The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Summary – Stephen Covey

Before starting The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Summary, let’s discuss the author, Stephen Covey, who was born in October 24, 1932 and died July 16, 2012 . The book by Stephen Covey 7 Habits was first published in August 15, 1989.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Summary

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Summary
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Summary

In Stephen Covey’s book “7 Habits of Highly Effective People”, there are 7 ideas, or “Habits” to becoming a successful person.

  1. Be Proactive
  2. Begin with the End in Mind
  3. Put First Things First
  4. Think Win/Win
  5. Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood
  6. Synergize
  7. Sharpen the Saw

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Summary – Be Proactive

Do you know someone who complains a lot? The electricity bill is too high, education costs are too expensive. That, is a reactive person. Reactive people’s feelings depend on external events they have no control over. If you put a fire under a reactive person’s hand, they would probably complain about how much it hurts. A proactive person, on the other hand, would move their hand away from the fire. Sure, I may be exaggerating a bit. But it happens ALL the time. A lot of people criticize about something, when they could be using their time coming up with a solution. Proactive people may have the early reaction when something happens “Oh no, there’s a fire under my hand”, but they speedily use that as a motivator to doing something about it.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Summary – Begin with the End in Mind

Like most people, I used to go with the flow. I would wake up, go to school, and get a degree without really thinking much about it because that’s the “normal” thing to do, but if you want to be highly effective, you have to initiate with the end in mind. For me, getting a degree just seemed like the most logical thing to do from the way I was brought up. But it was really “required” to get into the career I wanted? How can I get into that career without a degree if I had to? Those were questions I never asked. University was where I gained the majority of my independence and networking skills so I never regretted that experience, but in terms of actual academic education, I could have learned more by reading 10 books than all 4 years of undergrad. So it really rest on what your goals are. Start questioning why you are doing something. Begin with the end in mind.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Summary – Put First Things First

Out of the 7 habits, this was by far, the most simple, yet most difficult, for me. We all spend time doing things that are not moving us forward. Sometimes I catch myself going on a youtube video marathon, when I should be doing something more important. Start getting into the habit of excluding tasks that are not in line with your goals. Somebody once said, “Don’t be stingy with your money, be stingy with your time.” Money, you can always make back, but time is gone forever. A tip that has worked well for me is to always get enough sleep. Our willpower is stringer when we are well rested. Also, do the important things in the morning while our willpower is at a maximum.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Summary – Think Win-Win.

Let’s say I decide to hire someone to do my video animations. Let’s assumes that the average cost of animating a video is $300 but I am only paying the animator 250. That is an example of a win-lose situation. If she does take on the job, she probably wouldn’t be too happy, and would leave as soon as she finds another jobs willing to pay her $300. All win-lose situations end up being lose-lose situations. What if instead, I paid her $350, which is $50 more than the average. I’m still making money from the video so it is a win-win situation. The reason why win-lose situations don’t work is because people are not stupid. They will eventually realize that they have the short end of the stick and they leave. When we create win-win situations, we still have something to gain, and we can repeat the process to create more profits.

Costco understood the concept of win-win. They pay their staff higher than average wages and they even offer health benefits to part-time employees. They are making less profit than if they were to pay the staff minimum wage, but they make it all back from their ability to rapidly increase the number of stores by having high employee satisfaction and retention rates. In other words, they make the money back from not having to waste time hiring new people to replace unhappy employees who quit.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Summary – Seek First to Understand, then to be Understood

Let’s say I wrote a book and I told you to buy my book because I spent a lot of time on it. It probably wouldn’t persuade you to buy it because I didn’t attempt to understand what YOU have to gain from buying my book. When we understand the other person and put ourselves in their shoes, we are able to find the reasons they would benefit from buying our book. If you were telling a family member who cares about you, about your new book that you’ve spent a lot of time on, they would probably buy it, but that is because you understand that they care about you, and would support you in the things you do. What if it was someone you just met? They probably wouldn’t care about you. How could you use what they’ve given you to persuade them to buy your book. More importantly, will they benefit from buying your book? Remember to think win-win, if they don’t benefit from buying your book, then by all means don’t make the deal. Understand the other person first, and then you will be understood.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Summary – Synergize

The conception of synergy is simple, two heads are better than one. If there are two people, and they’re both too short to reach an apple. If one person climbs on top of the other, they can reach it and their combined efforts would give them more than their individual efforts. I know, it seems like common sense, but let me put it into perspective to show just how powerful synergy is. Let’s say I meet a product designer with 15 years of experience and she helps me create a product I can sell.

The advice from her is the same as having spent 15 years myself, learning about product design. Now, let’s say I meet a web marketer also with 15 years of experience, and he shows me how sell my product internationally. I now have 30 years of experience in my arsenal from just working with 3 people. The world’s most successful business have teams like that one. When Mark Zuckerberg created facebook, he had a specialized team that would work together every night to create new ideas. We only have a set amount of time in our lives to acquire certain skills, but our ability to synergize with others is unlimited.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Summary – Sharpen the Saw.

The idea of sharpening the saw means to always become a better person. Whether it’s through attaining new knowledge, experiencing new environments, or maintaining and improving our health. Always strive to be better person than you were yesterday. In the book “Richest man in Babylon”, One of the secrets to attaining wealth is to always increase you capacity to earn. The same principle goes beyond money, are you a more valuable person today than you were yesterday? Read books, learn more about what you’re good at. Keep your body healthy. Sharpen the saw. That was the 7 habits of highly effective people, by Stephen covey.

I hope you will have understood the complete “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Summary”. If you are interested to read the complete book, you can free Download or buy The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People pdf.

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The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Stephen Covey Quotes

  • But until a person can say deeply and honestly, “I am what I am today because of the choices I made yesterday,” that person cannot say, “I choose otherwise.
  • Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.
  • Treat a man as he is and he will remain as he is. Treat a man as he can and should be and he will become as he can and should be.
  • Start with the end in mind.
  • To change ourselves effectively, we first had to change our perceptions.
  • Two people can see the same thing, disagree, and yet both be right. It’s not logical; it’s psychological.
  • When the trust account is high, communication is easy, instant, and effective.
  • We see the world, not as it is, but as we are – or, as we are conditioned to see it.
  • It’s not what happens to us, but our response to what happens to us that hurts us.
  • to learn and not to do is really not to learn. To know and not to do is really not to know.

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