Author Topic: How do people make $100+ salary?  (Read 45918 times)

frogstomp81

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #50 on: January 16, 2018, 02:53:16 PM »
Merchant Mariner. 120k this year for working 5 months. When times were better I made 180k for 6 months. Even unlicensed mariners can come close to 6 figures for 6 months of work per year, which is the fairly typical schedule.


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MightyAl

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #51 on: January 16, 2018, 03:01:08 PM »
Mechanical Engineer at 120k in an extremely LCOL area.  Had an interview in HCOL and told them 160k was my minimum.


JLee

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #52 on: January 16, 2018, 03:17:00 PM »
If you don't mind staring at a computer all day, software engineering in the bay area is a solid way to earn more than $100k. I was recently helping a friend get his first programming job. He probably spent a few months looking and landed an entry-level position that pays him $120k. He is a recent college graduate.

Salaries in the range of $80k - $400k aren't unheard of out here for software engineers, I think. Some people make more than that, too. My salary is $350k/yr with ~5 years of professional experience, although I got pretty lucky finding this gig. Before moving to the bay area I was making < $100k in the same line of work.

Shit.

I really wish I liked programming...

Christof

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #53 on: January 16, 2018, 03:36:41 PM »
Luck.

People like to be in command and contribute lot more to their abilities than would be fair. This forum is a selection of survivors within a select group of high earners. It's not a reflection of reality.

Everyone that was around me when I started my business is either dead, bankrupt or employed by me now. There have been dozens of situations where it could have turned out either way for me, too, and there will be man more in the future.

It's a bit different for the US, though not by that much. Six digits put you into the top 2% here in Germany. To balance your view lok what it takes to get into the top 5% in other areas, such as football, IQ, grades, universities, body size, playing dart... It's really not different for income.

JLee

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #54 on: January 16, 2018, 03:42:26 PM »
Luck.

People like to be in command and contribute lot more to their abilities than would be fair. This forum is a selection of survivors within a select group of high earners. It's not a reflection of reality.

Everyone that was around me when I started my business is either dead, bankrupt or employed by me now. There have been dozens of situations where it could have turned out either way for me, too, and there will be man more in the future.

It's a bit different for the US, though not by that much. Six digits put you into the top 2% here in Germany. To balance your view lok what it takes to get into the top 5% in other areas, such as football, IQ, grades, universities, body size, playing dart... It's really not different for income.

A huge part of it is luck, yes.  Motivation is also a factor.

EricEng

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #55 on: January 16, 2018, 03:47:39 PM »
I graduated in 2003 at $55k and hit $100k in 2007 with a EE degree.   For me the key was to move from tier 2 automotive supplier to a small-business aerospace company.  I switched to the energy industry in 2008 and took a small pay cut for the move but was back above $100k the next year.  That's base salary, bonuses would be on top of that.  My other half makes a whole ton more money than me but she's not in engineering.
I think your key was company hopping to a small business without all the overhead expenses.  I usually had head hunters offering $20-30k bump in pay if I jumped to a small aerospace company (I've been big aerospace my whole life), but the job security was non existent and lots of unpaid overtime expected.  EE also seems to start higher than other fields although I think CS with software Dev can pass it in 5-10 years if they are really good.

big_owl

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #56 on: January 16, 2018, 03:58:31 PM »
I graduated in 2003 at $55k and hit $100k in 2007 with a EE degree.   For me the key was to move from tier 2 automotive supplier to a small-business aerospace company.  I switched to the energy industry in 2008 and took a small pay cut for the move but was back above $100k the next year.  That's base salary, bonuses would be on top of that.  My other half makes a whole ton more money than me but she's not in engineering.
I think your key was company hopping to a small business without all the overhead expenses.  I usually had head hunters offering $20-30k bump in pay if I jumped to a small aerospace company (I've been big aerospace my whole life), but the job security was non existent and lots of unpaid overtime expected.  EE also seems to start higher than other fields although I think CS with software Dev can pass it in 5-10 years if they are really good.

It def helped me move up quicker than I might have otherwise.  But that said, after my initial $15k drop when I switched over to a my current huge energy company I have since moved up to about 150k which is more than I was making in aerospace.  And my company is very large with rather rigid salary structures.  Much better job security though.  And even a cash pension!  The small aerospace was too stressful for me after four years and non-stop travel with minimal job security.  But it was cool R&D work that was cutting edge.  Such is life.

Parizade

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #57 on: January 16, 2018, 04:08:12 PM »
My degree is in Scientific and Technical Communication, but I currently create business documentation. I work from home, make over 100k/yr with 6+ weeks vacation, and live in a LCOL town. It's a very sweet gig.
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EricEng

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #58 on: January 16, 2018, 04:10:24 PM »
It def helped me move up quicker than I might have otherwise.  But that said, after my initial $15k drop when I switched over to a my current huge energy company I have since moved up to about 150k which is more than I was making in aerospace.  And my company is very large with rather rigid salary structures.  Much better job security though.  And even a cash pension!  The small aerospace was too stressful for me after four years and non-stop travel with minimal job security.  But it was cool R&D work that was cutting edge.  Such is life.
Wow that is pretty nice.  I find the pay in the aerospace/defense industry to be unusually low for the work.  Perhaps the price to pay for working on cool, fun things that move fast and go boom.

Christof

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #59 on: January 16, 2018, 04:22:24 PM »
Luck.

People like to be in command and contribute lot more to their abilities than would be fair. This forum is a selection of survivors within a select group of high earners. It's not a reflection of reality.

Everyone that was around me when I started my business is either dead, bankrupt or employed by me now. There have been dozens of situations where it could have turned out either way for me, too, and there will be man more in the future.

It's a bit different for the US, though not by that much. Six digits put you into the top 2% here in Germany. To balance your view lok what it takes to get into the top 5% in other areas, such as football, IQ, grades, universities, body size, playing dart... It's really not different for income.

A huge part of it is luck, yes.  Motivation is also a factor.

Absolutely. You need luck and opportunity. Working hard and efficient makes it's easier to become rich, but there's no guarantee.

Parizade

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #60 on: January 16, 2018, 04:45:50 PM »
Quote
A huge part of it is luck, yes.  Motivation is also a factor.
Quote
Absolutely. You need luck and opportunity. Working hard and efficient makes it's easier to become rich, but there's no guarantee.

I agree that it takes working hard, recognizing and taking advantage of opportunities, and some luck. I would add "don't be dick" because really no one likes to work with an asshole.
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I'm a red panda

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #61 on: January 16, 2018, 05:06:09 PM »
You could join the military.  With BAH most of my friends (15ish years in, officers) are clearing $100K now. Even more when they get deployed especially the pilots.

My husband left the air force, and we'd have a lot more money if he hadn't. Oh well, money isn't everything.

matchewed

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #62 on: January 16, 2018, 05:13:34 PM »

obstinate

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #63 on: January 16, 2018, 05:42:29 PM »
Programmer here, doing $500k per year total comp. Look at firms that make a high amount of profit per employee. These firms and their competitors are likely to be paying very well. Note that the more capital intensive a firm is, the less true my claim is, all other things being equal.

Lanthiriel

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #64 on: January 16, 2018, 05:44:31 PM »
idk how people on here seem to do it so quickly.
Because this community is self-selected and generally blows the general population out of the water on every development metric, and unlike real life, aren't shy to broadcast their achievements. So it feels like everyone is killing it.

Thanks for voicing this. I feel like whenever I talk about income on this site, everyone freaks out at me that I should be making more. I'm making $77k at age 30 with a useless liberal arts BA and an even more specifically useless liberal arts MS. Considering a lot of people who graduated from my grad program are making less than $50k in NYC, I don't think I'm doing that bad. Plus I married an engineer and half the engineers' wives I know stay at home, so I'm really out-earning my cohort...

obstinate

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #65 on: January 16, 2018, 05:55:14 PM »
Thanks for voicing this. I feel like whenever I talk about income on this site, everyone freaks out at me that I should be making more. I'm making $77k at age 30 with a useless liberal arts BA and an even more specifically useless liberal arts MS. Considering a lot of people who graduated from my grad program are making less than $50k in NYC, I don't think I'm doing that bad. Plus I married an engineer and half the engineers' wives I know stay at home, so I'm really out-earning my cohort...
I have never seen anyone "freak out" about someone making $77k. I'm sorry that happened to you, and I pledge to call it out if I ever see it happen.

I think it's a well known statistical phenomenon that in some types of surveys, the results are very skewed by what people feel comfortable reporting. Those who make more speak up more than those who make less. Same way sometimes those who are dissatisfied speak more than the rest about what is dissatisfying to them.

It's also absolutely true that luck is a huge component to making these types of salaries. Even if you get an education in CS, nobody is guaranteed a job at Google or Facebook. Business majors don't automatically land a job at Goldman, and even those who do have a pretty high probability of washing out. People will cite work ethic or intelligence, but having those things is in and of itself lucky. Not to mention the systemic effects that lead to these kind of opportunities.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2018, 05:57:13 PM by obstinate »

TheAnonOne

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #66 on: January 16, 2018, 06:02:01 PM »
I write software (think websites) and made a little over $200,000 last year. I do it by contracting, billing per hour, and loading up on as much work as possible.

Early on in my career I went from...
35k for 3 months
42k for 7 months
55k for 6 months- raised to 65k for 3 months
98k for 6 months - started consulting
160k
152k
Then it stayed up there in that range. Occasionally bumping over 200k

Job hopping is the absolute gold mine, at least in engineering. I had a senior level job around 2 to 3 years from my first job (but only 6 months out of college because I was hired as a freshman for full time software development)

I find that I am naturally good at it. So not all will see the same results.

wordnerd

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #67 on: January 16, 2018, 06:09:55 PM »
In my experience, there was both hard work and luck, but mostly luck. I got hired into a management track fellowship straight out of grad school in 2010. That was a pretty lousy job market year, so I was thrilled to have any decent job, much less one with serious opportunity for advancement. I started at $49K when I was 23, moved around a couple of times internally to my organization, and crested six figures when I was 29. There was some hard work involved there. I built a good reputation for myself, sought out career advancement, generally took tougher assignments when they came around.

But there was a lot of luck, much of which I would call privilege, including (but not limited to):
Parents who valued education, taught me, guided me through the college application process and paid for my undergrad
Having access to good, public education as a child
Being white, straight, cis, and able-bodied
Having mentors who encouraged me to apply for the fellowship, served as references, and gave me advice on how to get it
Having parents who let me live with them while I pursued unpaid internships in college, which looked good on my resume when I applied for said fellowship
Having the means to fly to the other side of the country on short notice to interview for said job
Having the means to relocate to the other side of the country at the drop of a hat
Having a supportive partner who helped me in my career (he found one of my internal advancement opportunities and got my resume in the right place)
Having a (very old) car that parents gifted me that got me to and from work the first several years of my career
Having access to reliable birth control, which allowed me to focus on my career in my twenties, rather than child-bearing
« Last Edit: January 16, 2018, 06:51:28 PM by wordnerd »

Blackeagle

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #68 on: January 16, 2018, 06:25:39 PM »
Step 1) Identify a career where salaries that high are the norm.
Step 2) Become qualified for one of those careers.
Step 3) Profit.

In my case it was more like:
Step 1) Spend 10+ years getting a PhD (in a field at the intersection of STEM and social science)
Step 2) Get a moderately paying job in academia
Step 3) When the academic thing doesn't work out, get a totally unrelated job at a 40% pay cut
Step 4) Get a job in a field related to my degree (as a practitioner, rather than an academic) earning about what I did in my academic job
Step 5) Perform really well and become critical to my organization, leading them to preemptively throw money and promotions at me so I don't leave

For me, at least, it was far from being a straight linear path, but I eventually ended up in a good place.

SC93

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #69 on: January 16, 2018, 06:30:30 PM »
idk how people on here seem to do it so quickly.
Because this community is self-selected and generally blows the general population out of the water on every development metric, and unlike real life, aren't shy to broadcast their achievements. So it feels like everyone is killing it.

Thanks for voicing this. I feel like whenever I talk about income on this site, everyone freaks out at me that I should be making more. I'm making $77k at age 30 with a useless liberal arts BA and an even more specifically useless liberal arts MS. Considering a lot of people who graduated from my grad program are making less than $50k in NYC, I don't think I'm doing that bad. Plus I married an engineer and half the engineers' wives I know stay at home, so I'm really out-earning my cohort...

Yes, NYC is not known for it's high pay for a LA degree. My wife's first job was at the Metropolitan Museum Of Art and once she worked there she can get a job anywhere in the world. So she got tired of NYC and moved where she could make 4x what she was making at the MET. She loves working at museums. No way I could drag her away. I'm sure she will work at one until the day she dies.

FiftyIsTheNewTwenty

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #70 on: January 16, 2018, 07:11:59 PM »
Yes, NYC is not known for it's high pay for a LA degree. My wife's first job was at the Metropolitan Museum Of Art and once she worked there she can get a job anywhere in the world. So she got tired of NYC and moved where she could make 4x what she was making at the MET. She loves working at museums. No way I could drag her away. I'm sure she will work at one until the day she dies.

I think this is true of nonprofit anywhere, that it's traditionally a gentlemen's/heiress's field (noblesse oblige and all that), with the assumption (reality?) of family money and other support.  There's still a huge pool of that in NYC, and plenty of other folks willing to scrape by to be able to work in the arts.

As far as LA backgrounds go, one can do just fine in media and advertising, and all kinds of design and merchandising.


TheWifeHalf

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #71 on: January 16, 2018, 07:21:29 PM »
My husband makes that much because:
1. He was a good student in high school
2.He did a lot of mechanical, motor, construction etc stuff in his down time. So he knew alot about how things work
3. He got a job at the railroad coal docks, and one of his jobs was to 'lift a coal car with a machine, pour the coal into a ship - more mechanical, motor stuff
4 Got laid off ,and watched the want ads for something.
5. Saw a refinery nearby was hiring.
6. Has a calm, intelligent, confident demeanor, so not only knew all that stuff, but interviewed well.
7. Worked his way through the refinery, so, again, knew his stuff, so got a position in the control room

ok, he started in '92

Another example, our son:

1.  Did well in school
2. joined the Navy and tested into the nuclear propulsion, was in for 6 years, awards along the way
3. Came home, within 6 mos the same refinery was hiring. He got an interview because of his accomplishments, not his Dad
4. Left with his Mom and Dad's blessings, making about 90,000

Summed up - do well whatever you do, know it, give an appearance of being calm and confident that you know your stuff, watch for openings in your field. Also, be willing to put in the years needed to know your stuff, and to be dependable

we are in a LCOL area, midwest
« Last Edit: January 16, 2018, 07:52:28 PM by TheWifeHalf »

fiStressRelief

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #72 on: January 16, 2018, 08:00:31 PM »
I write software (think websites) and made a little over $200,000 last year. I do it by contracting, billing per hour, and loading up on as much work as possible.

Early on in my career I went from...
35k for 3 months
42k for 7 months
55k for 6 months- raised to 65k for 3 months
98k for 6 months - started consulting
160k
152k
Then it stayed up there in that range. Occasionally bumping over 200k

Job hopping is the absolute gold mine, at least in engineering. I had a senior level job around 2 to 3 years from my first job (but only 6 months out of college because I was hired as a freshman for full time software development)

I find that I am naturally good at it. So not all will see the same results.
If you don't mind me asking, what kind of website work and what kind of hourly rate?

I'm thinking about trying to expand my contracting side hustle this year.

HipGnosis

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #73 on: January 16, 2018, 08:26:28 PM »
It's kinda snarky, but pragmatically applicable...
Pay attention to details - like, don't write "$100+" when you mean "$100K+".

MrUpwardlyMobile

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #74 on: January 16, 2018, 08:53:08 PM »
idk how people on here seem to do it so quickly.
Because this community is self-selected and generally blows the general population out of the water on every development metric, and unlike real life, aren't shy to broadcast their achievements. So it feels like everyone is killing it.

People who are killing it are making $500k per spouse per year. In the county where I live, middle class couples are making about $125k each
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hdatontodo

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #75 on: January 16, 2018, 09:03:13 PM »
In the mid 80's I worked at a Community College I.T. Dept in DC area while working on a Business BS. $18K
1988 After getting BS, got a job with a Gov't contractor on a DOD PC contract $34K then to 37K. Right after leaving, all others were laid off.
1991 Got a job with a Point of Sale Vendor in R&D for $45K Got my CS degree during the first 1.5 years there with 4.0 avg. Systems / network work.
2001 Over the 10 years there, I got into Software Test mgmt and then into dept mgmt. Ending at 80K. Laid off.
2001 3 wks later, got a job for an internet hosting company managing load testing $80K in a Prof Svcs Group
         Eventually moved into general work in that dept, then into Operations, then assigned to Unix website work for a large customer, eventually getting
         assigned just to that customer for past 5+ years (when I was able to work from home.)
         Had several years recently with no pay increase once I hit the band's salary max around $125K (but they had a 10% bonus and 6% 401K match.)
         Also around 2014/15 they started paying O.T. ($90/hr) and I was able to knock $166K off my house loan in 2 years.)
In Sept, 2017, division got sold to another firm and I have a new employer at same salary. I'm 57 now and wondering if I'll get laid off this year and just retire.

During my career, I was lucky to have been able to continuously work. Jumping from 18K to 34K was big. I was laid off in 2001 but got a job immediately from a coworker's husband. Before 2001 I was lucky to get 2 promotions back to back, taking my salary from 60 to 80K. After 2001, I was saved three times from layoffs by other people who wanted me around.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2018, 09:13:38 PM by hdatontodo »

Acorns

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #76 on: January 16, 2018, 09:34:13 PM »
Get an MBA. Starting salary for new grads from the top 25 schools is well over $100k. Granted many of these are also in HCOL area. However, police and fire in my local big city (HCOL) can make around $100k after 5-10 years, some times a lot more including OT. These do pretty much require a college degree, as well.

Off the Wheel

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #77 on: January 16, 2018, 11:10:27 PM »
Step 1) Identify a career where salaries that high are the norm, typically in a HCOL area..
Step 2) Become qualified for one of those careers.
Step 2.5) Be a top performer / put in the hard work and hours then switch companies
Step 3) Profit.

FTFY

Also, if someone (employer, customers, etc) are willing to pay you $100K+ its because your created > $100K in value for them. As an example, one of the professions not listed is supply chain / purchasing. A typical purchasing manager may make $90-150K depending on performance, tenure, responsibilities, etc. but is tasked with lowering (read: negotiating) costs by a factor of 3-20x what they are paid ($500K-$3MM savings for the company per yr). There's a clear value proposition for the employer to pay someone that much.

This.

The path to high earnings isn't always straight, but there are some key steps too. In my case, I chose practicality. I wanted to be a writer, I went into marketing instead since I could use the writing skills without the sacrifice of the starving artist. I worked really, really, really hard. I got to the office early. I left late. I always put my hand up. I proved my worth, and did more than I was asked and than my job description demanded. I also found champions. If you don't have people in positions of power that are taking note of all the good work you're doing and singing your praises, you can get left behind. I was strategic with the jobs I selected. I changed jobs every 12-24 months early on. I diversified my skill set. I moved to the dream city in my profession, to get it on my resume, before moving back. I also fell in love with and married someone who had a similar view to work, life and ambition that I did.

Getting to $200K is a challenge, and while I could see the path to it (particular sector, particular size of company, particular lack of worklife balance) the path I chose took me to six figures by 30 and I'm happy with it. I'll write that novel when I'm FI. ;)
« Last Edit: January 16, 2018, 11:15:22 PM by Off the Wheel »

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #78 on: January 16, 2018, 11:43:27 PM »
1. Educate yourself, not just about your chosen field, but also: how business works, how people work and how you can improve your work
2. Look for opportunities at your work and constantly think of how you can bring value to the company, then do that, bring value
3. Document your successes
4. Be good to people at work, up, down and across and build relationships
5. Ask for raises and promotions and back it up with evidence of the value you bring
6. Be willing to apply for new roles that are more aligned with your value
7. Be focused on continually enhancing your career
8. Be someone that people can trust
9. Learn about the other parts of the company and stay curious
10. Over-deliver and under-promise and be the person who isnít ever afraid to roll up their sleeves and do what others wonít and if that isnít appreciated or valued, move on

SharkStomper

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #79 on: January 16, 2018, 11:57:55 PM »
Network engineer, but I travel and work OT to make just over $100K.  It took several job and location moves to arrive here.  I live in a LCOL area and telecommute when I'm not on travel.


HomeSweetLab

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #80 on: January 17, 2018, 12:49:36 AM »
Step 1) Identify a career where salaries that high are the norm.
Step 2) Become qualified for one of those careers.
Step 3) Profit.

In my case it was more like:
Step 1) Spend 10+ years getting a PhD (in a field at the intersection of STEM and social science)
Step 2) Get a moderately paying job in academia
Step 3) When the academic thing doesn't work out, get a totally unrelated job at a 40% pay cut
Step 4) Get a job in a field related to my degree (as a practitioner, rather than an academic) earning about what I did in my academic job
Step 5) Perform really well and become critical to my organization, leading them to preemptively throw money and promotions at me so I don't leave

For me, at least, it was far from being a straight linear path, but I eventually ended up in a good place.

This seems like quite an interesting path, and somewhat similar to the path I'm on!

Currently, I'm doing a PhD making between 55K and 60k depending on the current exchange rate (Norway has great salaries for PhDs, which is why I chose to come here) and I'm gaining skills that will be applicable to a broad variety of fields. I plan on going into industry after this in geochemistry or environmental/industrial hygiene. You can stay in academia and make 100k once you reach associate/full professor, but I've seen too many people get pushed around by the tenure system to go down that long path myself.

I'd say that getting a PhD in a somewhat specialized STEM field, where you'll learn skillsets that are broadly applicable in industry, is actually a pretty good option if engineering/software/IT type jobs don't interest you. A somewhat longer road to 100K than some IT friends I know, but if you are interested in science it can be a rewarding career path. If you have an in-demand skillset, industry will throw money at you to try and lure you in and retain you.

I would not recommend medical school though (saw a few people mention that), unless you're truly passionate about medicine. I was thinking about that as an undergrad myself, but I was not really into it beyond the "I'm good at science/biochemistry and doctors make a lot of money" thought process. I have had a few friends go that route, and let me tell you, doctors deserve waaayyyy more compensation than they're given for the shit they have to put up with in the U.S. medical system. Most doctors now only make 100-150K a year unless you're in a speciality like Surgery or Derm, and most are 200-300K in debt coming out. With the hours they pull and stress they're under, plus the hassle of dealing with the general population when they're at their worst (sick and in pain), there's much easier ways to make 100k without the school debt or stress.

ulzxhi

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #81 on: January 17, 2018, 01:21:08 AM »
RNs in the bay areas easily make 100k+ working 3x 12-hour shifts per week. First year RNs make somewhat less but the payscale climbs quickly. Any job in healthcare in the bay area, as long as you are willing to pick up OT like a boss.

It really depends on the place and employer, though. At my first job in healthcare, I was making minimum wage with no opportunity for OT (they'd rather be short) and no raises (ah, gotta love retail).

At my other former position, I was making $100k with my high school diploma (which the salary is still, apparently, below the poverty line depending on the part of the bay). But I also picked up 16 hour shifts 3 or 4 days in a row, would average 60 to 90 hours a week, and worked up to 40 days in a row at a time. I took 1 month off for vacation, and a few week-long vacations as well.My base pay was about 45k, so I was racking up 55k in extra shifts and OT. Honestly I should have flunked out of high school. I don't believe in the US education system, but I had some professors who had good faith in me. And then I landed this gig with the best management ever who also had good faith in me. And outperform I did.

Then, there were layoffs. So now I work for an apathetic gumshoe. Ah, life.

In healthcare, definitely consider that layoffs happen for entry-level positions though. Unless you are an RN, you are expendible.
« Last Edit: January 17, 2018, 02:00:38 AM by ulzxhi »
hi friend! feel free to check out my journal ;D

frugledoc

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #82 on: January 17, 2018, 01:35:25 AM »
Salary in isolation doesn't tell you much:
- higher earners may have very high student debt
- may in a VHCOL area (where the high paying jobs are)
- may live in a higher taxed country/area

I am a UK doctor and often look across the pond at doctors salaries in awe.  But then I find out that many have 250 - 500k dollars in debt (my education was completely free).
I'm sure US doctors are still fall richer than their UK counterparts though, eventually!  My first job as a doctor in 2001 paid 22,000 pounds per year, and that was with lots of night shifts and weekends, but again I got free accommodation etc so you need to take these things into account.

Malkynn

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #83 on: January 17, 2018, 06:19:54 AM »
Salary in isolation doesn't tell you much:
- higher earners may have very high student debt
- may in a VHCOL area (where the high paying jobs are)
- may live in a higher taxed country/area

I am a UK doctor and often look across the pond at doctors salaries in awe.  But then I find out that many have 250 - 500k dollars in debt (my education was completely free).
I'm sure US doctors are still fall richer than their UK counterparts though, eventually!  My first job as a doctor in 2001 paid 22,000 pounds per year, and that was with lots of night shifts and weekends, but again I got free accommodation etc so you need to take these things into account.

Yup.

1: some careers have a direct path to high salaries, but are gruelling and require a lot of up front investment of both time and money, plus they tend to be ultra competitive. They also tend to cap out and be non-scalable with little option for passive income.
These are your professionals to have to be actively doing their trained trade to generate high incomes.
-Iím a dentist, I make a lot but it cost me a fortune to do so. The more I work, the more I make, but there is a ceiling as to just how much I am work and diminishing returns as the job is very physically taxing. Also, Iím 35 and have a negative net worth.

2: The more indirect path are the people who are good at moving up the ladder in the corporate/large organization world into positions that pay very well. Many pay over 100K, but a rare few remunerate much higher in the 200+ range.
-My DH works for the government, heís worked his way up to about 100K for 40hrs/week of work, he has a masters in public policy. He has hit a ceiling where to make more would require an enormous increase in his hours and stress and the pay increase would not be worth it.

3: The most indirect paths involve creativity, timing, incredibly hard work, and some luck, but they also tend to be more scalable and have better opportunity for passive income. These are your small business people, consultants, etc who are able to recognize opportunity.
-Often the level of work, sacrifice, stress, and risk is astronomical. There is no ceiling, but just getting to a profitable level is a serious slog for most.

Overall, for many many people making higher salaries, if you look at it in terms of what they make per hour worked, their hourly rate isnít all that impressive. Often A LOT of blood sweat and tears goes into generating bigger incomes. Thatís not to say itís not worth it, but if you just look at someoneís yearly income, you are missing a huge part of the picture.

Jenny1974

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #84 on: January 17, 2018, 06:32:55 AM »
For me, it was

   1) Making a wise choice in career selection (I'm a tax accountant).
   2) Be willing to take on increasing levels of leadership and responsibility.
   3) Perform well at whatever you do.
   4) Unique to my career . . . . get out of public accounting and go to industry.  More money to be made there!

Jennifer

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #85 on: January 17, 2018, 06:34:48 AM »
Electrical engineering degree from low cost state school. Starting salary was $79k in the energy industry designing control systems for refineries and chemical plants.

In my business, changing jobs is the best way for big salary bumps. Iíve seen many jump to 100k pretty quickly if they do good work.

Jenny1974

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #86 on: January 17, 2018, 06:35:45 AM »
Tax accounting. Congress keeps us employed and makes it nice and complicated so the earnings potential is there.

Isn't this the truth??  I swear tax reform alone will keep me employed for the next several years.  Trying to figure out what the hell Congress intended when they wrote half this crap is a full time job!!

SwordGuy

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #87 on: January 17, 2018, 06:43:17 AM »
Where I live (near Washington, DC), $100k salary is probably a bit below average.

Dead wrong.  Nowhere near that. 

DS

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #88 on: January 17, 2018, 07:09:20 AM »
I agree that it takes working hard, recognizing and taking advantage of opportunities, and some luck. I would add "don't be dick" because really no one likes to work with an asshole.

Then how are so many of them employed making 100k? ;)

hops

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #89 on: January 17, 2018, 07:22:09 AM »
Attending physician salaries in the U.S. aren't typically as anemic as some of these responses suggest, although it's true there are plenty of doctors (particularly in peds and family medicine) who are quite underpaid.

Some surveys:

https://www.medscape.com/slideshow/compensation-2017-overview-6008547

https://www.medscape.com/slideshow/young-physician-compensation-2017-6008749

But HomeSweetLab is right that you need a bigger reason than money to pursue medicine. The admissions process is also geared at weeding out applicants whose primary motivations are financial.

I'm a red panda

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #90 on: January 17, 2018, 07:28:41 AM »
Where I live (near Washington, DC), $100k salary is probably a bit below average.

Dead wrong.  Nowhere near that.

They probably meant in professional careers, so removing all the minimum wage workers from the calculation. 

DC does have the greatest average salary in the US.

newgirl

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #91 on: January 17, 2018, 07:33:29 AM »
OK but which careers are these?  I imagine doctor, law firm partner, people who work in finance?  What else?

THIS THIS THIS THIS!

I work in insurance underwriting and just job hopped for a 30%+ raise, currently making $108k base with 14% bonus. I started my career in the same field but an entry level position 10 years ago making $36,000. I've switched jobs on average every 3 years, usually getting a signing bonus each time, because the particular underwriting that I do is highly specialized and experienced people are in high demand across the industry. Typically when I switch jobs I trade up both for a fancier title and a raise in the neighborhood of 20-30% (that's just on the base, not including the bonus there).

Once you settle in somewhere, you can pretty much kiss big raises goodbye. Unless your current employer is forced to compete heavily to attract and retain talent, they'll typically throw a 3% COL raise at you each year and call it good, and maybe promote you every 5-7 years. At least that's what I saw in the insurance industry.

Job hop your way up the ladder.

Bearblastbeats

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #92 on: January 17, 2018, 07:39:47 AM »
OK but which careers are these?  I imagine doctor, law firm partner, people who work in finance?  What else?

THIS THIS THIS THIS!

I work in insurance underwriting and just job hopped for a 30%+ raise, currently making $108k base with 14% bonus. I started my career in the same field but an entry level position 10 years ago making $36,000. I've switched jobs on average every 3 years, usually getting a signing bonus each time, because the particular underwriting that I do is highly specialized and experienced people are in high demand across the industry. Typically when I switch jobs I trade up both for a fancier title and a raise in the neighborhood of 20-30% (that's just on the base, not including the bonus there).

Once you settle in somewhere, you can pretty much kiss big raises goodbye. Unless your current employer is forced to compete heavily to attract and retain talent, they'll typically throw a 3% COL raise at you each year and call it good, and maybe promote you every 5-7 years. At least that's what I saw in the insurance industry.

Job hop your way up the ladder.

I don't think I'll expect a significant raise this year. I also am not sure where I could make as much money as I do here, somewhere else. Not even my manager and some of our best talent makes 100k here.

I'm a red panda

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #93 on: January 17, 2018, 07:40:41 AM »
Unless your current employer is forced to compete heavily to attract and retain talent, they'll typically throw a 3% COL raise at you each year and call it good, and maybe promote you every 5-7 years. At least that's what I saw in the insurance industry.

Job hop your way up the ladder.

I'm in (non-teaching) education field- I wish I could get 3%!  1% seems to be the most common.

I did job hop my way to both the best company in the field and a good salary; it would be hard for me to hop anywhere else now though.  But I'm OK with that. I'm happy with my (sub $100k) salary, and more focused on life balance and enjoying my job now.

HawkeyeNFO

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #94 on: January 17, 2018, 07:40:49 AM »
Where I live (near Washington, DC), $100k salary is probably a bit below average.

Dead wrong.  Nowhere near that.
Think again, friend. It's expensive here, because people are making a lot of money.......
"The income per capita is $92,468, which includes all adults and children. The median household income is $183,738." 
Take the kids out, and the average is above $100k.
http://www.bestplaces.net/economy/zip-code/virginia/mclean/22101





Slow&Steady

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #95 on: January 17, 2018, 07:44:57 AM »
idk how people on here seem to do it so quickly.

KC metro here 28yo, I've been a Sys Admin for 5~ years and make roughly 70 with some nice benefits. Just need more certs + time I spose. Feels like I will top out around 80-90 though unless I get some more specific skill set (anyone have a suggestion on this btw?!)

All of my big advancements have come from moving jobs.  Maybe thats the secret :P, attain job, attain skills/exp, get new job, rinse and repeat :P.



http://www.bestplaces.net/cost-of-living/kansas-city-mo/secaucus-nj/70000

Simply relocating and getting a new job in a HCOL area would probably get you a 6-figure salary.

Yeah would be something I would consider if I had a bit different of a situation (family and such). Still seems some here manage it even in the midwest (which is probably just them being awesome =] ).

I am in the KC metro area and just accepted a job offer for just shy of $100k and a potential 10% annual bonus.  I am assuming with just average raises over the next few years my base will touch that $100k level.

I have also been in my career field (environmental compliance) for over a decade, have a BS, working on an MS, and this was a huge jump for me (30+%).  I almost didn't even apply because I thought the job description was too much of an overreach for me.  Sometimes you just have to take a chance and reach a little higher than you think you are ready for and take on more responsibility. 

Lan Mandragoran

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #96 on: January 17, 2018, 07:56:48 AM »
idk how people on here seem to do it so quickly.

KC metro here 28yo, I've been a Sys Admin for 5~ years and make roughly 70 with some nice benefits. Just need more certs + time I spose. Feels like I will top out around 80-90 though unless I get some more specific skill set (anyone have a suggestion on this btw?!)

All of my big advancements have come from moving jobs.  Maybe thats the secret :P, attain job, attain skills/exp, get new job, rinse and repeat :P.



http://www.bestplaces.net/cost-of-living/kansas-city-mo/secaucus-nj/70000

Simply relocating and getting a new job in a HCOL area would probably get you a 6-figure salary.

Yeah would be something I would consider if I had a bit different of a situation (family and such). Still seems some here manage it even in the midwest (which is probably just them being awesome =] ).

I am in the KC metro area and just accepted a job offer for just shy of $100k and a potential 10% annual bonus.  I am assuming with just average raises over the next few years my base will touch that $100k level.

I have also been in my career field (environmental compliance) for over a decade, have a BS, working on an MS, and this was a huge jump for me (30+%).  I almost didn't even apply because I thought the job description was too much of an overreach for me.  Sometimes you just have to take a chance and reach a little higher than you think you are ready for and take on more responsibility.

Thats awesome :), congrats.
ďTell them they can be great someday, like us. Tell them they belong among us, no matter how we treat them. Tell them they must earn the respect which everyone else receives by default. Tell them there is a standard for acceptance; that standard is simply perfection. Kill those who scoff at these contradictions, and tell the rest that the dead deserved annihilation for their weakness and doubt. Then theyíll break themselves trying for what theyíll never achieve.Ē

óErlsset, twenty-third emperor of the Sanzed Equatorial Affiliation, in the thirteenth year of the Season of Teeth. Comment recorded at a party, shortly before the founding of the Fulcrum.

sokoloff

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #97 on: January 17, 2018, 07:57:23 AM »
If someone (employer, customers, etc) are willing to pay you $100K+ its because [you] created > $100K in value for them. As an example, one of the professions not listed is supply chain / purchasing. A typical purchasing manager may make $90-150K depending on performance, tenure, responsibilities, etc. but is tasked with lowering (read: negotiating) costs by a factor of 3-20x what they are paid ($500K-$3MM savings for the company per yr). There's a clear value proposition for the employer to pay someone that much.
Programmer here, doing $500k per year total comp. Look at firms that make a high amount of profit per employee. These firms and their competitors are likely to be paying very well. Note that the more capital intensive a firm is, the less true my claim is, all other things being equal.
Lots of good comments, but these two stuck out and rang true for me. If you want to take home $X/yr, find a way to create 3*$X/yr in value for someone. You can do it directly as a business owner, or indirectly as an employee. If you're doing it as an employee, obstinate's guidance is sound if a high income is your #1 motivator.

For me, I always wanted to find financial security and was fortunate enough to find it via a path that I genuinely enjoy (computer programming and later, managing in the field).

JLee

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #98 on: January 17, 2018, 08:16:37 AM »
Where I live (near Washington, DC), $100k salary is probably a bit below average.

Dead wrong.  Nowhere near that.

It's certainly not near 100k/person average, but the DC area does have the highest median household income in the US at $93k.

big_slacker

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Re: How do people make $100+ salary?
« Reply #99 on: January 17, 2018, 08:24:55 AM »
On the luck comments, I'm surprised to hear people on this forum of all places attribute so much to chance. Especially lumping in the bundle of pros and cons that EVERYONE gets to start out with. While some draw a better hand than others I strongly believe how you play that hand makes all the difference in where you end up.