Connect the dots with Malcolm Gladwell


I read Malcolm Gladwell\’s The Tipping Point, Blink, Outliers, and David and Goliath all within a month. Now they\’re all going in the same post. I found them easy to read and hard to put down; recommended for anyone looking to start reading more non-fiction.These books go by quickly as Gladwell plays connct-the-dots with countless stories that illustrate the larger points that he makes. Most of his insights felt counterintuitive at first, and that\’s what got me engaged. At every turn, I learned a little more about how things work in everyday life. More importantly, I started to ask bigger and more specific questions in my own life and world.Here are some of my notes and quotes from each book:

The Tipping PointLittle things make a big differenceA small number of people do most of the work in driving change. These people are knowledgeable, great salespeople, and/or well-connectedMost people only know a few people, while a few people know a lot of peopleThe message is not enoughBehavior is context-dependent“The reason that most of us seem to have a consistent character is that most of us are really good at controlling our environment”Band solutions are best because they are cheap, easy and enable the wound to recover on its own.Blink“Being able to act intelligently and instinctively in the moment is possible only after a long and rigorous course of education and experience”“Simplest way that respect is communicated is through tone of voice”Too much information is a bad thingAnybody can make a snap judgement or reaction, but only experts can honestly and accurately explain why they didSpontaneity isn’t random“You have to give everyone your best shot”Caution against a defeatist mindset  Outliers“People don’t rise from nothing”Maturity does not equal abilitySmall differences at the beginning make a big difference in the long runSuccess is not randomUS public schools are designed for a farming economyKids lose most of what they learn in school during the summer because they don’t use it.David and GoliathNo one can be beaten at their own gameSize, money, experience, none of that matters“Our sense of how deprived we are is relative”Difficulty is a good thingThere is always more than one response to tragedy and crisisBad teachers make disobedient studentsA powerful institution’s greatest weakness is also its greatest strength: the dependence on legitimacyIf you play the conventional game, you will lose to the incumbent, bigger, stronger, winners.

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