Discovering Life, Learning and Leadership

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

Stephen R. Covey

Do you want to make a difference in life?  Are you interested in being effective?  If so, you simply must read this book.

I read The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People in January 2004 and rated it extremely high as one of the best leadership books.  However, it is more than a book about how to be an effective leader.  It presents well thought-out and proven lessons in personal change and is about how to be a more effective person in all areas of your life.

Stephen R. Covey commences the book talking about paradigms and principles, outlines his thinking on habits and how powerful they can be and then moves into a framework that provides a chapter for each of his Seven Habits:

Private Victory (moving from Dependence to Independence)

  • Habit 1: Be Proactive
  • Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind
  • Habit 3: Put First Things First

Public Victory (moving from Independence to Interdependence)

  • Habit 4: Think Win/Win
  • Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood
  • Habit 6: Synergize

Renewal

  • Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw

While I found each of the habits instructive and helpful, in my personal experience a few of them have been really transformational.  I hesitate to mention which ones as I expect that it will be different for each person and I really encourage you to read the book and learn for yourself.

At Creation Technologies, where it is my pleasure to serve as President & CEO, we are blessed with three certified 7 Habits Trainers and have taught the course that grew out of the book to over 700 of our people.  This has proven to be a key focus in our overall Leadership Development program and, even more importantly, has been a great investment in enriching lives.  We have included customers and other business partners in some of the training and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.

It has been my personal pleasure to share some of my learnings from The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People with people at work, at my church and in other countries while on a short-term mission trip and it has been encouraging to see how these principles are relevant and of benefit to people in a wide range of life and leadership contexts and in different cultures.  One of our Creation trainers recently taught the course at a charity in Africa as well as at our Creation Business Unit in Changzhou China.

According to Wikipedia, more than 15 million copies of the book have been published in 38 different languages.

Have you read the book?  Did you find it helpful?  What did you like best about it?  Were there parts you didn’t like?  Have you attended the course?  What has challenged you the most about the 7 Habits?  Do you have any good stories to share?  I welcome your thoughts and comments.

6 Comments to The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

  1. Mary M Russell's Gravatar Mary M Russell
    Aug 4, 2011 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

    I read the book soon after it was first release and thought it was very interesting. I wonder if I still have a copy some where, I’d like to reread it.

  2. Jay Medina's Gravatar Jay Medina
    Aug 6, 2011 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

    I read this book in 2006 and it’s very interesting. I wish I would of read it 20 years ago!

  3. Dwayne Bernitt's Gravatar Dwayne Bernitt
    Aug 7, 2011 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    I attended the session provided by Creation Technologies. The program provides effective methods for responding to the daily challenges we face. The quotations and proverbs from well known individuals allows us to learn from our predecessors and makes us realize the value of life long learning.

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When we can no longer change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.
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