“Seek first to understand,” my little girl admonished me a few months ago, when I reprimanded her before asking any questions about a situation. I was busted.
A few weeks earlier I had tried to pass along one of the lessons from Stephen R. Covey’s The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. She remembered my words, and I had neglected to practice what I was preaching.
More than two decades after Covey’s book became a best-seller, the advice stands as guidance for living an effective and meaningful life. Have you re-read it lately? Have your newest employees ever read it?
I remember the first time I heard part of the book, when a conference speaker related Covey’s anecdote about a Sunday morning ride on a New York Citysubway and the paradigm shift that occurred during that ride. I first read The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People shortly after that, and I listened to an audio recording of it earlier this year.
Covey’s death this week offers an opportunity to pull out his book and review those guiding principles, to assess how well you are following the seven habits. Share it with your team members too. Even a small change, such as switching from reactive to proactive language, will make a big difference in your organization.
[Image Source: Wikipedia Commons]