Monday, 2 January 2017

How do people become successful?

Perhaps there are other factors that I'm missing, but I have attempted to summarise the key factors that enable people to become successful, as follows:
  • Money
  • Status
  • Power
  • Contacts
  • Good looks
  • Skill
  • Intelligence
  • Hard work

The first five are circumstances of birth - being born to parents that have money, status, power or contacts, or being born with good looks. The next two are partially nature, partially nurture. I suspect there's both nature and nurture elements to being a hard worker, but it starts to get into free will debates if you think too hard on this one.

Status vs contacts

I have considered whether status and contacts could be conflated, however is possible, particularly historically, to have status without a particularly useful set of contacts. For example, being born with a hereditary title provides status without necessarily providing contacts.

It perhaps could be argued that status is the formal recognition of a person's place in society (through title or position), whereas contacts are an informal recognition of place in society.

Top trumps

It would be interesting to have a top trumps game with successful people rated by which of the above listed factors contributed to their success.

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