Last week, Seth Godin talked about ‘Hobson’s Choice’ – I wasn’t previously aware of the origin of this term, which dates back to the 16th century.

Thomas Hobson was a hostler who owned a livery stable in Cambridge. Whilst giving the impression of having an extensive choice of forty or more, Hobson would only allow the horse in the stable nearest the entrance to be selected, so as to ensure they were rotated as opposed to just the best ones being chosen; and hence we now use the term to describe a “take it or leave it” situation.

This got me thinking back to one of the most valuable lessons I ever learned from Stephen R Covey (author of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People), who I was very fortunate to be personally coached by thirty years ago.

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