an identity crisis part of growing in leadership. The evidence backing this theory is sound and comes from 20+ years of study. The thesis statement supports this summary of the book, "The problem is the inability to close the gap between what we genuinely, even passionately, want and what we are actually able to do. Closing this gap is a central learning problem of the twenty-first century." The problem is not a lack of willingness, but a lack of awareness and methodology to overcoming this immunity to change.
The writing style starts off, in the first chapter, as very much a journal article type format with numbers and charts and academic language throughout. As the book progresses, the narratives become more frequent and with individual case studies rather than overarching generalizations. The author does well in sharing only what is relevant to the text with his narrations and saving the rest of the story for the appropriate context later in the book. It reads much like Influencer or Crucial Conversations in that regard. I, personally, felt that the stories just may have been a bit too long at some points with the subject matter being too little.
In sharing the real-life case studies, the authors well present their thesis to identifying and overcoming adaptive (see adaptive vs. technical) challenges. By presenting these case studies, the authors demonstrate that these are not just theories but are very real and very valid methods to creating change not just in one's own identity, but entire corporations as well. These case studies range from the common man to the corporate executive and her peer group. Furthermore, the facts and statistics that are associated to these leadership challenges are well documented and displayed throughout the book.
In conclusion, a person or organization that needs help tackling challenges that have been frustratingly unsuccessful should check this book out. It goes beyond just telling a person to act this way and actually helps one to readjust his or her identity. Also, the knowledge in this book will aid in recognizing what challenges are technical and what challenges are adaptive, and how to appropriate the solutions.
- Hardcover: 368 pages
- Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press; 1 edition (13 January 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9781422117361
- ISBN-13: 978-1422117361
- ASIN: 1422117367
- Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 3.2 x 24.1 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 635 g
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,629 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)