I was first acquainted with Stephen Covey about twenty years ago, when a close business friend of mine gave me a copy of his early best-seller, Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People. My friend, Bill, knew I liked all kinds of business, leadership, and personal-improvement books, and figured I'd like this one.
He was right. By the time I had finished Seven Habits, I knew I had read a book as good and valuable as Dale Carnegie's classic, How To Win Friends And Influence People. And perhaps Seven Habits stood on a stronger, more consistent philosophical and practical foundation. This wasn't about sales or influence; it was about individual effectiveness and worth -- character.
Over the years, I would add to my Stephen Covey library. Principle-Centered Leadership, First Things First, and The 8th Habit all found their way to my shelves. For me, he was a teacher's teacher.
I liked Covey's kindness, optimism, ethics, practicality, and spiritual dimensions, which were fully reflected not only in his writings, but in the way he conducted his seminars and his business. His 8th Habit advice, "Find your voice; and help others to find their voice," encouraged me in the classroom in recent years: I had felt that way for a long time, but . . .
He was the one who put it into words, and his words moved people all over the world.
Thanks, Stephen Covey. Go with God.