How do you contribute?

Question: What impact does your work have on the world?

Rosabeth Moss Kanter: I would love to feel that my work has an impact in the world; but I also need to approach this question with a certain degree of humility. I mean we at Harvard sometimes think that we're part of the greatest university in the world. But there are lots of other places now that are also doing great things. My work, if I have influenced some people  some people in leadership positions to do things differently, that's the important thing. I do have many, many people who read my books. They quote me. I am sometimes recognized in airports. But I also sit at meetings with world leaders where I am convinced of my utter irrelevance. So I think that I have had an impact in terms of the term “empowermen", and the importance of empowering people. I think my work on change has guided many, many organizations not only through my books, but through a change toolkit on the World Wide Web that is being used by many companies and governments around the world. I think that the ideas have entered into the vocabulary of leadership so much so that people sometimes forget that I thought of it first. And I guess that's what's important because I'm gonna go on to the next idea.

Recorded on: 6/13/07

 

The ideas Rosabeth Moss Kanter spawned have flown the coop and landed in big companies and presidential campaigns.

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