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Bernard White


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Is Intelligence a good predictor of finical success? And should it be? Considering Economic and social backgrounds. Should we change it?

After having read many books like :
- Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell.
- Office politics by Oliver James.
It seems that Intelligence isn't the best predictor of "finical success". It seems that many other factors matter a lot more, such as : opportunities (which are mostly random), time when you were born, social and economic background, and how "charismatic" you are.
Also if you are a psychopath, it genially seems it helps you a lot in the business world, because you take credit for everything "good" and blame everything "bad" on other people.
When I say "should it be?" I am referring to the fact that some people may work extremely hard, who are less intelligent than someone who doesn't work hard. Now should that person who is "more intelligent" be allowed to do more well, for something he or she didn't even earn.
Another way of putting this is :
- One man works 10 hours to learn the equivalent of what another man take 1 hour to learn. Is that fair?
Would be interested in people's opinions on this, because in the past, there have been studies done on the correlation between "success" and intelligence. And the main factor was : Social and economic background not intelligence.
Also on a separate note : "What is intelligence?" (only answer this one if you want to, or have the time to.) Will ask a separate Ted question, for this issue!


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    Mar 15 2013: If you look at Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, you will see two very different people. Gates came from financial privilege. Not only could he afford to go to Harvard, but even more telling, he could afford to drop out. Jobs came from a financially meager family, yet his financial success is no less impressive. Both are brilliant men, but if you look at Fortune 500 companies, you will see that a high IQ is not a prerequisite. In fact, height is more important if you are a man.

    This said, I don't think that you will see someone with an IQ of 70 as a CEO of a Fortune 500 company. Not only would such a person not be able to handle the social networking, but such a person wouldn't want to do the work that the CEO must do to run the company.

    Sociopathy is essential (to a culturally acceptable level) for maximum success. So is the ability to have a vision for the future, a willingness to follow that dream, being able to articulate that vision, and finding followers who are willing to invest themselves (or their money) in your vision.

    As to what is "intelligence". Currently, it is defined by one's IQ - which involves the ability to recognize patterns that others do or don't see. It gives an edge because the vision can be seen, but it can also be a ball and chain because if you see a far greater pattern that most of the world sees, you will live in isolation even though you know how to fix all that is wrong with the world. Not seeing the pattern, others will demean you and call you names.

    BUT - if you have a low EQ (emotional quotient), the highest IQ (intelligence quotient) in the world won't save you from yourself. If you do not own your emotions, your emotions will own you, and such a person will not climb from nothing to a financial giant. That type of person must be born into financial privilege.

    PS: It's not at all about fairness as "fair" is defined by our culture.
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      Mar 15 2013: So would you say that intelligence and emotional intelligence (Not sure how similar and different they are) are vital towards success?
      Have you read Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell?
      Because Bill Gates spent more than 10,000 hours on coding at his school, which then enabled him to be one of the best coders, at the time when he released Microsoft,and when "coding" was in high demand and low supply. (Hope I have got my facts right :S)
      And would you say that it is their personality factors which guarantee their successive, rather than situational factors?
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        Mar 15 2013: EQ measures your maturity - as seen through your ability to manage your emotions. This is vital to success unless your success is measured in terms of your willingness to use violence against others to achieve your aims.

        Sociopathy to some AGAIN - CULTURALLY ACCEPTABLE level is also required. To follow this, you have to follow the history and workiings of our fiscal paradigm.

        IQ to SOME degree is essential.

        Because of increased economic disparity, it is becoming more and more difficult to climb above one's given station in life, but it is not yet impossible. Here is where social abilities help when combined with an idea.

        Gates may have spent 10k hours playing with his hobby of coding, but the language he used to code was STOLEN from Apple (first sign of sociopathy - and an offense for which Microsoft paid Apple 150 million dollars)

        Personality is the prime factor in fiscal success. If you have a low EQ and/or IQ and/or are intellectually lazy, your personality is CONSIDERABLY different from one with a high EQ, moderate IQ, and a driving passion. These are things that can be learned, but few choose to learn - even if they hear about something that will make their dreams come true, they will not believe it. An open mind is also necessary because it allows you to see beyond limits imposed on you by your culture.

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