Covey: Principle

Too often people focus on values, norms, and specifics while ignoring the principles that they are based on.

Principle-centered leadership, on the other hand, can be applied to any generation or any type of organizational culture. Another reason why Coveys book is effective is because he continually reverts to the central ideas of natural law and self-discipline. Natural law is best conveyed through the image of farm work: Covey offers this metaphor throughout Principle-Centered Leadership to underscore why principles, not values, guide effective leaders. After all, what an effective farmer does in his or her daily life is quite different from what an effective CEO does. If one focuses only on their core values, only differences would be evident. However, if one closely examines the principles that guide both the farmer and the CEO, key similarities in their leadership styles and personality traits will be made evident.

These are the principles that Covey discusses in his book, which is why it is a worthwhile read. Furthermore, although Covey does use abstract principles as the basis of his book, Principle-Centered Leadership is grounded and practical. All the principles the author discusses can be applied to any number of life situations and put into practice by readers of all ages, ethnicities, or professions. The graphs and charts in the book are largely unnecessary; they offer minor visual aid, except for a few exceptions. It is the bulk of the text that comprises the true value.