Episode 171: Scott Berkun – Big Ideas For Curious Minds

Scott Berkun is a bestselling author and popular speaker on creativity, philosophy, culture, business and many other subjects. He’s the author of six books, including  The Myths of Innovation,  Confessions of a Public Speaker, and The Year Without Pants. His work has appeared, or been mentioned, in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, The Guardian, Wired magazine, Forbes, USA Today, Wired, Fast Company, National Public Radio, The Huffington Post and other media.

Born and raised in Queens, NYC, he studied philosophy, computer science and design at CMU, was a manager at Microsoft (’94-’03) and WordPress.com (’10-’12), taught creativity at the University of Washington, was a co-host of CNBC’s The Business of Innovation TV show, is named on 5 U.S. patents, blogs for Harvard Business and BusinessWeek, and has appeared as an expert on various subjects on CNN, CNBC, NPR and MSNBC. He’s also the MC and speaker coach for Ignite Seattle, a finalist in the Amtrak 2014 writer’s residency program and the director of the short film We Make Seattle.

Episode 171: Scott Berkun – Big Ideas For Curious Minds 

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The Learning Leader Show

“The first tip to pitching well: Learn about the other persons environment”

In This Episode, You Will Learn:

  • Having a sports background to learn a work ethic and set goals can lead to sustained excellence
  • The process for Scott to quit his job at Microsoft to become a full time writer/author — And why he did it
  • Writing process
    • #1 Don’t chase headlines – Don’t chase traffic… Write good content
    • Write about evergreen topics that people will always want to read
    • Consistently write and produce content  — Stick to a rigorous schedule (he released work Tuesday & Thursday)
  • Understand your habits over time — Plan your day (when to wake up, eat, workout, write)
  • The topics he covers when he gives a keynote speech:
    • Innovation and creative thinking
    • Management/Leadership
  • Why he likes to prepare and not give the same speech over and over
  • Time spent on preparing vs. delivering = 10×1… Meaning he spends 10 hours to give a 1 hour talk
  • Teaching a creative thinking class at a University
  • The importance of “combining ideas”
  • “Passion is self perception of your interests… There is a need for self awareness”
  • Self discovery –> You need to try different things/ideas
  • Street smarts vs. Book smarts — Can be a false dichotomy
  • “How to call BS on a Guru”
    • Have higher expectations
    • How you read – Every chapter stop and plan for situations. Apply what would I do differently
    • Read with a different intent
    • Have a willingness to experiment
  • Why Scott hates speed reading
  • “How to pitch an idea”
  • “How to run a brainstorming meeting” — It’s about volume. You must be very clear about intended results and action plans
    • Have a good facilitator who says “Yes, and…”

“It’s very important to understand that all ideas are made up of other ideas… We need to combine ideas like “Uber for Laundry.””

Continue Learning:

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Episode 078: Kat Cole – From Hooters Waitress To President of Cinnabon

Episode 071: Nate Boyer – Green Beret, Texas Football, The NFL

Episode 073: Jay Bilas – World Class ESPN Basketball Broadcaster, Toughness, Fixing The NCAA

Episode 107: Simon Sinek – Leadership: It Starts With Why

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Episode edited by the great J Scott Donnell

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