Sunday, July 15, 2007

Book review - The Tipping Point

Wow, this has got to be one of the most though provoking books that I have read in recent times. “The Tipping Point” by Malcolm Gladwell sets out to explain those moments when ideas, trends and social behaviours cross a threshold and then spread liek wildfire.

The book raises many, many though provoking ideas. Ones of these is that you can measue a persons intelligence directly from the people that they associate with. Most people closely associate with people who are like them, move in similar circles, do the same thing, come from similar backgrounds. People who have a wide range of associations, even loose or weak ones, generally tend to be far more intelligent because they are mingling with people who are not like them. They are challenged by these differences and that greatly increases their abilities. It can also be shown that the more contacts people have the greater their intelligence since they have to continue to juggle these associations and social interactions. Interesting eh?

Gladwell identifies three personality traits that required to cause a tipping point. Each is unique but a necessary component for any trend to move into the mainstream. He cites many examples, like the growth in popularity of Hush Puppy shoes, the success of Sesame Street and the influence TV news readers had in recent Presidential campaigns.

If you want a book that will really make you think and take a hard look at what makes things tick then I can't recommend this book highly enough. It is rare that a book these days can so stimulating. In my opinion this is a must read book!

Rating = 10 of 10