I'm always sensitive to how men feel being asked this question right away by women. I don't ask, and I'm much more interested in learning other things about a man before knowing his occupation.
Imagine you've just met a woman, briefly discuss the weather and she asks, "So, what do you do for a living?"
I find men do this very often and I'd like to understand why, from a man's perspective. Is it that it's very important to you, or that you don't know what else to ask, or is it that you think you'll learn about her more quickly, by knowing? If so, would you be stereotyping? Has anyone made certain assumptions about you that were incorrect, based on occupational stereotypes?
Examples: Lawyers are dishonest; Investment bankers are ruthless; models are airheads; artists are flaky; construction workers are not that smart; accountants are boring..
Women are welcome to comment! I am just curious to know the motive behind men asking this question right away.
*I'm adding to this, as I'm getting a lot of "Just curious" replies which I don't believe addresses the question. Why are you curious? What will it tell you, that you need to know, in the first few seconds of meeting someone?
*Thank you all for your replies!