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Superhero career change: Life beyond the cape

With the much-anticipated release of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever our team wondered;

What would happen if our favourite characters decided to hang up the capes, work a 9 to 5 and swap fighting crime for managing time?

Donning a cape and fighting the baddies seems like a dangerous job. The death-defying stunts, the punches to the face, the cleaning, the insurance bills! It’s an awful lot of trouble for a paycheck (if they get one). Our expert recruiters set to work using their own powers to decipher super CVs and see how their skills match up with everyday jobs.

Disclaimer: There are plenty of heroes across the metaverses and universes. For our purposes, we’re going to stick with Marvel and DC to see what some of the most famous faces would do if they gave up spandex.

Marvel Universe

Iron Man

One of the original Avenger team members and the hero that started the modern Marvel franchise, Iron Man (AKA Tony Stark) is one of the most famous and successful superheroes on our list.

He has an incredible CV: a billionaire industrialist, former SEO of Stark Industries and a genius inventor. As a result, Tony Stark would have no problem landing a top job in finance or business development. His natural talent for developing businesses, genius intellect, and innovative inventions add to this skillset and would make him more than a match for real-life tech billionaires.

Tony is also incredibly personable and would probably win around the toughest clients. However, even with all of these plusses to his name Tony Stark is an HR and PR nightmare with his snarky comments and notoriety exasperating Pepper Potts daily.

All in all, Stark would be a great business leader or executive – and a riot at social events to boot.

Tony Stark would be a great business leader or executive in the finance industry


Spiderman (Peter Parker) already has an outstanding CV with his work for The Daily Bugle. The famous fictional New York City tabloid newspaper is always on the lookout for great Spiderman stories and Peter Parker is happy to oblige with exclusive shots of everyone’s friendly neighbourhood Spiderman. His eye for detail, camera skills, and quick reflexes make him ideal as a professional photographer, videographer or designer.

Whether taking action shots at Wembley, using his Spidey senses to capture those perfect moments at weddings, or covering breaking news stories from a unique vantage point; Spiderman is perfect for the audiovisual world.

Along with his skillset and intelligence, Spiderman also has some great soft skills. His sense of humour, communication skills, and all-around enthusiasm would be a great asset to any team and makes him one of the best Marvel characters to have in your workplace.

An ideal perk for Spidey is that his job will give him plenty of flexibility – time out of the office to both travel and work, which would suit this flighty, often scatter-brained hero down to a tee.

Spiderman would be a great asset to any team and an ideal Marketing candidate

Princess Shuri (Black Panther)

At the time of writing, rumours were circling of Princess Shuri becoming the next Black Panther (following on the legacy of her brother T’Challa, played by the late Chadwick Boseman) – however if she ever decided to leave the spotlight for a while, her CV for a 9-5 job certainly wouldn’t fit on one page.

An expert in engineering alien technology, Shuri is a genius inventor and scientist with skills in martial arts. Add to this a vast wealth based in vibranium reserves, and chances are in the real-world the princess of Wakanda is more likely to be looking for candidates than be one herself.

With her experience leading the Wakandan Design Group, we can see her combining her skills in team leadership, science and technology to continue to offer something new and exciting to benefit humanity. Shuri would be invaluable to the IT & Technology industry, owning a large company and motivating teams of scientists to develop futuristic tech with a focus on new healthcare devices, as we saw the kimoyo beads and T’Challa’s Habit having the ability to monitor heart rate and redistribute energy.

In the comic book world, Shuri is tutored by a griot spirit whilst in the Djalia, and gains the ability to transform into a flock of birds, or a singular large bird… which means when that 3pm slump rolls around and you find yourself gazing out of the window, there’s always a chance the princess of Wakanda could be outside your office peering in.

Princess Shuri would be invaluable to the IT & Technology industry

DC Universe


Batman is arguably DC Comics’ most famous superhero and for a good reason. With no inherent superpowers, Batman (secret identity Bruce Wayne) uses his scientific mind, unparalleled detective skills, and natural athleticism to fight crime AND run a business.

As the owner of Wayne Enterprises and the Wayne Foundation, Bruce Wayne is experienced in a range of industries including aerospace, security, food development, shipping, biotechnology, chemicals, construction, and entertainment. Bruce can’t take all the credit for his company’s success however as his right-hand man, Lucius Fox does most of the day-to-day management while Bruce is off fighting crime.

As a result, if he did ever decide to hang up the cape and get a regular 9 to 5, chances are Bruce Wayne would take a more hands-on role at Wayne Enterprises designing new products, innovating new tech, and using his detection skills to study markets and sniff out good contracts. His business connections and ability to influence people would also be invaluable in a meeting room and could be the push needed to get the deal across the line. Again, we could see him as a valuable job creator who candidates would flock to.

However, if there is one downside to Batman’s CV, it’s that his strong will and discipline can get in the way, even if sticking to his principles is detrimental. If all else fails Bruce could don his Batman suit, take up the name again and make a lot of money competing in professional sports. He is a master of over 127 different forms of martial arts and would no doubt fill the biggest stadiums in the world with his name on the title card.

We could see Batman as a valuable job creator who candidates would flock to.

Wonder Woman

An iconic and beloved DC superhero, Wonder Woman symbolises truth, justice and equality. Diana was raised on the hidden island of Themyscira and became an emissary for her people to the rest of the world. She has some incredible powers including superhuman speed and strength, as well as the ability to fly.

Diana also has a natural drive for peace, justice, and compassion. But it’s not just her incredible skills and kind heart that set this hero apart. She also has a unique weapon in the Lasso of Hestia, a magical golden lasso that compels people to speak honestly.

Her lasso, belief in justice, and incredible superhuman powers would make Diana a true asset to any HR team or leadership position. With her lasso, she’d be able to get to the root of the matter and resolve conflict rapidly.

Within the office, Diana may have to adapt to a few cultural differences between Themyscira and Earth (as seen in the films and comics). Her homeland is vastly different from our own so there may be some ‘fish out of water’ moments, but given enough time Diana would become a force to be reckoned with.

Diana would be a true asset to any HR team or leadership position.


As the King of the Seven Seas, Aquaman is one of the most powerful superheroes in the DC Universe. From humble beginnings, Arthur Curry discovered he was an Atlantean nobleman and heir to the throne. Once king, he became one of the most legendary kings in Atlantean history and a founding member of the Justice League.

He also has all the usual superhero staples; superhuman strength and impressive fighting skills but his standout talent is his telepathic ability. So let’s say Arthur gets bored with managing the oceans and chatting to fish every day. What would he do if fancied swapping water for dry land?

First of all, he’d need a job near the sea. His powers wane if he stays away from water for too long, so chances are he’d be best suited to a beachside life (wouldn’t we all).

Secondly, his telepathy and ability to communicate with hundreds of different sea creatures mean he has communicated with many different personalities and no doubt dealt with any issues that may crop up. As a result, Arthur would be great for communication and organisation. Perhaps a role in HR, recruiting, or even management would interest Aquaman?

Perhaps a role in HR, recruiting, or even management would interest Aquaman?

The Bad Guys

Now we’ve discussed the good guys, let’s take a quick look at some of Marvel and DC’s supervillains to see what would happen if they decided to change their ways.

Harley Quinn

Harley Quinn is a famous villain and antihero. Initially starting life as a psychiatrist at Gotham’s Arkham Asylum, Dr Harleen Quinzel fell in love with the Joker and into a life of crime. Since then Harley has become a hero in her own right and a crowd favourite with legions of fans. So what if Harley took the next step, dropped the clown gags and costumes, and decided to try to go the 9-5 route?

First off, Harley already has experience working in psychology. She also has enhanced strength, agility and durability, and is an expert gymnast. Harley is also famed for being completely unpredictable, and this makes us think she would be perfect for marketing – her one-liners would make great copy in advertising and definitely help to solidify her own unique personal brand on social media. She could use her psychological expertise to understand trends in what people want, and consumer purchasing behaviours.

Harley could also thrive in meetings and pitches with her energy, charm, and eye for fashion making her a keen marketeer with a bright future. Just be warned, this energy comes with a price and chances are that any workplace social event is going to be eventful. Also, you probably don’t want to let her bring her hyenas, Bud and Lou, into the office if you allow pets.

Harley Quinn’s one-liners would make great copy in advertising

Dr Octopus

Doctor Otto Octavius, AKA Dr Octopus is one of Spiderman’s most famous foes. Otto had a difficult childhood but overcame it to become a brilliant and respected scientist with a focus on nuclear physics. Before he went bad, he was an atomic research consultant, a keen inventor, and a lecturer. This experience led him to create his iconic metal tentacles, initially to handle chemicals that would be too dangerous to touch and garner the Dr Octopus nickname from his colleagues.

Since then, Otto has done some dastardly deeds – but what if he was pardoned from all of these and given a second chance at a normal life?

A technical job in engineering is a no-brainer as Otto could go back to doing what he does best, tinkering, discovering, and experimenting. With the aid of his metal tentacles, he could expand on his nuclear physics research and potentially discover new forms of power generation, create new elements, or engineer future tech.

One thing to be said for his employer though is Doc Ock is famous for his stubbornness and self-belief. His undoing is often down to the fact that he considers himself smarter than everyone else, so be warned employers, if you hire the Doc you may have to deal with a few disagreements.

A technical job in engineering would be a no-brainer for Otto

Poison Ivy

Poison Ivy, much like Harley Quinn, blurs the line between villain and antihero. Originally Dr Pamela Lillian Isley PhD, Poison Ivy is a genius botanist and biochemist with supernatural control over plant life. She also has enhanced physical abilities and a poisonous touch. Her crimes are usually related to eco-terrorism as her affinity and love for the natural environment often boil over and lead to extreme acts to protect our planet. This noble cause could be used for good if Poison Ivy ever decided to go back to being Dr Isley.

Environmental awareness is growing in popularity and importance here in the modern world (in fact, Isley would be welcome on our own Sustainability Team) and one that is front and centre of energy production and food production in particular. Dr Isley could be part of this change by using her knowledge and powers for good.

She could cultivate hardier crops that grow in barren areas, find solutions to green energy problems, and reforest areas destroyed by global warming or industry. As such, we think she’d thrive in biotechnology or the sciences.

However, with all this being said, her passion for plants can lead to issues so be prepared for any arguments that may come with debating how to best tackle climate change.

We think Poison Ivy would thrive in biotechnology or the sciences.)


At Distinct, we go beyond the CV to understand our candidates’ drives and objectives; supporting them in finding their ideal role. They may not always have shapeshifting abilities or superhuman strength, but we’re confident the candidates we match your business with will be right for your company culture.

If you’d like to learn more about our services or how we can help you attract new candidates, contact us today. Our superhero recruitment team have years of experience in a range of industries and are ready to show you how we do things differently.


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