The Most Common Occupations for Your Name, in One Fascinating Interactive Chart

Source: InfoCaptor
Source: InfoCaptor

If you're Robert, chances are you're a hairstylist; Amy, a waiter. And if you always planned on becoming a songwriter, you're probably named Richie, Billy or Stella. 

That's according to "Profession Vs. Names," an fascinating interactive web of relationships between names and jobs developed by Pittsburgh data-design company InfoCaptor. Based on app-maker Verdant Labs' analysis of public records, the visualization encompasses 2.5 million people and their listed jobs.

Click on the interactive below and point at a name, and the visualization displays connections to its related occupations — mousing over 'Hanna' links to 'journalist,' for example. Pointing to a specific occupation reveals a list of related names — if you're rescued by a firefighter, chances are he's named Jason, Brandon or Darren.


The data doesn't show the most likely occupation for specific names, but names "common in that profession relative to [their] overall frequency" in the sample set, explains Verdant's Mark Edmond. 

"Take Elvis, for example. There aren't all that many Elvises out there, but a particularly high percentage of them are musicians," writes Edmond. "As a result, Elvis ranks high among musician names. Elvis isn't the most common name among musicians—that's likely to be John or some other very popular name. What's interesting is that it's way more common among musicians than you might expect, given how rare it is."

Don't worry: This doesn't mean your name determines your career path. As Edmond notes, it's more likely "social, geographic, economic, and other factors" that decide what career paths we set on — and the opportunities we have.

You can explore a larger version of this interactive at Visualizing.

h/t CityLab

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Jared Keller

Jared Keller is the former director of news at Mic.

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