Brilliant and entertaining, Outliers is a landmark work that will simultaneously delight and illuminate.
©2008 Malcom Gladwell; (P)2008 Hachette Audio
I always enjoy Malcolm Gladwell's work whether it be in book form or the short pieces he does for The New Yorker - but I can't help thinking that he's becoming the era's Proof By Anecdote expert. 'Outliers' is interesting but perhaps more formulaic than it ought to be.
I am afraid that at the rate Gladwell is descending into his example = proof funk his next book might be called 'Lincoln and Kennedy - Just Too Many Coincidences to Ignore'.
Semi retired small business person/ college professor/ investor.
This is a well-written book that brings up some important things to think about. Gladwell's conclusion that you need to be lucky as well smart and hardworking to be hugely successful is probably true. To get really far out on the bell curve you need for everything to go right, or wrong, depending on which side of the curve. Still it is dangerous to draw too many conclusions from extreme outliers, at least when dealing with a standard bell curve. If you are interested in what makes rich people rich read "The Millionaire Next Door", it deals with the more applicable part of the curve for most of us. Drawing conclusions from relatively few data points is always risky but Gladwell shows clearly the a small head start can get you far ahead.
I enjoy sci-fi, fantasy, non-fiction, historical fiction genres. Liked Stormlight, Mistborn, GoT. Last read: Shadows of Self
This book talks about successful people and how everything around them helped them get there. There were a few chapters that were stretched just to make a point. Certain chapters like the first one where the author keeps on talking about hockey players born in January was very slow and boring. but the latter ones with software entrepreneurs was very interesting. Malcolm Gladwell doesn't say anything new here except for the fact that every individual needs to work hard and practice makes perfect. The only difference here is the amount of research the author has gathered is remarkable and many of his facts and researches prove a point. The epilogue chapter was completely unrequired. I gave a 4 rating beacuse of those certain unrequired chapters. Great research and a good book to read once.
This is a very good book in the same way Freaknomics was a very good economics book. It goes beyond the myths of how to become successful. If you have young kids, it is also a very good parenting book, on what you should be aware of to give your kids the best chance to succeed.
The outliers in this book are people who have either succeeded or failed beyond expectation. Besides intelligence, what other factors make people extremely successful? Some of the questions that are posed and answered are:
Why are most professional hockey players born Jan-
Why were 9 of the top wealthiest men of ALL time (cleopatra to present) born in the 1830's?
Why are many of the key people in computer technology born between 1953 and 1955? W
hy did some immigrant groups do better than others?
Why do asians do better in math?
These are interesting questions and interesting observations are provided. It is not clear if even the author has an overall opinion of if you can control your own destiny. He swings from chapters where when you were born is the largest factor, to other cases where simply working hard and smarts gets you ahead. Perhaps the answer is you need both to become a Bill Gates or a Rockefeller. However, he makes an excellent case of how external factors often set you up for success.
The other concept that is presented is the idea of working hard enough and long enough at something to become expert at something. Those that were wildly successful were experts at the right time in history.
The audio book is not referenced so if you want to read the studies cited for yourself, you will need to get the book.
If you have read Drunkard's Walk and Supercrunchers, this is an interesting and important addition to the factors that govern success.
I really enjoy Gladwell's articles for The New Yorker, and I've read his other two books, but in this one I found the evidence he presents for his "thesis" to be flimsy at best. It's posing as science, but awash in anecdotal evidence. I had a hard time taking it seriously after a while. I would not recommend to a friend except in excerpts.
I read a piece on Malcom Gladwell's book in fortune and decided to listen to it. I got hooked to it right away.
This is my first Malcolm Gladwell book and after listening to this one, I am going to listen to his other works as well.
I took a star off because I don't agree with Malcom Gladwell 100% although I must admit, I kept saying to myself, "hmmm interesting observation...." listening to his arguments.
There were a few success stories I can totally relate to (success story of my grandfather being one. At times Gladwell is able to convince the listener to wonder if he or she has the combination of right ingredients to be successful.
I agree with Gladwell when he argues success has little or nothing to do with having a high IQ or a low IQ. Rather, success is substantially a product of "practical intelligence" or how i like to call it is street smartness.
I loved this book! There is a reason I'm not a terrific ice hockey player (other than I can barely stand up on skates). I was born in the wrong month. Who knew? I was hooked from the first sentence to the last. It is very reassuring to know that people who have changed the world we live in are maybe not that different from any of us, but were instead at the right place at the right time. This book will make us all want to go out and change our educational system, look at what country the pilot of our plane grew up in and marvel that our Scottish ancestors took time out from their violent inclinations to have kids. Malcolm Gladwell has a gift for taking on topics that I have not found that interesting and turning them into mind twisters that delight. If he will now explain our economy we would all be better of for it!
The data was proven false. Gladwell was the subject of a fraud investigation in Canada for the material published in this book. Even if his data was credible, his conclusions are not founded and full of logical fallacies. Book is a fraud.
His passion for his work is clear in his reading.
His obvious socialist leanings are in your face throughout the whole book. Unqualified statements, such as 'tax breaks are only for the wealthy' are abundant. The 'anti-individualism' mandate of current left-wing thinking dominates this work.
There is plenty of interesting research in this book, it is just presented in the authors very biased world view instead of a purely factual manner.
Malcolm Gladwell gives you tremendous insights into how great success is engineered in our society.
What I had hoped and much more. Really enjoyed this book about to listen again.
"great food for thought and very well explained!"
I found this book incredibly interesting and it really does make you you look at success in a totally different light.
Fascinating and very easy to listen to! I'll listen to this one again really soon I'm sure, there's a lot more to unpack in here.
Starts strong and then degenerates into a string of interesting but disorganised thoughts. While I am inclined to agree with the views presented the author speaks too much about his own thought process and is unable to back his views up credibly (which is a real shame).
Overall great read.
"Thought provoking and very immersive!"
Yes, I found it very interesting, thought provoking and very well laid out.
The reason for Korean Airplane Crashes!
Well worth a read!
"Fascinating and thought provoking"
This is an excellent read (listen). I've been interested in the psychology of success for a while and this book brings an additional dimension to the recipe and talks about how opportunities seized unconsciously can be the difference between success and failure.
The concepts are extremely clear and well explained. I also enjoyed the reading style kg author! It makes light work of this masterpiece.
"A good book."
A good book. Will advise my kids to have a go at it. Thank you Malcom.
Gives very interesting insights into the world of success and opportunity. I would recommend to anyone.
Very well read by the author of the book.
"Hype makes sense"
The hype makes sense. The book is very well written and narrated. It's one of those that will make you look ignorant if you haven't read it yet.
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