Have you ever wondered what makes the most successful inventors tick and whether you could develop more of those traits? That exactly what NYU business school professor Melissa Schilling thinks about all the time. And it’s the subject of her riveting book, Quirky.

The litmus test for Schilling to enter such a coveted club is much higher than merely hitting the innovation jackpot and changing the world one time. For Schilling, being a super-innovator means being serially successful in a variety of fields.

There’s no formula for entrepreneurial genius, but there are many common traits which seem to help. With great detail and fascinating stories of their lives, Schilling notes of serial inventors: “Nearly all of the innovators exhibited very high levels of social detachment that enabled them to break with norms, an almost maniacal faith in their ability to overcome obstacles, a passionate idealism that pushed them to work with intensity even in the face of criticism or failure, and more.”

These are exactly the type of lessons everyone can use, whether a first-time entrepreneur or a seasoned business veteran. So we brought Professor Schilling on the show to learn more, and to ask her whether she thinks you need an MBA or not. Find out in the episode!

Resources discussed in the show

Prof. Schilling’s book, Quirky
The New Yorker review of Quirky
Paul’s review of Quirky