“If you want to be successful tomorrow, it’s impossible. If you want to be successful a year later, it’s impossible. But if you want to win ten years later, you adjust—that is one way.”
This was one of Jack Ma’s key insights at the World Economic Forum, which happened earlier this year in Switzerland. He was on stage as the founder of e-commerce giant Alibaba and Asia’s richest man, according to Forbes last August 2017.
But more than the long list of titles and the $40.4 billion net worth, Ma stands true to what success is all about—that it comes only to those who are strong and firm. And when we mean strong and firm, it goes even beyond applying for 30 jobs and being accepted by zero, or building a company that’s unprofitable until its fourth year.
FHM.com.ph interviewed five millennials with high-paying jobs to ask them about the fair share of sacrifices they've made to earn their keep, and how these lessons have added millions to their earnings.
A day in my life would be a constant hustle of things—flights, land transfers, video shoots and editing—with very little sleep.
Before landing this job, I worked in an advertising agency for four years.
I got my training from practicing constantly. I learned everything by myself. I also get inspiration from the places I travel to, and from other videos I see online or on the television.
I pursued this work because both videography and travel are my passion. Being able to do something that combines both fits the bill for my ideal lifestyle.
What I love most about my job is I get to do what I love. My work schedule is pretty much flexible, too.
What I want changed are the sleepless nights and continuous transits. It can get very exhausting.
I have to continuously keep up with not getting enough rest, definitely.
The costs of this pay are time with friends and family, in addition to proper rest.
I cool down from work by just taking long breaks at home or doing anything different from my lifestyle of always travelling.
My biggest achievements so far are being able to build my own online content marketing company at a young age, and having major brands as partners.
My career advice is keep dreaming, keep pushing.
A day in my life would be unpredictable. There are times I get a music brief in the morning and start on a new project or revise the current one. My day is fast-paced and almost non-stop.
Before landing this job, I was a video editor. I didn't like that job. I was just forced to take it because it was the readily available option and I had the skills to edit. Eventually, I quit that job and became a freelance composer for more than a year.
I got my training from years of self-study and exploration, peer-to-peer sharing, and musical experience from when I was young. It also came mostly from hands-on projects, since I started this job with a lean team.
I pursued this work because it only took me one visit to the studio for me to realize that I wanted this job. I saw how busy but how very creative the atmosphere was. I knew I was meant to be part of it.
What I love most about my job is the pay. Kidding! What I love most about it is that every day is an opportunity to do something different. I get to explore varied music genres and styles, and hangout with good musicians.
What I want changed are clients who can be pains in the neck. Most of them have little understanding of music. Also, working hours don't exist. We are always working.
I have to continuously keep up with the pressure. Sometimes I have to create a full song within the day. The craziest one was having to come up with something in time for the client's visit in 45 minutes.
The costs of this pay are my time and health. Since I took on this work, I've gained a lot of weight and lost a lot of free time.
I cool down from work by travelling every summer, mid-year, and Christmas.
My biggest achievements so far are the awards I received and the two viral dance jingles I produced last year. It went international.
My career advice is be realistic. Work on your personality and presentation. Most successful people are easy to work with and are presentable, tidy up, bruh.
A day in my life would be mostly field work. I drive out of town to meet with my clients, inspect and oversea the developments of projects in our construction sites, and do coordination calls.
Before landing this job, I was the Project Manager of another construction company.
I got my training from self-study and my own experiences, including those from my old job.
I pursued this work because of this business’ nature of low capital, yet high return.
What I love most about my job is I get to meet and deal with both the wealthiest and the lowliest of the society. I also get to practice my expertise in civil engineering.
What I want changed is nothing. Success is a rough road I’d travel head-on.
I have to continuously keep up with managing my team well. We experience many unforeseeable problems with our construction workers, not just in terms of their labor, but as well as their conduct.
The cost of this pay are my health and social life.
I cool down from work by going sight-seeing during my free time in between business trips.
My biggest achievement so far is still being able to make my business work.
My career advice is know yourself, know your priorities, know what you can sacrifice for your career, and work smart.
A day in my life would be juggling the tasks of creatives, sales, and operations. I am hands-on in every aspect of my start-up advertising agency.
Before landing this job, I was an Art Director at a small advertising agency.
I got my training from previous bosses, clients, and friends in the industry. I try my best to learn from every experience and person that I meet.
I pursued this work because the arts have always been my passion. One day, I had the sane thought of making a business out of it. It’s like hitting two birds with one stone.
What I love most about my job is that I love what I’m doing. I may still be learning the ropes of running a business, but as they say, when you love what you do, all else will follow.
What I want changed is nothing, really. I am willing to go through the highs and lows of starting a business, knowing that all these experiences will make me succeed.
I have to continuously keep up with making responsible decisions. Managing a business means that I just don’t work for myself anymore.
The cost of this pay are my personal time and proper attention to my health.
I cool down from work by spending time with my loved ones while still trying my best not to work or talk shop while with them.
My biggest achievement so far is taking the leap to start this agency. I used to be apprehensive of changes and taking risks.
My career advice is find out what you love to do, set your goals, and believe that you can achieve them.
A day in my life would be campaign planning, creative analysis, media optimization, leads management, process improvement, business intelligence, audience analytics.
Before landing this job, I was a branding professional and front end developer earning 15K.
I got my training from taking up a certification, immersed myself in different industries.
I pursued this work because of the constant growth in the digital industry, partnered with a passion for continuous learning.
What I love most about my job are its dynamic pace, various opportunities for learning, and high pay.
What I want changed is the industry’s nature of being capitalistic and opportunistic. Digital innovation should be for uniting society and improving the world. Why can’t we use it to solve bigger problems instead?
I have to continuously keep up with being overworked. Working for digital requires one to work at the same pace things change online.
The cost of this pay are my health and time for leisure.
I cool down from work by watching movies, reading books, and going on nature trips when an opportunity comes along.
My biggest achievement so far was being able to do projects with Top 500 corporations, sustain my needs, and invest on my future through insurance.
My career advice is never stop learning, never feel inferior, keep on shifting gears and challenging yourself.