Dr Stephen Covey’s book that was published in 1989 entitled “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” became a highly influential tome throughout the 20th Century. It explored the habits and guiding principles that help you change both personally and professionally thus becoming effective as a leader and ethical communicator.
He described three distinct phases of personal growth that become habits as we move through them and towards our desired goal. They are Dependance, Independence and Interdependence.
This forms the beginning of the journey, whereby we are dependent on others. If we did not personally develop and implement a strategy for this then we would always remain within this phase.
Through developing on a personal level, we become a lot more independent. We begin to take control of our actions in a more responsible manner.
It is at this stage that we become most effective. We do need others to help us achieve our desired goals but we are generally more self-reliant. It is at this stage that we realise that by working together as a team we will achieve greater results.
The seven habits then help guide us through each of these phases of personal development. Good leadership and ethical behaviour are intertwined. By embracing one, the other will follow.
By establishing a clear foundation as a leader that is underpinned by ethical values it will automatically make leading a team manageable and fun. So by incorporating truth, respect, fairness, responsibility, integrity and accountability into your strategy and methods it will make for a highly effective manager. Always treat others as you would wish to be treated yourself and by setting an ethical example others will automatically follow.
Harry Price is a freelance writer and artist who lives on the south coast. He loves travelling, cooking and marathon training, though not necessarily in that order or at the same time!