26-year-old switched careers, tripled pay to $100K by tweaking resume


Welcome to Paycheck to Paycheck, the place staff with the identical job throughout the U.S. share how a lot they earn, how they obtained to their wage and their finest negotiating suggestions. Prepared to affix the wage transparency dialog? Apply to be part of the sequence right here.

On this installment, a 26-year-old shares how she makes $100,000 working as a mission supervisor in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Lisa by no means thought she’d ever earn six figures, not to mention earlier than her thirtieth birthday.

The 26-year-old Charlotte, North Carolina, resident spent a number of years working in larger training and earned $34,000 as an assistant director at an space faculty, a place she tells CNBC Make It “seems like it could be very fancy” however did not pay her sufficient to maneuver out of her dad and mom’ dwelling.

In 2020, like many working professionals, she took a tough have a look at her profession and considered what she actually wished: more cash, clear construction and a path to promotion. Increased ed now not felt like a match. So after performing some analysis on-line and networking on LinkedIn, she determined to pursue mission administration.

A yr later, Lisa landed a mission supervisor job with a producing firm and earns $100,000 a yr, with an as much as 20% bonus primarily based on firm efficiency.

Here is how Lisa, who requested to be recognized by a pseudonym with a view to converse freely about her pay, almost tripled her wage by tweaking her resume.

She modified her outdated job titles (with permission)

As Lisa started job descriptions, she realized she had a variety of expertise main tasks in larger training, however by no means held the title of “mission supervisor.”

“I knew that it was going to be actually exhausting getting my foot within the door with a non-project administration expertise in a company setting,” Lisa says. “And so I had to consider non-traditional methods to go about it.”

She may tailor the “expertise” part of her resume to match the bullet factors in job descriptions, however what would actually make the distinction could be to alter her job titles.

So, she reached out to her earlier bosses, advised them about her new profession targets and requested for permission to alter her former job titles to “mission supervisor.”

For instance, in a single outdated job, she held the position of “program supervisor for the workplace of variety, fairness and inclusion.” She known as up her outdated boss and defined: “I ran occasions and managed these 5 packages. Would you’re feeling comfy if I say that I used to be the Workplace of Range’s mission supervisor?”

Her former supervisor agreed, and so she up to date her resume. Lisa says this doubtless helped her resume get via applicant monitoring techniques, and higher mirrored what number of years of mission administration expertise she had.

“I might by no means really feel comfy simply placing that on my resume,” Lisa says. “However after speaking to my references and listening to they have been on board with it, that is after I felt it was route.”

She requested LinkedIn contacts how a lot they earn

To push previous the discomfort of discussing pay with others, Lisa remembered a earlier expertise the place she discovered a male colleague with the identical job and {qualifications} as her was getting paid $10,000 extra. She did not need to be in the identical place once more.

So, as she took courses to earn a mission administration certification by way of Coursera, Lisa networked with different mission managers with 10 to fifteen years of expertise and tapped them for negotiating recommendation.

Whereas on-line aggregates like LinkedIn and Glassdoor may give her a spread, Lisa says, “listening to different folks’s salaries helped me much more.”

First, Lisa shared the numbers she was anticipating to barter for, primarily based on her analysis. Then, she’d ask the opposite particular person for a spread of what they made of their first mission supervisor job.

“What appeared to assist was asking a couple of earlier position versus what they’re making now,” Lisa provides.

She did not title a quantity

Lisa had at all times heard that job candidates should not title the primary quantity in an interview. However when HR pushed her to state her wage expectations, she gave a spread ($80,000 to $110,000) and aimed larger than a few of the averages she discovered on-line ($76,000).

HR requested her once more for a selected quantity, “and I stated, ‘I really want to listen to a bit bit extra in regards to the position first,'” Lisa says.

After three rounds of interviews, Lisa obtained the provide: $100,000 with a 20% bonus primarily based on the corporate’s efficiency.

“After they stated that quantity, I do not even keep in mind what I stated, I used to be in complete shock,” Lisa says. She accepted the provide as-is: “I used to be pleased with it as a result of I do know it was the higher a part of the vary.”

The cash itself has been “life-changing,” Lisa says. She began the job in October 2020 and by January 2021 used her new incomes energy, plus a efficiency bonus and cash she saved whereas dwelling with dad and mom, to maneuver out and purchase her personal home.

Had she stayed in larger training, Lisa says, “you do not make what I make now till you are virtually at retirement age. Now, I’ve to shift my monetary targets, as a result of I by no means thought I might make six determine, not to mention like earlier than the age of 30.”


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