The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People – Book Review

For May’s book I used a slightly different format. I came across Audible when Ron McKeefrey was giving away his book CEO Strength Coach for free.
You may remember in my previous post on 10 ways to improve as a coach that I quite like using a podcast as part of my commute to maximize time and invest in my development. Well another one I could add to that category is Audible – really useful way to utilize audio books…

 Title: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

Authors: Stephen R. Covey

Topic: Personal development, communication, psychology

Appropriate for: S&C Coaches, Technical Coaches, Parents, Teachers,

Overall rating: 5/5 (if you haven’t already – get reading!)

Overview: This book has been around for a LONG time and with good reason. Stephen Covey divulges some really challenging material and concepts that will make you rethink the way you work, coach, teach and relate to others, as well as how you judge yourself. Having said that, it wasn’t an easy listen, so I doubt it is an easy read either. Some of the terminology used and concepts presented can be quite difficult to grasp first time around, so I think I’ll be revisiting this again in the future!
Key areas addressed prior to the 7 habits themselves are:

  • Inside-out: we need to change internally to influence the external
  • Paradigms: basically what pre-conditioning exists in our perspectives
  • Personality vs character ethic: why some self-help materials are inappropriate and why a character ethic should be the focus.
  • Work/life balance: Production vs Production capability

He then delves into the 7 habits:

  1. Be Proactive: Act or be acted upon
  2. Begin with the end in mind: Your personal mission statement/centre
  3. Put first things first:  Keeping your focus and not getting distracted
  4. Think Win-Win: Why both parties need to win in relationships
  5. Seek first to understand, then to be understood: Understanding personal context
  6. Synergize: Creative cooperation
  7. Sharpen the saw: Invest in yourself and your own growth

Overall, I think reading this book is a real investment in yourself. Whether you read it physically or listen to it via an audio book, it will challenge your perspectives and priorities. It will also help you better understand your work colleagues, athletes and friends. I would recommend it to just about anyone, provided they have the patience to really chew over the content. Personally, I’ve come away with plenty to work on in my own professional and personal life and I’m sure you will too.
You can find the book on amazon here:The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
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