Famous author Stephen R. Covey in his trendsetting bestseller book “Seven Habits of Highly Effective People” talks about a concept of public victory and private victory. The private victory requires one to be competent in three habits viz., 1. Being Proactive, 2. Being able to begin with the end in mind and 3. Putting First things First, and public victory requires competence in the other three habits following private victory. 4. Think Win Win, 5. Seek First to Understand before being understood and 6. Synergize.
The private victory is achieved by following the three habits, which will help increase your self confidence significantly. As being proactive is wont leave you at the mercy of luck and chance, will, most of times, being proactive will save you from resorting to knee-jerk reactions. Being proactive is the by product of being a planner and a strategist, being proactive is the outcome of having sufficient knowledge and awareness about your environment. The second habit of private victory ensures that you are very clear about your objective and goal. Before starting on a journey you are clear about your destination. This clarity of end before even starting the beginning, saves you from many U-turns and forced detours. It also helps your team understand the clear picture of the entire project and make them better prepared to handle their roles efficiently and responsibly. Any artist any engineer begins with end in mind. Before creating anything in tangible format it is created in thoughts. Having the first two habits in place leads you to successfully adopt the third habit of doing first things first. Prioritizing is very important in this world which is hard pressed to catch up with schedules and deadlines. Doing first thing first saves you from getting trapped in the viscous cycle of urgent and important. All these three habits are considered as private victories because the challenge lies within us, the fight is with ourselves. The buck begins and stops with you. Without the private victory, achieving public victory is impossible and if by any chance it is achieved it will be short lived and will have consequences.
All the habits of private victory are responsible for building you as a better person. A person in control of things. A person who is conscious and responsible about things happening around him. This victory has far reaching results both in your professional and personal life. Private victory increases your self-confidence significantly. It’s a great eye opener, it makes you aware about yourself. You come to know yourself in a deeper, more meaningful way – your nature, your deepest values and your unique contribution capacity. As you live your values your sense of identity, integrity, control, and inner directedness infuses you with both exhilaration and peace. You are self-assured, you are self-confident, you have great self-image, you are not defined by other’s opinions. You don’t get swayed. You don’t go out searching about people’s opinion about wrong and right, as you know wrong for right, because your concept is rooted in the habits responsible for private victory.
It is rather interesting to note that, as you care less about what others think of you, you will care more about what others think of themselves and their worlds, including their relationship with you. You will understand people better, you will understand their perspective and point of views better, this will make you a more understanding and forgiving person. You will no longer build your emotional life on other people’s weaknesses. You will be more adoptable, as there would be less ego and less inertia to change. Ego is born out of pretentions, ego is the result of false and projected image, igo is driven by how others should see you, rather than how you actually are. You will be comfortable with adopting change and modifying your decisions because you would know that changing decisions does not change you, your core is more strong than these trivial momentary decisions taken in response to the feedback from your environment.
The habit of being considerate, understanding, and conscious of other persons perspective and point of view would help you reaching into the realm of public victory by effortlessly adopting the 4th habit of having the temperament of thinking win-win. In any transaction, your thinking would change from “What is in it for me” to “What is in it for us.” The exploration of rewards would be for all the stakeholders in a particular transaction. You will discover and unleash both the desire and the resource to heal and rebuild important relationships that have deteriorated, or even broken. Good relationships will improve, become deeper, more solid, and more adventuresome.
As thinking win-win makes you think from the perspective of others, it automatically inculcates another winning habit of first seeking to understand before being understood. When you initiate the understanding process the other person automatically becomes more receptive of you and your ideas. The sincerity of effort in seeking to understand builds confidence and trust. The most powerful cement for any relationship or association.
Thinking win-win and then first seeking to understand before expecting to be understood. Leads into the temperament and habit of synergizing. Looking for opportunity of advantage for all the stakeholders. The synergizing attitude makes you look for strong points in the person you intend to associate and build on those strong points by adding your strength rather thank looking for holes and weaknesses in your would be associate so that you can take advantage of those holes in future and win. Being synergetic is positive, because by the very nature it is not only simple combination of strength but associating in a manner where two halves add to become more than one. Synergy is an attitude which encourages, supports, and complements. It makes both the associate more competitive, by removing the vulnerabilities from both the partners.
Public victory and private victory don’t have either or association. Both are complementary, one without the other does not have a meaningful existence. There is no “Versus” between them. There is only an “And” between them. Go conquer both.