Graduation Year

Fall 2011

Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Second Department


Reader 1

Jay Conger

Reader 2

Sean Flynn

Reader 3

Gregory Hess

Rights Information

© 2011 Brian Hoffstein


Success is ultimately a story about human behavior. Regardless of the specific domain of the endeavor, the outcome is a product of the individuals involved. Businesses are a function of their employees and customers, just as societies are a function of their citizens and institutions. The ability to create a system that promotes human flourishing is one of the most vital tasks for any leader pursuing success. Yet the ability to break down a goal and engineer the proper procedure to achieve success has always been a somewhat daunting task. While many prosperous individuals have attempted to delineate their winning ways, the philosophies they preach sound more like encouraging poetry than a practical guide. Hard-work, ambition, and discipline - these are just some of the banalities used when trying to describe what it takes to win. However, the story behind greatness is more complex than that, and we are finally beginning to understand how and why. Recent scientific discoveries have a sparked an evolution of sorts; one that breaks down success and helps illuminate the conditions that encourage innovation, maximize potential, and drive mankind’s progress.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.