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YOUNG STARS: Always Get Paid, But Have Mobility Issues In Their 30's...

Got money and you know it
Take it out your pocket and show it
Then throw it like
This a way, that a way
This a way, that a way

-T-Pain in Got Money by Lil Wane

Young Stars.  I'm on the record as saying that if I repped a high potential in their 20's, I'd teach them to give themselves a 20% pay hike ever 2-3 years by switching companies.   That's how the market works - high performers that are willing to risk get rewarded.

By the way, everyone thinks they're a high performer, but this approach only works with 10% of the employee base in your company.

90% of your company thinks they're in the top 10%.  That's a problem. But the market never lies.  A non-high performer that gives themselves a promotion by switching companies can do it once, then they get exposed as an average performer.  They can't switch again with ease.  Only the real performers can switch 4 times before they're 35.

I just went all invisible hand on you.  Click the link if you don't have an Adam Smith picture in your office.

But there's another problem for young stars who take the track I've outlined.  They end up being 35 and comped very, very well.  Being comped so well at age 35 means that when they want to move again, they're at a point on the comp/age scale where it's really, really tough for them to move.  That comp/age curve tends to even out as they get to their early and mid 40s', but it's an interesting time for the young star.

What's the answer if you're 35 and find yourself in this spot?  You won't find your next gig through normal recruiters.  It's a custom fit - you're either going to network yourself into your next role or have a recruiter that's willing to do that work.

If you are who they say you are, it's possible to move laterally.  But the next bump in comp might not be coming until you cross the 40-year-old threshold.

1st World Problems.  Hang in there, young stars.  Never apologize for getting paid early.



I have friends making these career move now and I'd like to as what your opinion is on "getting paid" e.g. what is the "getting paid threshold."

To live as a single in Atlanta you are looking at:

- $1000 (and that's really modest) rent in a decent area you feel safe in
- $300 in renters insurance, utilities, cable/internet
- $75 cell phone bill
- $250 modest car
- $90 modest car insurance
- $22/week to fill up your modest gas tank and commute
- ~$300 chances are you have a student loan payment that helped get you that job
- $65/week in groceries (you're making your lunch/dinner)

With that list we are talking about $2168/month just to live.

Someone making 50K gross is taking about 36K net home (give or take state tax). 2168(12)= ~26K.

This person now has 10K + some more variable bills (health insurance, 401K, emergency savings, possibly a gym membership)

I think there's an angle in what lifestyle are you willing to live now to get paid later...


Hey HD -

Good question. Most of my commentary would be centered on the fact that most moves would be made in the same metro area for someone on a career path. A lot of the costs that you're outlining that would be different job to job would be more relo considerations market to market that impacting a young professional in the same market, right?

Thanks - KD

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