Rich People In Outliers By Malcolm Gladwell

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In the book “Outliers”, the author, Malcolm Gladwell talks about the life of many different people that have turned out to be very smart or even famous. He explains his points about were his subjects lived, and what years they were born. Gladwell argues that if the individuals had the resources around them, started at a young age, and worked hard, the subjects would be able to master anything in 10,000 hours.

Gladwell observes the way many of today’s most famous people used to live. Take the Beatles for instance. He talks about the amount of work that the Beatles put into their music in order to get famous. They weren’t an overnight sensation. The Beatles played day and night every week, and Gladwell then concludes that they played music for 10,000 hours before they got famous. Gladwell also talks about how Bill Joy and Bill Gates had similar circumstances in which they both got long hours at the computer lab in order to accomplish their 10,000 hours. Due to the immense amount of time on the computers, they both became world renowned.

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My original response to his argument was that it doesn’t make sense to say that without 10,000 hours, one won’t have the necessary skills to perform at the professional level. This is because many people have natural talents, which can lead them to becoming successful. Gladwell also says that “Ideally, you want to be twenty or twenty-one, which is to say, born in 1954 or 1955” (Gladwell 65), but if you look at Jeff Bezos and Steve Wozniak, two of the most successful people in the world, neither of them were born in that time frame. This means that age doesn’t matter and that you shouldn’t have to practice a certain number of hours in order to be successful. This comes to my conclusion of success. I think that success is knowing that you did your best to become the best you are capable of becoming. So it doesn’t matter how much money you make or how well known you are, but how satisfied you are with your life.

The richest man in the world, Jeff Bezos, says that ‘Success is going to require talented experts, a beginner’s mind, and a long-term orientation.’ Gladwell and Bezos have similar ideas in some ways. They both think that time is needed for success. But Bezos states that success requires talent, which goes against Gladwell’s meaning of success, which is that being born with or being given advantages allow you to achieve the task of putting in 10,000 hours worth of work needed to achieve success. Mark Zuckerberg on the other hand says that “If I had to support my family growing up instead of having time to code…I wouldn’t be standing here today.” Zuckerberg and Gladwell have very similar ideas because they both know that if you have the correct resources you can get anywhere.

Despite there being many different meanings of success, Gladwell uses lots of evidence and analysis to prove that his 10,000 hours rule is the path to a successful life in his terms. This can be proven wrong by many successful people that have not been born in a specific year or practiced something for 10,000 hours. But Gladwell concludes that with the correct resources, a good work ethic, and by starting at a young age, anyone can become successful.  


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