RIP, Dr. Stephen Covey (1932-2012)
I think this post is both urgent and important… Dr. Stephen Covey has passed away, at age 79.
Read Tom Peters’ tribute to Dr. Covey here, which includes:
One simply cannot pay tribute to Stephen Covey without saying at the outset that he was a lovely human being.
I had the good fortune, thanks to the kind people at the Shingo Prize organization, to meet Dr. Covey (who was newly involved with their work) in 2010 and was given the chance to talk 1×1 and to interview him for my podcast.
From the podcast:
Mark Graban: The one question I would ask for your thoughts on is Toyota’s principle of “respect for people,” or often referred to as “respect for humanity.” Could you share some thoughts on the importance of respect in workplace, what does that really mean?
Dr. Covey: I think that it’s of profound importance because it means you are caring and you trust them to do the right thing.
As I wrote about in 2010, the chance to speak with Dr. Covey was special. Even in a crowded room at a reception, he was incredibly “present” and, during our chat (both the recording and afterward), I felt like I was (at that moment) the most important person in the world to Dr. Covey. It was a humbling moment and a reminder that I need to try much harder at being half as present as he was in that moment. What a gift he gave to me, his full and undivided attention. It’s still a very vivid memory… and I’ll remember him as an incredibly kind and thoughtful man, not just a successful author and speaker.