The number one search term on the internet is, “highest paying jobs”. Most employers don’t really want you to know what they pay because it allows competitors to penny pinch them.  This happens when someone they hired gets poached by a competitor paying more, but not a marked amount more than the employer paid.

Also, the ranges of pay for a job you find on the internet only tell you half the story. Every employer has a different pay strategy and that is a combination of expenses taken on by an employer for you. 

So, if you are a job seeker how can you get the highest paying job in your field?

Know what you can do

Think about your skills. What do you do better than anyone else? What do other people come to you for? What are people always thanking you for? What can you do naturally and with ease that other people can’t? Everyone has different skills at different levels of expertise. Leveraging your skills and interests will help you get the highest paying job in your field and help you look down the road to creating your own career path.

Pay more attention to growing your skills than experience. Employers need skills to solve problems, and many skills are transferrable across industries.

Learn more about soft and hard skills 

Think about how you can apply those skills to your interests 

There is only one reason an employer will hire you: You can solve their problems while allowing them to maintain a profit. An employer will not pay you more than they think the position is worth, so your job as the CEO of your own life is to always be upgrading your skills and interests in a way that solves those problems. We are far beyond the days where a low-skilled assembly line job will pay the bills.

Spend some time thinking about what your interests are. Then, think about what the supporting skills are. After you break down your skills and interests, determine how you can polish the skills to solve other people’s problems. You can be an artist and still solve problems, it is not one or the other.

Learn more about the working world and how you can contribute.  

Know how valuable your skills are 

Basic skills earn less money because there are so many people who have those skills. There are tons of people that can run a cash register and do basic customer service. It is a far rarer skill to take a customer service attitude and mold it into high-close rate sales. Sometimes it’s the combination of your skills that make you more valuable to an employer. If you are an engineer with a knack for diplomacy, you’ll probably earn a million dollars. Or, how you choose to apply those skills to different industries.

The key takeaway is that if you know your skills are not able to support your lifestyle, then it is up to you to increase your value. You can do this through free resources, like library books, YouTube videos, and blogs. If you have someone you look up to, you can ask them to mentor you. And, of course, the formal education system. Regardless of how you choose to uplevel your skills, it will be a life-long pursuit. Even recent college grads will have to continue to read and learn to maintain their employability. Technology just changes too fast to rest on your laurels.

Know your options

No matter if you are working in a physical place or providing a digital service there are many ways to earn a legit income. Check out this list:

Work with Consumers On-Demand 

Work with employers On-Demand 

Work with ?? 

Be smart with your money 

Learning how to earn money, respect money, and how to grow money is important. Earning the highest wage will come but knowing what to do with it when you get it is just as important. If you spend every dollar you make, you will still feel broke even if you earn six figures. Invest your time in learning how to budget, set priorities, and plan for your future. If you can’t manage $100 dollars, you can’t manage $10,000. Wealth is a product of money management as much (or more) than it is a feature of income.

Know that your wage is just the beginning of calculating your earnings

The rate you get paid for your time involves how much an employer has to train you, provide benefits, buy the equipment you use to do your job, pay to comply with labor laws, and more. So, don’t be too quick to look at the first dollar you see to make a job decision. It’s the whole package that matters. In addition, viewing your salary as one aspect of a business expense will help you determine if you provide good value to your employer.

Negotiating starting wage 

The art of negotiation is an art because you have to know why you are negotiating and how to gain an understanding of your potential employer’s problems and how you can solve them. If you don’t know and you just want more money, chances are, your employer will decline your request. Know what value you bring to the table, what the market rate is for your skill and experience level, and how you can put your talents to use to solve your employer’s problems. Knowing your own value is key to negotiating – and please, negotiate!

A little tip: most people will pay more after they see what you can do. That means, make sure that you have an option to re-address your entry pay after a certain amount of time, perhaps 90 days.

Getting the highest paying job is only one puzzle piece

As you can see, income is only one aspect of your work life. Maintaining your earning potential through continuing education, making sure you are smart with your money, and knowing your value are all key to staying employable. Being financially stable is not solely a function of income, wages, and pay. You can look to the many stories of lottery winners who lost it all to reinforce this point. Learning money management is arguably more important than income.

Income is a starting point, not a finish line. Be the CEO of your work life and treat it with that same level of respect, diligence, and planning.