Low-Key Jobs with High Wages

Source: Yahoo

Low-Key, High-Pay Jobs

You don't have to be the center of attention to pursue a high-paying job.

Fast-talking lawyer. Brash CEO. Virtuoso surgeon. While many high-paying jobs may seem flashy, you don't necessarily have to be front and center to earn an impressive salary.
If you enjoy working more behind the scenes, there are several high-paying career options that could fit your low-key personality. In fact, your penchant for being low-profile could be an advantage in your career.
"Overall, people who work behind the scenes like to process information and ideas internally. They think things through, which may give them an edge when it comes to problem-solving, analysis, and idea generation," says Cheryl Lynch Simpson, an executive career coach and LinkedIn strategist in Columbus, Ohio.
So, if you're the type who doesn't like being in the spotlight, keep reading to discover six low-key jobs with high median salaries.

Career #1: Accountant and Auditor

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Median
Annual Salary
$65,080
Top 10%
of Earners
> $113,740
Bottom 10%
of Earners
< $40,370
If crunching numbers on your own sounds more fun to you than clocking face time with people, you may enjoy a career as an accountant or auditor.
As an accountant and auditor, you would examine financial records and other documents to ensure compliance with laws and regulations, notes the U.S. Department of Labor. You also might recommend ways to reduce costs and increase revenue.
Low-Key, High-Pay Factors: "Even though accountants do interact with people, much of their time is spent with numbers," says Cheryl Palmer, a career expert based in Washington, D.C. and the founder of career coaching firm Call to Career. "This type of work calls for a certain amount of alone time where they can think carefully about their work," adds Palmer.
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So why is this job so well-paid? It comes down to demand, says Donna Sweidan, a career and executive coach and the founder of Careerfolk in New York City, NY. "Corporate accountability and more stringent business regulations [have increased] the demand for those with accounting skills," Sweidan says.
How to Prepare: Accountants and auditors need a bachelor's degree in accounting or a related field, although some employers also prefer a master's degree, reports the Department of Labor.

Career #2: Computer Programmer

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Median
Annual Salary
$76,140
Top 10%
of Earners
> $123,490
Bottom 10%
of Earners
< $43,640
Some people are more comfortable interacting with computers than with humans. If that's you, a career as a computer programmer may allow you to stay in your comfort zone.
In this type of role, you would use computer languages, such as C++ and Java, to write code for software programs, reports the U.S. Department of Labor. Your job would also involve testing programs for errors and fixing them.
Low-Key, High-Pay Factors: "Computer pro­gramming is a detail-driven occupation that demands the ability to think through problems," says Simpson. "People who enjoy working behind the scenes may enjoy the solitary problem-solving this profession involves."
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As for the high-pay potential, it's because the economy operates on computer technology, and it requires a skilled workforce, says Anthony Skjellum, PhD, a computer science professor at the University of Alabama in Birmingham, Ala. "Computer programmers may work behind the scenes, but the effects of their work are evident in both domestic and international commerce and safety," adds Skjellum.
How to Prepare: Most computer programmers have a bachelor's in computer science or a related field, although some employers hire applicants with an associate's degree, reports the Department of Labor.

Career #3: Market Research Analyst

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Median
Annual Salary
$60,800
Top 10%
of Earners
> $114,250
Bottom 10%
of Earners
< $33,490
Think there's no room in the marketing world for more behind-the-scenes folks? Think again.
In a market research analyst role, you would study sales trends and market conditions and develop effective marketing strategies for companies, reports the U.S. Department of Labor.
Low-Key, High-Pay Factors: "This job is low-key in that market research analysts spend many solo hours combing through large amounts of data to discover key patterns, insights, and trends," says Julie Kostuj, a market research analyst and owner of Ks Consulting and Analysis in Glendale Heights, Ill. The exception to this rule would be when the market research analyst is collecting primary data - such as through interviews or focus groups, she explains.
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In terms of salary, market research analysts are generally paid well, because their skills are in-demand, says Kostuj. "Businesses are constantly collecting tons of information to better understand consumers, and these companies need qualified individuals to analyze all that data."
How to Prepare: Market research analysts usually need a bachelor's degree in market research or related field, reports the Department of Labor. Many have degrees in statistics, math, or computer science. Others have backgrounds in communications, business administration, or the social sciences.

Career #4: Technical Writer

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Median
Annual Salary
$67,900
Top 10%
of Earners
> $105,760
Bottom 10%
of Earners
< $40,270
If you'd rather do your communicating in writing versus in person, you may want to consider a career as a technical writer.
In this position, you would create how-to manuals, operating instructions, and other types of technical documentation, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.
Low-Key, High-Pay Factors: This type of work involves behind-the-scenes tasks, such as research, preparation, and writing, which would give you control over how you interact with your research subjects and materials, according to Jennifer Kahnweiler, an Atlanta-based author and career coach who specializes in developing and coaching introverted leaders.
In terms of high-pay potential: "This job pays well because good writers that understand technical details or technology are getting harder to find. This is a demand-supply consideration in today's market," says Dilip Saraf, a career coach at Career Transitions Unlimited and an advisor at the global mentoring network MentorCloud in San Francisco.
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Just keep in mind that to reach the high end of the salary range, "one must understand complex systems or products well and also be able to write to communicate well," says Saraf.
How to Prepare: Employers typically prefer applicants who have a bachelor's degree in English, communications, or journalism, reports the Department of Labor. Many positions require both a degree and specialized knowledge in a certain field, such as computer science, medicine, or engineering.

Career #5: Multimedia Artist and Animator

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Median
Annual Salary
$64,470
Top 10%
of Earners
> $118,890
Bottom 10%
of Earners
< $35,010
Do you find yourself doodling on everything from napkins to bills? Well, consider directing your creative energy into a behind-the-scenes career as a multimedia artist or animator.
In this career, you would create graphics and special effects for video games, movies, and other forms of media, says the U.S. Department of Labor.
Low-Key, High-Pay Factors: "Multimedia artists and animators work behind the scenes using their creativity and knowledge of technology to create computer-generated 3D images, and other types of visual and special effects ," says Chris Delaney, a career coach and author of "The 73 Rules for Influencing the Interview."
Just keep in mind that while their job is usually low-key, it can become more high-profile and high-stress as deadlines approach, says Saraf.
Next step: Click to Find the Right Graphic Design Program.
The high pay in this career comes down to demand - from the need for animation in everything from video games to movies, says Delaney. However, to reach a high salary in this field, you would need to be highly competent in several IT design, animation, and editing packages and also be able to integrate multimedia elements into your designs, he explains.
How to Prepare: Multimedia artists and animators typically need a bachelor's degree in computer graphics, animation, fine art, or a related field, reports the Department of Labor.

Career #6: Logistician

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Median
Annual Salary
$73,400
Top 10%
of Earners
> $112,750
Bottom 10%
of Earners
< $46,120
Would you be interested in being the invisible hand guiding the supply chain of major organizations? Then you may want to consider an important but behind-the-scenes career as a logistician.
As a logistician, you would handle an organization's supply chain, which includes purchasing, storing, and transporting products, according the U.S. Department of Labor.
Low-Key, High-Pay Factors: "The job is low-key, because logisticians are working behind the scenes using highly-developed systems and highly-trained support to move their goods," says Saraf. "They're only in the spotlight if a wrong part is shipped, a part in a bin is mislabeled, or there are delivery problems such as weather or transportation."
And when an error occurs, you'd have that responsibility on your shoulders, which may be partly why this career has such high salary potential.
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"It pays well, and it's a high-pressure position, because failure to deliver can cost companies millions of dollars in profits," says Delaney. "Therefore, logisticians need to work logically and systematically. They need good decision-making skills plus the ability to think laterally when problems arise."
How to Prepare: While logisticians may qualify for positions with just an associate's, more companies prefer to hire applicants who have at least a bachelor's degree, reports the Department of Labor. Many logisticians have a bachelor's in business, industrial engineering, process engineering, or supply chain management.

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