Saturday, September 28, 2013

(79)Outliers by Malcom Gladwell


Pages: 320
Publication Date: November 8, 2008

Yeah, yeah, yeah.   I am late to the game on this one.  I am pretty sure just about everyone but me has read at least ONE Malcolm Gladwell book.  Well until now at least. I chose to read Outliers for  book club at work just because I had heard how wonderful it was from so many different people.

According to one of the definition of Outliers is the following:

someone who stands apart from others of his or her group, as by differing actions, beliefs, religious practices, etc.: an outlier among Muslims; an outlier among conservatives. Synonyms: outsider, nonconformist, maverick; original, eccentric, bohemian; dissident, dissenter, iconoclast, heretic.
Knowing that, the author gathered many different stories on people who are the best in their fields and examines why they are so successful at what they do.  Everyone from sports figures to pioneers in the computer industry, and then there are the Beatles.  You know, that original boy band from across the pond?  Gladwell doesn't just cover success, though.  He also examines a scenarios where people "failed" like one of the most brilliant minds in Physics (I think it was physics) who never  finished college and is living in rural Missouri.  And then there is the Korean pilots, who because it went against their culture to question those in command and resulted in multiple airline crashes and hundreds of deaths.

The thing that really struck a chord with me was when Gladwell was talking about the 10,000 hour principle. Basically it takes a minimum of 10,000 hours of practice before a person can really master something.  Whether it be the Beatles playing their set or a member of the orchestra, the 10,000 hour principle is pretty typical for everything.  And knowing that, I figured I have another six years  or so before I have completely mastered a significant skill in my profession.

Bottom line, Outliers is not your typical business book.  The format is easy to read and the stories within the book are high-interest and very engaging.  If you are looking for something to reignite the passion you once had for your career, your hobby, or anything really, then Outliers is a must read.


Why I Read...

I remember the carefree summer days when I used to ride my bike to the public library to pick out new books. I would go almost daily to find books to read. I read to learn. I read to explore the world. I read to escape. I read because not reading is not an option.

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