Readers of Malcolm Gladwell's New Yorker articles, reviews, and profiles know him to be an author of wide-ranging curiosity about the world and the way it works.
His choice of subject matter ranges from the psychology of athletes in pressure situations to the salesman who masterminded the popularity of the George Foreman Grill.
What sets Gladwell's writing apart is his use of research in fields such as epidemiology, behavioral psychology, and other social sciences.
His ability to incorporate ideas from these fields in a manner that is both relevant and understandable makes Gladwell a unique, cutting-edge journalist.
Malcolm Gladwell's first book, the best-selling The Tipping Point, examines the ways small ideas can spread in epidemic fashion when they reach a critical mass.
His second book, the equally popular Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking, explores the power of the trained mind to make split-second decisions.
In his most recent work, Outliers: The Story of Success, Gladwell explores what makes the most famous and successful individuals different.
Throughout the book, Gladwell's intelligence and fresh perspective synthesize divergent ideas in order to make a broader point about the way our culture works- City Arts & Lectures
Kevin Berger is the features editor for Salon. In this capacity he has written on everything from music to Iraq and continues to contribute to Salon.com frequently.
Malcolm Gladwell has been a staff writer at The New Yorker since 1996. He is the author of the Times best-sellers "The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference," "Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking," "Outliers: The Story of Success," and "What the Dog Saw: And Other Adventures."
Brian Gruber is Founder and Executive Chairman of FORA.tv.
Gruber has twenty years experience successfully building and marketing media enterprises. As the senior marketing officer for a range of respected media institutions, he has managed billion dollar revenue budgets and large and small marketing teams.
As the first marketing director for C-SPAN, he built its affiliate sales and marketing organization, launching C-SPAN II with the largest subscriber base ever for a cable network at launch. As director of marketing for News Corp's FOXTEL, he helped build the cable television brand in Australia, going from number three to number one in cable subscriptions, brand equity and consumer awareness.
As the head of marketing of the largest urban divisions of 3 top ten cable companies (MSO's), he turned flat or negative subscriber growth into substantial gains. And as president of g/media and Principals.com, he has helped more than twenty new media companies develop brands, marketing strategies, and consumer products.
He also acted as the media adviser and new media producer for the World Affairs Council of Northern California, the nation's most prolific presenter of quality world affairs events.
I read his book and didn't quite know what to think. Hmmm. . .if you practice something a lot, you get better. . .now that's a brand new theory!
In my final analysis, I just heard him repeat the often stated idea that success is when preparation and opportunity cross paths. I also tried to apply his theory to every citizen alive today - can they see opportunities that are avialable due the circumstances of the economy, the culture, trends, fads, the weather, demography, etc., that is unique and could they possibly find ways to seek success through entreprenurial means - in other words, deliberately achieve what the Beatles and other persons in his book did. Gladwell tells their stories as if their success was completely unplanned - could a person do it deliberately?
The 10,000 hours of practice is true for many successful people,
however . . true genius does not require 10,000 hours.
There are geniuses that can learn a language in a week, or multiply huge numbers in their heads, or paint incredibly well, with no training and virtually practice (certainly not 10,000 hours.)
There is that women that remembers everything that every happened to her. "The women that can't forget". She doesn't practice any amount of hours. She just does. I like Gladwell, but in this book . . his points are not correct.
@Dongee I think the point was that, as with the success of the hockey players, so too the success of the Beatles is generally misapprehended by people. The Beatles' hard work is what "rigged" their gigantic success, but you never hear that story just as you never hear about most pro hockey players being born in Jan., Feb., and Mar.
The Beatles suck. :-P
I think that with the Beatles, they would have probably been successful to some degree(as least John and Paul would have, I think. However, it was this series of beneficial co-incidences that allowed them to find that niche and springboard them onto that international stage...beyond that, it was simply that they were better at foreseeing what the public was going to find interesting.
First he says “meritocracies are rigged”. Then he says the Beatles became great by “playing eight hour sets, seven days a week, for months at a stretch.”
Sounds inconsistent. What am I missing here? BTW, I’ve never heard anyone else say the Beatles were prodigies.
that is precisely what makes gladwell's work so appealing - it addresses complex questions with simple and clever answers, derived from various, interesting disciplines and experiments. the key is to enjoy them, as such, while realizing there is actually much more to the answers than he offers. gladwell admits this. it is also necessary when aiming for the general audience, as he does.
We try so hard to make complicated things simple, to reign them in so we can wrap our intellect's arms around them. I'm guilty of it daily. What makes the Beatles the Beatles is a myriad of circumstances, efforts (lots), musical inclinations and talent, happenstance, relationships, etc. It can't be reduced to a formula. I love Gladwell and read all his stuff, and Blink has been a great confidence booster for me, but this looks to be a searching for , that has become an oversimplification, no?