A good friend visited his newly-married 29-year-old son and spouse in New England recently. This young man is brilliant, very social, and has a PhD--a success by any definition.
He recently began a new job with a near-startup of 50 people doing cancer research. Lately, an influx of several hundred million dollars has meant they can do their work without the normal money problems faced by new and small businesses.
Is it for money or for passion?
If you can have both, you have the best of both worlds. Kudos to you!
We need to get the facts right.
Many engineers are engineers because they like what they do as an occupation. Engineers called this passion, but to the investors they called this love potion to keep their engineers dying to work for them. In reality, regardless of countries and companies in today's global economies, engineers do not get paid well because the companies they work for are publicly listed, thus profits will first be used to pay the board of directors and shareholders. The engineers who are employees get paid later with the remaining balance of the profits.
Ask yourself, how many engineers are damn rich?
They are, but they are businessmen themselves.
We are talking about businessmen who were engineers are the rich ones, not the engineers who are engineers.
The PhD guy (in this topic) that we are talking about is paid well, but he is doing what he enjoys doing.
He is working for the sake to bring the money home to finance all those loans and continue to maintain the cosy life they always wanted.
However, if he were to return to his R&D jobs, he is likely to get a big paycut and he will lose many luxuries, and probably loses his wife, when reduction in income could become a hot button.
These days, many couples divorced because of $$$ and this isn't a new thing.
A lot of times, we got to decide. Better pay for doing jobs you don't enjoy or less pay for jobs you enjoy.
The fact is easy to comprehend. Many jobs that pays well are usually jobs many people find it too stressful, too boring or too tough to handle.
Likewise, many jobs that pays not as good are jobs they many enjoy and you hardly find it too difficult to understand why you weren't shortlisted with your impressive credentials and experience on your resume. Sometimes it is just that the company can hire someone who can take lower salary than you for the job that many people will enjoy.
There is a reason they call it a job. Not to say you won't like it, but sometimes companies need to have things done by knowledgable people that isn't always pleasant or satisfying. If it was always so much fun, they wouldn't need to pay someone to do it. I'm just over the half-century mark and I've kept it in the technical track (for the most part) and have kept the satisfaction quotient reasonably high and the stress/loathing factors pretty low. Yes, I could be earning more money, but quite frankly (for me anyways) it's not worth the price of admission. I figure the majority of the engineers are engineers because they were attracted to the nature of the work not necessarily the pay. I do like what I am doing (in the big picture, not necessarily each task or project). I am comfortably well off but I do not submit to conspicuous consumption, I economize by putting in my own time and energy into home/auto/motorcycle/boat/RV repairs so I can spend my money on other things more important to me, and I don't have to worry whether I can pay my bills each month because we strive to "live below our means". Life is good.
hi, i am a young engineer with 1-2 years experience in two of the biggest semiconductor companies and i love doing R&D and prototyping in my university times. currently i am doing something that i do not have the best of interest for,i love learning the new stuff but i can't see myself stuck in mundane tasks. note: i am actually bonded on a contract with the current company for at least 2 years. i really do hope to seek some advice/motivation as this job pays quite well while startups is unable to match my current pay. I have been in this dilemma for a few months.
The law of diminishing returns applies to paychecks, too. Once you have everything you need, more $$ doesn't make you proportionally better off. What is important is to have a job which is interesting, and to work with co-operative colleagues. And no matter what, never try to find out what your colleagues earn. That bit of knowledge can only make you unhappy.
I am a young swiss passionnate electronic engineer, since age of 15 (I'm 30). I don't have much money. Less than many people around me. Sometimes I'm dreaming having more money... I don't lack ideas...
But ! First, when I have money, it's like the subconscious take the relay, and I don't know and remember where money goes.
Second, electronic is my passion and I don't want money take control of myself. It's the best way to loose itself. I experimented that ! My best designs and progress in electronic were when I had enough money to buy myself ONE chip !
Yes, I want to believe, that I can have "a good career with plenty of technology fun and still made a good living."
Thanks to you !
I always told my young engineers to follow their passion when making job decisions. I have seen too many follow the money and end up bored and mostly playing manager.
I made my decisions based upon what I was interested in doing at the time. Yes I made less then some, but I was having fun everyday, which money could not buy. I eventually went into management and I made a fair amount of money because I had accumulated lots of good experience and I had learned how to effectively use young engineers.
You do not need to go "wild and crazy", but with a little bit of patience, you can have a good career with plenty of technology fun and still made a good living.
Just my opinion.