Tag: Malcolm Gladwell

Malcolm Gladwell – David & Goliath | Review

Title: David & Goliath

Author: Malcolm Gladwell

Type: Non-Fiction

Page Count: 308

Rating: 3/5

I usually enjoy reading Malcolm Gladwell’s stuff, but this one was a little bit of a disappointment. I think the problem was that it was just far too basic – it basically shares a simple idea in a couple of pages and then spends the remaining 300 pages to give a bunch of examples. By about halfway through, I was thinking about DNFing it, but I stuck with it. I’m not sure whether I’m glad or not.

Basically, the idea is that it’s often the underdog who comes out on top, because they’re able to be more nimble and to use that to give them a competitive advantage. We see this in the story of David vs Goliath, although Gladwell argues that David was always the likely winner because he had a sling and Goliath was wearing heavy, cumbersome armour. He had no chance of getting close to David in the first place.

Then he talks at length about all sorts of different organisations, from the classic examples like Apple and Google to more obscure examples, such as the guy who campaigned for the three strikes law in California. It turns out that while the idea of harsher punishments might be a smart one, it just doesn’t really work in practice.

Overall, would I recommend this? Nah, I would not. It’s not that it’s terrible, it’s just pretty boring and not Gladwell’s best by a long shot. I’d recommend something like Blink instead. I still intend to read all of his books at some point, but it might take me a little longer to get to them now. He’s gone down a lot in my esteem and that’s a bit of a bummer. But it is what it is.

Learn more about David & Goliath.


Malcolm Gladwell – The Tipping Point | Review

Title: The Tipping Point

Author: Malcolm Gladwell

Type: Non-Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 280

Rating: 8/10


Malcolm Gladwell - The Tipping Point

Malcolm Gladwell – The Tipping Point


Since its publication, The Tipping Point has become one of the most iconic non-fiction books on the market, as well as the one that Gladwell is most well-known for. Loosely speaking, it looks at the idea that there’s a moment at which a cultural phenomenon hits a ‘tipping point’, a point of no return after which something will take off. Gladwell applies this to marketing, such as the rise and fall of Hush Puppies, as well as to things like crime and smoking, which can actually increase on a large scale due to things like graffiti, which can form a tipping point.

It might sound complicated, but it’s pretty easy to get your head around it once you start to get absorbed into Gladwell’s writing, which I guarantee will happen. It happened to me before, when I read Blink – he has a gift for taking complex subjects and scientific studies and making them easy for you to swallow. You feel smart when you’re reading it, and you should do – you’re learning things, things that you can put into practice both in business and in your day-to-day life.

Honestly, I’d recommend this book to anyone who works in marketing, like I do – the core concepts of it are valuable to both marketers and advertisers, as well as to communicators in general. It also introduces Mavens, which I’m not going to explain here – however, the concept of Mavens has taken on a life of its own, and it’s interesting to see how it all comes back to this book. Go read it!


Malcolm Gladwell

Malcolm Gladwell


Click here to buy the Tipping Point.


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