The rationale behind this book, I believe, is to change the way we look at success and how to be successful. We are so caught in the myths of the best, the brightest and the self-made spring naturally from the earth!
However, according to Malcolm Gladwell, success is not about working hard, being gifted or having a high IQ. Successful people don’t do it alone. Where they come from matters. They are the product of environment, cultural legacy, intelligence, personality and ambition.
Enriched with examples from different disciplines and fields, the book illustrates a very realistic anatomy for success and how different factors are interacting with each other toward achieving success.
One of the main factors highlighted is the environment and cultural legacy. Cultural legacy and environment are important to cultivate what is called “Practical Intelligence”; knowing what to say, to who, when and the maximum effective way.
Persistency is another important factor. Success is a function of persistence and doggedness and the willingness to work hard
Enough? Not really, even if you work hard, you have really excellent practical intelligence, ambition and persistency you still need a “Chance” to succeed. You need to be there in the right time, armed with persistency and practical intelligence to take advantage of opportunities when they pass by.
Outliers are product of history and community, of opportunity and legacy. Their success is not really exceptional or mysterious. It is a composite of advantage and inheritances, some deserved, some not, some earned, some just plain lucky. So outliers, in the end are not outliers at all.
Finally, reading this book was a real joy. The way success was approached and analyzed is very scientific, interesting and rational. Definitely, it affected my perspective about success.