WikiLeaks is a non-profit organization based in London, England, which main goal is to provide an “innovative, secure and anonymous way for sources to leak information.” Using its website as platform and financing itself mainly with donations, WikiLeaks has focused its work on publishing confidential information about governments and corporations.
Australian activist and journalist, Julian Assange, founded the group in 2006 but it was officially launched one year later. Its operations rely on a network of volunteers around the globe; some of them are whistleblowers and others computer experts who helped develop and adapt technologies that support their activities.
The organization says it bases its work on principles like the “defense of freedom of speech and media publishing, the improvement of our common historical record and the support of the rights of al people to create new history.”
Why Wikileaks is important? Assange answers that question in the next video:
One year ago, Wikileaks started to release quarter of a million (251,287) confidential U.S. State department diplomatic cables. They are released in “collaboration” with five major daily newspapers: El Pais, Le Monde, Der Spiegel, Te Guardian and The New York Times. The cables are published simultaneously by these newspapers first in redacted format with some of the sensitive things being deleted. After that they are taken over by almost every serious news media organization in the world. The data includes diplomatic cables from 274 US embassies, dated from December 1966 to 28 February 2010. The content includes various themes like critiques and praises for governments and countries, intelligence, counterintelligence, climate change, nuclear disarmament etc.
The reactions to the disclosure of the confidential cables also vary, from being called a a “monstrosity and a criminal act” by the foreign minister of Japan, “absolutely, categorically wrong and false” by the finance minister of Afghanistan, “September 11 of world diplomacy” by the Italian minister of foreign affairs. Some countries ever referred to the cables as being falsified.
The impact of the disclosure is considered to be immense, although large amount hasn’t yet been published. Some sources claim that the overthrow of the presidency in Tunisia, which was a trigger for the domino reaction of the Arab spring, is in part a reaction against the corruption revealed by leaked cables.
In September 2011 an encrypted version of all the 250,000 cables was reportedly available online for months. Jullian Assange, the founder of Wikileaks, blamed The Guardian for this leak.
In the middle of September an Ethiopian journalist was forced to flee the country after a cable was disclosed in which he was cited by name and referred to his anonymous government source. The journalist was interrogated by the police. The authorities gave him 24 hours to either reveal the identity of his source or face the consequences, Committee to Protect Journalists published recently.
This is one of the most recent examples of how confidential information can influence and endanger people’s lives.
-Why does he do what he does? Because no one else is. “It’s a worry — isn’t it? — that the rest of the world’s media is doing such a bad job that a little group of activists is able to release more of that type of information than the rest of the world press combined” (Julian Assange: Why the World).
-Why does it need to be done? “Because it reveals the hidden truth” ” (Julian Assange: Why the World).
What does he see for the future? There is “enormous pressures to harmonize freedom of speech legislation and transparency legislation around the world – within the E.U., between China and the United States. Which way is it going to go? It’s hard to see. That’s why it’s a very interesting time to be in. Because with just a little bit of effort we can shift it one way or the other.” (Julian Assange: Why the World).”
-Why is it right? Because it is important, because it can change things. “Well, there’s a question as to what sort of information is important in the world, what sort of information can achieve reform. And there’s a lot of information. So information that organizations are spending economic effort into concealing, that’s a really good signal that when the information gets out, there’s a hope of it doing some good. Because the organizations that know it best, that know it from the inside out, are spending work to conceal it. And that’s what we’ve found in practice. And that’s what the history of journalism is. (Julian Assange: Why the World).”
-What are his core values? “…capable, generous men do not create victims; they nurture victims… Nurture by policing the perpetrators… And so that is something that has been in my character for a long time.” (Julian Assange: Why the World).
Presentation for Humphrey Seminar on December 5
“Jobs … became the greatest business executive of our era, the one most certain to be remembered a century from now. History will place him in the pantheon right next to Thomas Edison and Henry Ford.”
Time, October 12, 2011
I figured nobody wants me to just copy/paste our essay into the blog.
[You can email me if you really want to read the essay; or, to save time, here is a helpful timeline of the events]
Instead, I’ll re-introduce two issues we didn’t get chance to discuss at length in the seminar: Are there more appropriate ways to do satire on sensitive issues? And: How should a publication respond to a situation like our case study?
The drawings generated angry protests from Muslim citizens and organizations across the continent, including government petitions and a boycott of all Danish products that continues in some places today. As we discussed in class, France in particular became embroiled in the conflict as well, with Le Monde becoming as much a face of the controversy as original publisher Jyllands-Posten. The question became “Should we republish?” instead of “Should we publish?”
In the United States, the response was remarkably muted. European publications took much more public and stalwart stances in solidarity with the Danish paper. The New York Times did not republish the cartoons, for example.
Neither did satire superpower The Onion, which brings us to that first question from the beginning of the post: Are there more appropriate ways to do satire on sensitive issues?
The Onion did not republish the images behind either the original controversy and the 2011 Charlie Hebdo controversy we talked about in class. Instead, it did fake “man on the street” quotes about the controversies:
As you can see, it’s commentary about the commentary. It’s making fun of the fact that these drawings have become such a heated conflict to so many people. And it’s giving both sides the opportunity to realize the hypocrisy of the moment without calling anyone in particular out–and most important to our conversation, not stoking the fire by republishing the Muhammad drawings.
The Onion repeated this decision when Charlie Hebdo, a French satire magazine, that published cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad the first week of November 2011. The weekly announced it would release a special issue titled Sharia Hebdo, featuring several images of the Islamic prophet as well as articles explaining and interpreting them.
The entire edition was a satire of all previous instances of protest over the use of Mohammad’s image in satire; they even dubbed him editor for the week.
There are many differences between how this played out, versus Le Monde. Retaliation, in the 2011 case, was more direct, and violent: The publication’s building was petrol-bombed a day after the cartoons were published in early November.
All the newsroom equipment was destroyed in the attack, though no one was injured. Also interesting is how Charlie Hebdo responded: It reprinted the cartoon, along with several new ones, in a special edition supplement. Though the satire was directed at fundamentalist Islam, there were also articles written by the staff, stating: “this team defends the ‘freedom to poke fun’.”
This brings us to our final question: How should a publication respond to a situation like our case study?
Withholding our own judgements, we will show you how several publications handled things, and let you decide for yourselves.
Jyllands Posten, the Danish paper that originally called for and published the cartoons, issues a public apology months later. They were still sued by a group of Muslim organizations. The charges were thrown out by Danish court, but not before Jyllands Posten responded with a counter lawsuit against the lawyer representing the Muslim organizations. I think this is a question our group needs to address. Did the publication cross the line in protecting their free speech when it went on the aggressive? (Another reaction: The Western Standard, a Canadian newsmagazine that caught some flak for republishing the cartoons, asks readers for donations for legal fees.)
Food for thought, I hope.
I’m out. Thanks for helping to make my last semester memorable, everyone.
This chart explains the findings of Michael Norton of Harvard Business School and behavioral economist Dan Ariely of Duke University (see his TED talk here on moral codes and economics) in a 2010 survey. They surveyed 5,522 Americans about their views on the country’s wealth distribution (BEFORE the Occupy Wall Street movement). It demonstrates how skewed the public’s view was, and how drastic measures need to be taken to reach that “ideal” distribution.
The public now knows that the American dream and class mobility may be just that – a dream – contrary to centuries of rhetoric. I would argue, that the Occupy movement isn’t helping the situation. It is making the public more aware, but not more informed. And this is an important distinction. The US has more wealth inequality than India, Australia, Canada or all of Europe. The land of the free isn’t quite Leading by Example…
But awareness is the first step towards progress… I have hope.
24-year-old Amanda Knox and her former boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito were acquitted of murder on October 3, 2011, after being sent to prison four years ago for the death of British college student Meredith Kercher. Knox is an American citizen who was studying in Italy when the incident happened to her roommate. Amanda and her boyfriend denied any wrongdoing. The verdict came after Independent forensic investigators testified that the evidence in the original investigation might have been contaminated.
Suporters vs Opposers of Amanda Knox
The biggest supporters
- “Friends of Amanda”- a site dedicated to the truth about Amanda and the charges against her”.
- Los Angeles Times columnist Nina Burleigh (The Fatal Gift of Beauty)
- Injustice in Perugia -A site detailing the wrongful conviction of Amanda Knox & Raffaele Sollecito (http://www.injusticeinperugia.org/)
- Kiro-FM’s Frank Shiers- (http:////mynorthwest.com)
- Italian prosecutor Guliano Mignini
David Marriott’s PR Strategy
Three days after Amanda Knox arrest on November 6, 2007, her father Curt Knox, hired David Marriott, a PR specialist in communication crisis to manage the media press harassment about the case. The first target that Marriott began to develop a long-term media strategy, was to change the bad image that the international press was painting about Amanda Knox. The specialist collected many family and friends stories about Amanda and put all those stories at the media. He also integrated the parallel campaign developed by Amanda’s friends to his strategy. Marriott made use of specific news organizations using family’s and friends to tell about Amanda’s true personality. The strategy worked well when they got space in national TV news magazine shows, which proved to be the best vehicle. The format allowed for in-depth investigations, and brought credibility to the family’s case. In spite of that, in December 2009, the Italian court found Amanda Knox guilty of Meredith Kercher’s murder. However, Marriott continued to enlist supporters to rebut the verdict focusing the argument that “there was no evidence”. The Italian court allowed an appeals trial to Amanda when they found out some misconceptions in the process. These facts caused the verdict to be overturned in October 3, 2011, allowing Amanda Knox to come home.
What will Amanda Knox’s next move be in her PR plan? Even though the court’s verdict of her innocence was what she wanted, her future remains open and full of possibilities as she finally faces the outside world.
One writer at The Week, a UK paper, says both Knox and Kercher’s sides need to back off after all this intense media scrutiny. In a poll by the LA Times, 49% of respondents said they believe Knox should get a book deal, because they believe she is innocent and agree with the verdict. Several publishing insiders were asked their opinion about a possible book deal to an Entertainment Weekly writer and all expressed interested in selling Knox’s account. There’s already been one book published in 2010 about her time in prison called, Take Me with You: Conversations with Amanda Knox in Prison by Rocco Girlanda, but this new book would be written entirely by Knox about her whole ordeal. Lifetime updated their movie on Amanda Knox to include the new verdict that acquitted her, even though her family from the onset was opposed to the project, afraid it would hurt her chances of being accurately judged. Barbara Walters has featured Knox in her annual “10 Most Fascinating People” special, which will air on ABC on December 14. “Fascinating” is definitely an understatement for Knox who has been cast by the media as both an angel and a demon. Marriott will not be able to convince everyone in the United States, Italy and elsewhere to see Knox in a positive light, but as long as he can meet his clients’ needs to “help them maintain some sense of normalcy in their lives,” he will have succeeded.
The Art of War is a battlefield manual written by Chinese general Sun Tzu (孙子, also spelled “Sun Zi”) around 300 B.C. It is difficult to summarize, because it is essentially a book of success tips not unlike what we now see populating the bestseller’s list.
Point is, I’m not trying to summarize the book as a whole, because it doesn’t lend itself to being summed up, and not all of it applies to present day. What we can do? Look at how each of us can interpret The Art of War in ways that complement our vision of servant-leadership.
Sun Tzu begins by establishing “five constant factors” that govern the art of war. But more generally, he is saying these factors should be taken into account in every decision that involves . Like the rest of The Art of War, the ideas are expressed in formal language informed by Taoist imagery. At first it seems confusing, but actually it can help us divorce the ideals of leadership in Art of War from the context of ancient war strategy.
For example, here are Sun Tzu’s “five constant factors” [original wording in bold] translated into modern day English as advice for leaders and managers of today:
1) “The Moral Law” = Determine goals, and just as important, why those are the goals, then determine what kind of workplace culture or “moral law” is necessary to achieve those goals
2) “Heaven” = Read outside factors and influences – which might hurt or help your chances of achieving these goals.
3) “Earth” = Develop a “real-world” game plan to navigate your vision through the circumstances it faces, good or bad.
4) “The Commander” = That’s you, whether you like it or not. Sun Tzu’s list of great leadership traits is timeless: Be sincere, be kind, be courageous, be wise – but lay down the law when you have to.
5) “Method and Discipline”= Surround yourself with a team you respect, and that respects you. Just as important, make sure the infrastructure is in place for everyone to communicate and get things done efficiently.
Many other people have adopted Sun Tzu’s battle manual in other ways: to business management and personal success, even things like computer programming, library administration, and liberal arts lesson-planning. That’s the beauty of an interpretative leadership text: It can have a different impact on different people, depending on the context.
But should we really be taking servant-leadership advice from one of the most calculating warriors in history? There are certainly fables about Sun Tzu that would suggest NO. To select one: It is said that when the King asked Sun Tzu for advice on how to turn his concubines into warriors, Sun Tzu simply executed the King’s two favorite ladies. They were too distracting to his duties. The rest, terrified, agreed to rigorous training in martial arts. Even the King didn’t ask questions.
So…yeah. Things like this might make us shy away from using Art of War as a way to develop our own personal leadership skills and mentality. But don’t be scared! Remember: Read it like a metaphor, or better yet, like a book of general philosophy. Don’t worry about the sections where Sun Tzu tells you how to best equip chariots to ravage the Chinese countryside. Those sections don’t apply to you (I hope…) After all, many thought-leaders of the 21st Century, including Pat Benatar, have used “the battlefield” as a metaphor for other aspects of modern life. And if she can do it, so can we!
So, to finish off this post, let’s look at how a few original lines from Art of War can inform our service leadership in 2011 and beyond.
Attack him where he is unprepared, appear where you are not expected. (Chapter I, line 24)
Meaning: Don’t look for solution in the same places everyone else is. Lead your team to untapped niches in the market, or to unsolved problems in society.
What the ancients called a clever fighter is one who not only wins, but excels in winning with ease. Hence his victories bring him neither reputation for wisdom nor credit for courage. (Chapter IV, lines 11-12)
This is more of a personal success tip. Don’t enter a challenge with the mindset, “Will I succeed or not?” Instead, think “How will I succeed?” Doing things well is your job, your duty to others. So when you succeed, don’t brag about it!! You’re just doing your job, your duty as a leader to those who follow you.
Maneuvering with an army is advantageous; with an undisciplined multitude, most dangerous. (Chapter VII, line 5)
Before you “lead your team” anywhere, you need to make sure everyone is on the same page. This is basically a lesson in communication + organization. Sun Tzu also believed in mutual trust between officer and soldier as the one of the most important of a strong army. Same with an organization. First priority is always team-building. After your team is strong, united, and communicative: Then act.
Another trait of the ideal servant-leader we have discussed in the seminar is that he or she should be an inspiration to everyone else in the organization. Sun Tzu concurs:
“The principle on which to manage an army is to set up one standard of courage which all must reach” (Chapter XI, line 32).
These are by no means the only things to be learned from Art of War, but by now you should want to read the classic. Yourself. Even Paris Hilton’s doing it!
How to build what is next for news? This is one of the very controversial topics. What makes it very important topic is the big challenges journalists meet nowadays and in future. It is not a secret how circulation for subscription media will decline. As a result, advertising will fall. The only thing that will multiply is competition that will put more pressure on both readership and advertising prices. So, what is the solution? the “Entrepreneurial Journalism: How to build what is next for news?” gives us a great answer. The book that is written by Mark Briggs, 2011, gives us a clear road map for how to build your future and to have your own news business. This is really a worth-reading book.
Entrepreneurial Journalism and Servant-Leadership Values
If you decide to take the risk and to begin the journey beyond limits, you should have your own goals. So, setting up your goals is first step at your long journey that you build mainly on what the people need and what you can provide them.
The formula for success depends greatly on the goals and expectations set by a foundering team. Obviously you can not know what the future will bring, but it’s important to envision how big or small you would like your company to be, if everything goes well, and then set benchmarks for how you’ll measure success. Learn from others’ experience: When a site makes you stick around and explore, what’s the reason? What grabbed you, and how can you apply that to your own star-up idea? Practice thinking analytically and Doing business while being a journalist. Do not forget: Stick with your goals, real leaders should have a passion.
How to earn money with integrity
Advertising is the most popular business model for content publishers. In the digital age, fragmentation has disrupted the advertising industry. While companies are spending more money on advertising today that at any other time in history, “they have more places to spend their advertising budge. This has created massive competition for publishers but also massive opportunity, especially for publishers whose content finds a niche or target audience that’s attractive to advertising.
However, be careful! Never publish a story agains money. Money is only for advertising not for editorial! While you are making business , always announce who are your advertiser and sponsors. Do not ever be reluctant to publish a story because it may upset current or potential advertiser. Be fair!
Technology and technology and technology
You need to know how to publish your own website or at least to have a great team who believe on you vision. Social media is the most supportive tool to serve your website. However, having a 1000 fan on Facebook is not a guarantee or evidence for success. The point here is how far those fans are interested in your product, your website and what you publish!
One of the amazing success stories mentioned in the book is that of Pegasus News, one of the very successful web-news. It was established by Mike Orren i
n 2004 to meet the shortage in the local media newspaper. Orren stayed for six months without salary. However, just after three month of publishing the website, the site drew more than 200,000 unique monthly visitors. Here are some insights about Orren and his successful news website:
1) Orren pursued more conventional financing, through his extensive network of local media contacts (to assemble a solid business plan for the new digital publication;
2) He envisioned building a loyal local audience for an innovative website that would be irresistible to area residents seeking customized local news and indispensable to local businesses seeking a viable advertising alternative;
3) He quiet his previous job, as publisher of Texas Lawyer magazine, and went 22 month without salary;
4) He hired a team who had a great belief in his vision. “we were the pirate ship,” Orren says of his overachieving staff, whose belief in Orren’s vision kept them going. “It was a cause, it wasn’t a job.”
5) Audience played a role, too. They tagging content and adding feedback;
Reflection as a value of Servant-Leadership
At the same time, Orren succeeded in building a great team who shared with him his vision. About this experiment, Mark Briggs and Orren say: “We were the pirate ship, “Orren says of his overachieving staff, whose belief in Orren’s vision kept them going. “It was a cause, it wasn’t’ a job. I discovered you get a lot more out of people when it’s a cause, than when it’s a job.”
Other resources on the Book:
Who is Richard Branson
Sir Richard Branson is an English businessman and founder of the Virgin Group, that operates more than 400 companies. At the age of 16 he dropped out of school and founded a magazine called Student. In 1972 he launched the record label Virgin Records and signed Mike Oldfield whose debut album Tubular Bells became one of the most succesful records in UK of all time. Later he signed other major artists such as Sex Pistols, Boy George, Rolling Stones and Janet Jackson. In the same year he opened a chain of record stores called Virgin Records. In 1980s he founded Virgin Atlantic Airways and expanded the Virgin Records music label. In 1992, to keep his airline company afloat, Branson sold the Virgin label to EMI for £500 million. He is the fourth richest person of the UK according to Forbes 2011 list of billionaires with an estimated net worth US $4.2 billion.
Branson was a dislectic child and had problems with learning. At 16 he decided to quit the school and founded a magazine called Student. Everybody was trying to tell him out of it. However, he was determined, ask for four pounds from his mother and spent two years sending the letters to major corporations in order to get advertisment from them. Besides he tried to get the interviews with famous people calling them from a school phone-booth. Although at the beginning, nobody wanted to pay for the ads at the unknown student magazine, he didn´t give up. Eventually, he managed to get interviews with John Lennon and Mick Jagger, get advertisments from brands such as Coca-cola and turned the magazine into his first successful business. That is just one example in his rich career how can strong determination and belief in one´s abilities make impossible things happen.
In his book Branson confesses, that for all his life, he hasn´t done anything he wasn´t enjoying. He thinks that enjoying what you are doing plays an important role in succeeding. “I don´t follow any rules in business. I just work hard and believe I can do it. Most importantly I´m trying to have fun.” When he set off a very risky journey in a hot balloon and he didn´t know if he comes back, he wrote a letter to his children where he said: “Live life to its full. Enjoy every minute of it. Love your mother.” He said these words are a core of what he believes in life. Not to waste any time. Have fun. Love your family. He says that it was never his intention to become rich. He just worked hard, loved challenges and enjoyed what he did. “A lot of people tell me it´s time for me to take a break, relax and have fun They say I should start playing golf or painting. Why would I do it? The thing I enjoy the most is my work. “
3. Set high goals, aim high and use all your potential. Don´t be afraid to try new things.
Branson says that challenges are the fuel of human actions. According to him it was challenges that took people “from cave to stars”. He was the first to cross the Atlantic in a hot-air balloon, later he challenged himself to cross the Pacific ocean, and at present he is working on his plan to launch commercial flights to the space with his company Virgin Galactic. He continuosly keeps proving that there are no limitations and encourages people to set their goals as high as possible
4. Choose the right people to work with you and reward them. Believe in the power of your family. Be loyal.
Branson demonstrates his leadership ability also when he describes his relationship with the people. He says that when he recognizes a talent (f.e. in any of his employees) he always lets them do their work, be creative and never tells them what to do. As an example he writes a story about a shop assisstant in one of his Virgin stores who later became Executive director of Virgin music. Branson writes that many people ask him how could he afford travel the world and not being in charge of his company all the time. He says that when you choose the right people and reward their talent, they will always do a good job, even if you are not controling them. Branson also states that one thing he believes most in is family and says that even he is very busy businessman, family always comes first in his life.
5. Respect others, no matter what social status they have
In his book Branson demostrates strong respect for all the people he meets in his professional or private life. He says that when he was a young hippie with long hair dressed in sweater and barefoot, the Japanese businessmen he was dealing with didn´t care about his appearence and showed him their respect. He says, respecting people from all social backgrounds is essential if one wants to become a leader. During his TV show Apprentice, where he was choosing his employee and a person who would get one million pounds, he was disguising himself as a taxi driver and drove the contestants to the show. “I was observing how would they treat an old man who is struggling with heavy luggage. I have learned a lot about them and I was shocked. It is important to treat all the people the same way, not only those you need to impress. “
“I was brought up in faith we can all change the world. I always believed it is our duty to help others ” says Branson. When a homeless guy asked for a change on the street and he didn´t have any, he gave him all his clothes and went naked for the rest of the day. During his student years he founded a student help center, answering a phone all night. One of the best examples of his servant leadership came in 1990, when the Persian Gulf war began. In the news he saw thousands of refugees running across the border out to Jordan. He called King and Queen of Jordan how can he help. She said they need one hundred thousand blankets because the refugees are dying in the desert. In two days a plane of Virgin Airlines brought the blankets with medicine and food to Jordan and brought back English citizens living in Jordan. Then he found out that Saddam Hussain is holding English hostages in Iraq. He wrote him a letter offering him supplies of medicine and food in change of the hostages. After negotiation, Hussain agreed and in few days, Branson personaly flew to Iraq together with former English prime minister Edward Heath and brought the hostages back to England. He says that it is a big privilige of succesful businessman that they could contact any leaders of the world and it is their duty to use this privilege for the good of the world. In 2004 he founded Virgine United – organization that helps solve the most serious social problems in the world. He founded an organization Global Zero where he works with the Queen of Jordan and other global leaders on eliminating the nuclear power. He has founded a Richard Branson School of Enterpreneurship in South Africa. In 1990s he has also founded an organization Global Leaders with Nelson Mandela to help to solve the most difficult problems of the world.
The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Teens, written by Sean Covey, is largely based on his father Stephen Covey’s principles set out in the vastly popular book The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.
The original seven habits book deals with finding oneself through principles of a character ethic that are described as being universal and timeless. The 7 Habits puts forward an integrated and principle-centered approach to solve the myriad of personal and professional problems that people continually face.
In the book for teens, author Covey (1998, p.4) lays forth the reason for why he attempted to target teenagers:
I wrote it because life for teens is no longer a playground. It’s a jungle out there. And if I’ve done my job right, this book can be like a compass to help you navigate through it. In addition, unlike my dad’s book, which was written for old people (and can get boring at times), this book was written especially for teens and is always interesting.
What’s Effective About the Teen Book!
The entire book is generously interspersed with funny and visually appealing illustrations, cartoons and diagrams explaining what is written. These go a long way in explaining the concepts.
For instance, the entire 7 habits are summarized in a drawing of a tree. The use of such imagery provides an easily digestible explanation of where each habit lies in, and what their relations are to one another.
Another strength is how the book provides encouragement towards starting practicing the 7 habits, in what is termed as baby steps. Covey (1998, p. 27) explains that “though small, these steps can become powerful tools in helping you achieve your larger goals”.
As the book is aimed at teens, naturally, the situations that are used to enhance a principle are based on what teens face in their lives.
It’s about how to proceed when a friend badmouths you, your parents’ seemingly overbearing nature, your teachers’ disregard of the importance of your social life by piling you up with homework, etc.
This approach makes everything very relatable to the typical teenager, and thus provides easy parallels from which the teen can work on when using the principles set forth.
All which has been said so far are excellent and targeted enhancements to the 7 habits, which form the crux of the book as it is. The book deals with the habits in a way that is stylized especially for teenagers.
This can be clearly seen in how each habit as was envisioned by Stephen Covey, was manipulated by his son Sean Covey, with a catchy phrase to strip the ostentatiousness from the phrases that title each of the 7 habits.
So, the 7 Habits?
The habits under these deal with identifying yourself, figuring out what your goals in life are and then planning so that these happen.
As such the habits here are to Be Proactive (I Am the Force), Begin with the End in Mind (Control Your Own Destiny of Someone Else Will) and Put First Things First (Will and Won’t Power).
This was followed by the public victory, consisting of Habits 4, 5 and 6, which primarily deals with how to function with other people and in groups and making the most out of such social interactions.
These included the Habits Think Win-Win (Life Is an All-You-Can-Eat-Buffet), Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood (You Have Two Years and One Mouth… Hel-lo!), and Synergize The “High” Way.
The final habit of was that of renewal, tagged with It’s “Me Time”. It’s about sharpening the saw every once in a while so that you are kept refreshed of the principles you learn in the book.
Be Exposed Early On
This is because of the simple reason that situations, which crop up during adolescence are novel, and are then interpreted under the limited experience had so far, thus causing them to be wildly distorted out of proportion.
A pimple erupting on the face would be viewed as catastrophic during these years where one transitions to being an adult.
Which is why the book for teens is especially important.
It is a book that is easily palatable for people of that age group, and would equip them with the tools provided by practicing the highly useful 7 habits at that point in their life where they are easily impressionable.
Starting out early with an awareness of these principles would ultimately prove to be advantageous to them when they emerge into the adult world of more complex relationships, time management issues, figuring out what to do with life while being content by renewing oneself.
As teen years are the playground imitation of the adult world, it is at this time that the 7 habits should reach them, to allow adolescents to analyze the adult world mimicking situations they are faced with, and then work towards overcoming them.
This is the book’s greatest strength, it’s ability to make contact with an audience whose minds are not yet set on a certain set of paradigms or habits.
With the highly entertaining way in which the book is laid out, it is extremely easy to absorb and would prove to be invaluable because these timeless principles would reach them at an early age.