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Publisher's Summary

Based on the award-winning article in Harvard Business Review, from global leadership expert John Kotter.

It's a familiar scene in organizations today: a new competitive threat or a big opportunity emerges. You quickly create a strategic initiative in response and appoint your best people to make change happen. And it does - but not fast enough. Or effectively enough. Real value gets lost and, ultimately, things drift back to the default status. Why is this scenario so frequently repeated in industries and organizations across the world?

In the groundbreaking new book Accelerate (XLR8), leadership, change-management expert, and best-selling author John Kotter provides a fascinating answer - and a powerful new framework for competing and winning in a world of constant turbulence and disruption.

Kotter explains how traditional organizational hierarchies evolved to meet the daily demands of running an enterprise. For most companies, the hierarchy is the singular operating system at the heart of the firm. But the reality is, this system simply is not built for an environment where change has become the norm. Kotter advocates a new system - a second, more agile, network-like structure that operates in concert with the hierarchy to create what he calls a "dual operating system" - one that allows companies to capitalize on rapid-fire strategic challenges and still make their numbers.

Accelerate (XLR8) vividly illustrates the five core principles underlying the new network system, the eight accelerators that drive it, and how leaders must create urgency in others through role modeling. And perhaps most crucial, the book reveals how the best companies focus and align their people's energy and urgency around what Kotter calls the big opportunity. If you're a pioneer, a leader who knows that bold change is necessary to survive and thrive in an ever-changing world, this book will help you accelerate into a better, more profitable future.

©2014 John P. Kotter (P)2017 Recorded Books

What listeners say about Accelerate

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    5 out of 5 stars

Terrible

Avoid this audiobook, borderline unlistenable, which is a shame since it’s a great book full of great info.

2 people found this helpful

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More fluff than stuff

Beginning with a slight rehashing of the 8 stage change process for which he is known, the author then describes a two operating system approach, with the left-hand system is the current hierarchy while the right side is described as a network structure. It’s not lost on me that the metaphor used to describe the network is the solar system, which is predictable; there’s not much dynamic here, and little guidance on how the right-hand (network) system forms or works. Also, at least in the audiobook, there are no details regarding the organizations purportedly using this approach. I’m confident there are other titles that provide more insight and guidance into structures and approaches to building agile organizations than this book. Move along, there’s nothing to see here.

1 person found this helpful

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Good book but awful narration.

Going back and forth between the book and the audiobook as my schedule permitted but I really did not like the narration. It was at times flat and at other times overly dramatic in pronunciation and pauses. The verbal emphasis was placed on all the wrong words and phrases. Really difficult to unpack the content while hearing such awkward narration.

1 person found this helpful

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Great content, horrible narration

This is one of the worse narrative books I have listened to. I listened on 1.25 speed just to make it tolerable.

The story/content was excellent!

1 person found this helpful

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Dull

I found myself often zoning out while listening to this book. The reader was dull and unengaging.

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  • PS
  • 08-09-17

Good concepts / boring narration

I appreciated the concepts discussed and the review of the accelerators - but it was a very boring narration.

1 person found this helpful

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Worst audio narration ever.

Narrator speaks in a sing song condescending voice the whole time. It was all I could do to finish the book. I didn’t think there was a huge difference in this book and his earlier work. The vignettes were told in excruciating and boring detail. By the time I got to the end of one the examples I’d had forgotten where it started.

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Seriously off putting narrator's voice

The book is great on its own, frameworks like Scaled Agile Framework have been even created on the theory behind it as foundation.

The voice though, oh the voice. This sounds like a butler for the queen of England is reading the book. You feel as if somebody is talking down to you with unjust self proclaimed authority.
It's a short book but terrible tedious to listen here.

I personally advise for this book to be purchased but NOT in audio format, no unless Chris Sorenson is no longer the narrator.

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Good book for those who cannot yet envision an accelerating organization

I am having afterthoughts on my original review of the book, and finding that I overrated the book based on my appreciation for J.P. Kotter to understanding organizational culture. This book, however, does not match up to my expectations.
There are numerous better books to understanding the characteristics and the underlying principles of agile and fast paces organizations. Unlike many such books, this one gives little credit to other resources, which is a shame.
The word 'agile' is mentioned many times in the book, but I feel that at the time of writing the author did not fully embrace the meaning of the word in the organizational context. This makes this book relevant for managers and leaders who have not yet crossed the chasm to realize the criticality of embracing an agile mindset.
Original review:
This book is great for senior managers in organizations that embrace the hierarchical model, and want a better way to increase their agility and accelerate their results. The audio narration was not to my liking. At speed of 1.6 it was ok.

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  • RG
  • 08-30-20

The narration will put you to sleep

The book content is amazing. But the narrator is not a good fit. it’s ironic to listen to a narrator with such dull monotone, talk about a sense of urgency. The narration instills the absolute opposite effect as to what the book is meaning to generate.

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  • Seb
  • 01-24-20

Really like the content. Narration is difficult to listen to

Kotter’s work is great so I really wanted to listen to this. However the narration is possibly the most difficult to listen to of all of the audible titles I have read to date. Nasal, monotonous, painful.

1 person found this helpful

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  • A. Sheikh
  • 06-21-17

Interesting

The concept is interesting but not terribly well explained. The narrator's voice is monotonous and very annoying.

1 person found this helpful