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4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 11 April 2006
Stephen Covey's book "The 8th Habit" contains a lot of very good ideas but is rather padded. This audio CD provides a very useful summary of the key points in the book. Although it is still a bit preachy at times, it does avoid most of the homely self-indulgent anecdotes of the book. The audio CD though, has one major weakness in my view - it doesn't spend enough time on what I feel is the most important feature of the book - the 4 Roles of Leadership. Barely 10 minutes of the CD covers this vital development plan for 21st century leaders(and that coverage is fairly poor). So read the book, reinforce the key points with the CD, and skim the book again focussing on the leadership aspects. That should help you get to grips with the material.
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on 21 March 2005
This is basically a rehash of previous material with a few bits and pieces thrown in from other authors like Jim Collins et al.
Stephen Covey has had one great idea, the 7 Habits, which he has capitalised on for some time this book adds a bit of substance to that idea but it is poorly written, repetitious and makes some sweeping statements with little evidence to back them up. Covey is fond of saying things like, "the research shows..." but he rarely ever lets you know which research. Stephen Covey has continually advocated principle centred leadership, however his material is vague on how, specifically, one should put this into practice the eight habit adds little by way of clarification.
My recommendation is that if you want a good book on leadership try The Leadership Challenge by Kouzes and Posner, Good To Great by Jim Collins or Situational Leadership by Ken Blanchard.
One can't help but wonder if Stephen Covey lived for another twenty years would we see a ninth and a tenth habit. Just when I thought I was doing well with seven he comes along and introduces and eighth, bummer, its like learning to drive all over again - help someone, I need a programme to help me kick these crazy habits.
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on 8 March 2005
The 7 Habits was magnificent. The Power of the 7 Habits was somewhat of a 'cashing in' from a public hungry for more. At first listen I thought the 8th Habit was more of the same.
Certainly Covey uses more sales pitch, repeatedly reassuring people that others have found this stuff useful. The 7 Habits stood on it's own two feet and this initially appeared to flounder. After the second and third listen however I started to be able to get into the material. The message of this book is more complicated and therefore the sort of catchy sound bites of the 7 Habits were harder to generate. A number of the concepts are articulated with such clarity and economical use of words so as to be very impressive in context.
The tone of this is more overtly evangelical than the earlier work. The final sentence has an undisguised religious message which IMHO weakens the non affiliated altruistic humanism that runs through his earlier work.
The message of the 8th Habit deepens (to use a 'Covey' word) the understanding of the 7 Habits concepts but almost by necessity the 8th Habit cannot propel your thinking forward in the way his previous work did.
Most people who might be considering getting this audiobook will be 'knowledge workers' and some will be at a crossroads trying to make sense of their place within their workplace. For those I couldn't recommend this highly enough. As someone who works as an executive coach this offered me insights and new paradigms that I hadn't previously understood as well as I do now.
Impressive as it is though, the brilliance of the 7 Habits makes this excellent audiobook seem ordinary in comparison. Get the 7 Habits first. Get to know it and after several listens get the 8th Habit.
Finally, unless you walk the walk suggested this stuff is just fancy talk.
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on 17 February 2005
I love this guy and am a huge fan of his earlier works, but I can't help feeling he's just running out of steam, and is repeating himself now.
Its like listeneing to "that difficult second album" of your favourite band.
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on 14 December 2005
I've been through the 7 Habits and First Things First, now I'm on the 8th Habit. Boy—is this dull! This is mostly a re-hash of the 7 Habits with more of a focus towards teams, leadership and businesses. As someone who works mostly on my own and not in a team, this book did not seem overly relevant to those in a similar position.
There are a few new ideas in here but not many. The short films are a nice touch which helps to break things up a little. I listened to this while out walking so couldn't just stop and watch them when instructed.
Ironically for a book about “finding your voice,” I found Mr Covey's voice extremely dull, lifeless and uninspiring—not a patch on Tony Robbins’ level of excitement—I often felt myself wandering off into a daydream while listening and then having to rewind to see if I had missed any astounding revelation (which for the most part, I had not).
A manual for greatness, this is not—a cure for insomnia, quite possibly.
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on 27 June 2008
Having found Stephen Covey's "Seven Habits of Highly Effective People" an extremely useful tool for organising my life, I really looked forward to what might lie in store with this "8th Habit" volume.

In many ways, I found reading it very much like eating a fruit cake - insofar as the pearls of wisdom and practical advice that were so densely packed in the "Seven Habits" - (I have my MS Outlook organised into Covey's "Urgent and Important, Important and Not Urgent . . ." system) were still there, but they were mixed more thinly through the dough of the fruit cake.

The subtitle of the book is "Finding Your Own Voice and Teaching Others to Find Their's" and indeed it does have some extremely valuable lessons to give about empowerment and about delegation. But perhaps it's most important message is that we are now in the age of the "knowledge worker" in which everyone, from the most menial worker to the highest paid executive, is an expert in their own field and must be treated with the respect they deserve in order to get the best results.

For me, that insight, and the change it has brought to my own work practices, is easily worth the price of the book and therefore I have no problem in recommending it as an accompanying volume to Covey's other excellent works.
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on 9 June 2009
It's hard to believe this was written by the same man who produced the 7 Habits. While the latter was in some ways ground breaking, the 8th Habit is dull and turgid. It's interspersed with meandering and ponderous case studies that fail to inspire.
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on 1 May 2013
A must read for anyone, who really want to take his/her game to another level.

Of course you should really implement it. And re-read it several times. Not a quick fix book.
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on 8 November 2010
This book is an extension of all the principles Dr Covey has ever addressed in his earlier books - The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, First Things First and Principle-Centred Leadership. Note I said EXTENSION - it is not a repeat of what you may have read in those tomes, but a further development of the ideas and strategies he started to formulate in 1976.

For that reason I woyuld suggest that if you consider buying this book - and you should - then you should ensure that you get the others, too. I suggest a reading of the 7 Habits first, then the 8th. It is not essential but it would be advisable, in my experience and opinion, if you wanted to maximise your understanding of the whole philosophy. PCL could just be missed out (although it is a fine book on personal AND business leadership), and First Things First is a stand-alone time/self management book par excellence.

This 'stuff' is being used in government, schools, law enforcement and business. It is being used because as soon as you read it you KNOW you have discovered a truth without compare. Not a religious truth but a common-sense-not-yet-common-practice sort of truth. I know of no-one who has read this (with an open mind) who has not come back to me and said "I needed to hear this".
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on 20 September 2011
For anyone who found the 7 Habits of Highly effective people life altering, I highly recommend this book. There is a huge amount to take in - but for anyone who wants to succeed in the business world, or in life in general, please take this book, read it carefully and adopt the 8th habit. For me Stephen Coveys habits are life altering, they put things in a completely new perspective and completely fill the void in a lot of peoples lives. You may already know a lot about what Stephen talks about in the 8th habit - but until you apply it you never really get the full benefit. This is not a book that you can speed read and passively take in the information. I recommend you read this book over 8 months to 1 year and adopt each of the concepts until you fully know them. This book is worth its weight in gold. We need more people like Stephen Covey in this world.
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