The ingredients for a successful career are one part passion, and one part practicality. You can’t thrive in a career that’s shrinking into extinction (aspiring typewriter repairmen, we’re talking to you), nor do you want to pursue a career you dislike just because it’s showing fast growth. (Queasy at the sight of blood? Maybe nursing isn’t a good fit.)
But potential for growth isn’t the only practical factor to consider when you’re making decisions about your professional future. There’s one question you shouldn’t fail to ask: How will your career be viewed by others — and do you care?
The fact is that working in a negatively viewed industry can be difficult. Think how hard it is to be a banker at a big investment firm after the recent housing bubble burst. Whether any individual banker helped create the housing bubble or not, she may still feel the heat of a displeased public.
You may be the type of person who can pass through that heat unscorched. Or maybe your passion for banking is strong enough that you can thrive despite the bad press and sidelong glances. But if neither of these scenarios holds true for you, well, maybe banking isn’t right for you, after all.
We’ve created an infographic that identifies the most and least popular industries in the eyes of the American public. Then, we’ve taken a closer look at some of the fastest-growing (and highest-paying) careers in three popular industries.
We like to think of these careers as win-win-win. You win on salary, you win on growth, and you win, well, the popularity contest — along with a lot of other people in popular fields. Do any of these jobs sound like the career of your dreams? If you’re still wondering which career best suits you, take our free career test.