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The 3rd Alternative: Solving Life's Most Difficult Problems Hardcover – October 4, 2011
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—Archbishop Desmond Tutu
“You can ‘get’ Stephen Covey’s message in five pages—or less. But I dearly hope you will carefully read and apply every page. Stephen has given us a precious gift—but, like most profound ideas, it is the daily, conscious practice that can or will transform your life.”--Tom Peters, author of The Brand You 50 and Re-imagine: Business Excellence in a Disruptive Age
“In The 3rd Alternative, Dr. Covey inspires us to think differently about solving problems than we ever have before. We must set aside our differences, including our boundaries, languages, economics, politics and cultures and work hand in hand together to create solutions which are greater than the problems we now face.”
--Muhammad Yunus, Nobel Peace Prize winner 2006
“In The 3rd Alternative, Stephen Covey urges us to chart a course beyond the suboptimal solutions to all our crises – beyond left and right, and beyond the many false choices in front of us. The 3rd Alternative is a wise and welcome echo of Einstein’s warning that the problems we’re facing today cannot be solved by the same level of thinking that created them.”
--Arianna Huffington, president and editor-in-chief of the AOL Huffington Post Media Group
“Once again, Stephen Covey has nailed it. In this latest book, he offers meaningful advice for navigating life’s toughest challenges. It’s not about ‘my way,’ or ‘your way,’ but seeking out ‘our way.’”
--J.W. Marriott, Jr., Chairman & CEO of Marriott International, Inc.
“In this book, Covey reaches out way beyond his familiar domain, to the Universe, and has come up with a social vaccine capable of addressing if not resolving the existential agonies and angst that we all face, as individuals and to the organizations and societies that we live and work in. In this Olympiad vault, Covey has written his most ambitious and hopeful book, in my own view, a masterpiece to benefit all of us doing our best to live in peace and justice in this messy world.”
--Warren Bennis, Distinguished Professor of Management, University of Southern California and author of the memoir, Still Surprised
“A most compelling approach for addressing the most challenging issues of the day. It is an inarguable formula for success in the corporate world and beyond.”
--Douglas R. Conant, retired CEO, Campbell Soup Company, and New York Times bestselling author
“Dr. Covey has done it again. The 3rd Alternative is not only powerful reading—it answers some of life’s most challenging questions. A must-read for all future leaders.”
--Jon M. Huntsman, Sr.
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Top Customer Reviews
Frankly, I was disappointed with this book. I did not really see anything new - just a re-packaging of 7 Habits' concepts and lots of examples: Think win-win; reach out to the other guy to really listen; synergize.
Also, maybe I have changed, but I now find his tone heavy-handed and "teachy."
I really had hoped for something new and fresh - but I didn't find it.
Don't waste your money on this book. Go for the book Crucial Conversations. It is an amazing book with so much covered in handling conflict.
Covey is correct in what he says and he says it very well. I think there is tremendous value in the chapter that explains the 3rd Alternative (through page 85). What follows are fairly long chapters that describe real world examples of 3rd Alternative thinking at Work, Home, School, the Legal System, Society, and the World respectively. I was not that interested in some of those chapters and others I found quite useful.
So if you are involved in conflict in any of those areas, I do think this book would be very useful. I skimmed some chapters because I wasn't interested and frankly he is saying the same things and after a while you get it. It's too long for the general reader but if you are having problems in even one of those areas it's worth the price of the book.
Every corporations, politicians, doctors, musicians, educators and governmental officers of famous and only known locally, he introduce as 3rd alternative thinkers, are unanimously impressive. Especially Pablo Casals's words knocked out me. Whoever can say I'm beginning to notice getting better at this at the age of ninety three. I gird up my loins again to live in crescendo.
Dr. Covey's erudite knowledge covers the whole globe. We can deepen our cultural anthropology understandings, like ubuntu, talking stick communication, ashimsa, dharma and izzat, etc. In Japanese, the Chinese character of person comes from a scene two people stand on earth leaning against each other. We should know we live on an interdependent planet, and need to think in holistic to solve the difficulties we are facing, rather than consider the sum of the parts, by a broad and deep understanding reality.
The 7 habits has been my guidance to date to lead a highly effective life. Now and then I stop and looked back myself to the light of these guidelines. From now on I'll add this 3rd alternative thinking to my mental attitude.Read more ›
Covey’s ideas are presented in fluent style in this book, which has really touched my heart. It is far less schoolmasterly than the books on effectiveness and leadership in a stricter sense of the word. But like those others, it is richly illustrated with comprehensive graphics, so typical for all of Covey’s books.
As I mentioned in my review of the 8th Habit, the 3rd Alternative Leadership and Conflict Resolution Approach was developed as an extension of the 6th Habit: Synergy. I personally see the emphasis more on the conflict resolution function this approach facilitates and believe that the methods taught in The 8th Habit are largely sufficient for leadership purposes in general. But as life in general, and human relations in particular, always engender problematic situations, we can easily see that we need to be prepared ‘for a leak in the boat’—as the I Ching expresses it. For the Chinese executive, preparedness is crucial for good and effective leadership.
The present book shows how extensively Dr. Covey has learnt both from Middle Eastern cultures, from African traditions, and from the wisdom traditions of the Far East. The book abounds of examples that show how cross-culturally Covey has worked perhaps all his life, but especially in his later years.
It is the examples of outstanding human achievement that captured me throughout this book.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I love the mind set of abundance over scarity and this book show me the way live with it. Thank you Stephen Covey. May your soul rest in peacePublished 1 month ago
To the readers - This book is too winded, causing the key messages to be diluted. The key messages can be distilled to no more than 100 pages. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Woowaa
Interesting book, all the chapters are well covered and its applicable even on most common difficulties, totally recommend.Published 6 months ago by Jaime
Covey gets criticized for being too wordy and the case could be made here. My question is, wouldn't a reader want too much information than too little?Published 10 months ago by A. Meyers
I think the concept is sound, though the book is mostly a collection of examples of its use in various areas of life. Read morePublished 11 months ago by J. Sharley