Forum

  • If you are new to these Forums, please take a moment to register using the fields above.

Announcement

Announcement Module
Collapse
No announcement yet.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

Page Title Module
Move Remove Collapse
X
Conversation Detail Module
Collapse
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

    The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

    Powerful Lessons in Personal Change was a groundbreaker when it was first published in 1990, and it continues to be a business bestseller with more than 10 million copies sold. Stephen Covey, an internationally respected leadership authority, realizes that true success encompasses a balance of personal and professional effectiveness, so this book is a manual for performing better in both arenas. His anecdotes are as frequently from family situations as from business challenges.
    Before you can adopt the seven habits, you'll need to accomplish what Covey calls a "paradigm shift"--a change in perception and interpretation of how the world works. Covey takes you through this change, which affects how you perceive and act regarding productivity, time management, positive thinking, developing your "proactive muscles" (acting with initiative rather than reacting), and much more.


    This isn't a quick-tips-start-tomorrow kind of book. The concepts are sometimes intricate, and you'll want to study this book, not skim it. When you finish, you'll probably have Post-it notes or hand-written annotations in every chapter, and you'll feel like you've taken a powerful seminar by Covey. --Joan Price--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
    Click here to more details & FREE DOWNLOAD

    [code] http://www.xdown.org/viewtopic.php?t=28 [code]

    mahamnoor1973-post

  • #2
    I found Covey to be the most idealistic, nebulous, and irrelevant time management writer I have ever read. I will admit my copy was, as the review suggests, heavily underlined on many pages. But whenever I revisited it, I found that it added up to just so much hot air, which vanished after I put it down.

    Eventually I dropped it in the trash.

    Time management should take us to where the rubber meets the road ... not park us somewhere in orbit gazing down on the world. 7 Habits is not so much a book on time management as a collection of sermons. When you read it you end up feeling like some sort of irresponsible sinner, pummelled on the head for hours with righteous pillows.

    The daily organizer is less than useless: you carefully work out your number one priority for the day, focus your energy and enthusiasm on it … then at 2 minutes past nine your table of priorities is kicked over by today’s crisis. What hope have you of refocusing your energies to deal with your new duties?

    And when the heck is the right time focus on a priority C3 task?

    Covey might be good for Sunday service reflection, but it is a waste of time for real world time management. Reading it actually de-motivated me.

    Franklin Covey may have had something good to say at the start, but it seems to me that they are now just another stationery and luggage retailer.

    Dave

    Comment


    • #3
      Amen to that!

      I totally agree. I read 7 Habits at the suggestion of a colleague. Though I'm glad that I read it, the preachy overtones were way too much to handle.

      It has now found a happy place on my book shelf, never to be opened again.

      JC

      Comment


      • #4
        There is a simple way to incorporate Covey's plan: Weekly planning.

        I've read the 7th & 8th habits, and while I didn't find him too preachy, I do ffel there's a lot of hot air, or what I lik to call "feel good speak" - I will admit I do use his Indian Talking Stick analogy when having heated discussions with colleagues and my wife from time to time

        I feel that it's important to start at the top and work down. I've totally discounted the A1, A2, B3 thing. (I was just at a Covey workshop yesterday and left at lunch. It just isn't that realistic, but isn't DA's approach similar with the levels of importance???

        Here's what I do, and I use the FC software to help with this, but just to help...

        Sunday afternoon, I look at what I've already got on my schedule for the next week and place "Block Time" around those appointments and commitments to ensure that I'm courteous and run on schedule. I next look at my mission, core values and goals and do my best to schedule at least 2-3 of these. I give them an estimate of the amount of time I think they need to be completed, or if it's a longer project, a suitable amount of time for good progress. I next make notations of where I may be running behind and schedule a Block (for those of you who have used or listened to Anthony Robins' lectures, my blocks are not an exact correlation to an RPM Block) for Catch-up.

        The important thing that I just learned yesterday was to not schedule past 65% of my time, this way you have the option of filling in those spaces with the little fires that crop up during a work week...

        Hope that helps,

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Busydave
          I found Covey to be the most idealistic, nebulous, and irrelevant time management writer I have ever read.
          Dave

          Yeah, 7-Habits is a load of crap.

          1 - Be Proactive: Why make life difficult by taking control when you can just wake up in the morning and let things and people happen to you all day long?

          2 - Begin with the End in Mind: Actually plan for the future? What a waste of time. The future happens by itself--it doesn't need us to help it.

          3 - Put First things First: Why on earth would I want to make room in my schedule for things that are important to me? Besides, my parents got Tivo so I can watch my favorite TV shows any time I want.

          4 - Think Win Win: Why would I actually care about what's important to the people in my life. Heck, my mom is my mom. She'll love me forever.

          5 - Seek First to Understand: Nah. The more I listen, the less I get to talk.

          6 - Synergize: I'm all I need--'nuff said.

          7 - Sharpen the Saw: Entropy is the natural order of things. Fighting nature can only lead to bad things.

          Yeah. It's definitely not worth my valuable to stop and think about such trivial subjects.

          C

          PS. Time management is only related to 1 of the 7 habits and even that one has nothing to do with ABC prioritization (in fact Covey criticizes it)

          Comment


          • #6
            But my point is, aren’t these 7 habits so obvious that it is an insult on Covey’s part to imply that we need to read them? Is he trying to make out that these are great secrets that he (and he only) has discovered through his own experience? And is he now making bazillions of dollars by packaging everyday knowledge in a style of cover normally reserved for college business books?

            Reading the obvious can be a rewarding experience first time round. You start with the (dangerous) assumption that if something is in print, it must be authoritative. So you read on and find lots of things that strike a chord with you, and you underline and underline. At the end you have a warm fuzzy feeling – this writer understands you, and further more, he has defused a lot of your day to day tension and mild paranoia by reassuring you that, hey, most other people feel the same way: you’re not falling behind, you’re not out of step.

            But it’s the re-read that tells the real story: a book that gives you even five or six nuggets to apply to the way you do things on a daily basis was worth the money. A book that launches you into a whole new way of tracking your life is a real find. But a book that leaves you saying “Yes, very nice, but I knew all that already” is a waste of money.

            Comment


            • #7
              I agree that the Covey 7 Habits thing is not that useful, I see it as a type of Preaching, which lots of people like, but I don't.

              As far as the FC software!!!! Don't get me started! I used that junk long ago, and there was an online support forum with so many complaints, that FC shut it down, and deleted a massive archive of info.
              Then they moved to where they CHARGE people for software support. Very cynical, build junk software literally full of endless bugs, and then charge the poor folks to try and get it working!

              I find Covey to be dealing in selling what philosopher Daniel Dennett calls "skyhooks".

              Covey is a good Preacher. I won't go off topic here, but if you look back to Covey's book "The Divine Center" he explains how he is going to translate religious concepts into more secular words to reach a broader audience, and this is exactly what he did, and continues to do.
              For those of us who are not religious, this is a big turn off.
              Even lots of religious folks have problems with Covey's hidden religious theology, which is embedded in his missionary writings, which frankly, are what his books are about.

              http://www.hismin.com/habits.htm
              http://www.cephasministry.com/mormon_stephen_covey.html
              http://www.apologeticsindex.org/c13.html
              Last edited by CosmoGTD; 03-31-2006, 09:00 PM.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Cikub
                Yeah, 7-Habits is a load of crap.
                ....

                Yeah. It's definitely not worth my valuable to stop and think about such trivial subjects.

                C

                PS. Time management is only related to 1 of the 7 habits and even that one has nothing to do with ABC prioritization (in fact Covey criticizes it)
                OK, good, you can do sarcasm- always so win-win . I will freely admit that I got a few valuable insights from Covey's 7 Habits and First Things First books. However, there are many books that are just as inspirational.. and a lot shorter, with less "quantum synergy" and similar stuff. Covey never had a decent approach to daily and weekly work that helped me. Franklin had that, but it ultimately relied on a very disciplined approach to time management. Franklin-Covey teachings today are an amalgam of Covey and Hyrum Smith plus reactions to the changing landscape of work. GTD is frankly just a lot easier at the levels of next actions and projects, and at the higher levels you can pick and choose.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I think the differences between the main writers lies in their view on life. Tony Robbins urges you to really go for it: get everything you can out of life, at hi-octane pace. David Allen is more serene: get the mind clear, release all that creative energy, be a calm centre in the eye of the storm.

                  Covey seems to want us to be servants first and foremost. He aligns life’s tangles along the lines of “roles”. These are probably not that different from Robbins' areas of life management. But Robbins wants your relationships to be buzzing, juiced, and fulfilling. Covey, on the other hand, sees roles as categories of selfless service.

                  While I understood, most of Covey’s thinking, the one topic of his that I could never come to terms with was the idea of “Mission”. It seems to me to be a tragically narrow-focussed way to go through life. Also, it seems to be rich in religious overtones, leaving little room for any other interpretation.

                  Dave

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    It's been a while since I read Seven Habits, but I seem to remember that the Mission thing grew out of Covey's discovery that people with a strong sense of purpose are both more effective and happier. Which makes sense.

                    The problem is that development of a personal Mission is, by definition, a deeply introspective exercise. The process is inherently subjective, but Covey needed an objective (i.e. salable to business execs) approach. What he ended up with was (IMO), pretty much guaranteed to be worthless.

                    Katherine

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by CosmoGTD


                      I find Covey to be dealing in selling what philosopher Daniel Dennett calls "skyhooks".

                      [/url]
                      That’s an excellent way to put it!!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I got value from 7 Habits

                        I'm no fan of religion, but I got great value from 7 Habits, and I remember clearly appreciating that here was this Mormon guy who was translating good living into non-religious skills; I loved him for that. True, this was 1990, and now many of those ideas are well-known. But back then, the first time I saw that circle-within-a-circle, describing the distinction between what's in my control and what's out of my control, was a true epiphany. I was grateful beyond words for that insight alone. I'm *still* grateful for it!

                        I didn't find him too preachy. I took great value from much of the book, and left the rest behind.

                        As far as sarcasm goes, I actually like it as a communication tool. I chuckled at Cikub's post. No need to fight here.

                        As I see it, if I get one idea from a $20 book that can make me happier, more productive, make me some moolah, or get me to lighten up or improve my sex life... man, that was $20 well spent. As long as you're not searching for enlightenment or the next messiah, I highly recommend 7 Habits. Some good ideas in there.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Mission statements

                          I'm under the impression that the current trend (fad?) for making mission statements either started with Covey or was popularized by him. Does anyone here know for sure?

                          Mission statements undoubtedly have much value in clarifying one's thinking or the thinking of a group, but sometimes I think their ubiquity has lessened their force. They seem to be de rigueur for everyone from the CEOs of megacorporations down to kindergarden children. "You're nobody without a mission statement" seems to be the silent message. Any other opinions?
                          Last edited by Day Owl; 12-07-2005, 10:48 AM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Busydave
                            But my point is, aren’t these 7 habits so obvious that it is an insult on Covey’s part to imply that we need to read them? Is he trying to make out that these are great secrets that he (and he only) has discovered through his own experience? And is he now making bazillions of dollars by packaging everyday knowledge in a style of cover normally reserved for college business books?
                            Your criticism of Covey is unreasonable. In your first post, you say the book is a useless hot air, but now you say it's "obvious." Which is it?

                            Covey never said that he and only he discovered any secrets through his own experience. He said that he looked for themes throughout published "wisdom literature" and "success literature."

                            On the other hand, David Allen does emphasize his own experience in coaching "senior and savvy executives."

                            And it is hard to see how an enthusiast of David Allen's Getting Things Done(TM) can criticitize someone for "making bazillions of dollars for packaging everyday knowledge"! You have got to be kidding.

                            Exactly what in the book Getting Things Done is not obvious? There is little in there I didn't already know I needed to do. I have a hard time believing that people don't know they need to read all their email and decide what to do with it. Writing things down is hardly revolutionary; the Day-Timer I bought many years ago came with the advice "Think with a pencil in your hand." Breaking projects down into individual steps is not a new idea, either. And so on.

                            The main value in these kinds of books is to package mostly-known material and maybe a couple new ideas in a comprehensive and motivating way. Perhaps some of the ideas will be new to some readers and thus be valuable in their new presentation as well.

                            Originally posted by Busydave
                            Reading the obvious can be a rewarding experience first time round. You start with the (dangerous) assumption that if something is in print, it must be authoritative.
                            I don't know which of the 7 habits should be challenged as patently untrue. On the other hand, what about the ridiculous nonsense about Baroque music at 60 beats per minute having an effect on creativity? The authority behind this statement are the equivalent of snake oil peddlers. It is not true simply because David Allen repeats it.

                            Originally posted by Busydave
                            But it’s the re-read that tells the real story: a book that gives you even five or six nuggets to apply to the way you do things on a daily basis was worth the money.
                            The 7 Habits book frankly discussed principles of purpose, individual character, and the building of relationships. There are many ideas that can be implemented, but you have to apply the principles yourself.

                            The goals in question are hard to achieve but nonetheless worthwhile. Speaking for myself, I do want to live my life with purpose and integrity, and I do want to build close and satisfying relationships. Applying several of the 7 habits on a daily basis has enriched my closest relationships, and I doubt I would have thought of them on my own.

                            The 7 Habits book has repeatedly been criticized on this forum as an inferior time-management approach, but it was obviously not meant to be a time management book at all. The only message related to time management was that you must make time, preferably each week, for activities that are important but not urgent. And that you must minimize activities that are urgent but not important, or just not important at all. These principles are pretty much universally true.

                            After you get the "big rocks" into your schedule, Covey assumes the rest will fill itself with the urgent stuff of life. Covey assumes that you know how to get new tires for your car and that you will just do it. David Allen noticed that people don't necessarily know how to get new tires and elaborated on this in great detail.

                            Allen, on the other hand, assumes that people will always intuitively know what their priorities should be. But it's clear from reading the many questions on the forum that many people don't. And GTD offers no practical help for that problem. It was interesting to see David Allen's blog post about his recent epiphany about priorities, which is strikingly similar to a question Covey posed in the 7 Habits book years ago.

                            Neither book contains everything you need to know for your entire life. They address entirely different levels. One addresses the level of character and relationships. The other addresses the level of tires and ticklers. Of course low-level details will appear more practical because by definition they are very concrete. That doesn't mean that high-level purpose is useless. Both books have their place. The two books do not address the same levels of life and should not be compared.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Day Owl
                              Mission statements undoubtedly have much value in clarifying one's thinking or the thinking of a group, but sometimes I think their ubiquity has lessened their force. They seem to be de rigueur for everyone from the CEOs of megacorporations down to kindergarden children. "You're nobody without a mission statement" seems to be the silent message. Any other opinions?
                              The problem I see with mission statements is that most of them are just not true. The value of a good mission is obvious, but organizations shortcut the process of developing one. Worse, some organizations can't present their true mission because it does not sound marketable or appealing -- such as "Create massive wealth for shareholders, especially for top executives." The true mission is inferred by examining the past behavior of the organization, which is clearly at odds with the mission printed on the plaques on the walls.

                              Another problem with mission statements is that a person or organization may have no idea what they really want to achieve at that high level. I certainly couldn't come up with a satisfying mission when I first read about them, because I was too young and didn't know myself well enough.

                              But when a person or organization does have a true and worthwhile mission, the power is amazing. Google is an example; so far, they have been completely driven by their mission.

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X