Outliers: The Story of Success (by Malcolm Gladwell)

People are unusually successful because they are unusually gifted.

The sentence above is wrong!

Success is a series of lucky events, rare opportunities, financial resources, and other factors that are out of your control.

Who we are cannot be separated from where we’re from.

When you're born matters

When you're young, it matters whether you're 8 years old competing against 9 years old (in sports, school, or anything else). Ten extra months at that age gives you a huge advantage. This advantage adds up over time (success -> motivation -> more work -> more success -> ...).

Bill Gates was so successful because he was the only person in the world to have unlimited access to the computer terminal at that time. That gave him a huge advantage over anyone else who was also hard working.

Where you come from matters

Our heritage has a huge effect on our potential for success.

Asians are good at math. Simple fact.

It's mostly because it's in their cultural heritage. They work harder and don't give up that easily.

Historically, rice field farmers had to work much harder and smarter compared to European "potato" farmers. This is reflected in today's Asian culture.

The other reason is quite simple - Their numbering system is logical and simple. In English, the numbering system is inconsistent (one-teen vs Eleven, or three quarters vs three-fourths).

© 2021 Ondrej Sevcik