32 min

The Formula: Unlocking the Secrets to Raising Highly Successful Children - A conversation with Ronald Ferguson and Tatsha Robertson Parenting for the Future

    • Parenting

Ronald Ferguson is a Harvard Kennedy School professor. Tatsha Robertson is an award-winning journalist. Together, they have found the answer to a pivotal question every parent asks: "How can I raise my children to be, not just successful people, but extraordinarily successful human beings?" In 2009, Ronald, a father of three who is also the faculty director of the Achievement Gap Initiative at Harvard University, started the “How I was Parented Project” in which Harvard students interviewed one another in an effort to understand how parenting got them to where they were. Four years before Ronald started his project, Tasha Robertson, who was then the New York City Bureau Chief for The Boston Globe, begun interviewing high-achieving people (including eventually, President Obama) about how thy raised their own children and how they were raised. The purpose? She wondered if mothers and fathers of very successful people were knowingly or unknowingly following patterns in their parenting. In late 2014, Tatsha decided to write a book about her investigation and reached out to achievement expert Ronald Ferguson. She wanted to know if he saw patterns, too. He did! The two worked together, analysing Tatsha’s interviews and the data from the Harvard study as well as re-interviewing many of the achievers and their parents. They confirmed that there was a distinct pattern in the way they were all parented; a pattern that was astonishingly consistent among these parents, regardless of their socio-economic status, race, religious or cultural background or level of education.  The Formula reveals the strategies you too can use to raise your children to extraordinarily successful people who lead happy, purposeful lives. 

Ronald Ferguson is a Harvard Kennedy School professor. Tatsha Robertson is an award-winning journalist. Together, they have found the answer to a pivotal question every parent asks: "How can I raise my children to be, not just successful people, but extraordinarily successful human beings?" In 2009, Ronald, a father of three who is also the faculty director of the Achievement Gap Initiative at Harvard University, started the “How I was Parented Project” in which Harvard students interviewed one another in an effort to understand how parenting got them to where they were. Four years before Ronald started his project, Tasha Robertson, who was then the New York City Bureau Chief for The Boston Globe, begun interviewing high-achieving people (including eventually, President Obama) about how thy raised their own children and how they were raised. The purpose? She wondered if mothers and fathers of very successful people were knowingly or unknowingly following patterns in their parenting. In late 2014, Tatsha decided to write a book about her investigation and reached out to achievement expert Ronald Ferguson. She wanted to know if he saw patterns, too. He did! The two worked together, analysing Tatsha’s interviews and the data from the Harvard study as well as re-interviewing many of the achievers and their parents. They confirmed that there was a distinct pattern in the way they were all parented; a pattern that was astonishingly consistent among these parents, regardless of their socio-economic status, race, religious or cultural background or level of education.  The Formula reveals the strategies you too can use to raise your children to extraordinarily successful people who lead happy, purposeful lives. 

32 min