New Releases

That's Not How We Do It Here!: A Story about How Organizations Rise and Fall—And Can Rise Again

May 31, 2016


Renowned author John Kotter has a new book out, along with some special bonus material if you pre-order before June 7.

In their iconic bestseller Our Iceberg Is Melting, John Kotter and Holger Rathgeber used a simple fable about penguins to explain the process of leading people through major changes. Now, ten years later, they’re back with another must-read story that will help any team or organization cope with their biggest challenges and turn them into exciting opportunities.

Backed by 40 years of research, That's Not How We Do It Here!: A Story about How Organizations Rise and Fall—and Can Rise Again (Portfolio/Penguin Random House; On-sale June 7, 2016) tackles the eternal tension between management and leadership and the reasons for the rise and fall of organizations.

As a special thanks for pre-ordering this new book before June 7, Kotter International is offering special bonus materials:

  • Free access to an exclusive podcast series in which John will take you behind the scenes of his writing process, the book itself and what’s next.

  • A free Leaders’ Guide PDF (valued at $9.95) for use with your clan to further explore key themes from the book.

For orders of 2+ books:

  • A free copy of John Kotter’s previous international best-selling fable, Our Iceberg Is Melting.

All bonus materials will be distributed shortly after the publication date of June 7, 2016. Sign up to receive your bonus materials

The story is told through a clan of meerkats living in the Kalahari, a region in southern Africa. Struggling with a drought that reduces their resources and leads to a rise of dangerous new predators, the executive team quarrels about possible solutions, and suggestions from frontline workers face a soul-crushing response: “That’s not how we do it here!” When a few brave meerkats venture off in search of new ideas to help their troubled clan, they discover a much smaller group that operates with more teamwork and agility. While the smaller group has their faults, they have developed innovative solutions to find food and evade the vultures

Can the clan figure out how to combine the best of both worlds—a large, disciplined, well-managed clan and a small, informal, inspiring clan—before it’s too late?

That's Not How We Do It Here! distills Kotter’s decades of experience and award-winning research on leadership and change, revealing:

  • How to leverage a startup approach within a larger organization to be more agile and innovative
  • How ideas can come from anybody on the team no matter what their hierarchy level, and how this can be encouraged
  • Secrets to gleaning “buy-in” from top leadership
  • How organizations mired in turbulent industries can adapt their structure to prevent limiting beliefs and attitudes

Often called the world’s authority on change leadership, John Kotter’s books have changed the way millions of people approach their careers and lead their teams.


John Kotter, professor emeritus at Harvard Business School, is often called the world’s foremost authority on leadership and change. His many previous books, including Leading Change and Our Iceberg Is Melting, have been translated into more than two hundred foreign-language editions and have been bestsellers around the world. He is a founder of Kotter International, a consulting firm that specializes in helping leaders transform their organizations.

Holger Rathgeber is the coauthor of Our Iceberg Is Melting, a former executive at a medical products firm, and a principal at Kotter International.

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