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Library Journal Review
A personal-development guru, best-selling author, and father of nine, Covey has done it again. Here he espouses the same seven habits to live by as he did in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (S. & S., 1989), but this time the focus is strictly on the family. While his message is not new, it is written with sincerity and simplicity, and even the most career-driven individual should feel passionate about family after reading this book. Covey contends that all families get off track, mostly because they don't know where the track is headed. The remedy: develop a sense of destination. As in Effective People, each chapter here explains the significance of one of the "habits," illustrated by personal stories. Chapters conclude with practical suggestions for putting the habits into action. At times hokey, at times virtuous, always thoughtful and enlightening, this book is recommended for all libraries. [This is the publisher's first adult title.Ed.]Kimberly Lynn, Reading P.L., Mass. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Publishers Weekly Review
Covey's "7 Habits" ("Be proactive"; "Begin with the end in mind," etc.) have become well-known in business and in the field of personal self-help through his popular seminars and bestselling books, including The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Principle-Centered Leadership and First Things First. Now Covey applies the Habits to family life, advising parents to create a "beautiful family culture" by setting aside regular "family time" and applying "one-on-one bonding" with each family member, and by maintaining an "Emotional Bank Account." Asserting that "happy families have certain constant characteristics, and these characteristics are contained in the 7 Habits," Covey provides "a basic framework of fundamental principles that you can apply to any situation." With personal stories from his own large family and many others, he clearly illustrates the practices of being "proactive" rather than reactive; creating a "family mission statement" and using it to guide all family decisions and actions; making family a real priority in daily life; counteracting negative influences of society; and replacing "criticizing, complaining, comparing, and competing" with understanding one another, supporting mutual success and "synergizing" into a "we" mind-set. Ending each chapter with exercises for sharing the Habits with children, teens and other adults, this smoothly written book provides excellent advice for the "highest role and most important stewardship" of parenting. Major ad/ promo; simultaneous Golden Books Audio. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (1989) made Covey one of the high priests of secular self-help, and his advice has become a brand-name commodity, as his new adviser's title acknowledges. Families is published by Golden Books, provider of the inexpensive children's books most Americans know well, and the bargain-basement pictorial style of Golden's trademark product reappears in it. Fortunately, there are not all that many pictures, and there is nothing whatever wrong with Covey's advice. It begins with the master habit, "Be Proactive," which he explains and applies to family dynamics by means of real-life anecdotes and, at the end of the chapter, a page of suggestions for sharing the information with other adults and teenagers and another for sharing with children. Covey follows the same format in the succeeding six chapters on the other habits: "Begin with the End in Mind," "Put First Things First," "Think Win-Win," "Seek First to Understand . . . Then to Be Understood," "Synergize," and "Sharpen the Saw." As those phrases attest, like other self-help gurus, Covey has some catchphrases specific to his method, and he also effectively appropriates pop-culture imagery (e.g., when he urges using the "pause button" to keep from making defensive remarks). No wonder he is popular: he is precisely in tune with the pop-cultural zeitgeist. --Ray Olson