Author and New Yorker writer Malcolm Gladwell said the most influential entrepreneurs responsible for vast transformational changes in technology share an important trait: they have the courage to be independent, and even disagreeable.
Gladwell spoke in parables about the types of traits that are common among entrepreneurs during his keynote speech at Wednesday’s marketing and tech conference Inbound.
“It’s not enough simply to have great ideas … You also need to be the kind of person that can tune out the naysayers because there will inevitably be naysayers when it comes to transformation,” Gladwell said.
Consider Malcolm McLean, who revolutionized the shipping and trade industry in the mid-1950s by coming up with the idea of the shipping container, Gladwell said.
McLean also had the creativity necessary to think about a concept that would transform an entire industry — another trait that’s common among entrepreneurs.
“In successful attempts of transformation you’ll see an act of re-framing the problem that makes the solution possible; erasing existing boundaries and starting from scratch,” Gladwell said.
“(Entrepreneurs) have the imagination to understand how to change the world,” he continued.
Lastly, the most successful entrepreneurs are the ones that embody a sense of urgency that motivates them to quickly and radically deploy their ideas, Gladwell said, referring to Steve Jobs.
Gladwell spoke at the annual Inbound conference, hosted by Cambridge-based inbound marketing software firm HubSpot, following a surprise performance by Chicago rock band OK Go. (Side note: Applause for the band was rather lackluster — probably because it was 8 am on a Wednesday.)
By Sara Castellanos Technology Reporter- Boston Business Journal