Could your first name be the key to your success? A slew of research from the past decade reveal that your name may be more than just an identifier.
One study even observed a link between first names and criminality. Researchers from Shippensburg University found a strong correlation between uncommon first names and delinquent behaviour. Such relationship was consistent regardless of race, but was more pronounced in younger individuals.
They noted that the uncommon first names didn't cause the delinquent behaviour per se, but that they could have a psychological impact that can increase one's propensity to it: "Adolescents with unpopular names may be more prone to crime because they are treated differently by their peers, making it more difficult for them to form relationships," reads the study. "Juveniles with unpopular names may also act out because they [may] ... dislike their names."
10 other studies found even more surprising impacts of first names:
1. People with names that are easier to pronounce are generally more widely favoured by others. This is because we tend to like information that is simpler to comprehend, according to a New York University study.
2. People with last names closer to the beginning of the alphabet are more likely to get into better schools and receive better test scores, according to a study in the Economics of Education Review.
3. People with last names closer to the end of the alphabet are more likely to be impulse shoppers, according to a study in the Journal of Consumer Research. The behaviour may have some psychological basis: "For years, simply because of your name, you've received inequitable treatment. So when you get to exercise control, you seize on opportunity."
4. People with common first names are more likely to be hired, as evidence showed those with more recognizable names were generally perceived as more likeable, according to a Marquette University study.
5. People with white-sounding names are more likely to be hired, with a study by The American Economic Association showing evidence of individuals with white-sounding names receiving 50% more callbacks than those with black-sounding names. Researchers even determined that having a white-sounding name could be taken by employers as having eight years of work experience.
6. People who use their middle initial makes then appear smarter to others, according to a study in the European Journal of Social Psychology. "The display of middle initials increases the perceived social status of these people and positively biases inferences about their intellectual capacity and performance," the study reads.
7. People are more likely to work in a company with a name matching their initials, according to a Ghent University study. That means someone named Gary may be more attracted to job at Google than at Amazon.
8. People with noble-sounding last names like "King" or "Queen" are more likely to hold higher-ranked positions in a company, according to a European study. This could primarily be due to the effects of associative reasoning.
9. Boys with a common girl name are more likely to be suspended from school, according to a study by the University of Florida. Lead researcher David Figlio found that these boys also had increased disciplinary problems and lower test scores.
10. Women with a gender-neutral names are more likely to succeed in certain fields, according to a Clemson University study. Names like Leslie, Jan and Cameron, for example, proved to be more effective for women in law careers.
Source: Business Insider
Some of these may seem outrageous, but the correlations seem to exist. Which ones apply to you?