In Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell explores the “hidden factors” which help contribute to success. Believe it or not, he ascribes being in the “right place at the right time” as a major contributor. From Bill Gates to the Beatles, no one succeeds alone. Gates happened to attend one of the few schools in the world (at the time) to provide high school students access to the type of computer programing system which allowed him to develop his coding skills. He also happened to live near a University with a similar system he could access on weekends, evenings, and school breaks. The Beatles big break may have been a gig playing in Hamburg strip clubs for hours on end. With nearly unlimited stage time and thousands of hours of live practice, they mastered the basics and began to elevate their sound to the next levels. In addition to these two most famous examples, Gladwell presents and examines several other cases where external factors provide the impetus to propel people to success.
I found Outliers a fascinating look “behind the scenes” of success. Gladwell does an excellent job of identifying and illustrating variables with the power to change people’s lives. By blending famous examples with more obscure cause and effects, the author provides stories with wide appeal. This is informational (“non-fiction”) writing at its readable best. Both informative and enjoyable, I recommend Outliers to any reader who has every looked at our society and wondered “Why?”
Outliers, written by Malcolm Gladwell, is an enthralling book that is formed to explain the formula for success, and all the variables of success within the formula. Gladwell uses well known individuals in society such as Bill Gates, The Beatles, and Steve Jobs to explain their path to success, and how the common denominators to success resulted from hard work, chance and acting when presented with opportunity. The conclusion of the book ends with a thought provoking rhetorical question; are all individuals of society outliers? If people were presented and acted upon opportunity and improved their work ethics, wouldn’t we all be successful?
This book was very interesting and easy to read because Malcolm Gladwell presented his thoughts in a clear format, and wrote in a personalized style so that it felt like a conversation between the reader and author. I enjoyed this book because it was easy to read, but interesting in content.
Recommendations: The Tipping Point, Freakonomics, and Blink