How Everyday Davids Win 1/3 of the Time—and Strategies For Slaying Your Personal Goliath

In yet another insightful piece from his series in The New Yorker, renowned author Malcolm Gladwell (The Tipping Point, Blink, Outliers) looks at the fabled “David beats Goliath” paradigm and finds it’s not as rare as you might think. In fact, a little digging shows that there are a few common tactics that seem to recur whenever the underdog comes out on top of the competition. Read the article here:


How have you used these strategies, consciously or not, in your life or business to beat long odds?


  1. Thanks Tony! Always great perspectives from you and this great community…

    There are so many of us “Davids” out there, fighting valiantly, and beating our Goliaths alone. It’s time we banded together and leveraged each others’ capabilities to focus on fighting the Goliath of all Goliaths. Imagine the capability that a community of connected Davids can do in concert as we fight those Goliaths together, leveraging each others’ strength, and attacking from all flanks.

    One statement from Gladwell’s article, “When underdogs choose not to play by Goliath’s rules, they win,” is the key point. We need break more paradigms and take more stands… easier said than done, right?

    In my life, I’ve fought Goliaths, and won, in collegiate athletic arenas, the literal battlefield as a United States Marine, in corporate arenas across the planet, and in my own spiritual warfare. I know how it’s done. I know which stones to choose. I know how to carry the sling. I know Goliath’s psychology. But what I DON’T know is what all you other David’s know…

    Now is the time for us to do it together, like it’s never been done before. That’s what it will take to slay the big Goliaths now. We need to band together, with trust and accountability to hold each other to his / her highest, and truly support one another. Like rowers in a boat, we must pull more than our weight, knowing that our fellow oarsmen are doing the same for us.

    Chris Steely on September 4th 2011
  2. As an entrepreneur, I can definitely relate to the David’s of the world. This article is some useful encouragement from two of my favorite ‘giants’.

    Chris on September 3rd 2011
  3. Great stuff Tony, keep delivering, especially your epic videos!

    YourTubeTheme on August 22nd 2011
  4. Great article…while the New Yorker story mainly uses sports (and a little military) analogies to talk about the David vs Goliath dilemna, it can equally be applied to any industry where your main competitors are entrenched (i.e. are the Goliaths) and you’re David. You have to do things your way and not try to beat the big boys at their own game. Very interesting. And it’s always a good idea to be our own unique selves anyway!

    Kara on August 17th 2011
  5. Mr robbins- I would like to get in touch with u on your personal mail id.I request you please do send me your personal email id.
    Aditya Kothari

    aditya kothari on July 31st 2011
  6. OMG!
    correlating between the Goliath stone-throwing story, before Christ, and the ‘thou the one without sin cast/throw the first stone’ saying by Jesus himself, it almost seems that Jesus was some sort of society/cultural interventionist!
    watta thought.

    Anca Sovarosi on July 2nd 2011
  7. Thanks for posting this article, Tony. I just forwarded it to the Cairns Taipans basketball team who need all the help they can get LOL. Best regards, Jewel

    Jewel Rainbow on June 30th 2011

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