About the author
Author Malcolm T. Gladwell is a Canadian journalist, speaker, and author. He is currently a reporter for The New Yorker. All five books he wrote – including the famous two “Tipping Point” and “In the Blink” – were on the “bestseller” list.
The book “Outliers: The Story of Success” offers us a different and more comprehensive view of the reasons for the success of outstanding people. The common factors that we know: intelligence, talent, determination... only explain 50% of the success of outstanding people. The remaining 50% lies in completely different, seemingly unrelated factors such as: family background, family and school upbringing, living environment, living situation, traditions and heritage they receive Yes, opportunities come to them, and especially the number of hours they work and practice for their profession.
Wasted Talents and the Matthew Effect strengthen and develop lucky talents
A closer look at the list of members of the Medicine Hat hockey team - a team that plays in Canada's Major Junior A - shows that 17 out of 25 young players were born between January and April of the year. What will happen to the players born in the remaining months? The very simple reason was found. In Canada, the cut-off date for age-based hockey team selection is January 1 of each year. Children who turn 10 in the months of January, February, and March will be selected to participate together with other children born in October, November, and December of the year. During adolescence, a difference of months in age can make a huge difference in how physically mature children are. Therefore, children born in January, February, and March - older, more coordinated - are often selected after these recruitment contests. And when chosen, These young players are better trained, have better teammates, compete in tournaments and have more exposure than those who are not selected. So when they reach the age of 13, 14 - the age to enter Major Junior A - the gap between these players and the players born in the last months of the year (May - December) is even more different. That explains why there are so many young players born between January and April in Canada's Major Junior A teams. It is clear that the young talents born in January - April have had a better chance - to be selected and developed - than those born in the same year but in other months. The same thing happened in American baseball. Due to the break in the selection date at the end of July, the number of talented players selected for the key tournaments born in August is much different than in other months. In English football, since the date selected is September 1,the majority of players born from September to November.
Two economists - Kelly Bedard and Elizabeth Dhuey - examined the relationship between the month of birth and students' math test scores according to data from TIMSS, a testing program that takes place every four years in many countries around the world. gender. They found that among fourth graders, older children scored about 4 to 12 percent higher than younger children. Two children with completely similar intelligence, the one with the closest birth date achieved 89%, and the one with the closest birth date scored only 68%. A sizable difference enough to exclude young children from talent development programs.
In the examples above, the “bias” selection – though objective – distorts the outcome of talent selection. Selected lucky talents have better conditions to become more talented. Sociologist Robert Merton has called this bias phenomenon the Matthew effect, based on the biblical teaching: “To everyone who has, more will be given, and there will be an abundance; and whoever does not have it will be taken away." Successful people will have more chances to succeed, the rich will get the most tax relief, the best students will get the best care and education. In the examples above: Selected talents are taught, trained, and other favorable conditions to become more talented. Talents that are not selected are increasingly lost. Thus, talent-seeking organizations, Future planners need to develop scientific and fair ways of choosing, minimizing biased choices, so as not to waste talent.
The 10,000 hour rule – You can't excel without 10,000 hours of work
In the early 1990s, psychologist K. Anders Ericsson and two colleagues at the Berlin Academy of Music conducted a talent study of the academy's violin students. They divided these students into 3 groups: The first group consisted of students with the potential to become world-class solo artists; The second group is the students with good ratings; The third group is not playing well and intends to become a music teacher in the public school system. The researchers found a distinct difference between the three groups, which is the number of hours they exercised. Students in the first group practiced for an average of 10,000 hours, the second group 8,000 hours, and the third group 4,000 hours. Mr. Ericsson and colleagues found similar results for professional pianists. To get into a top music school, all potential artists have to reach the required level of talent, and in order to succeed as a professional performer, they must achieve at least 10,000 hours of practice. Without 10,000 hours of practice, no matter how talented an artist is, he cannot become a professional performer.
Various studies on people excelling in the fields of: composers, basketball, novelists, skating, chess, and even skilled criminals... have produced surprisingly similar results in terms of performance. 10,000 hours of practice. For a person to reach the level of mastery and potentially become a world-class expert in any field, they need to work at least 10,000 hours.
Bill Joy - compared to the Edison of the Internet - is one of the most influential people in modern computer history. He co-founded Sun Microsystems and rewrote Unix and Java software. Before shining, Bill Joy had the opportunity to practice programming at Michigan and later Berkeley. Thanks to studying at Michigan school where a modern computer system was in place in 1971, as well as discovering a billing error in this system, Bill Joy - a math student - had the opportunity to practice programming day and night. He determined that the total number of hours he had practiced programming was about 10,000 hours.
The British Beatles - one of the most famous rock bands in the world - thanks to the chance to get a gig in Hamburg, USA where bands are required to perform for a long time, so they have the opportunity to practice. and performed for many hours. Before really shining in 1964, the Beatles performed 1,200 concerts, 5-6 hours a night. These hours outnumbered the hours of most other bands, and made the Beatles truly one of the world's most beloved bands.
People tell, even weave many stories about the outstanding success of Bill Gates, but not everyone knows that one of the important factors determining the success of Bill Gates and Microsoft is that Bill Gates also spent 10,000 hours practicing programming before founding the software company Microsoft. Thanks to his family's condition, by chance, Bill Gates was programmed on the computer for 5 consecutive years - from eighth grade to last grade of high school. And by the time Bill Gates got out of Harvard to start his own software company, he had more than 10,000 hours of programming hours. Bill Gates acknowledges that is a huge opportunity, and he thinks that only about 50 teenagers in the world get 10,000 hours of programming at a young age.
No matter how good or talented, no one can take a shortcut to brilliant success, to excellence. The path that all people who want to succeed must go through is 10,000 hours of practice, it couldn't be shorter. Outstanding people get 10,000 hours of practice, not only because of their great passion and hard work, but also because of special opportunities. Without the opportunity to be invited to perform in Hamburg, the Beatles would not have had the opportunity to practice much and become a successful band. Bill Gates also acknowledged that he had an incredible chance when he was transferred to Lakeside private school, which was a rare place for a computer club and at that time. Thanks to that, Bill Gates, an eighth grader, had the opportunity to work more with computers for his passion for programming.
The era of creating heroes – The fortunes of outstanding people
List of the 75 richest people in thousands of years of human history - starting with John D. Rockefeller with an estimated net worth of 318.3 billion US dollars, Bill Gates 37th with 58 billion; Warren Buffett 41st with 52.4 billion; Crown Prince Alwaleed bin Talal 75th with $29.5 billion – 45 Americans, but especially 14 Americans were born between 1831 and 1840. Why is that? In the 1860s and 1870s, the American economy underwent the greatest transformation in history. This time the railroads were built, Wall Street - financial markets - rose, industrial production flourished, the rules governing the traditional economy were broken and re-created. Those born in the late 1840s were too young to seize this opportunity. People born in the 1840s are too "old" minds because they are influenced by the model of pre-Civil War America. This precious opportunity is just right for those born between 1831 - 1840. In those 9 years, millions of people were born, but only talented and visionary people can take advantage of the opportunity. a few hundred years have this one.
In 1975, Popular Electronics magazine announced the birth of the personal electronic computer - marking a revolutionary event in the world's information technology industry. Which generation will benefit from this great opportunity? Those are not talented people in their 30s and 40s. They have settled into fairly solid positions, and their minds have no room for new technological inventions. High school talent can't do great things at that age either. The most suitable age to seize this information technology opportunity are those born in their 20s in 1975. These are Bill Gates – 1955, Paul Allen – 1953, Steve Ballmer – 1956 of Microsoft, Steve Jobs – 1955 by Apple, Eric Schmidt - 1955 by Novel and Google, Bill Joy - 1954 by Sun Microsystems...
Joseph Flom - Jewish American - was accepted to study law at Harvard by a convincing letter. A brilliant legal thinker, he was at the top of his class, but he couldn't get a job at the proud Wall Street law firms, consisting of lawyers representing large and prestigious corporations. So he co-founded the law firm Skadden. For many years, Joseph Flom and his law firm Skadden - the firm of Jewish lawyers - failed to integrate with the prestigious world of white-shoe lawyers on Wall Street. The jobs his firm received in the 1950s and 1960s were in litigation and proxy fights that white-shoe law firms refused to accept. Until 1970,Mergers and acquisitions are becoming more and more common and the legal demands of these deals become high-profile cases. At that time white shoe law firms were just beginning to enter this market while Joseph Flom and his law firm Skadden had gone too far. The more experienced Joseph Flom's Skadden company became, the more likely it was to receive more lawsuits. They were wildly successful and became the most prestigious law firm in the world. The difficult initial circumstances turned into great opportunity for Joseph Flom and his Jewish law firm. The important thing is that Joseph Flom was ready to seize the opportunity and thereby transform himself from an ordinary person to an outstanding person. At that time white shoe law firms were just beginning to enter this market while Joseph Flom and his law firm Skadden had gone too far. The more experienced Joseph Flom's Skadden company became, the more likely it was to receive more lawsuits. They were wildly successful and became the most prestigious law firm in the world. The difficult initial circumstances turned into great opportunity for Joseph Flom and his Jewish law firm. The important thing is that Joseph Flom was ready to seize the opportunity and thereby transform himself from an ordinary person to an outstanding person. At that time white shoe law firms were just beginning to enter this market while Joseph Flom and his law firm Skadden had gone too far. The more experienced Joseph Flom's Skadden company became, the more likely it was to receive more lawsuits. They were wildly successful and became the most prestigious law firm in the world. The difficult initial circumstances turned into great opportunity for Joseph Flom and his Jewish law firm. The important thing is that Joseph Flom was ready to seize the opportunity and thereby transform himself from an ordinary person to an outstanding person. The difficult initial circumstances turned into great opportunity for Joseph Flom and his Jewish law firm. The important thing is that Joseph Flom was ready to seize the opportunity and thereby transform himself from an ordinary person to an outstanding person. The difficult initial circumstances turned into great opportunity for Joseph Flom and his Jewish law firm. The important thing is that Joseph Flom was ready to seize the opportunity and thereby transform himself from an ordinary person to an outstanding person.
Analytical intelligence (IQ) is only a necessary condition
Analytical intelligence (IQ) is only a necessary condition. Other sufficient conditions are practical intelligence, family-oriented education.
Scientists measured the link between a person's IQ and success. The higher the IQ, the more likely one is to succeed. However, this relationship only works up to the threshold of 120. Once someone has reached an IQ of 120, adding a few points or more of superior IQ does not translate into any advantage. A scientist with an IQ of 130 is as likely to win a Nobel Prize as a scientist with an IQ of 180. And a person with a high IQ without "enough" conditions is not necessarily successful.
In 2008, Chris Langan was the person with the highest IQ in America. His IQ is 195, while that of the genius scientist Einstein is 150. He passed the IQ test for the smartest people with only 1 wrong answer. In the TV show Arena 100, he confidently competed with the remaining 100 people. With polite, neat answers, he was sure he had won tree after question. Until he reached the $250,000 bonus, he abruptly stopped playing. His intellectual mind had already calculated the probability of winning or losing on the next question. He decided to stop and quit the game at the top. However, in addition to showing, presenting and making money with his intelligence, Chris Langan is not a successful person in life, much less an outstanding person. He is the owner of a horse farm in a rural area.
So what made Chris Langan not be successful? He was born into a poor, destitute family, and was not raised normally like many other children. His family and living environment only taught him how to live in restraint, not in teaching him the right to do, the right to pursue personal interests, the right to actively control the interactions around him. The higher Chris Langan's analytical intelligence (IQ), the lower his practical intelligence. According to psychologist Robert Sternberg, practical intelligence is the ability to "know what to say and to whom, when, and how to say it with maximum effect". Chris Langan has almost no ability to communicate, persuade others and almost have to do everything alone without the help of others.
Also has a high analytical intelligence like Chris Langan, but the story of Robert Oppenheimer - the American physicist who helped invent the atomic bomb for the US during World War II - is a completely different story. He was born in a wealthy family, and his family applied the educational method "converted cultivation". Thanks to that, along with his high analytical intelligence, he also possesses a very high level of practical intelligence. Thanks to that, he was brave enough to overcome the adversities in life at a young age. In middle age, with his talent and two high intelligences, he persuaded Mr. Leslie Groves to be recruited into the position of Head of Atomic Bomb Research and achieved great success. .
So what ultimately makes outstanding people?
Luck. For young talents, it's luck being born in January, February, and March. For 14 American billionaires, it's luck being born in a nine-year period from 1831 to 1840. For Bill Gates was lucky to be born in the period 1955-1975, and to attend the right Lakeside School. For the Beatles, it was a blessing to be invited to perform in Hamburg. For lawyer Joseph Flom, it was a fortune from the wave of mergers and acquisitions.
Place of origin. Talented players, Bill Gates, Robert Oppenheimer were born in a family with good conditions and inherited a good upbringing, developed in a more favorable environment than many others.
Communicative intelligence and other knowledge and skills that outstanding people inherit from family-oriented education.
Work at least 10,000 hours. Outstanding people have the opportunity and passion to practice, working at least 10,000 hours for their profession.