Review: The Tipping Point (Malcolm Gladwell)

The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference

The Tipping Point is damned excellent. It’s a real easy read with lots of insights on how little things can make a big difference. In one case (p. 96) two pieces of medical literature were delivered to students educating them about the benefits of a tetanus shot. In the first case the final take-up rate was 3% of the students, in the second case the rate shot up to 28%.

The difference? The addition of a map and details of the opening times of the medical centre – no change at all to the medical content or wording of the literature.

He also talks about the ‘strength of weak ties’ (p. 54), something that has become increasingly important to me over the last 18 months as I have developed Mor Consulting.

The results are a little old (a 1974 study titled “Getting a Job”) but nonetheless relevant: 56% of people interviewed found their jobs through a personal connection, with another 18.8% using formal means and the remainder applying directly. Of those that used a personal connection, 16.7% saw that contact “often”, the remainder saw the contact “occasionally” or “rarely”. Most of these people found their jobs through friends-of-friends or casual acquaintances. It’s all about the networking…

The book is an easy read, certainly suitable for the commute and packed with interesting stories and studies. A definite Thumbs Up.

1 Comment

  • This book is EXCELLENT. It provides so many fresh perspectives to all the events in our lives which we normally take for granted. A must-read book for all entrepreneurs to boost their marketing skills as well as social skills. Interesting facts and anecdotes. However, some statistics and reports may be outdated. Yet, they are still somewhat relevant.