One of the remedies suggested by Kotter (1996) is a sort of continuing pressure. He states that, “In successful change efforts, executives link pressure to urgency through the constant articulation of vision and strategies” (p. 127). Persistent urgency is a strategy, not a hammer, “…urgency does not imply ever present panic, anxiety, or fear. It means a state in which complacency is virtually absent, in which people are always looking for both problems and opportunities, and in which the norm is “do it now” (p. 162).
The main idea behind recognizing short-term victories and building upon the achieved momentum is the awareness of the possibility of complacency regaining in personal and organizational attitudes. The transformation process has many stages leading to the end game of cultural change. Until the goal is finished, the vision is the primary driver of change. Repetition and reaffirmation of the vision helps to combat nearsightedness.
Alternative Methods to Keep Momentum Ahead of Complacency
Ladders of Success
In today’s environment with rampant and fierce competition in the economy, a series of transformations leading up to an overall change helps to drive momentum. By continually rolling smaller changes toward the overall vision of the major transformation, a persistent urgency remains to fight off contentment. Each wave of change is tied to and contributes to the success of the overriding change effort.