written by
Srinivas Rao

Scott Miller: Become The Leader You Would Follow

3 min read

These are cliff notes from an episode of The Unmistakable Creative Podcast

1. Just like many other habits, Children get their reading habits from their parents because that is the behavior they see in their environment. We can argue that schools and educational institutions should do something to promote reading, but Scott thinks that parents are a lot more effective role models.

2. Scott’s brother was a specialist (a chemical engineer by vocation), while Scott was a generalist. He did not have a clear career trajectory, was somewhat of a late bloomer and ended up doing many interesting projects and becoming very influential. For many centuries, the economy was valuing specialists a lot more but that landscape is shifting. Interpersonal skills are becoming more important because technical skills can easily be trained.

3. Scott emphasized the importance of having an abundance mindset.  regardless of your circumstances, you can choose to focus on your own abundance and not feel in lack. He shared an inspiring story of his grandmother, who was a widow and still chose to pay for her son’s medical intervention despite that charity was offered to her. She felt that more unfortunate families would make better use of that charity. That story stayed with Scott for a long time and seeded an abundance mindset for him.

4. With so many distractions, nowadays we all have some form of attention-deficit. The bad news is that distractions are not going to go away and we must learn how to build resilience. One skill that suffers from our poor attention, in particular, is listening. We value speaking more than listening, which is evident by the existence of so many programs on how to improve speaking, presentation skills, etc. Yet, listening is often neglected.

5. Scott shared 2 tricks for good listening. 1.) Check in with yourself every few seconds and make sure that you are present. 2.) resist from interrupting the other person. When you feel compelled to do so, count to 10 and the person will likely finish or bring up some key point that he or she would not have brought up otherwise.

6. There is a crucial difference between being efficient and being effective. Scott worked with Steven Covey, who wrote 7Habits of Highly Effective people (the emphasis on Effective). From him, Scott learned that if you are able to do a lot, you are efficient. If you do the right things for the right reasons, that makes you effective. With people and relationships, oftentimes we are more effective when we are slow and patient while trying to be effective throws us back.

7. To move from efficient to effective, you must Know your mission statement or know your values. Only then, your actions will be informed by the underlying principles and higher purpose.

8. Difficult conversations and do not have to be harsh conversations. There is an article in delivering feedback that is direct, yet kind and considerate. One key thing when it comes to interpersonal communication that includes feedback or otherwise is clear communication of the expectations. When both parties know what is expected of them, the potential for conflict is minimized.

9. Regarding goal setting, Scott claims that we should set the Goals that stretch us to grow and improve but that are not unrealistic. Another framework that he mentioned is setting congruent goals in different time frames: 5-year, 1-year, 6-month, quarter, month, day and present moment. Our present actions and focus should be aligned with our long-term vision.

10. To be unmistakable, according to Scott, you must be generous, have an abundance mindset and lift other people as you rise and grow.

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