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18 of the Best Jobs for Introverts

You don't need to have a big personality to make a big impact in your career—and to earn a big paycheck.

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A job that suits your personality

“Finding a truly satisfying career may be difficult for many introverts,” says Mahesh Kumar, a spokesperson for the Transcription Certification Institute. Most careers require interaction with others—coworkers, vendors, the public—but, says Kumar, “there are a lot of jobs that not only pay well and allow you to work from home but also give you the freedom to not constantly talk to people or deal with the public directly.”

Amma Marfo, Digital Content Lead of Swoot, agrees. “Contrary to popular opinion, no skill, ability, trait, or career path is outside the real possibility of competency for introverts or extroverts,” she says. “Being in a supportive environment and having supportive supervisors, coworkers, and educators can help either type stretch their skills toward things that may not come naturally. This is something we should all aspire to do.”

Introverts, Marfo says, really blossom in roles where they have time to consider and refine their thoughts before communicating. And there are many great jobs for introverts if you consider their strengths. “Roles that have heavy amounts of writing, or even crafting posts for and monitoring social media (such as the one I presently hold with podcast company Swoot), can be great for this. Given the time to let their thoughts develop organically, and the space to share them without interruption, [introverts] can truly shine.”

Leesa Schipani, a partner at KardasLarson Human Resources Consulting, lists just a few famous (and surprising) self-described introverts who prove that you don’t need to be outgoing to accomplish big things: Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Barack Obama, Rosa Parks, Meryl Streep, and J.K. Rowling.

Here are some of the best jobs for introverts, along with their approximate starting salaries. See which ones interest you—and which coincide with these 21 in-demand jobs for 2020.

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Content writer

“I’m a content writer, and I’ve found it’s a perfect fit for my introverted personality,” says Alex Lancaster, a writer based in Santa Barbara, California. “I began my career as a freelance writer and then moved into copywriting at a marketing agency. While I did have to occasionally present my work to clients, the day-to-day offered a lot of downtime for me to quietly work on my own. In my current position, I’m an in-house content writer for a software company. This means that I don’t need to interact with clients at all, and presentations are rare. I’m able to build strong relationships with my small team.”

Approximate salary: $72,685

By the way, these are the highest-paying jobs in every state.

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Web developer

“Working as a programmer/developer is a great job for introverts,” says Ben Taylor, serial solopreneur and founder of HomeWorkingClub.com, an advice portal for aspiring freelancers. “This kind of work is a naturally quiet and solitary pursuit, and there are lots of opportunities out there, on both an employed and freelance basis.”

Approximate salary: $53,216

Of course, jobs come and go as the world around us changes. Here are 15 cool jobs you could have in the future.

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Graphic designer

“This is a very in-demand skill, so learning graphic design is good for either a side business or a full-time job,” says Caitlin Proctor, Marketing Manager at zipjob.com. “It allows introverts to be creative without being put on the spot.”

Approximate salary: $49,174

Here are some great cartoons that introverts will really understand.

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Online school administrator

“I currently work for Harvard Business School Online and previously worked for a number of consumer technology companies, including Gazelle and TripAdvisor, and all three organizations are/were staffed with a majority of introverts,” says Michele C. Reynolds. “In this technology-dependent world, it’s a friendlier environment for introverts. Many colleagues use headphones at their desks, so it’s very much like being alone much of the day.”

Approximate salary: $52,650

Of course, to land the perfect job, first you have to get through the interview process. Can you answer this tech CEO’s favorite question (that everyone gets wrong)?

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Public relations consultant

This may seem odd, but Jeanna Valenti, publicist at Lightbox PR, believes that public-relations consulting is a good job for introverts. “All of my time, attention, and energy are focused on getting my clients media coverage, so I am able to be the behind-the-scenes person who is inwardly focused,” she explains. “It’s a good balance, since most of my clients are extroverts out in the world.”

Approximate salary: $48,461

Wondering if you should quit your job? Here are 9 signs you’re in the wrong career—and how to find work you love.

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Dietitian or nutritionist

Dietitians and nutritionists work behind the scenes in hospitals, schools, and health-care facilities, often on a one-on-one basis or with a small group of colleagues, which is an ideal setting for someone who is introverted but still enjoys social interaction. “Dietitians and nutritionists can also be self-employed and work from home,” says Kumar.

Approximate salary: $56,409

In addition, dietitians have pretty good job security; at least, it’s not one of the jobs that might disappear in the next 25 years.

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E-commerce seller

Nick Heritage of Heritage Armory says he was having trouble finding a job that fit his introverted personality. “My solution was starting my own online store,” he explains. “I deal with people as needed for the success of my business from a comfortable distance by e-mail or phone. It’s worked out well, and I’m much happier.”

Approximate salary: Ranges widely, depending on the number of sales and the price-point of goods

Here are more best jobs where you can be your own boss.

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Transcriber

“Transcription jobs are ideal for introverts, as they are extremely flexible as far as the time frame and the amount of work you do are concerned,” says Kumar. “You do not require any client communication, just need to provide accurate transcripts on time.”

Approximate salary: Starts around $15 per hour, while an advanced transcriptionist earns $25 to $30 per hour

Even if you’re not an introvert, these are the most stressful jobs in America.

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Data-entry worker

Data-entry work doesn’t require any face-to-face communication. Plus, you have the freedom to make money from home with basic computer skills, according to Kumar.

Approximate salary: $31,577

Looking for something that’s a little more off the beaten path? Check out these 12 weird jobs you can apply for right now.

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Bookkeeper

“If you are good with numbers and financial records, you might be interested in being an at-home bookkeeper,” says Kumar. “Accountingdepartment.com and Belay are some of the sites where you can find work as a bookkeeper.”

Approximate salary: $58,082

Wondering what some of the most common jobs in America actually pay? We’ve got the answers.

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Social media manager

“Even though it might sound counterintuitive since it’s technically a ‘social’ job, as the name implies, introverts actually possess a very high social intelligence,” says Darko Jacimovic, cofounder of WhatToBecome.com. “The job description consists of planning and deploying social media marketing campaigns and strategy. Knowing how to write clever copy and content that is engaging to your target audience is also important. Introverts tend to express themselves better through writing as opposed to direct communication, so I think it’s a perfect fit.”

Approximate salary: $48,000

If you want a job with more work-life balance, this is the most flexible job, according to a new survey.

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Researcher

Michael Tomaszewski, a career and workplace expert at Zety, says, “A researcher role is a godsend job, as it taps into an introvert’s two key strengths: written communication and a plethora of solo work. Unlike extroverted researchers who find it difficult to concentrate on repetitive tasks and follow set procedures, introverts can flip the switch and become laser-sharp focused for as long as needed to solve the task at hand. As a cherry on top, researchers are sought after in pretty much any industry, which allows for a smooth transition from an existing career.”

Approximate salary: $61,857

Here’s how to write a résumé that will get you hired.

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Entrepreneur

“This can be rewarding for both extroverts and introverts,” says Agata Gruszka, Community Manager at ResumeLab. “One thing’s for sure: This isn’t a mission for the risk-averse. It skews technical nowadays, but it’s highly contingent on the industry you aim to disrupt. ‘Fortune favors the bold,’ so if uncertainty isn’t scary to an individual, this might the lone-wolf arena where one thrives and excels.”

Approximate salary: Varies

Being an entrepreneur isn’t the only way you can make a small fortune (or a large one). Here are 14 careers that could make you a millionaire before you retire.

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Affiliate marketer

There are several reasons why a career in online affiliate marketing would be the ideal job for an introvert, says Mark Webster, cofounder of Authority Hacker. Namely…

  1. A lot of people start out in affiliate marketing specifically due to the low barrier to entry and great ROI. These are the people we often encounter among our course users.

  2. The great thing about affiliate marketing is that technically speaking you only need to have a website and a knack for communicating through the written word to do it. There’s also an unbelievable amount of free resources you can use to learn about affiliate marketing. You can get started with as little as $500 and easily reach $10,000 a month in revenue.

  3. Affiliate marketing can be an entirely one-person show, and even if you have to work with other people, you are the one setting the rules as a business owner.

Approximate salary: Varies

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Outside sales representative

“When we think of salespeople, we often picture charismatic extroverts cold-calling people and trying to win deals. But, there’s another side of the sales world that we don’t see in movies like The Wolf of Wall Street,” says Ellen Mullarkey, Vice President of Business Development for Messina Staffing. “Outside sales reps are the people who go from store-to-store, taking orders from existing clients. They’re the ones who go into pizza shops and make sure that the Coca-Cola fridge is fully stocked. Typically, happy customers just want to re-up continuously, so this job requires very little negotiating. Plus, outside sales reps spend most of their time out of the office, driving alone from location to location. It’s a great gig for introverts who enjoy talking to people sometimes but prefer to work solo for most of their day.”

Approximate salary: $58,000

Don’t make these résumé mistakes that could cost you the job.

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Private investigator

Darrin Giglio, Chief Investigator for North American Investigations, explains why this is a great job for introverts: “Much of the time, we work alone, doing surveillance, background work, and the like. When we have to interact with others, it’s often in a scripted situation. We have questions to ask to gain information, and then we just sit back and listen to their answers. We often present our findings in written form, thus avoiding interaction and conversations that way, too. Investigating effectively is a quiet, under-the-radar activity much of the time, making it ideal for someone who is more comfortable working behind the scenes.”

Approximate salary: $30,000 a year

Want a job with an adrenaline rush? Find out what the 18 most dangerous jobs around the world are.

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Public servant

Marc Pitart, a product owner and career coach at CV Online, points out that the MBTI personality categorization shows there are eight categories of introverts. “The most common type of introverts are called ISTJs, [and they] tend to excel at jobs that involve serving the public good, such as judges, lawyers, law enforcement officers, or detectives,” says Pitart. “Many famous ISTJ introverts have pursued careers in politics, like George Washington, Angela Merkel, Condoleezza Rice, and George Bush.”

Approximate salary: Public servants start around $33,000; lawyers make an average of $117,000

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Geologist

A great job for introverts, says Jon Hill, Chairman and CEO of The Energists, is a geologist or geoscientist. “While they do spend some time in the office interacting with coworkers, geologists also spend a lot of their time working independently, whether that’s collecting data in the field or analyzing it in the lab.”

Approximate salary: $69,595

Once you’ve found the right job, turn your attention to these 8 surprising secrets that will help you be happier at work.

Joe McKinley
Joe McKinley is a regular contributor to Reader's Digest, covering cars, careers, tech and more.