Here is the shocking statistic from the Social Security Administration. If you take 100 people at the beginning of their careers, and follow them for the next 40 years to retirement, here is what you will find:

  • 1 will be wealthy
  • 4 will be financially secure
  • 5 will have to continue working – because they have to
  • 36 will be dead
  • 54 will be broke and dependent on friends, family and the government to take care of them

Wow! In summary, 5% will be successful and 95% will struggle their whole lives. Pretty shocking, yes?

My name is Mark Wayman and for the last 15 years I have owned an Executive Recruiting firm focused on gaming and high tech. Compensation starts at $100,000, average base salary is $250,000, and last year I placed several executives north of a million dollars.

Disclaimer: Only represent executives I know personally or by referral. No online job postings, no candidate databases, no unsolicited resumes. No disrespect intended! Also, all Troll comments on the article will be deleted. Thank you!

Back to our story. When I started my Executive Recruiting business 15 years ago, I categorized candidates the way you would grade students in school. The top 10% are the “A” candidates, the next 10% are “B” candidates and the rest are not someone I can represent. I’m sure they are lovely people and in no way am I judging them. At $100,000+ salary levels, my clients pay me to find the best of the best. If they are below $100,000 or don’t want “A” players they can post ads on and Zip Recruiter.

Here is where it gets more interesting, at least for me. Over the course of 15 years I came to a different conclusion. The “A” candidates are actually the top 5%, maybe even the top 2%. I can’t believe how many people with high quality resumes do silly things. The CFO that failed the drug test. The high tech exec that left his cell phone on his desk and emailed in his resignation. The marketing executive that took my job for three months until she could “find something better.” The engineering executive that took my client’s job offer, then reneged three days later when he got a counter-offer.

You’re laughing, right? These are not $12 an hour employees. They make $200,000 to $500,000 a year. And we can disagree on whether the aforementioned behavior makes you a “B” player (or worse!), but for me, they are not people I would ever represent again. That’s what’s great about America – we can all have differing opinions and still be friends.

So here is the lesson in all this. God gives us in choices. And every choice eliminates 50% of the possibilities. Choose wisely…and God bless!