Award-winning broadcaster Scott Pelley shares his insights on the changing public culture of American health care in the November/December cover story. The well-respected journalist and anchor further shared his acuity for encouragement and motivation that reaps great benefits. Here’s what he had to say:
Q: Where do you go when you need encouragement? What do you do?
A: I go to my wife because I get honest encouragement from her, and that’s the best kind.
Q: How do you stay motivated to be the best you possible?
A: I keep in mind that I don’t want to let people down. I don’t want to let the audience down by any omission of effort, and I don’t want to let the people of CBS News down. I am depended on to do my best every day, and my team is all doing their best, so it would be a terrible thing if I didn’t return that favor and do my very best for everyone here.
Q: What role models or people have inspired you?
A: I would say the late Bob Simon and, honestly, my two children. Bob helped me understand what writing can be — not just how to write, but what writing can actually be. Bob was always a great inspiration to me for his courage, which was manifested in all the work that he did covering wars all around the world. In addition, my son Reece and my daughter Blair inspire me. I love looking at the world through their eyes. They’re adults now, but they see everything with a youthful kind of vision. Looking at the world in a positive way, a world that can change and improve — they inspire me to do that.
Q: What is one piece of advice you share with those facing hardships who you interact with either through your job or your charitable work?
A: It’s an old saw, but I think it’s a good one: Tough times don’t last, but tough people do. There are times in life when you think the circumstances are just too great and you’re not equal to the task. I promise you can get through it, whatever it is.
Many of my friends and colleagues have been through terrible crises — typically a health crisis — and I’ve seen them fight and fight and fight and persevere. I think each of us as individuals are capable of more strength and courage than we can even imagine.
Q: How do you challenge a person to live with purpose?
A: Find a cause that is bigger than you. Find a cause that is larger than your immediate family that you can engage in, in the hope of making the lives of others that are less fortunate than you better, safer and more prosperous. Not only will those people receive great benefits, but it will also be transformative in your own life. It allows you to imagine greater things through this world, and the gratitude you receive from the people that you help is the greatest reward that you could imagine.