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Among the books I’ve written, one of the best-sellers is 50 Best Jobs for Your Personality, now in its third edition. For this blog, I thought it would be useful to update the lists in the book to reflect more recent occupational information from the Department of Labor.

Note that the following set of lists does not replace the book, because it covers only the top 20 occupations for each personality type, it offers only 6 lists (as opposed to the 131 lists in the book), and it is not accompanied by occupational descriptions. It also lacks an explanation and quick assessment of RIASEC types for those unfamiliar with this approach to career development.

I constructed these six lists using the same approach I used in the book, and I suggest you consult the introduction to that book for a full explanation. However, in brief, what I did here was to sort the occupations three times: on annual earnings, on projected growth, and on projected annual openings. Each time, I ranked the occupations, and then I summed the rankings to determine the best occupations on all three measures combined. The set of occupations excludes (a) any for which annual earnings data is not available and (b) any with both negative growth and fewer than 500 projected openings per year. Because of the small size of the pool of occupations with Artistic as their primary RIASEC code, I augmented this pool with occupations that have Artistic as their secondary code.

Everyone seems to love lists, so I hope you find these interesting. (The blogging software limits the number of characters I can put into one entry, so I had to divide this blog into three parts.)

Realistic
Occupation
Annual Earnings
Projected Growth
Projected Annual Openings
RIASEC Code(s)
1.
Civil Engineers
 $80,770
19.7%
 12,010
RIC
2.
Electricians
 $50,510
19.7%
 22,460
RCI
3.
Plumbers, Pipefitters, and Steamfitters
 $50,180
21.3%
 13,050
RC
4.
Radiologic Technologists
 $55,200
20.8%
 6,960
RS
5.
Computer User Support Specialists
 $46,620
20.2%
 19,690
RCI
6.
Industrial Machinery Mechanics
 $47,910
18.9%
 15,250
RIC
7.
Carpenters
 $40,500
24.2%
 32,920
RCI
8.
Heating, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration Mechanics and Installers
 $43,880
20.9%
 12,370
RC
9.
Brickmasons and Blockmasons
 $46,610
35.5%
 3,280
RCI
10.
Operating Engineers and Other Construction Equipment Operators
 $42,540
18.9%
 14,440
RCI
11.
Surgical Technologists
 $42,720
29.8%
 3,910
RSC
12.
Medical Equipment Repairers
 $44,180
30.3%
 2,460
RIC
13.
Structural Iron and Steel Workers
 $46,520
21.8%
 3,150
RCI
14.
Service Unit Operators, Oil, Gas, and Mining
 $42,790
20.9%
 3,640
RCI
15.
Captains, Mates, and Pilots of Water Vessels
 $69,920
13.8%
 2,130
REC
16.
Electrical Power-Line Installers and Repairers
 $64,170
8.9%
 4,990
RIC
17.
Health Technologists and Technicians, All Other
 $40,900
26.7%
 3,310
RCI
18.
Construction and Building Inspectors
 $54,450
12.2%
 3,670
RCI
19.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging Technologists
 $66,050
23.6%
 1,130
RCS
20.
Cement Masons and Concrete Finishers
 $36,130
29.1%
 5,720
RE
Investigative
Occupation
Annual Earnings
Projected Growth
Projected Annual Openings
RIASEC Code(s)
1.
Physicians and Surgeons, All Other
 $187,999+
18.7%
 15,260
ISR
2.
Surgeons
 $187,999+
23.2%
 2,310
IRS
3.
Software Developers, Applications
 $92,660
22.8%
 21,850
IRC
4.
Software Developers, Systems Software
 $101,410
20.4%
 13,470
ICR
5.
Dentists, General
 $146,340
16.3%
 5,120
IRS
6.
Anesthesiologists
 $187,999+
24.4%
 1,670
IRS
7.
Petroleum Engineers
 $132,320
25.5%
 1,960
IRC
8.
Computer Systems Analysts
 $81,190
24.5%
 20,960
IC
9.
Pharmacists
 $119,280
14.5%
 10,980
ICS
10.
Family and General Practitioners
 $176,530
14.6%
 4,920
IS
11.
Nurse Anesthetists
 $151,090
24.9%
 1,560
IRS
12.
Management Analysts
 $79,870
18.6%
 24,520
IEC
13.
Optometrists
 $101,290
24.4%
 1,770
ISR
14.
Market Research Analysts and Marketing Specialists
 $60,800
31.6%
 18,850
IEC
15.
Operations Research Analysts
 $74,630
26.7%
 3,600
ICE
16.
Internists, General
 $186,850
14.1%
 2,010
ISR
17.
Pediatricians, General
 $157,610
15.7%
 1,410
IS
18.
Psychiatrists
 $178,950
16.2%
 1,120
ISA
19.
Diagnostic Medical Sonographers
 $66,410
46.0%
 3,530
ISR
20.
Biomedical Engineers
 $88,670
26.6%
 1,010
IR

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