* Wrote several bestsellers on business management
* Popular motivational speaker, consultant
(Adds details, background throughout)
By Laura Zuckerman
SALMON, Idaho, July 16 Stephen R. Covey, author
of the bestselling motivational book "The 7 Habits of Highly
Effective People," died on Monday at an Idaho hospital from
injuries he suffered in a bicycle accident in April, family
members said in a statement. He was 79.
Covey, a former professor at Brigham Young University in
Utah, founded an executive training center in Salt Lake City
that merged in 1997 with Franklin Quest Co to form
FranklinCovey, a leading provider of time-management seminars
The publicly traded company is perhaps best known for its
line of Franklin Planner appointment calendars, which it markets
along with books, workshops and other products based on its
"Franklin System" of business management and Covey's "7 Habits"
Covey, a Salt Lake City native, earned a master's degree in
business administration from Harvard University and a doctorate
from Brigham Young.
But it was his self-help guide to success in business, "The
7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in
Personal Change," published in 1989, that made Covey a brand
He went on to write several more bestsellers about business
management, including "Principle-Centered Leadership," became a
favorite motivational speaker on the Fortune 100 circuit and
served as a personal consultant to organizations ranging from
Procter & Gamble to NASA.
Covey was recognized in 1996 as one of Time magazine's 25
most influential Americans, and was named among the world's top
50 business thinkers in 2011 by Thinkers50, a group that
compiles that list every other year.
His "7 Habits" title has sold more than 15 million books in
38 languages worldwide, and the audio version has sold 1.5
million copies, the most of any nonfiction business book on
tape, according to Covey's website.
Publisher Simon & Schuster said Covey's works have sold a
combined total of more than 20 million copies, including 400,000
for his 2004 work, "The 8th Habit."
He died at the Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center in
Idaho Falls "due to the residual effects of a bike accident he
suffered this past April," his family said in its statement.
Covey fell off his bike and suffered severe head injuries
requiring hospitalization on April 19 during a ride near his
home in Provo, Utah, according to Provo police Sergeant Brandon
Covey was remembered on Monday by colleagues at Utah State
University, where he joined the business school faculty in 2010,
as an accomplished scholar and tireless mentor to students.
"Dr. Covey touched the lives of people around the world in
very personal ways," Utah State President Stan Albrecht said in
a statement. "He was an inspirational leader who was always a
powerful voice for individual integrity, strong character and
extreme trustworthiness in every aspect of life."
In an article published in the business school's magazine,
Covey was described by one of his sons as an informal,
approachable person with a good sense of humor.
"He always treated everybody the same, exactly," Sean Covey
said in the spring 2010 issue of the Huntsman Alumni Magazine.
"It didn't matter if you were the CEO of a Fortune 10 company or
the local barber. You wouldn't have ever known the difference."
In his final hours, Covey was surrounded "by his loving wife
and each one of his children and their spouses, as we sang him
his favorite hymns, just as he always wanted," the family
(Editing by Steve Gorman, Cynthia Johnston and Mohammad