The Heart of Transformation Book Summary - The Heart of Transformation Book explained in key points
Listen to the Intro

The Heart of Transformation summary

Michael J. Leckie

Build the Human Capabilities That Change Organizations for Good

(4 ratings)
15 mins

What is The Heart of Transformation about?

The Heart of Transformation (2021) is a how-to guide for changing an organization. It focuses on six specific capabilities that leaders can adopt to meet the demands of the twenty-first century.

Table of Contents

    The Heart of Transformation
    summarized in 7 key ideas

    Audio & text in the Blinkist app
    Key idea 1 of 7

    Exploring before executing

    So, how do you transform an organization for the better? The first step is to explore before you execute. To be clear, there isn’t anything wrong with executing per se. Execution simply means carrying out a plan or course of action – and every business relies on execution to some degree.

    But fixating on execution becomes a problem when the needs of an organization change. Execution is all about sticking to the plan. Trouble arises when the plans that fixed yesterday’s problems don’t work for today’s. More specifically, leaders get stuck when they refuse to question whether once-useful strategies are still viable.

    This is where exploring comes in. You have to ask whether the systems and practices of old still work, or whether they need revising. It can be hard for leaders to challenge the ideas they once championed. But this kind of exploration is exactly the type of leadership that results in transformation.

    So, what does exploring before executing look like in practice? Here are five questions to ask others – and yourself – to accomplish the task.

    First up is, “What do you think?” As simple as it is, this question activates the curiosity necessary for transformation. 

    Second, “What are you assuming is true?” Assumptions shape many of our ideas. Laying them out in the open helps everyone better understand where stakeholders are coming from.

    Third, “Whose voice is missing?” This question takes aim at the echo chamber. It invites diversity of thought – which is more important than ever, given the information silos many people occupy today.

    Fourth, “What is your third-best idea?” There’s a method to this madness: Typically, the first answer people give is the “safe” answer. Their second choice is usually just the first answer in different words. It’s often not until the third-best idea that people start thinking outside of the box.

    The fifth and final question is, “What didn’t you say that needs saying?” This urges people to state the things that are uncomfortable or scary, but that need to be heard.

    These five questions can help leaders explore the best ways to address rapidly changing problems before executing their plan of action.

    Want to see all full key ideas from The Heart of Transformation?

    Key ideas in The Heart of Transformation

    More knowledge in less time
    Read or listen
    Read or listen
    Get the key ideas from nonfiction bestsellers in minutes, not hours.
    Find your next read
    Find your next read
    Get book lists curated by experts and personalized recommendations.
    Shortcasts New
    We’ve teamed up with podcast creators to bring you key insights from podcasts.

    About the Author

    Michael J. Leckie is a leadership consultant and public speaker. He is the former Chief Learning Officer for the digital industrial transformation at General Electric. His firm, Silverback Partners, helps businesses adapt to today’s digital world by transforming their corporate cultures.

    Who should read The Heart of Transformation?

    • Anyone working in management or leadership
    • Entrepreneurs or small business owners 
    • Anyone curious about how to change a workplace for the better

    Categories with The Heart of Transformation

    Books like The Heart of Transformation

    People ❤️ Blinkist
    Sven O.

    It's highly addictive to get core insights on personally relevant topics without repetition or triviality. Added to that the apps ability to suggest kindred interests opens up a foundation of knowledge.

    Thi Viet Quynh N.

    Great app. Good selection of book summaries you can read or listen to while commuting. Instead of scrolling through your social media news feed, this is a much better way to spend your spare time in my opinion.

    Jonathan A.

    Life changing. The concept of being able to grasp a book's main point in such a short time truly opens multiple opportunities to grow every area of your life at a faster rate.

    Renee D.

    Great app. Addicting. Perfect for wait times, morning coffee, evening before bed. Extremely well written, thorough, easy to use.

    People also liked

    Start growing with Blinkist now
    26 Million
    Downloads on all platforms
    4.7 Stars
    Average ratings on iOS and Google Play
    Of Blinkist members create a better reading habit*
    *Based on survey data from Blinkist customers
    Powerful ideas from top nonfiction

    Try Blinkist to get the key ideas from 5,500+ bestselling nonfiction titles and podcasts. Listen or read in just 15 minutes.

    Start your free trial