I remember many years ago, I read the famous book “The 7 Habits of Highly Successful People” by Stephen Covey. I found it interesting to adapt his valuable advice to the daily activities of entrepreneurs, since this would allow them to achieve essential achievements because, in many cases, the bad habits of our everyday life prevent us from arising and prevent our ventures from occurring.
We must remember that each belief, each action, each habit and each undertaking begins in our thinking and is made sustainable by our will, perseverance and determination. Our habits are the software of our life, and these determine our automatic actions, our subconscious responses.
The 7 habits of highly successful people based on Stephen Covey
The first habit pointed out by Covey refers to Proactivity. Can you imagine an entrepreneur who is not proactive? That almost impossible. An entrepreneur must be proactive because the different stages of the entrepreneurship started will require the individual to assume different roles with varying degrees of complexity, and for this, not only are skills, abilities and competencies as are necessary for entrepreneurship, but large doses will be required. Willing to take on challenges.
An entrepreneur must be willing to take on new challenges continually, because in general, however, planned an entrepreneur might be, the natural environment of entrepreneurship is uncertainty. In this type of situation like the COVID-19 pandemic affecting the whole world at this time, you must have a high level of awareness and responsible behaviour, understanding very well your frustrations and accomplishments, the challenges to be assumed and their consequent responses, in addition to understanding and master your ambition.
Covey like this called the second habit: Start with the end in mind. Obviously, if an entrepreneur has no idea where he wants to go, much less will he be able to start the trajectory with some minimal chance of hitting the target.
It is required to be the first leader of oneself and understand that one’s destiny as a person and that of our entrepreneurship largely depend on our actions. So, it is necessary to understand and internalize the reason for the existence of our venture and its primary mission, beyond the mere generation of wealth. It is also essential that the entrepreneur understands and internalizes the future vision of his project.
Of course, an active entrepreneur could not be if he does not establish a clear Order in the priorities. That’s what the third habit defined by Covey is all about. We must find the differences between what is essential and what is urgent because this is decisive in determining the priority and quality of the decisions that are made daily and thus make the existence and performance of our enterprise more productive.
“The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.” – Stephen R Covey
The author defines as urgent those activities that require immediate actions and as important those activities that are directly related to the results. In this way, in the daily development of our events, we will come across businesses that in a state of crisis will be simultaneously urgent and essential, others that will be important, but not critical, so that the administration of the enterprise will be proactive.
These are the quadrants in which an entrepreneur must maintain his continuous management of crucial activities because in this way the objectives and goals can be defined in the short, medium and long term, although in today’s challenges, characterized by constant changes in In the economic, political, legal and social environment, planning tends to be projected simply in the medium term.
Procuring and guaranteeing the benefit of all those related to entrepreneurship is one of the main tasks of the entrepreneur who acts in good faith and takes his project seriously. If some of the parties are harmed, the venture will become unfeasible. Covey defined the fourth habit as Think Win-Win.
Always, in any personal, work or business relationship, the mutual benefit must be the premise. This contributes to balancing human relationships and achieving mutual satisfaction.
“The key is taking responsibility and initiative, deciding what your life is about and prioritizing your life around the most important things.” – Stephen R Covey
It is sufficiently demonstrated and documented that not understanding and not acting by following this principle is the leading cause of significant failures and social, political and commercial conflicts.
The fifth habit, defined by Covey tells us that you must first try to understand and then be understood. Wisely, the author outlines the supreme importance of communication. With this, we can understand that if an entrepreneur does not do a clear reading about the needs of their potential customers or users, they will not be able to define their value proposition, nor their minimum viable product.
It is decisive to identify, with a high level of precision, the needs that we must satisfy our clients in the present and the future. After there, we are in a position to make ourselves heard, exposing our proposal and giving our venture more opportunities.
Synergy is the penultimate of the seven habits. By understanding the importance of achieving results superior to those achieved individually when working collectively effectively, even more, significant results are achieved. You just have to realize that the outcome of collective work is excellent for individual work, but only when it is done well.
When we are undertaking, not all collective work is done well, so not all processes that are believed to be synergistic necessarily are. Hence the importance of staying proactive and continually adapting our management on the project, innovating, growing, giving new approaches to entrepreneurship, but with the firm intention of obtaining validated knowledge.
The seventh habit described by Covey consists of sharpening the saw or taking a restful rest to be able to observe our undertaking and its different edges from another perspective, giving rise to the possibility of making adjustments, redefining objectives and goals and expanding the vision of the project… If we cannot redefine ourselves on the fly, reinvent ourselves, reengineer our business based on the constant changes in the environment, our business will have little chance of survival.
Personally internalizing the seven habits of highly successful people defined by Stephen Covey is a necessity for many people. Still, I am sure that applying them in the development and evolution of business represents a fact that will make the difference between the continuous growth or the death of our business or draft.