Get the Book: Outliers: The Story of Success

-The great are great because of the environment, their experience and training.

-Hockey players in Canada are selected as young as 9 and 10 yr old b/c they are defined as good or bad at a young age, they are given more playing time, better coaching and more experience, so they usually become better.

-year of birth
-Age difference of a few months have incredible effects
-Age differences means being bigger and stronger which gives them more play time and additional experience

-even if you have talent you need to practice 10,000 hours
–you need to be lucky in order to be able practice 10,000 hours.
–Opportunities aren’t always out there all the time.

After a certain point, having a higher IQ won’t make you more or less successful. There are other ‘stuff’ starts to factor in like creatively.

Practical intelligence is knowing what to say to whom, when to say it, and how to say it for maximum impact.

Social Savy is knowledge that comes from the family

Scientist found that there are only two ways of parenting: passively or involved.

The wealthy are heavily involved in their child life. They talk to them about schools, teammates, teachers. Also, parents are highly involved in planning out different activities and cultivating the child’s natural abilities.

When their children are in trouble, or if they weren’t accepted into a gifted program, parents will attack the authority, and even petition for a retest. They also treat their children as equal.
We can name wealthy parents parenting style as concerted cultivation.

Neither style is superior but practically, concerted cultivation is better b/c they learn to be entitled, and how to customize situations to suit their needs.
–Have a right to speak up and assert himself
–Having the sense of entitlement to ask questions and shift power from the authority figure to yourself is important.

How am I as a person? Do I feel a sense of entitlement?
I kind of do and I kind of don’t. I think I feel less of a sense of entitlement than wealthy kids, but I am no where as passive as the children that went through passive parenting.


When you were born is important. For instance, Joe Flom was born in an era and culture that believes Jews are second tier citizens. Because he was Jewish he couldn’t join the ‘white-shoe’ law firms and he was only able to practice what was considered second tier law, takeovers and litigation. Yet, he was able to transform and become a success story because subsequent to Joe’s 10,000 hours of takeover and litigation experience, takeover and litigation law became important and profitable.

Another example of when you were born is important: If you were born in the 1930’s you were born into a small baby population. Nurses and teachers weren’t overwhelmed and gave each baby special attention. There were ample jobs to choose from.

The Generation before the 1930’s live through tough times
-1918 flu epidemic; killed 10% of the worlds population

‘Hard work is a prison sentence only if it doesn’t have meaning’

Children born under parents who are entrepreneurial tend to do better because they saw their family hustle to make it.

Where you were born is important
During the 19th century, Kentucky was filled with violence.

Because the environment wasn’t fit for farming, so everyone there were herdsman who raised animals. Those animals can be taken so people are always worried that someone will steal from them, thus they live in a culture of honor where they have to protect themselves and be aggressive. A Mans reputation is the center of his livelihood and self worth. This culture of honor behavior is passed down to mordern day.

So in a sense where you are born and how you were raised also shape your personality.

More on culture
Individual collectivism: how much the culture expects individual to look after themselves.

Uncertainty avoidance: How well does a culture tolerate ambiguity

Power distance index:
low- ashame of power
high- there is a hierachy structure where people feel ‘subordinate’ or ‘in command’
The united states have a power index of 40, which is in the middle.

Koreans have 6 different ways of talking depending on social standing.

The culture that we were raised up in will dictate what we say and how we say it.

Western communication have what is called transmitter orientation; speakers’ responsibility to communicate ideas effectively. Eastern are receiver orientated; listener to make sense of what is being said.

When you are being subtle, people need to pay close attention to your motivation and desires. Sometimes people don’t have the luxury of time to unwind each others meaning so they aren’t capable of picking up your subtlety.

Human beings store ‘digits’ in memory loop of 2 seconds. Chinese number words are remarkably brief.

These are all examples of how your culture affects how you are as a person. In eastern society, like china, the numeric system is alot more concise and easy to follow. Children are able to count to 40 at a young age and become good at math. When you are good at something, you will try more and it is a virtuous cycle that keeps going.

More examples of culture

In China, agriculture consist mostly of paddy fields. Farming rice requires skill. You couldn’t hire slaves to tend the paddy fields because there are so much that can go wrong. The person tending the land really need to care for it in order to yield the best result. So it is an autonomous system.

This gave Chinese the belief that hard work will yield results and WE worked thousands of hours a year. Whereas the European feudal system created a belief system where people don’t believe in hard work.

Also those who are able to sit still and solve problems without giving up on it are great in math.

This culture and belief translate over to the current culture-

Western planted wheat and corn which needed the land lie fallow for a season or a long period of time before the land could be used again. This thinking was carried over to the school system now, in america, where Americans only go to school for 180 days a year while Chinese go to school for 240 days and have longer hours.

Also, research found that the wealthy aren’t smarter because of their wealth, but because the rich learn more during summer breaks.

In summary you need to put in the hours, but also need to be given the opportunities to succeed.

Get the Book: Outliers: The Story of Success

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Convent- a community of people devoted to religious life under a superior
Fractious- readily angered, irritable
Egalitarian- asserting, resulting from, or characterized by belief in the equality of all people
Ethos- The fundamental character or spirit of a culture
Obscure- hard to perceive, not clear
Dignitary- a person who holds a high rank or office.
Tumult- Violent and noisy commotion or disturbance of a crowd or mob
Meritocracy- an elite group of people whose progress is based on ability and talent rather than on class privilege or wealth
Virtuoso- a person who has special knowledge or skill in a field
Pluck- courage or resolution in the face of difficulties
Specious- apparently good or right though lacks merit
Expanse- an uninterrupted space or area; a wide extent of anything
Fledgling- young, new or inexperience
Advent: a coming into place or view
Dole: to give out sparingly or in small quantities
Estrange: to turn away in feeling or affection; make unfriendly or hostile
Subsist: to remain alive
Inquisitive: given to inquiry, research, or asking questions.. eager for knowledge
Repugnant: distasteful or offensive
Flounder: to struggle clumsily or helplessly
Sprawl: to be stretch or spread in an unnatural manner
Despair: loss of hope
Wistful: characterized by melancholy
Melancholy: a gloomy state of mind
Plight: a condition, state or situation esp unfortunate or unfavorable
Despondent: feeling or showing profound hopelessness, dejection
Amiss (adjective): improper; wrong; faulty
Protract: to draw out or lengthen; prolong
Imperil: to put in danger
Gregarious: fond of the company of others; social
Concerted: contrived or arrange in agreement. Planned or devised together
Connotation: the associated or secondary meaning of a word
Embody: to give a concrete form to; express, personify, or exemplify in concrete form
Reform: the improvement or amendment of what is wrong.
Idiocy: utterly senseless or foolish behavior
Subsume: to consider or include as part of a more comprehensive one
Meteoric: resembling a meteor in transient brilliance, suddenness of appearance, swiftness
Transient: not lasting
Antecedent: a preceding circumstance, event, object, style. Ancestors
Enmesh: to catch as in net, entangle.
Matrimony: the state of being married
Insurgent: a person who rises in forcible opposition to lawful authority
Purported: reputed or claimed
Solicitous: anxious or concerned. ‘Eager’
Delirium: a more or less temporary disorder of the mental faculties
Halting: faltering or hesitating esp in speech
Imperious: domineering in an haughty manner
Haughty: disdainfully proud: snobbish
Patriarch: the head of a group/ clan
Acquiesce: to assent tacitly; submit or comply silently without protest
Irascible: Easily provoked to anger: very irritable
Remnant: remaining, usually small part, quantity, number, or the like
Unequivocal: unambiguous, clear
Incapacitated: deprived of strength or power/ unable to act, respond, or the like
Cajole: to persuade by flattery or promises
Prelude: a preliminary to a action, event, condition
Anomaly: a deviation from the common rule, type, arrangement or form.
Renounce: to give up or put aside
Plight: a condition, state, or situation, esp an unfavorable or unfortunate one.
Postmortem: an evaluation or discussion occurring after the end of fact of something
Mangle: to injure severely, disfigure or mutilate by cutting, slashing, or crashing
Gradient: degree of inclination, or the rate of ascent or decent
Inclination: something to which one is incline
Deference: respectful submission or yielding to the judgement, opinion, will
Indelible: making marks that can’t be erased, removed, or the likes
Squeamish: fastidious or danity
Fastidious: excessive, particular, critical, or demanding; hard to please
Predispose: to give an inclination or tendency before hand
Verdant: inexperienced; unsophisticated
Fare: state of things
Efficacy: capacity for producing a desired result or effect
Rote: routine, a fixed habitual, or mechanical course of procedure
Disenchantment: to rid of enchantment
Enchantment: to delight to a high degree
Virtuous: conforming to moral and ethical principals
Proclivity: natural or habitual inclination or tendency
Innate: existing in one from birth
Dawdle: to waste time, idle
Coerce: to compel by force, intimidation or authority
Recompense: to repay
Disparage: to speak of or treat slightly; depreciate
Dogged:persistent in effort; stubbornly tenacious
Despair: loss of hope
Motley: exhibiting great diversity of elements
Haphazard: characterized by lack of planning or order
Pernicious: causing insidious harm or ruin; deadly; fatal
Respite: to relieve temporarily
Fallow: not in use
Lallygag: to spend time idly
Desultory: lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order
Constancy: the quality of being unchanging or unwavering
Progency: a descendant or offspring
Expound: to set forth or state in detail
Parlance: a way or manner of speaking; vernacular
Miscegenation: marriage or cohabitation between two people from different racial groups, esp in the U.S.
Miscreant: vicious or depraved person; villain
Reproach: to find fault with a person, group, etc.


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