Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Managing Transitions: Making the Most of Change” as Want to Read:
Managing Transitions: Making the Most of Change
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Managing Transitions: Making the Most of Change

3.99  ·  Rating details ·  2,186 ratings  ·  157 reviews
The business world is constantly transforming. When restructures, mergers, bankruptcies, and layoffs hit the workplace, employees and managers naturally find the resulting situational shifts to be challenging. But the psychological transitions that accompany them are even more stressful. Organizational transitions affect people; it is always people, rather than a company, ...more
Kindle Edition, 25th Anniversary Edition, 208 pages
Published January 10th 2017 by Da Capo Lifelong Books (first published May 2003)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Managing Transitions, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Managing Transitions

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.99  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,186 ratings  ·  157 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Managing Transitions: Making the Most of Change
Apr 25, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
I received a copy of this book from my workplace because we are getting bought out by another company. I attended a Working Through Transition class and all of the attendees received a copy of this book.

This book is actually a guide for management to lead their employees through a successful transition. There is an ending, a neutral zone, and a new beginning.

This book is not exactly geared for an employee finding out they are getting laid off.

I will say it appears my company is doing a good job
Jul 12, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The news that the grant which funds the work my team and I do was ending prompted me to return to this book I first read parts of when another "sea change" was coming to the AVID world: the retirement of Mary Catherine Swanson, and the appointment of a new Executive Director. Much was changing, and Chapter 3 of this Book ("How to Get People to Let Go") helped me gain perspective on managing my own feelings of grief, as well as helping those around me figure it out. It was the end of an era for t ...more
Mark Kaech
Jun 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
To echo my friend that recommended this book, I wish I had read this years ago.
Jun 05, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is not exactly what I was looking for though it is a good read for dealing with organizational change within ones business.
Apr 05, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: career, leadership
Written more for the manager/executive handling major transitions (plant closings, mass layoff, etc.) than the layperson dealing with more day-to-day changes, but very thought-provoking and highly re-readable. A bit idealistic, perhaps, but certainly geared at erring on the side of sensitivity and compassion.
Ralf Kruse
Jun 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great insightful book. The simple model to orient the journey of a transition is great and for well to my experience of supporting transitions.
It would be helpful if all the people running a digital transformation would read such books before they start their to simplistic rollout plans ...
One of the ‘classic’ texts on “change management” is Managing Transitions: Making the Most of Change by William Bridges, originally published in 1991 and last updated in 2009. William Bridges, an American author, speaker, and organizational consultant, emphasizes the importance of understanding transitions as a key for organizations to succeed in making changes. One of the theses of the book is that ‘transition’ is the psychological process of adapting to change and it is this that Bridges spend ...more
Aug 23, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Full disclosure I only read chapters 1-5 as part of a class assignment. I really enjoyed it for a silly reason. I looked at the book and the title and thought it would be a bore. When I got into it, however, there were lots of good stories to illuminate the points being made. Good job Mr. Bridges.
Penny Ramirez
Good foundational work for organizations about to go through a major change. Feels a bit dated, 29 years after it was first written (and 10 since this update). I swear I either read this as an undergrad psych major, or in grad school.
Feb 02, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
I am retired. It's time to remove business books from my "to-read" shelf because I am no longer interested in them.
Geoffrey Graham
External changes can lead to periods of transition. These can be losses in relationships, or changes in your home life, work, career or finances and/or personal changes. Internal shifts such as spiritual awakenings, psychological insights and/or changes in self-image can also result in periods of transition.

Transition periods have three parts-an ending (of something), an in-between space and a new beginning. Each period or phase can be difficult, but the in-between space can often be the most co
Jan 24, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Managing Transitions: Making the Most of Change is a follow-up to Transitions: Making Sense of Life's Changes. Two major differences:
1) The first book is about transitions and change in life, broadly, but using a lot of examples from transitions that happen in the workplace.
2) The second book is all about facilitating transitions and big changes within organizations and companies, and very little about changes that happen in personal lives. All the examples come from workplace situations.

The fir
May 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reading this book has been a valuable experience. This book put a name to different phases you go through when changing from one state to another one. transition readiness is specially interesting to assess the organizations williness toward change.

Besides, the author provides many areas where leaders could act when supporting a transition.

A must for transition developers and organizational coaches to understand a common issue I organizations nowadays
Craig Davison
Jul 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Every manager of teams/people should read this. Especially if your organization is undergoing change. (and what organization isn't, these days?). Great next steps and check lists for you to leverage any time you need to reference. Be warned: you will wish you'd read this earlier as you reflect on how you could've managed change better. Live and learn!
Mar 28, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an excellent book, and a very good read for anyone who has to manage people going through important changes. I have used this for students, for women and men transitioning from welfare to work and for adjudicated youth trying to make changes in the way they are living. Really insightful.
Nov 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Best book on how to manage yourself and other through change out there. Why is it good? Two primary reasons - approachable in writing style, easy to understand and apply theory. A very useful fairly quick read.
Mar 03, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good book if you are in management, which I'm not. Also, the book might make more sense if you have read Transitions: Making sense of life's changes, which I have not, but am going to read next.

Overall, I like his theory. I'm just struggling how to apply it to my life right now.
Jan 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
Practical guide for managing transitions in the workplace. Strong emphasis on the person over the end result and drives home that there are subjective and humanistic aspects to transitions.

Fast and engaging read, especially for people who are new to reading books about business/management.
Sep 03, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Instruction manual for helping yourself and others weather changes. Though the focus is on work transitions, this could easily be used as a guide for personal changes as well." -Tamara
Scott Mabry
May 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great book for the people side of change!
Jun 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
really good insights, structures, and advice
Karen Elizabeth
Jun 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very helpful and easy to read. Reminds managers that change is a process
and needs to be respectful of how employees experience transition. Was suggested to me
and I will suggest it to others.
Aug 06, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The concept is interesting. It could have been 50 pages instead of 200. Very repetitive.
Steve Kreidler
Mar 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Maybe the best introductory book for upcoming managers to learn about the complexity and difficulties of change management. I have used it for years with upper mid management to great success.
Aug 26, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
NOTE: This review/interview originally appeared as a posting on my professional blog, "The Nonprofit Consultant Blog." The audience on that blog is others working in the nonprofit sector.

Regular readers of this blog know that I've been involved in two successful nonprofit mergers, as well as a third attempt that was never consummated, and I've written several blog posts on my feelings about nonprofit mergers. So, when I received a message asking if I was interested in speaking with Tom McLaughli
Erika RS
May 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
(Note: I have the same review on the 3rd edition of this book. I read the 3rd edition and deeply skimmed the 4th edition. It is fundamentally the same. A few more examples. A few paragraphs removed or restructured.)

(Note: this model is applicable in any group undergoing transition, not just business organizations.)

This book presents a model of transitions for times of change. It is short and practical, containing many ideas that can be directly applied in organizations or groups undergoing trans
Feb 24, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Originally thought this book was about transition for every day life. I since learned it was specifically relating to business principles, but I think I still learned plenty about how it can apply to individual change. The book is definitely written toward individuals who have to communicate change, and I would’ve liked it if there was a part that went from the perspective of the individuals being told about change and managing transition. But regardless, I learned that grief is a part of transi ...more
Rhonda Sue
Mar 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a terrific book if your company is in the middle of change. Managing the transition is a must and the authors provide a fantastic roadmap on how to achieve this. The three phases of transition are: letting go, an ending, and loss; the neutral zone; and the new beginning. Transition starts with an ending. Once you understand the basics, you can figure out how to make it happen.

There's a ton of information that you'll find helpful. The process is spelled out and examples and checklists are
Aug 03, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Much of the good of this book was completely derailed for me by one passage at the beginning. The author used an example of Spanish "conquistador" Hernando Cortez. "When he came ashore with his men at Veracruz, he knew they were extremely ambivalent about the task ahead of them. Some called it hopeless. Faced with a continent full of adversaries, everyone must have wished that he had never come. Cortes burned the ships." WTF??? You know who wished they had never come? EVERY NATIVE ON THE CONTINE ...more
Robert Bogue
Somehow, the idea that we’re making a transition seems larger than making a change and simultaneously more concerning and more comforting. Managing Transitions: Making the Most of Change intentionally couples the word “transitions” to change to remind us of the personal nature of the kinds of change most of us consider. In that reminder is the reality that, to accomplish organizational change, we must change individually, and that means letting go of some of the things that have given us comfort ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Books to read after starting a new Career / job 1 5 Nov 28, 2015 01:31PM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Organizational Culture and Leadership
  • Flawless Consulting: A Guide to Getting Your Expertise Used
  • Leading Change
  • Deep Change: Discovering the Leader Within
  • The Wisdom of Teams: Creating the High-Performance Organization
  • Our Iceberg Is Melting: Changing and Succeeding Under Any Conditions
  • The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook: Strategies and Tools for Building a Learning Organization
  • Leadership Is an Art
  • HBR's 10 Must Reads on Change Management (including featured article “Leading Change” )
  • Leap: Leaving a Job with No Plan B to Find the Career and Life You Really Want
  • The God Who Goes before You: Pastoral Leadership as Christ-Centered Followership
  • Servant Leadership: A Journey Into the Nature of Legitimate Power and Greatness
  • The Weather Machine: A Journey Inside the Forecast
  • Long-Distance Real Estate Investing: How to Buy, Rehab, and Manage Out-of-State Rental Properties
  • The Big Book of Dashboards: Visualizing Your Data Using Real-World Business Scenarios
  • Climatopolis: How Our Cities Will Thrive in the Hotter Future
  • Crucial Confrontations: Tools for Resolving Broken Promises, Violated Expectations, and Bad Behavior
  • Weird: The Power of Being an Outsider in an Insider World
See similar books…
d. 1814

Similar Authors
William Bridges, New York Zoological Society
William Bridges, Organizational Management
William Bridges, Poet & Essayist

Related Articles

Last year, Buzzfeed culture writer Anne Helen Petersen struck a chord with her viral article “How Millennials Became the Burnout Generation.”...
108 likes · 16 comments
“Endings occur more easily if people can take a bit of the past with them. You are trying to disengage people from it, not stamp it out like an infection. And in particular, you don’t want to make people feel blamed for having been part of it.” 1 likes
“The second warning is not to overwhelm people with a picture that is so hard for them to identify with that they become intimidated rather than excited by it.” 1 likes
More quotes…