As kids, we all look at the future laid out ahead of us and consider what part we want to play in it. And because we are kids, we don’t think about it very logically, so we decide we want to be a professional basketball player, or a singer. For a small percentage of us, this actually comes off, which is excellent news, but for the rest of us it becomes a question of which careers will allow us to maximize our earning potential.
In truth, some of the highest-paying jobs are as hard to get into as the music industry or the NBA, and require the same kind of special skills (even if the skills themselves are different). But if you work hard and master some of these tough fields, then the opportunity to earn more than your peers is there. There is, however, a reason that these careers pay the big bucks. They will require a level of effort, intelligence, or particular flair (and sometimes a combination of all three) that is hard to achieve. Let’s look at some of these jobs, and see why they are so well-remunerated.
It’s a surprise to most people to learn that in many hospitals, the highest-paid staff member is not a rock-star brain surgeon or the chief resident, but the anesthesiologist. What they do may not be glamorous, but there is a good reason they’re worth their wage. You see, anesthesiology is hugely complex. It’s one thing to put a patient under for surgery, and a much more precise job to do it in such a way that means they will wake up again - and do it after the operation is completed. One wrong step from an anesthesiologist can be catastrophic, even fatal. The fact that you don’t hear about such mistakes happening often is because these specialists are very good at their jobs. Anesthesiologists typically work in hospital settings, clinics, and treatment centers. Sites like AnesthesiaJobs.com help to connect the top anesthesiology talent with employers, to fill positions fast.
For the entry-level worker, construction is quite well-paying compared with entry-level office work. The higher up the ladder you get, the more that gap can widen. This is because there are numerous jobs on a construction site that involve a significant level of hazard. If done wrongly, the best thing you can say is that they will delay the project. The worst thing is that people might be seriously injured or killed. When you’re dealing with these payloads and the high risk work training required, not everybody can do such hard work with such precision. Those who can, and do, are paid so well because they take the responsibility on.
Not every career in law pays as well as Hollywood might suggest, and if you’re a family law attorney in Columbus, Ohio or a public defender you’ll learn that the hard way. However, corporate law involves decisions that can take a company into the higher echelons, or see their doors close forever. So they are prepared to pay handsomely for legal professionals who will be able to layout - in front of a judge who knows the law inside-out - a reason why such a company is legally in the right, or their counterpart is in the wrong. It’s highly specialized work, and often requires working well into the night to find obscure precedents, and there is a reason a lot of lawyers retire early. Well, two reasons: they can afford to, and they won’t miss those late nights.
While some of us might envy those top-earners, it’s worth being aware why they get paid the big bucks - and why life at that end of the scale isn’t for everyone.