News and media Argos

The world is your toy-ster

Argos  |  Press release

Forget career tests and advisors, toys hold the key to a child’s future job. New research carried out by Argos, the UK’s number one toy retailer, reveals how children’s Christmas wish lists could be telling a deeper story about their development.

Play time not only provides fun and games for children but can also give parents a glimpse into what the future might hold for their little ones. From displaying an early affinity to animals to an eye for design detail, these qualities can in fact be spotted through children’s choice in toys.

With more than one in 10 parents admitting that they actively buy items to encourage their child’s interest in a certain job, selecting the right toy this Christmas is no child’s play.

The toy specialists at Argos have teamed up with parenting experts to analyse children’s interaction with toys and as a result have identified a direct link with play and the fostering of vocational skills.

Results demonstrated a clear correlation between the play that adults enjoyed as children and their current careers. With over 60 per cent of adults working in design led jobs, such as architects and designers, who enjoyed playing with building blocks, and 66 per cent of those in maths related roles, such as accountants and bankers, who couldn’t get enough of puzzle play as kiddies.

Playgrounds are full of budding engineers, entertainers and IT specialists all perfecting their skills through the act of play. From team work through to problem solving children are practicing their professions from an early age.

Anita Naik, author and parenting expert, said, “Observing how children choose the toys they want to play with and how they play with them can give clues into their future interests and possible jobs. From children creating a vivid tapestry of stories for their toys, to precise engineering reflected in Lego building.”

Andrea Abbis, Chief Toy Buyer at Argos, said: “Play time needs to be fun, so we see it as a bonus if this activity then goes on to inspire our children and develop new interests. This year we’ve had fun imagining what career paths our Top Toys could inspire and they are a skilful bunch, from app developers to engineers we have definitely seen them all in a new light.”

From the new Furby encouraging the caring skills required of a teacher, to the Teksta inspiring the next generation of vets, this year’s Top Toys list from Argos will provide parents and children with variety of skills to explore.

Furthermore, results show that children are considering their future careers from an early age with over a quarter of kids contemplating their career paths at primary school age, this rises to 38 per cent during secondary school years.

Argos 2013 Jobs for the Top Toys list


Skills / passions


Furby Boom


Confidence, empathy,



Teksta Dog

Nurturing, animal lover

Vet, dog walker, Zoo keeper


Sesame Street Elmo Hugs


Patience, loving

Nurse, child minder

LeapFrog LeapPad Ultra


Research, informative


'Sofia The First' Talking Doll and Animal Friends


Eye for detail and style

Fashion / lifestyle stylist


Lego Star Wars R2D2


Design, construction


Monopoly Empire

Money management, property skills

Banker, estate agent, entrepreneur


Planes Wing Control Dusty

Imagination, story telling

Journalist, author


Nerf Elite Rapidstrike CS-18

Courage, fairness, teamwork

Policeman, policewoman


Lego Friends Dolphin Cruiser


DIY, creativity

Interior designer

VTech InnoTab 3S



App developer, coder

Flying Fairy by Flutterbye

Dance, movement




And of those career aspirations, it is traditional professions that are coming out top with children dreaming of becoming teachers, vets and doctors.

When I grow up I want to be….

The below chart lists out professions children express interest in pursuing, in order of preference:

Top 20 careers

1.         Teacher 

2.         Vet

3.         Doctor / Footballer

5.         Police Officer

6.         Nurse

7.         IT Specialist

8.         Soldier

9.         Fireman

10.       Scientist

11.       Chef

12.       Graphic Designer

13.       Princess

14.       Fashion Designer / Photographer

16.       Author / Writer

17.       Lawyer

18.       Racing Driver / Pilot

20.       Shop Owner / Manager



Notes to Editors:

Research by Opinion Matters, carried out between:11/07/13to16/07/13with 1308UKparents.

For more information, please contact the Surname & Surname team:

020 7260 2770

About Argos

Argos is a leading UK digital retailer, offering around 29,000 products through, its growing mobile channels, stores and over the telephone.

Argos continues to be the UK’s largest high street retailer online with 635 million website and app visits in the 12 months to February 2013. Argos serves around 124 million customers a year through its network of around 735 stores. 

In the financial year to February 2013, Argos sales were £3.9 billion and it employed some 30,000 people across the business.

Argos is part of Home Retail Group, the UK’s leading home and general merchandise retailer. 


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