October 18, 2007

7 Habits of Highly Effective People...In Haiku

Haiku, as you may know, is a Japanese poetry form that traditionally is only three lines long. The first line has five syllables, the second has seven and the third line has five. This form leads to incredibly terse statements that, remarkably, still deliver the message. In a recent presentation I gave at work on Stephen Covey's classic book, "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People", I summarized each of the seven habits as a haiku. Here's what I came up with...

1. Be Proactive
Be responsible:
Don’t blame you and don’t blame “them”.
Action is the key.

2. Begin With The End In Mind
Select your goal first,
Then your path is determined.
Now, take your first step!

3. Put First Things First
Prioritize it:
Do first what is important,
Then do all the rest.

4. Think Win/Win
This is what I want:
We both get what we both want.
(That is the best way.)

5. Seek First To Understand, Then To Be Understood
Listen intently,
Never, never, ever speak.
Then, speak a little.

6. Synergize
I am only one.
One is also all you are.
But combined, we’re three!

7. Sharpen The Saw
Busy, busy, oh!
Stop, relax and be refreshed.
That’s how you’ll improve.

I hope you enjoyed those, they were fun to write! I also learned more about each of these concepts in the process of trying to find 17 syllables that would best explain them. And so, the moral of the story is this: to understand a thing better, put it under a different light.

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Anonymous said...

Very clever! I enjoyed reading your haiku and admire your thinking.

Aaron Simmons said...

Thanks, I'm glad you enjoyed it.

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