Have you ever seen those videos where they set up hundreds of dominos and then push the first one over causing a chain reaction of, eventually all the dominos falling over. Can you hear the sound all those dominos make as they fall? Can you picture the trail of the falling dominos as they loop and curve around and around? I always enjoy those short film clips when I get a chance to see them. Libby (now 10) and John (now 9) have fun from time to time setting up the dominos only to knock the first one over and watch the chain reaction.
Yesterday, I thought about a domino of sorts that caused a cascade of effects of change and learning all over the world. Stephen R. Covey the author of the famous “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” passed away yesterday from complications from injuries he sustained in a bicycle accident three months ago. It wasn’t yesterday that the domino fell though, it was 33 years ago when he wrote and released his aforementioned leadership manifesto “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.” That book sold some 20 million copies and there my friends are the dominos. All those readers, then students shared the concepts Dr. Covey discussed in his book.
Dr. Covey was quick to admit that few new ideas could be found in his landmark book and the publishing and motivational-speaking empire he built around it. None the less the way he presented his 7 habits was unique because the concepts weren’t so much about business as they were about character. When asked time and again what was magical about the number 7, Dr Covey would say that “there was nothing esoteric or special about why I chose the number seven. .?.?. It just happened to turn out that way.”
Here are the 7 maxims.
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.
7. Sharpen the saw The quest to always improve!
If you have never read “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” you really should. Learn to internalize the Seven concepts and then to share (teach) them to others on your team, family or association. The trail of dominos continues to move… one person to the next as far as the eye can see… and then on some more.