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Want a Six-Figure Income Without Getting a College Degree of Any Kind? Here Is How

Copyright © 2021
by Ed Bagley

As someone who has acquired 6,100+ high-end clients who are interested in jobs and careers, I paid attention when I read a story about six-figure incomes based on information from the Unites States Bureau of Labor Statistics indicating that physician jobs dominate the list of the nation’s highest-paying positions, holding the Top 10 most lucrative jobs that are “equal to or greater than $208,000 in annual income”.

They include psychiatrists, oral or maxillofacial surgeons, obstetricians and gynecologists, general internal medicine physicians, surgeons, anesthesiologists, prosthodontists, orthodontists, physicians and ophthalmologists, and family medicine physicians.

Next in line were chief executives, nurse anesthetists, and dentists at $183,000 in annual income.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics is interested in keeping these kind of salary statistics for demographic and political purposes (political districts gain more representation in the U. S. Congress when the population increases).

It is a funny thing about statistics: politicians and propagandists can easily use statistics to prove a point they want to make, but seldom does it represent the complete story about what really happened or what it really represents. There is generally a backstory that is too often unseen and unknown to the reader or observer, which, when given the light of day, can offer a totally different impression.

For example, it is easy to show statistically that a person with a bachelor’s degree will generally earn more income over their adult working life than a person with only a high school degree or no specific professional training that would lead to a license or certification in an occupation or industry that could generate more annual income.

Seldom are we told about any exceptions to the statistics given. Most workers would be ecstatic to earn $183,000 in annual income with a full benefit package worth $45,000 that would give them a total compensation package of $228,000, or more than a quarter million dollars.

My clients generally are professionals (that is, there are a pro at what they do, whatever that may be), generally earn $60,000 to $140,000 in annual income, and are either in management or supervision or want to be.

As a creator of high-end professional resume products, about 30% of my clients do not have an associate degree or no degree at all, and the income of some clients with no degree may attract your attention.

For instance, during 35+ years as a high-end resume writer,
I have a client with no high school degree and not even a GED equivalent that is generating $500,000+ in annual income.

I have three of them, and another generating $650,000 in annual income and another generating $700,000 in income, all of whom have no high school degree and no GED equivalent. I ask my prospective clients, what occupation or industry do you think they are in?

Their responses generally include IT (information technology because it can pay well in our economy), licensed or certified positions (attorney, accountant or educator, for example), or self-employed. All of these are good answers, but they are all wrong. Only 1 out of 100 clients ever gets it right.

All my clients without a high school degree or GED equivalent that earn higher annual incomes ($100,000 to $500,00 to $700,00 and more) are in sales, not as salaried employees but working on a commission basis, being paid a commission percentage on the amount of income they produce for a company or organization.

As you continue to walk down the work road of life, understand that sales is the second highest paid profession on planet Earth. It is probable that only 5% or less of the adult working population is involved in direct sales, that is because 97% (perhaps an exaggeration) of people would not be caught dead selling.

Most people would never be in sales because they can’t stand rejection, they view rejection as failure, or they think too many salespeople are not honest or are in it for their own gain, rather than serving the needs of the buyer or the general public.

That is why people in sales, especially people who are good at selling, make a lot more money than managers, supervisors or worker bees. We live in a capitalist system that rewards salespeople for producing income for companies or organizations, this is a merit system that rewards production; this system is made for workers who have ambition, work hard and improve their employability by acquiring degrees, licenses or certifications so their skills and experience become more lucrative.

Men can make excellent money ($100,000) with only a high school degree in an number of occupations.

Women can also make excellent money with only a high school degree, but they tend to do it generally in three ways:

1) They own their own business, usually a small business that is very profitable. Some research organizations report that there are more small business owners making $100,000+ than in any other job or occupation.

2) They work in commissioned sales rather than salaried sales. A sharp woman can many times outsell a man because of the dynamics between the sexes. A sharp woman calling on a male client many times gets more time and attention than a male calling on the same client.

3) They work in a financially-related position, such as a stockbroker, mortgage banker, mortgage broker, loan officer or chief financial officer.

Here is some information you can use if you are a high school graduate and have zero interest in getting a bachelor’s degree at this point in your work career: go into sales if you have any people skills or personality.

Sales is the second highest paid profession in the world, and it does not usually require a college degree. There are some corporate sales jobs that do require a degree, but there are many more opportunities available if you can generate sales production.

There is not a single business in America that cannot benefit from more sales, and almost every business will pay for sales production.

Here is some even better news: If you are selling and producing big time and the owner or company is too cheap to compensate you at the level you should be compensated at ($100,000+++), dump the owner or company and sell for someone else.

A far better idea would be to start your own business, go into competition directly against the cheap owner or company that would not pay you, and wipe them off the map.

There really is no reason you should be working for someone else anyway. Working in your own business can be an outstanding deal. You call your own shots. You will not fire yourself, lay yourself off, or deny yourself promotions, fat bonuses for production, outstanding benefit packages, and a lot of time off to enjoy your money and family.

The 9 examples listed above have 7 positions that amount to no more than hired help, that includes the Chief Executive position. Only the Dentist and Lawyer positions might be either self-employed or hired help.

All nine examples cited by the Bureau of Labor Statistics have more stress than anyone needs and are labor intensive. Even the Dentist and Lawyer positions, which might be self-employed, require them to report to work or not get paid. If a Mac truck runs over them, their income stops in a heartbeat.

Has anyone ever heard of income-producing investments when these job opportunities come up? Income producing assets allow you to take possession of your own time while your investment throws off the income to fund your lifestyle without working a job.

It might be fancy to have any of those nine jobs with status and making $100,000 a year. Some people would rather make $250,000 a year and not have a job, have a boss, and deal with the stress.

Here is a rare career path: Own the business, company or organization and hire the six-figure people in the examples above to work for you. When they generate $1 million in annual company income to be paid $100,000 in compensation, there are owners who would gladly pay the above examples of their $100,000 wage when you the owner could make $250,000 free and clear and essentially not work.

Who needs status and aggravation when you have money?

Online Hiring – People Skills Are the Most Important Trait You Have to Present in Selling Yourself at an Interview (Part 2 of a 4-Part Series)

(Ed’s Note: This is Part 2 of a 4-Part Series.)

Copyright © 2007 Ed Bagley

As one who has spent 33+ years in the high end of the resume writing business crafting 6,000+ hard copy resumes for executives and professionals making $60,000 to $500,000 a year, this is not my experience of how things get done in the hiring process.

For one thing, the more responsibility and more income the position generates the greater the likelihood that a hard copy resume and cover letter will be requested in the hiring process. Company officers higher up in the food chain than human resource types want more rather than less information on which to make a more intelligent hiring decision.

High level corporate officers would also like to view the writing skills of the applicant. They are well aware of the fact that the potential corporate-level hire probably had a pro write his or her resume.

They also understand that the client had to provide information for the process and this is one indicator of how well they present themselves professionally, and how well they can transmit pertinent information about themselves.

They are interested in the cover letter which, I might add, most online application forms and even resume posting opportunities many times do not address.

This is important because there is one thing that can be done by a pro in a cover letter than cannot be done by a writer in a resume, no matter how good of a resume the writer creates.

Pay attention because this important: You can demonstrate people skills in the cover letter and you cannot do so professionally in the resume product.

So what is the big deal about demonstrating people skills? Only this: people skills are the most important trait you have to present in selling yourself at an interview.

People skills are more important than education, training, experience, intelligence, talent and knowledge.

Do not misunderstand what I am saying here.

I am not saying that education, training, experience, intelligence, talent and knowledge are not important in the hiring process. I am saying that people skills are even more important.

The human process of “people contact” (my quotes) forms your attitudes about everything, and your attitude drives your personality. Show me someone with a good attitude, and I will show you someone with a good personality. Show me someone with a bad attitude, and I will show you someone with a bad personality.

If you do not think so and are content to remain ignorant, then explain to me how a high school dropout who lacks subject-verb agreement in his or her conversation can earn more than $1 million a year in sales.

Companies hire high school dropouts in sales even though the description for the job requires a high school or college degree, and proven experience selling in the field.

Why? Simple, do you know how many people can sell effectively? Less than 5% on anyone’s best day. When business employers realistically require education as a component in hiring they severely limit their ability to find people to generate sales to keep them in business.

Do people who believe this tripe being peddled about online hiring even realize that less than 5% of the employees in our economy are in professional sales, and that it is this same 5% of people who create the jobs for the other 95% in our economy?

Even Diane Stafford would be unnecessary as a journalist at The Kansas City Star if someone in their advertising department did not sell enough advertising to cover the newspaper’s overhead that includes her salary. She produces nothing and sells nothing and is irrelevant without ad sales to support her very existence.

Now some smarty is going to say that Diane Stafford is such a great writer than her writing will help The Kansas City Star draw readers for its ads. Fair enough, but if that point has any legs to stand up then take the ads out of the paper and try to sell it.

I have owned a newspaper and know better. I have worked as a managing editor of a daily newspaper property for another owner. He thought the same thing I did; this is why he did not pay me a $1 million a year to be his managing editor. Some of the ad salesmen made more than I did.

And? What’s the point? Well, think about it. How are an online application and an online testing process going to reveal anything about a person’s people skills in the hiring process?

At least with a hard copy resume and cover letter you can use the cover letter to demonstrate your people skills. Ergo, high level corporate executives are not going to let human resources (HR) limit them to online processes only.

Here’s Just One
Happy Client:

Susan found out what excellent presentation can do

From Susan:
“When I first walked into your office I was scared and apprehensive.
I knew I had to make a career change, but didn’t know how. I also thought all resume services were the same and expensive. After meeting with you, seeing your work and meeting with other career services,
I decided you were the best for the best price.

“The response I received to your well-prepared resume was literally overwhelming. I had responses from practically every company I sent a resume to. I had one woman call and say, ‘Although you’re not really qualified for this position, I wanted to meet with you because your resume is so impressive’. I decided not to meet with her because, after hearing more about the position, I didn’t want it. I ended up taking a position with a pharmaceutical company, something
I’ve wanted to do since graduating from college.

“Not only was I able to change careers but
I also did not have to take less salary or perks. This leads me to conclude that my resume was written expertly to open doors and show how my previous experience could cross over to another career. Lastly, Ed is an understanding and compassionate man who helped me define my goals. The extras above and beyond the resume helped immensely, and
I am looking forward to the partnership I can expect in managing my career choices! Thanks again.”

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