Seth Godin & Malcolm Gladwell on SUCCESS

This week I’ve read two interesting pieces about one topic from two very successful people, namely the New York bestseller author Malcolm Gladwell and marketing guru Seth Godin.They talked about something that interests me greatly: what is it that makes people stand out and be successful?

Malcolm Gladwell´s new book Outliers

Malcolm Gladwell´s new book Outliers

First, let’s talk about Malcolm Gladwell (writer of one of my favourite books called Blink). His new book Outliers, which will be released November 18th, 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?” According to Social Capital Blog, “Gladwell thinks success in the 21st century is going to be less about sheer intelligence and more about collaboration and hard work to get to the level of mastery in a topic (which he says typically takes 10,000 hours)”.

Seth Godin discusses the relationship between effort and success on his blog. He states the following: “Delete the outliers–the people who are hit by a bus or win the lottery, the people who luck out in a big way, and we’re left with everyone else. And for everyone else, effort is directly related to success.” He continues with statements that I couldn´t agree more with:

Effort takes many forms. Showing up, certainly. Knowing stuff (being smart might be luck of the draw, but knowing stuff is the result of effort). Being kind when it’s more fun not to. Paying forward when there’s no hope of tangible reward. Doing the right thing.

Although Seth and Malcolm discuss the topic from a different perspective, they come to a similar conclusion: reaching success is merely hard work. Although this can be hopeful for some people (success is in reach for all of us), it also implies that the less successful just haven´t worked hard enough. That one is a tougher cookie than just blaming it on others or circumstances. For the latter, just don´t read Malcolm Gladwell´s new book :-)


Last weekend I did something that was on my to-do list for a long time already. It involved beer (lots of it), funny dresses and pants (respectively Dirndls and Lederhosen) and old fashioned German music… Yes, I went to the Oktoberfest in Munich!

Since my Germany fondness started to develop a few years ago, I knew the Oktoberfest was something I just had to do one day. After contemplating of visiting the past two years, last weekend I finally went there. And it was great! When you go, one has to go in style so I bought myself a Dirndl (see picture). For obvious reasons men really like this piece of traditional clothing. While wearing it, I of course made a beginners mistake: I wore the bow of my skirt on my back (meaning you’re a widow), instead of on the left (=single, right = taken).

Yours truly in a Dirndl (traditional bavarian dress)

Yours truly in a Dirndl (traditional bavarian dress)

I stayed at Hippodrom, one of the nicer tents of the 11 that are on the Wiesn. For an impression of what it looks like during the day, watch this (don’t let yourself be misled with this video, it gets crazy after dark). As I’m not much of beer drinker, I wondered how I should survive a place where they only serve beers by the liter (Maβ). However, I did so there is hope for everyone :-) One other thing international visitors should do while going to Oktoberfest is to learn ‘Ein Prosit’ by heart (they will play it every three minutes!).

When you have been thinking about visiting this crazy party, I can only say: mach’s einfach (= just do it)!

NY Times proclaimed Amsterdam as ‘reigning capital of cool’

Old news to its inhabitants, but of course worth sharing with the rest of the world. I just wanted to share a few quotes from the publication.

The Dutch capital has emerged as a cultural juggernaut, with everyone from designers to DJ’s flexing their creative muscles

Concept dining is ‘in the elevator’ as the Dutch say. Following in the heels of big ideas like dining in bed (Supperclub) or dining in the dark (Ctaste), the latest theme is the twist on a classic mantra: odd location, odd location, odd location

From big ticket furniture galleries to workaday markets, every inch of town bears that Dutch knack for design

'reigning capital of cool'

Amsterdam "reigning capital of cool" according to NY Times

Got curious and want to read more? The article touches upon a limited but clever selection of design shops, trendy lounges, oddly-located restaurants, architectural hot spots, hotels and new creative breeding grounds such as the NDSM and Westergasfabriek. Go here and click on the icons to discover the wonderful city I live in.