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Becoming the Change
Becoming the Change
by John Toussaint, MD, and Kim Barnas

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Two renowned healthcare transformation executives reveal how you can implement the principles and behaviors that leaders at all levels must embrace in order to create lasting change.

Healthcare is on the brink of a quality revolution—one that requires deeply personal as well as organizational changes. In Becoming the Change, two pioneers in the healthcare transformation movement show you how to cultivate principle-driven behaviors that can turn the tantalizing possibilities on the healthcare horizon into reality.

Transformational improvement has often been aimed at frontline healthcare workers rather than leaders at all levels, resulting in “islands of excellence” that are unsustainable. Toussaint and Barnas demonstrate how change needs to start at the top—whether you’re an executive, a governing board member, a manager, or a physician. 

Drawing on a wealth of case studies, they explore how change actually happens, and reveal how healthcare organizations led by people who are compassionate, principled, and engaged can undergo profound and lasting transformation. 

Publisher:  McGraw-Hill
ISBN-13:  978-1-260-46168-8
SKU:  1688
Publication Date:  September 1, 2020
Number of Pages:  168
About the Author
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“In Becoming the change, John and Kim takes us through a process on how to create and sustain lean thinking across an entire organization. Supported by strong field research and evidence from several healthcare systems, this book offers great insights and playbook for every healthcare leader at various phases in their lean journey.” 

Aravind Chandrasekaran (AC) 

Professor of Operations  

The Ohio State University 


“True organizational excellence, in healthcare and every other industry, requires much more than just a set of tools. It requires the right behaviors guided by the right principles.Becoming the Changeteaches leaders what behaviors they need to adopt to change their healthcare organizations and set them on a path of excellence. This book explores the role of each person in the organization from the caregivers to the board. This book emphasizes the importance of going to where the care is provided to gain a correct understanding of what is really happening, and how that understanding can lead to significant improvements. This book provides excellent case studies from which all healthcare professionals can benefit. I encourage all to take these lessons to heart andbethe change.”

Ken Snyder

Executive Director, Shingo Institute

Utah State University


“A practical guide for leaders at every level as they take on the leadership challenges of today and tomorrow. This book describes the journey from idea to results and shares the tools to design and move forward to a new culture and system for caring.”

Maureen Bisognano


“A wonderful resource for leaders with case studies and ideas harvested from organizations with results key to success today. The framework and tools are helpful for leaders at all levels and in all sites for health care.”

Maureen Bisognano


“With this book, Toussaint and Barnas address the elephant in the room by calling for a radically new way of leading our nation’s healthcare organizations. They aim to start nothing short of a revolution. Do you lead with humility; ask a lot of questions; not pretend to have the answers; and create an organization where everyone is a problem solver? If not, you read this book at your peril. You are being asked to change a large part of who you are”.

Stephen M. Shortell, PhD, MPH, MBA

Distinguished Professor of Health Policy and Management Emeritus and Dean Emeritus

Co-Director, Center for Lean Engagement and Research (CLEAR) in Healthcare

School of Public Health



“Becoming the Change provides much needed practical advice to health care leaders at all levels on both the reflection and actions required to change their leadership behaviors.   The book is filled with examples throughout and provides a template for a personal A3 that guides the leader through his or her leadership transformation.  Written by two accomplished leaders in healthcare improvement, the book is a compelling read that fills a real development need from the board of directors to the frontline.”

Peter Ward, Richard M Ross Chair in Management

Director, Center for Operational Excellence

Ohio State University