People

Stephen Covey

Stephen Covey

Formal First Name
Stephen
Dates
10/24/1932 - 7/16/2012

Stephen Covey was one of the world's foremost leadership authorities, organizational experts, and thought leaders. He is best known for his research and model: the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. He made teaching principle-centered living and principle-centered leadership his life's work. He provided training services to various leading international organizations for more than 30 years. His combination of intellect and empathy made him a truly unique and visionary individual.

Professional Experience


Academic History

THE SEVEN HABITS OF HIGHLY EFFECTIVE PEOPLE

  1. Be proactive.
  2. Begin with the end in mind.
  3. Put first things first.
  4. Think win-win.
  5. Seek first to understand.
  6. Synergize.
  7. Sharpen the saw.


EARLY LIFE 

  • Covey was born in Salt Lake City and grew up on an egg farm outside the city.
  • His promising athletic career was cut short by degeneration in his legs, causing him to use crutches for three years as a teenager.
  • He sometimes preached the Mormon doctrine on Boston Common.


EDUCATION

  • Covey entered the University of Utah at 16 and earned a degree in business administration.
  • He spent two years in Britain as a Mormon missionary before returning to the United States to earn an MBA from Harvard Business School.
  • After another missionary stint, in Ireland, he earned a doctorate in religious education from Brigham Young University. His thesis was on “success literature” in American history.
  • At Brigham Young, he became an assistant to the university’s president and began teaching his self-help ideas on campus, drawing as many as 1,000 students in a single class.


PUBLICATIONS

  • Covey was a Mormon. Some saw large elements of Mormon theology in his work, though his language was ecumenical.
  • He denied any Mormon bias in his books, saying he drew inspiration from the Scriptures and from history’s great thinkers.
  • His book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, sold more than 25 million copies worldwide and also became the first audiobook to sell more than a million copies.

RECOGNITIONS
  • In 1996, Time magazine named Covey one of the 25 most influential Americans.
  • Forbes called “Seven Habits” one of the top 10 business management books ever.
  • He received 10 honorary doctorate degrees.


FRANKLIN COVEY

  • In 1983, he gambled everything he owned on starting the Covey Leadership Center, a training and consulting concern in Provo, Utah.
  • In 1997, the Covey Leadership Center merged with Franklin Quest to become the Franklin Covey Company, which now operates in more than 50 countries.