So what is the verdict?
I can’t seem to find any academics slamming the 7 habits (but I have given it half a day not a month so do let me know what I missed). On the contrary I found a few articles in top journals* using his tools for their specialty (i.e., pharmacology and nursing). I also see he was himself and academic. So far so good, I think I’ll go further.
But first I have long forgotten what the 7 habits actually are, so let’s start with a recap for your sake and mine:
- Be Proactive – Wow this baby is big it is much more than Nikes ‘just do it’. It is doing it with self-awareness, with reference to your personal values, by leveraging your own unique awesomeness and more. I do like the sound of this. It feels intuitively useful no?
- Begin with the End in Mind – Get your mission statement going mate.
- Put First Things First – “The main thing is to keep the main, thing the main thing”
- Think Win-Win – This one sounds a wee bit too hippy dippy, law of attraction, abundance blah blah for me. But I shan’t judge this book by its cover.
- Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood – Easier than it sounds.
- Synergize – that feels a bit last millennium, corporate bingo now huh?
- Sharpen the Saw – you never know when you need to prune a tree. Actually it’s about working on our four domains: physical, social/emotional, mental and spiritual. I’d say this is very much interlinking with habit 1.
So there we have the 7 habits of highly effective people. Over the coming weeks I’ll take each one and see what evidence exists for it.
* You can enter journal titles and see their ranking here. Understanding them is another thing – I’ll get around to a post on that eventually.