We had the good fortune of connecting with Robert Mills and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Robert, what is the most important factor behind your success?
I chose a career in Army Special Forces with no clear career plan beyond the service. I retired after 25 years with a very selective set of skills; tactics, shooting, unconventional warfare, threat assessment, intelligence analysis, etc. These skills seem unrelatable to the civilian commercial market but surprisingly are very relatable. The intangible skills gained from my chosen profession; leadership, organization, critical thinking, time constrained problem solving, interaction with varied cultures, etc. are the ones that contribute to my success equally, if not more so than the technical, hands-on skills. So yes, a complimentary set of diverse skills, extensive experience, and intimate knowledge of my profession all work together to create success. But what I’m finding out daily is that building a network of friends and partners is a huge contributing factor. You can do a lot as an individual with a dream and work ethic, but the significant leaps happen when you’re working with like-minded, goal focused people that believe in the mission statement. I look at my contemporaries not as competitors, but as partners. That looks different for each partner, but you find ways to compliment and support each other, that support builds both companies up.
In modern society, we are experiencing very painful realities of violence and culture clash. The firearms training business is unique in that it faces backlash for promoting gun ownership but also serves people who, maybe even begrudgingly, purchase firearms for their own safety and peace of mind. I do not believe gun ownership to be a partisan issue at all. I have clients across the spectrum; republican, democrat, libertarian, atheists, Christians, trans, laborers, doctors, astrologists, even a figure skater. I want individuals of all stripes to be mentally, emotionally, and physically prepared to defend themselves in the face of imminent threat, regardless of the origin of that threat.
We create a non-intimidating yet focused learning environment. We perform in-depth analysis of individual needs and keep training realistic, relevant, and safe. Our performance-based approach ensures clients maximize their potential by doing the best with what they have. Clients get the most out of each round, regardless of experience or skill level. Our client base are loyal return clients with clearly defined, and increasingly challenging goals. We are relatable, our experience, dedication, and proven training approach inspires confidence and trust in Osprey Shooting Solutions.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I am an Atlanta native. Born in Decatur, grew up all around Atlanta’s south and southeast side. I also came up on the low end of the economic scale. The question “where would I take a friend to eat?”, I have no high dollar example. Zesto is the spot for me! I once described the Zesto on Moreland Ave. in Little Five Points as the essence of Atlanta. Turns out that one has recently closed, I assume to some hipster organization wanting to build a micro brewery.
Piedmont Park, is also a favorite spot to go walk and people watch. I’ve seen a constant transformation of the park from the mid 80’s through today, I love it.
Want to grab a beer with great people? Mr. C’s Bar and Grill on the north side. Ask for Glen.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My wife has supported me from the earliest days (even when undeserved). She has allowed me to take my own path and has been and still is, a positive voice in my life.
My customers from Colorado Springs, who supported OSS from day one, deserve recognition. OSS like any small business, started with much struggle, they have been there with much appreciated words of encouragement.
One of my current, and most influential partners is 3 of 7 Project. These guys are pure motivation. Our goals are remarkably similar, our business models share similarities, and we have very complimentary styles. They focus on physical and spiritual fitness with absolute acknowledgment of our place in the universe.
As for cultural influence, I am an Ayn Rand follower. The philosophy of Objectivism makes perfect sense to me. Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead were pivotal books in my life. The celebration of the individual human’s ability to achieve his own success in his own way is powerful to me. The idea that collectivism is necessary for the welfare of humanity is completely smashed. The individual, living his best life, is the best path to benefit the larger society. Powerful stuff!
Dennis Rousseau Emilee Ramsier