Study: People With Shorter Names Earn More

For Mother’s Day, researchers examined the financial importance of what Mom decided to call you.


A Rose by any longer name probably wouldn’t make as much, says job search site TheLadders.

Incidentally, Bill Shakespeare would also make more than William, it says.

The site took data from its member database of about 6 million people — first names matched with industry, salary level and location — to figure out how much names matter.

They found some fun stuff, but it’s worth noting that even if there’s a link between a name and these things, there isn’t necessarily a cause-and-effect relationship. You obviously won’t get a raise just because you adopt a shorter nickname, for instance.

With that caveat, here’s what they found:

  • The 25 most-popular names make about $7,000 more per year, on average, than the rest of the list.
  • The best-paid male names are: Tom, Rob, Dale, Doug and Wayne.
  • The best-paid female names are: Lynn, Melissa, Cathy, Dana and Christine.
  • Females make 22 percent less than male counterparts, on average.
  • Christine was the only name that showed up in the top five for both highest paid and highest ranking (CEO, CFO, COO, etc.) female names. (Although Bob made one and Rob made the other among male names.)
  • Each additional letter added to your name accounts for a $3,600 drop in annual salary, on average.
  • In the 24 cases tested, Lawrence was the only name to be better paid than its nickname (Larry).
  • People whose names start with “F” or “G” make the most, on average, while those whose names start with “H” or “N” make the least.

The site concludes: “So, to all prospective mothers, our advice is to keep Baby’s name short and sweet – your child will thank you when they’re raking in the money one day.”

Stacy Johnson

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