Like Paul Graham writes about in his blog post Cities and Ambitions, places send you a message. Thus, the most ambitious, high achieving people are drawn to certain fields. In New York, it’s finance. In Silicon Valley it’s tech entrepreneurship.
Since moving to New Hampshire, the high status play for young people seems to be politics. There are a few tailwinds for this trend. One of which is that my move happened right around the time the first in the nation primary race is heating up in New Hampshire. Thus, ambitious, young, campaign staffers are flocking to the Granite State to try to secure an early win for their candidate.
In Delaware, the high status play was starting something. Whether it was a business, nonprofit, program, etc…
While a lot of high status-ness is driven by a convergence of seemingly random factors, there are ways that we can manufacture it. By writing articles, featuring people, admiring initiatives and speaking highly about great work. What if we created communities where teaching, and public service were high status professions? Where we admired, compensated and featured these people as heroes?
Instead of leaving it up to chance, why don’t we decide on what we want to be high status behavior in our communities?