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Principal Centered Leadership
Stephan R. Covey
Covey Text Comments
Submitted by: Ladd Kocinski
International Falls Cohort
Covey presents an amazing amount of information on how to improve ones self no matter what the situation or the area to improve. He has very clear-cut ideas on what needs improvement and how to do it. Just going through his eight characteristics of principal centered leaders leaves one feeling a bit inadequate when considering so many personal traits and attitudes to be good at. He mentions the creator and his close feeling toward divine destiny. This is a comfortable thought for people who believe this approach to existence but must be hard for others to grasp even though most of his statements and outcomes make sense. Hopefully people not of a religious nature would not feel his whole idea is out of line because he believes in God, the creator.
He brings up the law of the farm more than once throughout the book. One must agree that this certainly applies to many areas of life. The quick fix more often than not does not work. Steady progress over the long haul and a method to the madness seem to bring much more success in the end. Natural laws and principals operate regardless so these need to be at the center of ones life.
Covey discusses what is needed to make life a mission and adventure. He gives many examples of how positive feelings can come from very simple as well as great accomplishments. An example he puts forth is getting out of bed early. As he says putting the mind over the mattress. Such an early morning victory gives a sense of conquering, overcoming, and mastering. This propels one to further conquer difficulties.
He has many lists for many different aspects of life. Seven habits, three resolutions, seven sins, thirty methods of influences, eight ways, seven problems, and six conditions are just a few. Many more are listed and explained very clearly to the reader.
Covey brings W. Edwards Deming into his discussion and enlightenment. Deming was quite a manager and a philosopher in his own right and many people think he was the savior of Japan. That could be disputed.
As one reads through Coveys book, it is apparent that it is very difficult to fulfill all these fine human attributes he discusses. The book seems to be an endless list of the ten commandments. Certainly no one can live completely and truthfully within the commandments and the same seems to apply to Coveys philosophy.
Reading the book and trying to affect change in ones life in a positive manner toward Coveys ideas would be a great achievement. He has an immense amount of information and organization to give mankind and is certainly a positive light in what can be a sea of darkness. His book is intriguing and uplifting to those who have a mind to make themselves and the world better than the status quo.
-- Anonymous, May 12, 1999