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Old 04-27-2010, 06:49 AM   #21
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I always put my family (wife/son) before my own desires. That meant that I always did what I needed to do to maximize income. Most often, I disliked the job, but had other responsibilities IMHO.

If I was single and had nobody to worry about but myself, I would think that I would have looked at the job in a different manner and had gone in a different direction.

However, pursuing the salary rather than the satisfaction of the job also put me in a position that I was able to retire much earlier than those I worked with.

Today, I have a "job" that I really like - and it's for the rest of my life...
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Old 04-27-2010, 06:56 AM   #22
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I worked as a division CFO for a multi-national and an AVP Business Development for several Hi-Tech co's. Bottom line, the pressure was always very intense. Now that I have $$$ I look back and think that I should have done something that I was passionate about or done something that made a difference in the world. But that sure is easy to do now.

good luck with your decision!

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Old 04-27-2010, 07:57 AM   #23
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Sorry if there was any confusion, I'll go ahead and clarify. Both of the pay scales I have given you are estimates. For ATC, yes it is an assumption of getting a level 11 facility in Detroit. I am well aware that if there aren't any openings I will have to try elsewhere, although I wouldn't mind Cleveland either. I'd also like to move into a supervisory position if that opportunity ever presents itself.

For those asking how I can get a executive job out of ATC, it is for two reasons. The first is I will have my MBA, the second is that I will have about 5 years of experience as a military officer. I've been doing a lot of research of military officer's with an MBA starting salary v. the average MBA and it is significantly higher, in the mid 100's to low 200's including bonus depending on the position and company (source below).

The point of this thread is to more ask the question of whether you would take a position with relatively high earnings but a capped salary that you liked more or one with an even higher starting salary and "unlimited" earnings potential in the future that may have longer hours and may not bring quite as much job satisfaction.

Hope this clarifies the issue! Thanks!

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CBS MIBA: Admissions
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Old 04-27-2010, 08:03 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by JBmadera View Post
I worked as a division CFO for a multi-national and an AVP Business Development for several Hi-Tech co's. Bottom line, the pressure was always very intense. Now that I have $$$ I look back and think that I should have done something that I was passionate about or done something that made a difference in the world. But that sure is easy to do now.

good luck with your decision!

jb
Ditto...not an easy decision.

I've been a combined country head, multinational region head and global EVP for a global megacorp for the past 10 years or so. It was a long ladder up. I enjoy many parts of my current role, and dislike some parts of it. I do enjoy being able to take the time to mentor, teach and lead my colleagues. I enjoy being able to lead and participate in social responsibility activities for my division of megacorp. I have enjoyed helping people grow and progress into bigger, more important roles. I have enjoyed the fruits of the successes we have had, both in the kudos my group receives as well as in the comp and incentives.

Interestingly enough, along with the successes I have enjoyed has come the responsibility to be in the limelight...which I don't always enjoy...as in press conferences, meetings with stuffy stuck up multi-billionaire types, etc. I also very much dislike dealing with the darker side of human relations, such as having to fire people for conduct unbecoming an officer of the company (although I would rather remove them than suffer the consequences of leaving them in place). I do not enjoy the more bureacratic realities of a megacorp. I am becoming very tired of having to repeat the same messages over and over (and over and over and over). I am tired of having to train new global CEOs about the realities of the business in Asia (I have had 5 CEOs in the past 10 years). I hate having to body-block corporate types who somehow think they can treat my people like floormats...etc. You get the picture.

I could go on and on. There are many enjoyable things about being a part of corporate leadership. But there are the difficult parts as well.

I would have to say that if I were you, I would temper my salary expectations as a newly minted MBA. I really and truly believe that a newly minted MBA will not be able to get a salary that large right out of the starting block. BTW, I have several MBAs (from Wharton and Harvard) on my staff and none of them make that much in salary, 7-10 years post MBA. I do have several people who make that much and more on my staff, but the MBA is not what does it...it is the person, his/her personality and effort. In fact, I have one person on my mgmt team who is only a HS grad, but has developed himself so well as a leader and producer that his salary is more than 200k.

Hope this helps. Good luck!

R
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Old 04-27-2010, 08:13 AM   #25
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Everyone's priorities are different, but FWIW DW and I did have the chance for the $300k income and turned it down. We are very happy with the decision. The "cost" of that $300k income was to remain in the Washington, DC area and the insufferable traffic there, dealing with a lot of highly-stressed people, and many, many emergencies, some of which were actual emergencies, but most because somebody wasn't paying attention.

Our feeling is that once the basics are taken care of everything else is gravy. But we don't feel deprived because we can't afford a 50 foot yacht, a 6,000 sf mansion, or a Beech Baron airplane.

YMMV.
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Old 04-27-2010, 09:26 AM   #26
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I have worked for a large corp, and I hated it. Everyone around me was stressed out. I never had time for my family - or, even to get the rest etc. I needed.

A friend suggested that I make a priority list, and put myself at the top. Sanity came first.

Since then, I have followed my heart; I feel at peace, and connected to my family. And, yes, saved enough for retirement on top of everything else!
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Old 04-27-2010, 09:44 AM   #27
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Brewer and Walkingwood:

that's a pretty cynical thought..that you will be miserable no matter what, so you may as well go for the money.

I am not so sure that I agree.
No at all what I meant.
I meant that even the best jobs have BS that you have to put up with. I prefer to think that's the portion that gets me paid. The enjoyable parts I do for free.
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Old 04-27-2010, 10:40 AM   #28
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Sorry if there was any confusion, I'll go ahead and clarify. Both of the pay scales I have given you are estimates. For ATC, yes it is an assumption of getting a level 11 facility in Detroit. I am well aware that if there aren't any openings I will have to try elsewhere, although I wouldn't mind Cleveland either. I'd also like to move into a supervisory position if that opportunity ever presents itself.

For those asking how I can get a executive job out of ATC, it is for two reasons. The first is I will have my MBA, the second is that I will have about 5 years of experience as a military officer. I've been doing a lot of research of military officer's with an MBA starting salary v. the average MBA and it is significantly higher, in the mid 100's to low 200's including bonus depending on the position and company (source below).

The point of this thread is to more ask the question of whether you would take a position with relatively high earnings but a capped salary that you liked more or one with an even higher starting salary and "unlimited" earnings potential in the future that may have longer hours and may not bring quite as much job satisfaction.

Hope this clarifies the issue! Thanks!

Source:
CBS MIBA: Admissions
I suppose my advice to you would be to wait until you at least have a tentative offer for a facility from the FAA. You may very well get DTW or ZOB or CLE, but I would caution you not to make too many assumptions early on. If you do go to a level 11 or 12 facility, you will likely see $125k+ as a CPC by the time you are done with training. Also, the source which you hyperlinked seems to be arguing the value of a top MBA more than anything else. In my opinion, the "article" reads more like a sales pitch than something I would use to base my potential future earnings on.

But, back to the question you asked. I would take the pay, benefits and relative security of a GS-2152 job at an 11 or 12 over the private sector, particularly since you say you have a passion for ATC. Good luck in whatever you decide.
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Old 04-27-2010, 10:56 AM   #29
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I always put my family (wife/son) before my own desires. That meant that I always did what I needed to do to maximize income. Most often, I disliked the job, but had other responsibilities IMHO.

If I was single and had nobody to worry about but myself, I would think that I would have looked at the job in a different manner and had gone in a different direction.

However, pursuing the salary rather than the satisfaction of the job also put me in a position that I was able to retire much earlier than those I worked with.
+1, but without the kid.
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Old 04-27-2010, 01:29 PM   #30
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40k per year is not enough to make me be unhappy.

Meaning 160k per year vs 200k per year, that 40k difference isn't going to buy much more (28% of that or 25% of that will go to feds anyway).

The "unlimited earning potential" needs to be renamed... only thing potential does is get pro coaches fired... so only thing earning potential will do is leave you thinking grass is greener somewhere else.

If you crave capitalism, start your own business on the side, and see if you can earn the 40k difference.
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Old 04-27-2010, 02:39 PM   #31
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I'd factor in the Air National guard or AF Reserve. Good $, and a COLA retirement. If you have lots of active duty time, it really helps your pension. I have 0 active duty time, and my pension will be around $650 a month starting at age 60. I made about $15K a year in the Army Guard.

I'd lean toward the gov't job. But I like guaranteed pensions. I also like the 40 hour work week and good bennies. And job security. ATC get to retire early too, which is something else I like, and hope to eventually try out!

So, ATC job and AF Reserve/Guard would be my gig. Tho it may be hard to do both if you are required to work weekends as an ATC.
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Old 04-27-2010, 03:04 PM   #32
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If you choose the high paying corporate world and sometime in the future you get laid off and / or get your benefits / 401k match / pension slashed....please dont come back here and complain that you shouldve taken the government job.
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Old 04-27-2010, 04:14 PM   #33
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Brewer and Walkingwood:

that's a pretty cynical thought..that you will be miserable no matter what, so you may as well go for the money.

I am not so sure that I agree.
In the 60s, as I was surveying the jobs that I was being recruited for, I asked my Mother how to evaluate them. She asked, "Why are you going to work?" I told her for the money. She recommended that I rank them based on their likely pay in 7-5 years. Then she asked what is my second work desire, I said "Mobility." We then discussed mobility. She pointed out the issues she knew about specific organizations, particularly when you have a mission or clientele whose goals were not easily met so I pulled out a couple from the pile.

Then she said to focus on a couple who best met desires 1 & 2 but to recognize that every job can be miserable, that is why they call it work.

Mom was a smart cookie. I recommend a similar process with your needs/desires.
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Old 04-27-2010, 04:18 PM   #34
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I'll add another voice of caution about the entry level MBA salary. Have you seen any published job offers within this range?
monster.com? dice.com? glassdoor.com? craigslist.org?
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Old 04-27-2010, 04:42 PM   #35
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and many, many emergencies, some of which were actual emergencies, but most because somebody wasn't paying attention.
As they say: Failure to plan on your part does not constitute a crisis on my part...
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Old 04-27-2010, 05:48 PM   #36
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From what I can tell, most people work at jobs that they do not enjoy. If you are one of the fortunate few, you are blessed.

I am not so sure that you will enjoy working in business. Perhaps you might, but the odds are against it (see above). Despite your suggestion that you "love capitalism", "love the business world" and "am fascinated by stock trading and the economy", it isn't apparent from your posts that you have any significant private sector experience ... which is rather less sexy than portrayed on CNBC.

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For those asking how I can get a executive job out of ATC, it is for two reasons. The first is I will have my MBA, the second is that I will have about 5 years of experience as a military officer. I've been doing a lot of research of military officer's with an MBA starting salary v. the average MBA and it is significantly higher, in the mid 100's to low 200's including bonus depending on the position and company (source below).
Quite frankly, there is no shortage of newly-minted MBAs, former military officers, or combinations thereof.

The $200,000 p.a. starting salary mentioned in the link you provided assumes employment in "bulge-bracket investment banking (Goldman, Morgan, Lehman, JP Morgan, etc.), or top-tier strategy consulting (McKinsey, BCG, Bain, Booz Allen), two of the most popular and conservative post-MBA professions for veterans". It's no secret that few such jobs are currently available (especially at Lehman Brothers! When was that puff written?).

I stand to be corrected, but I am not sure that former military officers with MBAs significantly out-earn average MBA graduates. Certainly the website you've cited does not support that. As it says, most private sector employers don't know what you've done in the military, don't understand what you've done in the military, or don't value what you've done in the military.

In any event, this all appears to be essentially a moot point. Your initial post says that you will be completing your MBA soon. Presumably you will want to put it to use, so that there is some return for the time and money you've invested (very few people go to business school for fun). In the circumstances, your decision was made more than a year ago, no?
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Old 04-27-2010, 07:34 PM   #37
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you didn't mention staying on active duty as an option.

Is that option off the table?

you could retire 5 yrs earlier than you could with civilian
air traffic (41 vs. 46) and with a better pension multiplier, too.

I don't know your promo track but I'd guess you could
be knocking on 100k's door in 5 more yrs or so, right?

-LB
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Old 04-27-2010, 09:02 PM   #38
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How certain are you that you can score the $200k job? As I understand it, the school from which you earn your MBA and the area of concentration are the principal determinants of what type of job you might obtain. (i.e - Wharton finance grads get the primo jobs at Goldman, etc; others don't). In my own experience, when I first left the USN and looked for work, civilian employers valued my experience as a Navy officer far less than I did
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Old 04-28-2010, 05:37 AM   #39
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you didn't mention staying on active duty as an option.
This is an option, but it is not as safe as you might think. The lieutenant's AFSC (job) would be 13MX (Airfield Operations). This AFSC seems to often be overmanned, and thus is often one of the more susceptible jobs to force shaping (reduction in force) measures by the USAF. Ironically, the enlisted AFSC 1C1X1 (Air Traffic Control) is almost always chronically undermanned.

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So, ATC job and AF Reserve/Guard would be my gig. Tho it may be hard to do both if you are required to work weekends as an ATC.
Fortunately, this is never an issue. The FAA allows military leave, and the Air National Guard, in my experience, is very flexible with allowing RUTAs.
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Old 04-28-2010, 05:44 AM   #40
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If the question is job satisfaction or large salary, Id go with the job satisfaction without a doubt...unless the large salary is so large that Id only have to put up with it for a few years. I think I could handle that.
That's what I did. Unfortunately, it became something of a slipery slope because I ended up enjoying some of what I did....until it got boring and I had children and got fed up with the working hours preventing me from seeing them in the evenings - by which stage I figured another 4-6 years would enable me to retire. Right now the last few years are dragging by so slowly....

Twenty years after starting my career, I'm not sure if I made the right decision or if I would make the same mistake decision again.
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