Jealousy is a waste of time and emotional energy. I haven’t coached a successful leader yet that focuses on it. Knowing what other people earn and celebrating them for their accomplishments is what motivates many top performers. Being realistic about your skills, resources and behaviors will help guide your activities and decisions and will lead to better career and financial outcomes.
Thinking that a position pays $100,000 when a top professional, in that job after 10-15 years, only makes $45,000 can help you plan better career paths. Many people come out of college thinking they need to make $40,000 to pay their college loan payments, yet are only qualified for positions that pay $25,000-$30,000 because of their lack of experience and practical knowledge to perform the requirements of the job. This isn’t anyone’s fault. It’s simply a fact that can be navigated if professionals stay focused on their skills and market conditions.
So how do you find out what people in your industry make so that you can set and negotiate realistic goals? (or, find out how good you have it where you currently are!) There are a couple of options:
This site shows you 84 different people and what they earn
Want to know what more than 800 jobs pay? Click here.
Career Profiles is a source for determining salary ranges.
Glassdoor – a social media site for employees where anyone can post a rating for their company, description of their job, review the company culture, their boss, or coworkers and state what they make, anonymously. If your organization doesn’t have a page, you might want to create one before a disgruntled employee does for you.
Another way to determine what people make is to ask someone in that industry. It’s surprising how much you can learn if you simply have the courage to ask. I’m not talking about being inappropriate or crass. Be strategic. Many times someone in an industry knows what different positions pay. At a conference, at dinner or while having drinks, you can inquire as to what people in certain positions usually make. You can find out which firms pay the most, which ones have the best working environments, and what qualifications you will need to have to earn the highest rate of pay in that field and with that company.
Earning a good living is not luck. The professionals I have coached and trained work hard for what they make. Yes, some make LOTS more than others. The truth is, though, those that earn more are usually willing to sacrifice more, have taken more risk, and may have some killer people and other skills and talents, along with the emotional discipline needed to motivate and engage team members, customers, and negotiate with vendors.
Do you want to earn more in the next 5 years? Here are some tips:
- Be willing to work hard… workers perceived as unenthusiastic and low energy aren’t usually the one’s to cross any finish line first, like being offered the promotion they desire.
- Stay focused on delivering things that your organization values the most, not just for a day or week, but consistently over time.
- Create credible connections, relationships, and study those people that are above you or earn more than you do – mimicking the highest performers’ behaviors will go a long way to you being one of them one day.
- Work on the components of your executive brand/presence that you need to.
- Read, read, and read some more to build your current knowledge base of your industry
- Practice, practice, practice, the skills that will pay off the most in your organization or in your industry.
- Get or maintain optimal health – people want to promote people who have energy and enthusiasm for what they do.
SUGGESTED EXERCISE FOR THIS TOPIC THIS WEEK:
Ask yourself these questions:
- Are you earning what you want to be earning? If not, how much do you think you are worth?
- Can you prove you are worth that amount? Have you been offered that amount of money, or earned that amount, by another company?
- What skill would you need to obtain or build to be worth what you want to make?
- Is what you want to make an industry standard for the position you want to have or are you guessing or know one person making that amount?
- What types of perks and benefits do you have now that a different position, or even promotion might not offer you?
Be realistic about what you want to make for the position you are in, want, or will be qualified to do. Make yourself known and create the relationships that you will need to land that position one day. Trust me, you are capable, smart, and hard working or you would not be reading this, and especially not to the end. Don’t let anything deter you from what you want to achieve. Leadership is lonely and success is not sexy. Not everyone makes it because getting what you want isn’t always fun along the way. Celebrate today how far you have come to get to this point. Use all of your strengths and those of others to build your success one day at a time.
At Cortex Leadership Consulting we provide DISC, Motivators, Leadership Competency, Stress, 360 degree and Team Accountability assessments along with workshops and leadership programs to assist you and your team to reach your peak performance. You can contact us at [email protected] or (540) 776-9219 to book a workshop for your team, a customized leadership program for your organization or schedule a keynote speech.