Gladwell's newest book is coming out in November. In the publisher Little, Brown and Company's catalog (pdf) is this excerpt:
OUTLIERS is a book about success. It starts with a very simple question: what is the difference between those who do something special with their lives and everyone else? In OUTLIERS, we’re going to visit a genius who lives on a horse farm in Northern Missouri. We’re going to examine the bizarre histories of professional hockey and soccer players, and look into the peculiar childhood of Bill Gates, and spend time in a Chinese rice paddy, and investigate the world’s greatest law firm, and wonder about what distinguishes pilots who crash planes from those who don’t. And in examining the lives of the remarkable among us—the brilliant, the exceptional and the unusual—I want to convince you that the way we think about success is all wrong.
Any idea which firm Gladwell is calling "the world's greatest"?
In this stunning new book, Malcolm Gladwell takes us on an intellectual journey through the world of "outliers"--the best and the brightest, the most famous and the most successful. He asks the question: what makes high-achievers different? His answer is that we pay too much attention to what successful people are like, and too little attention to where they are from: that is, their culture, their family, their generation, and the idiosyncratic experiences of their upbringing. Along the way he explains the secrets of software billionaires, what it takes to be a great soccer player, why Asians are good at math, and what made the Beatles the greatest rock band.
Brilliant and entertaining, OUTLIERS is a landmark work that will simultaneously delight and illuminate.
I am looking forward to reading Outliers when it comes out. And to learning the identity of the "world's greatest law firm"!
Hat tip to 800-CEO-READ Blog.
Note (added December 27, 2008, 12:19 PM Mountain): I read Outliers yesterday and would give it about a B-. Not much new in it but some good stories and interesting applications of old information. For example, he shows how Hofstede's research was applied to airline cockpit communications. As for the question asked above, the firm Gladwell says "is generally regarded as the finest in the world" is Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz.