Creative Leadership

Think About This Before You Pick a Career

Firefighters, scientists and teachers are seen as the most prestigious occupations by U.S. adults, while bankers, actors and real estate agents are the least prestigious occupations, according to the annual Harris Poll that measures public perception of 23 professions and occupations.  Six occupations are perceived to have “very great” prestige by at least half of all adults:

Firefighters (61%), scientists (54%), teachers (54%), doctors (52%), military officers (52%) and nurses (50%). They are followed by police officers (46%), priests/ministers/clergy (42%) and farmers (41%).

By contrast, the list includes ten occupations which are perceived by less than 20 percent of adults to have “very great” prestige — real estate brokers (5%), actors (9%), bankers (10%), accountants (11%), entertainers (12%), stockbrokers (12%), union leaders (13%), journalists (13%), business executives (14%) and athletes (16%).

Those rated as having “hardly any prestige at all” included stockbrokers (25%), union leaders (30%), entertainers (31%), real estate brokers (34%) and actors (38%).

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  1. When your purpose is known then it is quite easy to do a number of things that will help build you towards that career. Careers are best enhanced when one's purpose is understood. Too many of us are governed by how much money can be made before we consider a chosen field of career – no wonder there is so much rubbish out there. Any career is good as long as the person doing it knows the reason why they are doing it and then does the best they can with it. But if you are going for a career in entertainment do a second job or another career while building up your entertainment career until you breakthrough or unless you have people who are close to you that are willing to help develop you and give you opportunities to succeed.

  2. Those statistics remind me of a scene in 'Mr. Holland's Opus' where the principal, due to budget cuts, decides to cut out music and arts in favor of reading, writing, and arithmatic. Mr. Holland responds (Paraphrased) "You take away those things you'll have nothing to read or write about."  The moral being that most of our talents and occupations are not independant.  They are co-dependant upon different occupations to fulfill their purpose. Cut out athletics and your firefighters are going to have a much harder time getting the job done.  Cut out unions and teachers are going to have a hard time surviving.  Cut out business and scientists are going to have a hard time creating new medicines and having necessary equipment to save lives and discover new ideas.  Cut out entertainment and half the country will probably go into depression.  Cut out journalism and ignorance about the rest of the world and our nation will grow to a state of emergancy.   I think people respond to certain occupations more because they see the direct benefit and disregard the importance of others because the benefits seem less iminant, when indeed, they are just as important.  Hmm…

  3. After reading leslie's comment I must agree. It is not so much the nature of the occupation, but the passion put into it, that decides the importance and impact. Christ never disregarded or spoke ill of any occupation…Not even the highly hated tax-collectors. He saw the importance of the human heart's character and integrity that was brought to whatever a person was doing.

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