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July 04, 2017

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That's true if both get average raises every year. But who wants average? In the example after 40 years both employees are making 7 times their starting salary based on a 5% annual raise (1.05 to the fortieth power = 7). However in my experience talented employees can easily earn up to 20x or more of their starting salary over time if they are promoted and rise rapidly through the corporate ranks. Starting salary is a great headstart for sure but the other important factor is getting off the hamster wheel where everyone else is stuck and being seen as a star performer!

100% agree! (But that's for another post) :)

Just as in investments costs matter too. For example if a new grad is offered equivalent jobs, one paying 40k in NYC and the other 35k in Indianapolis, that 700k career wage difference will probably be eaten up and then some by the cost of living. IMO earnings appear on the bottom line, not the top line.

Aaaaabsolutely. I'm admittedly a job-hopper, but that enabled me to double my $30k salary in just a few years. I didn't set out to do that, of course, but it was a happy consequence. Hopefully that means my lifetime earnings will be higher. :)

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