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As an introvert, you might think that your personality traits will go against you during your job search, assuming that all hiring managers want loud and outgoing characters that will be the life and soul of the office.
But that isn’t necessarily true. You don’t have to push yourself to the limit to fit into a career that isn’t right for you! Instead, there are hundreds of other opportunities where you can thrive in the workplace, ensuring your best qualities are used to the fullest extent.
And to help you find the perfect role, we’ve listed the 25 best jobs for introverts below for some inspiration.
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Average annual salary: $84,400 (£62,150)
If you’re a science lover who wants to focus on studying microscopic life forms and processes, becoming a microbiologist could be perfect for you. To succeed in this role, you’ll need a great attention to detail and a degree in biology, biomedical sciences or microbiology.
2. IT technician
Average annual salary: $55,510 (£40,880)
Aside from answering troubleshooting requests from your colleagues, you’ll spend most of your working day with just your computer screen (and your IT pals, if you’re part of a larger team). The plus side? Most of the problem-solving can be resolved from the comfort of your own desk!
Average annual salary: $41,280 (£30,400)
Introverts tend to be the best photographers as they have the ability to sit and reflect on their surroundings. They have the patience to analyse and often see the world through a different lens to extroverts. If you’re skilled in this department and want to hide behind a camera, you can make a decent living off it, too!
Want to get into photography? Get an insightful introduction into digital photography with the Michigan State University’s ‘Photography Basics and Beyond’ online course. Check it out on Coursera
Average annual salary: $99,250 (£73,080)
Working with pets can be far better than working with people! Your furry friends won’t annoy you, and they’ll make your day a whole lot better! To succeed as a vet, you’ll need to spend years of studying to ensure you understand the anatomy of different animals.
Average annual salary: $93,290 (£68,690)
If you’re a fan of numbers and you like solving complex problems, you should consider a career in mathematics! To secure a job, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree and a master’s or a PhD in mathematics; you’ll also need to learn computer modelling software.
Average annual salary: $32,220 (£23,720)
If you enjoy gardening and consider yourself a bit of an introvert, becoming a professional gardener is right up your alley. Though it’s a very physical job, it can be a fun and relaxing way to keep in touch with nature, while you won’t have to interact with people much. You don’t necessarily need any formal qualifications to become a gardener, but some relevant training will be useful.
Average annual salary: $60,820 (£44,770)
While the job of a librarian involves a fair share of interacting with people, helping them find the books they’re looking for and recommending materials for specific information, the quiet workspace of a library is a great place in which introverts can thrive. To become a librarian, you’ll generally need a master’s degree in library science.
8. Web developer
Average annual salary: $77,200 (£56,820)
Web development is a great job for anyone who enjoys solitude. You could work on a freelance basis or within an office, and won’t need to interact much with clients or colleagues. You’ll spend most of your time writing code and developing webpages.
Thinking about a career as a web developer? Enrol in University of California, Davis’s online course to get an introduction to web development. Check it out on Coursera
Average annual salary: $49,120 (£36,150)
If you like working independently and have a craft that you’d like to share, you can consider becoming a fine artist. To be successful, you’ll need a lot of creativity and imagination, and some help from a commissioner to get your work featured in local galleries and art exhibitions.
10. Video editor
Average annual salary: $61,900 (£45,560)
The work of a video editor often goes unnoticed, but it’s a job that’s very much in demand in such a digital age. From editing short clips for marketing purposes to entire TV series and films, the work of an editor can be far from boring!
11. Graphic designer
Average annual salary: $53,380 (£39,290)
As a graphic designer, you’ll have the opportunity to work alone and get stuck into your creative artwork. Although you’ll occasionally have to deal with clients, you’ll get to recharge your batteries when you’re working on new designs.
Want to learn graphic design? Gain fundamental skills needed to be a graphic designer with the California Institute of the Arts’ online course. Check it out on Coursera
12. Social media manager
Average annual salary: $65,810 (£48,450)
If you’ve got a bubbly personality and can keep up with emerging trends, you could consider becoming a social media manager. In this role, you’ll be responsible for establishing social media marketing strategies, ensuring the company or companies that you work for have a strong brand ethos and online presence.
Average annual salary: $128,950 (£94,930)
As a physicist, you’ll spend your days cooped up in a lab exploring the structure and behaviour of matter and energy. There are many subfields you can venture into that are perfect for introverts who are passionate about all things science.
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14. Lab technician
Average annual salary: $54,180 (£39,890)
As a lab technician, you’ll help diagnose patients through thorough analysis of their results. And the best part is that you won’t have to speak to the patient directly! Instead, you’ll be studying fluids, blood, tissue and other substances collected from the patient.
15. Fashion designer
Average annual salary: $75,810 (£55,810)
It may come as a great surprise that some of the world’s best fashion designers are quiet and antisocial. Take the iconic Tory Burch, for example, who has often been recognised for her introverted personality. However, that hasn’t stopped her from building a brand and focusing on the design side of the business!
Want to succeed in the fashion industry? Learn how to develop an effective fashion business model with Parsons School of Design’s ‘Transforming the Fashion Business’ specialisation. Check it out on Coursera
Average annual salary: $52,920 (£38,960)
When you think of a legal job, you assume that you’ll be based in a courtroom fighting for the life of your (innocent or not) client. But as a paralegal, you can work from the safety of your own office, conducting research or drafting contracts, without interacting with a large group of people.
Average annual salary: $44,050 (£32,420)
Mechanics are tasked with inspecting, repairing and maintaining motor vehicles, like cars, motorbikes and trucks. While they do occasionally deal with clients, they’re mostly left to their own devices to carry out their work, making it a great career option for introverts.
Average annual salary: $73,560 (£54,160)
Are you a number cruncher who enjoys sifting through financial statements? If so, becoming an accountant could be ideal for you. The good thing about this job is that you know what’s expected of you every day, and you can earn a decent living once you’ve qualified.
Want to become an account? Get an introduction to finance and accounting with the University of Pennsylvania’s highly rated online course. Check it out on Coursera
19. Research scientist
Average annual salary: $81,920 (£60,310)
As a research scientist, you’ll generally be involved in planning and conducting experiments and analysing results in a laboratory, mostly working independently. That said, you may be required to work in group projects and attend seminars and conferences from time to time.
Average annual salary: $111,030 (£81,720)
Another great introvert job for number crunchers is that of an actuary. In this role, you’ll analyse statistical data and create forecasts for future risks. What’s great about this job is that you can do it remotely and get paid a hefty salary!
Average annual salary: $52,330 (£38,510)
If you have a passion for languages and are a skilled writer, being a translator is perfect for any shy person. You’ll mainly interact with clients by email and spend most of your time translating documents from one language to another.
Average annual salary: $67,120 (£49,400)
Do you communicate your thoughts and feelings through written words? And do you get sucked into the pages of a good novel? If you’re anything like myself, a career as a writer could be ideal for you! What’s great about this profession is that you can freelance and write for a variety of different industries, ensuring that no two days are the same.
Want to be a better writer? Enrol in the University of Michigan’s ‘Good with Words’ online course to perfect your writing and editing skills. Check it out on Coursera
Average annual salary: $53,380 (£39,280)
Have a passion for food? Why not consider becoming a chef? As a chef, you won’t have much interaction with customers (unless you’re requested to pay a special table visit), and you’ll get to spend most of your time creating unique and mouth-watering dishes.
Average annual salary: $130,440 (£96,000)
A career as a pilot doesn’t only pay well but is also extremely rewarding and perfect for shy personalities. Being safely locked away in your cockpit, you’ll only be interacting with your copilot and will spend the rest of your working day focusing on flying the plane.
Average annual salary: $52,140 (£38,370)
As an archivist, you’ll be responsible for appraising, assembling, cataloguing and preserving valuable documents and records in museums, government departments or companies, all of which require very little social interaction. You’ll typically need a master’s degree in history or a related subject to work as an archivist, while professional certification can be useful in securing a job.
As with any career, the ideal job for you will depend on your personal interests and level of introversion. But it’s important to identify what you’re comfortable with, and you’ll find the right position for you in no time.
Which career is right for you?
Take the CareerHunter test to discover which careers are perfect fit for your interests, personality, motivations and aptitudes!
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Join the conversation! Which career is the most appealing to you? Let us know in the comments section below!
This article is an update of an earlier version published on 10 October 2018 and contains contributions by staff writer Chris Leitch.