Career progression after 10 years

We all need some reflection to improve ourselves, right? Thought I’d just reflect on my last 10 years of working (and counting), going at it in the rat race. Hopefully my sharing can bring some insights to those of you considering your career moves as well!

I graduated with a engineering degree and entered the manufacturing sector as a process engineer at a large Multi-National Corporation (Company A). I was then stuck in the same job for 8 years before jumping ship to a new company (Company B).

Why 8 years, you ask. Well, many times I thought of leaving, partly because I knew that the career prospects was not very bright. But having such a familiar and comfortable environment encouraged me to stay. It didn’t hurt that I made some good friends there and we had a great time together. When I finally felt the push to leave the company, it wasn’t very easy to find a new job. At last, Company B’s manager had faith in me and took me onboard.

Company B wanted to setup a production plant in Singapore to cater for their growing market in Asia-Pacific. My pay was rather stagnant in my 8 years with Company A, I did not get any promotions at all (this deserves another post). Each year at Company A, the increment I got was less than the inflation rate! My salary at Company B (where I’m presently employed at) is not very high. Although I got pretty good increase of 20% moving to Company B, my pay is considerably lower compared to my peers in this industry.

To me, manufacturing is a dying industry in Singapore due to the low remuneration you get in return for the effort you put in, especially so for sunset industries. I have ex-colleagues who were retrenched and they couldn’t get back the same pay they were getting previously. I can tell you their previous pay are not high for people in their age (high 40s). Government advertisements have been encouraging these people to take up new skills and embark on a new career with much lower pay. How many of us can afford to take a much lower pay after working for so many years? All we want is to retire with a sizable sum to take good care of our family.

This is one of the reasons why I started this blog – to have a different source of income. We all need some reflection to improve ourselves, right? I believe we live in a gig economy and we need to adapt ourselves to the ever-changing career landscape.

I read a lot on finance books and these books usually advocate having multiple streams of income. Hence, I continue to work on this in parallel with my current job. Hopefully I can find some insights to this and share them in the near future.

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