Skip to content Skip to navigation

Immunity to Change

Kegan and Lahey explain why many efforts at individual and organizational change tend to fail and present a methodology for increasing the likelihood of success. According to the authors, we often have beliefs that we may not even be aware of that get in the way of succeeding at our goal. For example, if we believe that the only "real" work is doing something ourselves, or that delegating work to someone else who might do a great job might show our boss that we aren't good at our job, it could make sense that we resist delegating our work until we examine our beliefs and decide whether they are accurate.

Nearly everyone has something that they have tried to change unsuccessfully at some point - losing weight, eating better, delegating, find work-life balance, etc. Kegan and Lahey's Immunity to Change provides a potential path toward more effective, sustainable change.

If you decide to use this book on your own, I suggesting paying specific attention to the worries and fears around changing succesfully. Immunity to Change is often focused on the cognitive aspects of change (our "competing commitments"). While important, I believe that the emotional components related to the potential, often unconscious, downsides of successfully changing are equally important, if not more so.