Choosing Change

Leaders Praise Choosing Change

How do you respond to change and disruption?  Ignore it?  Resist it?  React to it?  Embrace it?  Or create it? Choosing Change will help you find your choice point — and when you see and use it you will quickly be able to escape the habits of the past and build for the future.

Daniel Denison,
Professor of Management & Organization, IMD Business School, Chairman, Denison Consulting LLC, author of the Denison Organizational Culture Survey and the Denison Leadership Development Surveys.


The only way to succeed today is to change before you need to. Goldsworthy & McFarland draw from over 60 of today’s most successful leaders to create an unprecedented roadmap on exactly how to change before it’s too late.

Marshall Goldsmith,
2 million-selling author of The New York Times bestsellers, MOJO and What Got You Here Won’t Get You There, the Thinkers50 Award Winner (sponsored by Harvard Business Review) for Most-Influential Leadership Thinker in the World


Susan Goldsworthy and Walter McFarland have made an outstanding contribution to the literature on leadership and change. In fact, their focus on both is unique. Goldsworthy focuses on the work leaders need to do – both in their organizations and within themselves – and McFarland tackles core issues of leading change at the organizational level. These highly complementary perspectives yield a work that is much more than the sum of the parts. I recommend Choosing Change highly.

Michael Watkins,
International Best-selling Author of The First 90 Days, Co-founder of Genesis Advisers, Professor IMD Business School


McFarland and Goldsworthy change the game around change. Explaining not just why its hard, but outlining a whole new approach to change, resting on both science and real cases. Congratulations on a great book.

David Rock,
Director, NeuroLeadership Institute, Author Your Brain at Work


Change. Or be changed. This amazing book takes a deep dive into helping leaders create new possibilities – for themselves and for their entire organizations. Susan and Walt blend their unique perspectives and extensive experience – from the vantage point of an Olympic athlete and a management consultant – to connect the personal with the professional. The result is a book that is inspiring and engaging, brimming with insights, compelling stories and practical wisdom. This book is for those who want to scuba dive, as the authors say, ‘exploring the depths of your inner, as well as your outer, life.

Patrick Sweeney,
President of Caliper and co-author of The New York Times bestseller Succeed on Your Own Terms


There were good books about personal change and good books about organizational change. Choosing Change is a great book linking the two domains and giving you the tools you need to succeed on both fronts. Gandhi encouraged leaders to be the change they want to see in the world.  Goldsworthy and McFarland show you how to do it!

Jean-François Manzoni,
Shell Chaired Professor of Human Resources and Organizational Development and Professor of Management Practice, INSEAD, author of award-winning Set-Up to Fail Syndrome


Inspiring, comprehensive and profoundly relevant, Choosing Change is an excellent and empowering read. With inspirational leadership stories, a simple yet comprehensive format and the congruent perspectives of Susan and Walter, this is recommended reading for all change focused leaders, organizations and individuals alike.

Danny McCarthy,
General Manager Mining for Australian Mining, Thiess Pty Ltd


When we look at the immense tasks that lie ahead for humanity in the 21st century it becomes clear that the most essential talent for a successful leader will be their capacity for conscious evolution – knowing how to change both their organizations and themselves for the better. In Choosing Change, Susan and Walt use a fascinating multi-disciplinary approach with simple clear ideas and practical actionable advice as to how to develop this innate capacity. If you aspire to being part of the solution, this book can help, big time!

Richard Olivier, Artistic Director,
Olivier Mythodrama, Author Inspirational Leadership: Timeless Lessons for Leaders from Shakespeare’s Henry V


Each year, the field of change management is flooded with books. Many are worth the read and, if we are lucky, a few actually offer content worth serious consideration. I rarely see a manuscript that is pivotal in its nature, but Choosing Change is just such a seminal work. This is no rehash of familiar ground in an effort to mimic thought leadership—this is the real deal. It is a formative writing in two respects: it offers new information, fresh perspectives, and deft insights for both change practitioners and the leaders they serve, and it is a call to action for the whole of the change facilitation profession to practice our craft at a higher altitude. The depth of understanding this book offers and its easy-to-absorb writing style combine to make it an indispensable resource for anyone facing the realities of transformative change in organizational settings.

Daryl Conner,
Chairman Conner Partners, bestselling author and internationally-recognized leader of organizational change


McFarland and Goldsworthy have written a classic! Combining wonderful stories from 60 successful global executives with cutting-edge neuroscience and leadership theories, the authors show the read how to effectively change individuals, groups and organizations. Choosing Change is truly insightful, interesting and inspiring.

Mike Marquardt,
Professor George Washington University and President of the World Institute for Action Learning


Sometimes the most obvious is not only the most powerful and desperately needed – but also the most absent. This book is such an example. Joining up the individual and organizational aspects of change is hugely significant contribution. No real world leader is able to separate the two and yet most literature does just that. This book closes that gap. Combined with leading edge organizational, psychological and neurobiological research it is a must read for the executive truly wanting to be effective at leading change.

Duncan Coombe,
Co-author, award-winning Care to Dare, Associate Faculty, Ashridge Business School


In a world where change is constant, transformational leadership all too rare and effective change leadership even more rare, what could be more important than a book that serves as a map for the VUCA world that lies ahead and, especially, for those who must navigate their companies safely through the rapids and rip tides of change?  Susan Goldsworthy and Walter McFarland share just such a map in this book and just in time!

Rebecca Ray,
Ph.D., Senior Vice President, Human Capital, The Conference Board


In this book an experienced consultant and a coach engage in what the late Donald Schön called ‘reflective practice’: They critically assess what they have learned through experience, contrast it with established and emerging scholarship, and share the lessons learnt with others. One hopes that their courage will spur other experienced readers to engage in such critical thinking themselves.

Dr. Rafael Ramírez,
Fellow in Strategy & Director, Oxford Scenarios Programme, Saïd Business School, University of Oxford


Goldsworthy and McFarland’s introduce a compelling framework that will help you harness the true power of choice, make sense of the complexities of change, and build your capability and capacity for achieving better results. Their insights and stories are like having your own highly effective personal coach and consultant supporting you throughout your change journey. Readers will benefit greatly from their extensive experience and wisdom.

Tim Tobin,
Vice President – Global Learning and Leadership Development, Marriott International, Inc.


Many change initiatives fail to realize their potential benefits. In addressing this, each of us has a choice to make – am I part of the problem or part of the solution? Choosing the latter path may seem disconcerting, but McFarland and Goldsworthy (and the many change leaders they’ve interviewed) are there to guide you every step of the way.  Read and apply the lessons within.

Stephen Jenner,
author of Managing Benefits™ and co-author of Management of Portfolios®.


Choosing Change reminds us that leaders seeking to change organizations must first change themselves. Challenging oneself to change behavior is possible only if we are brave enough to move out of our comfort zones into areas that may prove to be uncomfortable or even threatening. Helpfully, Choosing Change provides a clear roadmap for translating our intellectual understanding into action. It provides us with the confidence to move from intellectual insight to personal and organizational change.

Robert M. Tobias,
Director, Key Executive Programs, American University


This book is an important read for senior executives, business owners, entrepreneurs and anyone desiring to be successful and competitive in today’s rapidly changing world. For those individuals and organizations that struggle to stay relevant there is a need to understand that without a “change focused” perspective there can be no long-term success.

When a culture of change is embraced both individuals and organizations can rise to their full potential. How do you motivate people who will be content to live with the status quo? How do you inspire individuals and organizations to move out of their comfort zone and actually take risks, and eventually grow? Read this book and roll up your sleeves – it’s time to make some changes!

Gary Anzalone,
CEO, CEO Clubs NYC


Successful organizations depend on the ability of their people to deliver sustainable high performance. The latter can be negatively influenced by rapidly changing environments and business requirements, which can create a lot of anxiety and concern. Susan Goldsworthy and Walter McFarland deliver important insights into what change is, how it should be viewed and how it can be managed. Their approach will help you and your people to successfully adapt to new requirements, while staying positive and continuing to trust that everyone can achieve great things in your organization.

Klemen Cas,
Joint CEO, Co-Founder, ecenta AG


Choosing Change should be required reading for every leader and change practitioner. This is an integrative guide to leading through revolutionary, difference-making change. It is filled with rich experience, relevant research and applicable insights. The ideas are impactful and the stories are striking. Read and apply what you learn in order to unleash profound optimism, productive energy and new levels of performance as you improve your change effectiveness.

Donna Brighton,
CEO, Brighton Leadership Group, President & Board Member ACMP


As one major raison d’être of a Corporate University is to support change and to aid transformations. Choosing Change is a book that all executives should read urgently! They will find a framework for the importance of a new mindset as the only approach to lifelong learning, growth, and improvement. Congratulations to Walt and Susan for this very useful book that combines theory and practice, testimonials and tools. I appreciate the strength of their vision and their smart guidance.

Annick Renaud-Coulon,
Founder & Chair, The Global Council of Corporate Universities (GCCU)


This book takes us on journey to create awareness of the holistically
concept of 5 Ds so that leaders of organizations can better manage and
leverage on disruptive change at the workplace.  What I like most is the
sharing of personal insights by Chief Executive Officers who had been there,
seen it and done it. As change is a constant in our daily lives and
disruptive change a norm in today’s workplace, this book is a must read for
leaders who believe in riding the wind of change.

Robert Yeo,
Executive Director & CEO, Singapore Training and Development Association (STADA)


The insightful testimonies and analysis exposed by Susan and Walt made me think: I want to be part of it; part of those leaders who succeed in changing their organization because they look beyond the technical or academic sides of change. These leaders’ change journeys are to be read as a soul-searching experience, which the authors decoded and presented in an accessible model. This book is a must read for change practitioners who seek to impact the future of their organization.

Cécile Demailly,
Co-Chair, the Change Leaders (global alumni of HEC/Oxford University MSc, Coaching & Consulting Change)


Susan and Walter have put together a valuable book focused on two important areas for business success; leadership and organizational change.  Making sure leaders take on exploring and improving their own change capabilities before expecting that they’ll be able to adroitly lead broader organizational change is logical but the two are rarely if ever addressed together and in the right order.  Take the opportunity to expand and change your own thinking; read this book, it is well done!

Karen Kochner,
Chief Learning Officer, Cigna Corp.


If you think everything has already been written about embracing change, think again.  These authors deliver a practical guide rife with real world examples for employing today’s change bombardment as a catalyst for sustainable growth, both personally and corporately.  Never before has the ability to choose change, and use it for our benefit, been more significant.  I took the journey with Walt and Susan to sharpen my ability, and I came away with change as a new ally.

Beth Jackson,
President, Fluor University


In a faster developing economy such as China, business leaders are encountering challenges on many fronts every day, and changes are “inevitable.” We’ve seen many management theories and many books are flowing around, but rarely is there one that approaches the subject of Change Management in such granularity, addressing it from the layers of the individual and the organization, and pointing in the direction of establishing a “Change Leadership”. Walter’s and Susan’s rich experience and in-depth research as practitioners greatly contributes to why I give ‘Choosing Change’ my “thumbs-up.“ I strongly recommend it to my fellow Chinese business executives and entrepreneurs as a “ Must -have ” playbook.

Wayne Wang,
Chairman & CEO, CDP Group, Ltd.


Change management is the Achilles Heel of management practice – despite great ideas and concepts most change projects fail. It is therefore essential to keep asking ourselves how we can reverse this situation and increase the odds of success in particular with regard to an increasingly complex and unpredictable environment. We have no choice but to build change capabilities into the organizational DNA and to help individuals to understand their own barriers to change. Choosing Change provides valuable insights and practical clues on how to move towards a new understanding of building change and learning as fundamental individual and organizational capabilities into organizations where change is not just something that they do but something that they are.

Richard Straub,
President, Peter Drucker Society Europe

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Leaders Praise Choosing Change

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Leaders Praise Choosing Change October 22, 2013


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