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February 25, 2013
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As a follow up to my recent blog, A Rose by Any Other Name, I wondered if there is a relationship to names and careers. I started doing research to see what the “experts” had to say on this matter.

To my surprise there is actually a science behind the study of names called onomastics, and there is a group called the American Name Society that was founded in the 1950s,  just to promote onomastics.
Who knew?

In the research that I completed everything indicates that whether we like it or not, our names do have an impact on our career.
According to an article in ABC News:

  • The most popular name for a male CEO is Peter, followed by Bob, Jack, Bruce and Fred.
  • The most popular CEO names for women are: Deborah, Sally, Debra, Cynthia and Carolyn.
  • Long names of seven or more letters, Thierry, Philippe and Laurent were popular in the food-service industry.
  • Engineers also typically have longer names of six or more letters. Topping the list for engineers were Rajesh, Jeremy and Andrew.
  • The top name for a pro athlete: Ryan
  • The top name for a police officer: Billy
  • The top name for a human resources manager: Emma

This article from AOL has names associated with intelligence and leadership.

Names associated with intelligence

  • Abigail, Alexis, Grace, Leah, Meryl, Vanessa, Alexander, David, John, Kenneth, Samuel and Tim

Names associated with leadership

  • Ruth, Alexander, Dwight and Lance

Names associated with working hard

  • Adal, Ingrid, Mariel, Margaret, Jake, Manuel, Ron and Todd

And just for fun this article lists the 10 worst names a person could possibly have along with some reasons why (sorry if you are named in this article).

So before you think about following the celebrity lead and naming your child Apple, Tu Morrow, Blanket or Pilot Inspektor we want to know if you think your name does have an impact on your career?

Rachel Brockway
Rachel Brockway
A former HMA Public Relations employee.


  1. Stephanie Lough says:

    Find out what characteristics your name is associated with: http://www.kabalarians.com/ Here’s one of mine:

    -Your name of Stephanie contributes sensitive, creative, and idealistic qualities to your nature that could be expressed in a variety of literary or artistic fields.

  2. I’m not sure my parents had “painted warrier” in mind….

  3. Katie says:

    Ha, I like to be “the master of my own domain”. Fascinating.


  4. Ken Jacobs says:

    I completely agree with this post, particularly the line about names most associated with intelligence.

  5. I love that David = intellect. Right on! Cheers, David

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