Here is a question that gets right to the heart of a community’s culture: Within this community, what confers status?
Put another way: You see those people at the top of the heap? Why do we have a collective understanding that those people are at the top?
I’ve been part of communities that have conferred status based on the following:
-Generosity and consistency
-Conspicuous performance of ideological purity
-Looking like other people regarded as high status
-Level of contribution
Getting clear on what confers status in a community helps us understand how it runs. That is a huge step toward understanding the culture and, therefore, gaining perspective on how you can help it to grow.