With Shorter First Names comes Bigger Paycheck

What’s in a name? Money. No, I’m not high, I swear. Apparently, people with shorter first names earn a bigger paycheck, says study. Shorter names bring higher paycheck, and it is backed by facts.

shorter first names

So, if you are a parent and you have been planning a lot to help your child succeed, there might be one thing that you are overlooking, and that’s your child’s first name. So instead of going with ‘Katherine’, go with ‘Kate’ or ‘Kathy’. I know, ‘Katherine’ sound so sophisticated, but ‘Kate’ or ‘Kathy’ will earn more money. I did my job, the choice is yours then. According to an online job matching site TheLadders, employees with shorter first names earn much more than the ones with complicated and hard-to-pronounce monikers. Sometimes, even the hiring manager won’t call someone with a complicated name, because they have no clue how to pronounce that and they don’t want to embarrass themselves on the phone.

When you are juggling a lot of baby names before the naming ceremony of your child, longer names may seem more sophisticated but shorter first names bring more money. Even if you name him Robinson, he’s going to change to Rob after twenty years. And the study shows that Rob is more likely to get a bigger paycheck than Robinson. Names that are short and sweet are more popular among the C-suite. Also, they won’t sound intimidating to the hiring managers, so they would surely be invited for the interview.

shorter first name

Top-five C-level names:

Female names that are prevalent among C-suite:

  • Christine
  • Denise
  • Cindy
  • Shannon
  • Sarah

Male names that are prevalent among C-suite:

  • Bob
  • Lawrence
  • Bill
  • Marc
  • Martin

Top-five highest paid names:

Female names that earn the highest paychecks:

  • Lynn
  • Melissa
  • Cathy
  • Dana
  • Christine

Male names that earn the highest paychecks:

  • Tom
  • Rob
  • Dale
  • Doug
  • Wayne

If you are Christine, lucky you. (And, I’m so jealous of you right now!) Each additional letter in your name accounts for a drop of $3,600 in your annual income. But if you already have a longer name, you can opt for a nickname for yourself and you are good to go. If you are a Stephen, change it to Steve; a William to Bill; a Christopher to Chris; or even a Sarah to Sara. Even a single more letter in your name may lower your income, so pick Michele over Michelle (except you are Mr. Obama) and Philip over Phillip. Except your name is Lawrence, don’t change it to Larry. Lawrence is the only exceptional name that earns more than its shorter version Larry. So, if you have a longer name that is not Lawrence, you should consider changing it to something that is shorter and is easy to pronounce, you don’t want your name to ruin your career, do you?

So, after all, your name makes a difference. (Sorry, Shakespeare! You were so wrong!)

Thanks, mom, for naming me Anna!

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Diana Coker
Diana Coker is a staff writer at The HR Digest, based in New York. She also reports for brands like Technowize. Diana covers HR news, corporate culture, employee benefits, compensation, and leadership. She loves writing HR success stories of individuals who inspire the world. She’s keen on political science and entertains her readers by covering usual workplace tactics.

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