Birth Order Survey - Your comments
‘This snapshot confirms some people’s preconceptions, as well as bringing some surprises,’ commented AHEAD’s Managing Partner Guy Vereecke. ‘For sure, it’s a subject full of complexity that has captured the interest of many.’

Here are some of the 94 spontaneous comments from contributors:

Psychologists say the first is a hero, the second a rebel and the third a clown. I found that with my children too.

Oldest are bossy, in particular when they are female ...

As first child, you don’t have the right to fail and you always have to set an example. That’s what I’ve been doing all my life and it’s very tiring !

First child = blue/red profile = responsibility is key
Youngest = green/yellow profile = creative & high EQ

I’m the youngest of 7 children and the only one who was interested in having a career and also succeeded in it. I believe personality is influenced by one’s childhood position but I don’t really believe this influences one’s career.

A significant aspect is the ‘age-gap’ between siblings, and the sex of the other siblings.

I would expect to see no correlation between childhood position and career ...

From what I know as a psychologist, first born individuals are more anxious than later born ones. This information comes from studies counting the losses of air pilots during the second WW.

Not being a psychologist, I hesitate to put childhood position as a key driver of professional traits. I would rather consider parents’ personality, family context, education and early professional experience as more impactful drivers.

I am the oldest of 9. If there is an effect of place in family, it is probably more pronounced in large families.

Middle children are the most easily ignored in a family. I have been asking many around me, most of them feel the same way. Which means, middle kids could be very independent. It is hard to say if it is good or not.

Most interesting would be to see if there is a correlation between the childhood position and the type of career. Are top managers more often middle children or first? Are successful artists more often only children?

I expect that the oldest ones are often more traditional and the youngest ones more creative. I experience that ambition is spread over the entire family (being relaxed or collaborative or well organized might be more influenced by the position).

NB. … sample bias - you will get only people connected to AHEAD filling in this questionnaire... probably only high achievers.... Good luck with this interesting topic.