Imagine stepping into a world where your paycheck hits that sweet $200K mark. A world where financial stability isn’t a distant dream but a tangible reality. For a student majoring in accounting, this isn’t just an impulsive thought but a future they’re ardently mapping out. Through a Reddit post that sparked a discussion among readers, we reveal honest, unfiltered insights about career paths that promise such lucrative outcomes.

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Key takeaways:

  • There are multiple paths to achieving a $200k salary, including working in multinational companies, the tech industry, and various other professions like finance, law, and healthcare.
  • Ensuring that the career path chosen aligns with personal interests will contribute to long-term satisfaction and sustainability in the profession.
  • Regardless of the industry, continuous skill development, networking, and staying adaptable to industry changes are crucial. 
  • High-paying jobs always mean demands and pressures. It’s essential to consider the impact of these roles on work-life balance and ensure that the pursuit of high earnings does not detrimentally impact overall well-being and personal life.

The post, titled “What career paths lead to $200k?” became a hotbed for discussions, attracting comments and stories from various professionals across different fields.

The author, currently immersed in the world of debits and credits, is peering into the future, considering the paths that could lead to a comfortable and prosperous career. But why stop at the known territories of accounting? The Reddit community opens up a world where career paths are not just linear but are scattered across diverse fields, each offering its own set of challenges and rewards. From the stability of large corporations to the dynamic world of tech, the responses to the post offer a straightforward yet insightful look into the real world of high-earning careers.

The Lure of Large Corporations

Large multinational organizations remain a light for people seeking financial prosperity in the vast universe of job choices. A Reddit user shortly puts it, “Mid-level management at any established multinational company, really.” This standpoint, shared by many in the thread, sheds light on the potential within the structured hierarchies of big corporations.

The idea is simple yet profound: find a stable, large company, preferably multinational, and climb the corporate ladder to reach that coveted $200K salary. One user advises,

“Go for a larger multinational company. Avoid household names like Coca Cola or Apple, too much competition.”

The suggestion here leans towards exploring companies in stable industries like manufacturing and construction, where competition might be less fierce and opportunities for upward mobility might be more accessible. 

However, the path isn’t without its traps. While climbing the corporate ladder in a large company, especially one with over “$10B in revenue,” as one user notes, can indeed lead to financial success, it also comes with a set of challenges and risks. The larger the company, the more complex the dynamics, and the journey to a high-paying position may not always be straightforward or secure.

An image of people working in an office
Working in a large company can guarantee a successful career. Image source:

Yet, the allure remains. The promise of reaching a salary of $200K through strategic career moves, patience, and perhaps a bit of corporate savvy and charisma is tempting. The stories shared by Reddit users, from enjoying a $180K salary at Stanley Black and Decker to reaching a milestone after seven years in a large pharma and med devices company, illustrate that the track, while potentially challenging, is indeed plausible.

The Versatility of a Finance Degree

The finance sector, with its diverse career options, often emerges as a promising field for those eyeing a prosperous career. One of the Reddit user highlights,

 “The beauty of a finance degree is that it’s very versatile so changing jobs from PE/IBANK/Investments shouldn’t be an issue.”

Indeed, a finance degree opens doors to various sectors, including Private Equity (PE), Investment Banking (IBANK), and other investment fields. However, the user also points out the reality of the competitive nature of these jobs, emphasizing the significance of luck and timing due to the similarity in qualifications among top applicants.
While the competition is stiff, the finance field is known for its rewarding compensation packages, especially in roles related to investment banking, asset management, and financial consulting. Strategies to stand out in this competitive field often depend on building a robust network and continuously enhancing one’s skill set. Engaging in professional workshops, attending industry conferences, and leveraging alumni networks can pave the way for fruitful connections and opportunities in the finance world. A pragmatic approach is shared by a user says, 

“Your mindset shouldn’t be on trying to break into this field right away as a fresh grad but more in the sense to give yourself time to have a strong set of skills, work on yourself, and network so that when an opportunity arises then you’ll be prepared.”

Thus, a blend of patience, continuous learning, and strategic networking forms the cornerstone of building a prosperous career in finance.

Exploring Various High-Paying Professions

A career that promises a hefty paycheck often involves exploring various avenues and understanding the nuances of different professions. Reddit outlines a range of professions that have the potential to lead to a $200K salary, each with its own challenges, qualifications, and peculiarities. Take a closer look at these professions, not only exploring Reddit users’ insights but also adding a broader perspective through general facts and figures.

Below is a table that provides a snapshot of the discussed professions, their characteristics, and average salaries:

ProfessionCharacteristicsAverage Salary (USD)
DoctorExtensive education and residency, high responsibility, potential for various specializations$200K – $500K depending on specialization
CRNAAdvanced practice registered nurse, requires master’s degree, high demand in healthcare$180K – $250K
LawyerRequires law degree and passing the bar exam, various specializations available$120K – $200K+ depending on specialization and experience
EngineerRequires a degree in an engineering field, various specialties available, problem-solving skills$80K – $150K depending on specialization and experience
Business/Operations ManagerRequires management expertise, strategic planning skills, potential for various industry applications$100K – $150K
Insurance SpecialistRequires industry knowledge, potential for specialization, sales skills$50K – $150K+ depending on role and specialization
Programmer/IT ProfessionalRequires technical skills in coding and systems management, continuous learning$80K – $200K depending on role and expertise
PilotRequires flight training and certifications, potential for industry fluctuations$80K – $300K depending on experience and airline

Each profession, while offering a path towards a lucrative salary, demands a unique blend of education, experience, and sometimes, a dash of strategic career navigation. In the subsequent sections, we will explore more about navigating through these career paths, ensuring the roadmap to that $200K salary is informed and strategic.

A Glimpse into the Tech World

With its innovative spirit and rapid advancements, the tech industry constantly attracts those aspiring towards high-paying roles. A Reddit user shares,  “Most big tech companies (Google, Meta, Amazon, Microsoft, etc) pay well over 200k,” highlighting this industry’s high-paying opportunities. ​​Below is a table that provides a general overview of some tech companies known for offering generous base packages for entry-level workers. 

A bar chart representing entry-level salaries across leading tech companies
CompanyAverage Base Salary (USD)Notable Benefits & Perks
Google$110,000 – $130,000Health care, wellness programs, 401(k) match, parental leave
Meta$110,000 – $120,000Health insurance, retirementbenefits, wellness programs
Amazon$100,000 – $115,000Health care, 401(k) match, employee discount
Microsoft$105,000 – $120,000Health insurance, 401(k) plan,
parental leave
Apple$100,000 – $125,000Product discounts, health care, 401(k) match
Salesforce$95,000 – $125,000Wellness reimbursement, philanthropy model
Adobe$100,000 – $115,000Medical insurance, wellnessprograms, employee assistance
Airbnb$110,000 – $130,000Annual travel coupon, healthinsurance, employee stock
Note: The salaries mentioned can vary based on the role, experience, and location. The benefits and perks are also subject to change and might have certain eligibility criteria. Always refer to the official company website or contact their HR for the most accurate and up-to-date information.

However, the intense competition and potential for burnout are also repeatedly mentioned as serious downsides for those lacking genuine interest or passion in the field.

Indeed, the tech world offers plenty of roles, from software engineers and data scientists to product managers and cybersecurity experts, each with its own demands and rewards. While the salaries can be tempting, the path towards them often requires tackling a competitive landscape, continuous learning, and, sometimes, managing the high-pressure environments that these roles may entail. The tech industry, while being a hub of innovation, also demands its professionals to stay up-to-date with the ever-evolving technologies and trends perpetually.


Choosing a career that makes you happy and pays well can be tricky, but it’s definitely doable. The advice from Reddit users gives us a peek into different ways you might reach a $200k salary. From working your way up in big companies to diving into the fast-paced tech world, there are many paths to explore, each with its own set of challenges and rewards.

The shared advice highlights the importance of smart career choices, always learning new things, and staying up-to-date with what’s happening in your industry. Whether it’s moving up in a big company, using a finance degree in various ways, or finding your spot in the tech world, reaching a high salary often involves a mix of planning, sticking with it through tough times, and always being ready to learn.

It’s also crucial to remember that while making money is important, enjoying what you do and balancing work with rest and fun is key to a happy life. The stories and tips from people in different fields not only guide us but also remind us that the way to a well-paying career is made up of experiences, challenges, and constant learning.

In a world that keeps changing, with new technologies and global trends shaping industries, professionals need to keep improving their skills, connect with others in their field, and be ready to change as their industry changes. Getting to a high-paying career isn’t a straight line but a series of steps, each bringing different experiences and learnings that help you grow professionally and financially.

To wrap things up, while aiming for a $200k salary is a clear goal, combining what you love to do with your skills and smart career planning is key to making money and enjoying your work life. Here’s hoping that the shared experiences and tips help guide professionals to their career goals while also encouraging a love of learning and flexibility in the ever-changing world of work.


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