What changes can society make to use the knowledge Gladwell offers us to foster success?Share one way that you think Gladwell's ideas can be applied in society at large.

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Lorraine Caplan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There are so many ideas in this book about success, but the one that struck me the most was the 10,000 hours because that is a culture-neutral means of accomplishment, applicable to anyone, anywhere, in any field of endeavor.  Success is not accidental, and it involves far more in the way of hard work than it does inspiration.  Gladwell tells anecdote after anecdote to demonstrate this, and I am certain that all of us know people whose success is the result of putting in those 10,000 hours.  An expression came to my mind as I read that section of the book: "Chance favors the prepared."  When you have put in the time and opportunity comes along, you are ideally situated to reap the benefit.  If you haven't put in that time, you cannot.  Today, at least in the United States, there seems to be a notion amongst young people that one can succeed without this kind of preparation, that we can just go through the motions of education and apprenticeship and there will be some great reward at the end.  But without the substantive knowledge and practice of your discipline, success may come for a while, but there is nothing there to sustain it. 

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Outliers: The Story of Success

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