What jobs can make you rich: careers to consider for financial success

1 min read by Unbiased team Last updated June 28, 2024

Discover the jobs that will make you rich fast in the US so that you can choose the best career for financial success.


  • Some of the highest-paying jobs that can make you a millionaire in the US include positions for cardiologists, radiologists, engineers, professional athletes, and anesthesiologists.  

  • Cardiologists, in particular, are some of the highest earners in the US in 2024, earning an average of $421,330 annually before tax. 

  • The majority of jobs that make you rich in the US are in the medical and healthcare sectors. 

  • Let Unbiased connect you with a financial advisor who can help you manage your wealth as a high-earning professional. 

How can I find a high-paying career? 

High-paying careers have universal appeal due to their generous compensation and benefit packages.  

If you are looking to achieve financial independence, retire early, or build a solid investment portfolio or a nest egg for your retirement years, finding jobs that make you rich fast could help you reach your financial goals more quickly and achieve the independence you desire. 

Several key factors contribute to a job’s potential to make someone wealthy. These factors include demand for specific skills, abilities, job titles, skill levels, and the economic impact of the positions in question.  

A range of factors also affect jobs that can make you a millionaire, including an industry's current rate of growth, the level of innovation present in that industry, the scalability of the role, and the demand for people who can fill it. 

What are the top jobs that will make you rich? 

We’ve examined ten of the best-paying jobs in the US across various industries and sectors.  

We also provide details about each of the best jobs to make money, including the average salary before and after tax, annual income after average expenditures have been deducted, the qualifications and skills required, and how long each job would take to make you a million dollars. 

It’s important to note that the majority of the top-paying jobs in the US are within the healthcare industry. However, positions in other industries and sectors offer high average salaries, helping you reach your financial goals.  

We used examples from leading financial publications and included positions cited most frequently across these sites, including positions from different industries, to provide a wider scope. 

  • Anesthesiologist 

The annual salary for an anesthesiologist before taxes is $302,970 

The average annual income after expenses for these professionals is $147,703. This means that it would take a US anesthesiologist around six years and nine months to earn a million dollars. 

A US anesthesiologist may hold a Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) degree and must pass the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE).  

They must complete a 4-year medical residency program and become state-licensed. They must register with both the American Board of Physician Specialties (ABPS) and the American Board of Anesthesiology (ABA).  

  • Chief Executive 

The annual salary for a CEO in the US is $246,440 before tax.  

A CEO’s annual income after average expenditures comes to $122,287. This career will make you wealthy, as it will only take you roughly eight years and 10 months to earn a million dollars.  

Most US CEOs start their journey by obtaining a post-secondary degree, such as a Master of Business Administration (MBA), and then becoming certified in specific niches relevant to their industries of choice.  

They must then gain years of professional experience in business management before becoming eligible for a CEO role. 

  • Radiologist 

The average salary for a US radiologist before tax is $329,080 before federal taxes.  

The average radiologist's annual income after average expenses are deducted is $164,061. It would take the average radiologist around six years and one month to reach millionaire status. 

US-based radiologists must gain a degree focused on biomedical sciences and clinical skills and pass the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE).  

They must complete a 4-5 year medical residency program, enter a 1-2 year radiology fellowship program, and gain board certification through the American Board of Radiology or the American Osteopathic Board of Radiology. 

  • Engineer 

Average salaries for engineers will vary according to their specializations.  

For engineering managers, the average salary in the US is $163,689 

Annual income after average expenditure comes to $54,812. A US engineer would take around 18 years and two months to earn a million dollars. 

US engineers must hold a bachelor’s degree in engineering and complete a post-secondary engineering discipline specialization, such as civil engineering, petroleum engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, or aerospace engineering.  

High-earning engineers may have a Master’s degree or PhD, an Engineer-in-Training (EIT) or Engineer Intern (EI) Certification, and a Professional Engineer (PE) License.  

  • Lawyer 

As far as jobs that make you rich go, lawyers are almost always on the list, not just in the US but globally.  

The average lawyer’s salary in the US is $145,760 before tax deductions.  

Annual income after average expenditures comes to $55,154. The average lawyer would take 18 years and one month to reach millionaire status. 

US lawyers must pass the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) or GRE tests, complete law school and earn a J.D., pass the Multistate Bar Exam, and meet a range of character and mental fitness criteria.  

They must take an oath to become licensed, state-recognized attorneys.  

  • Investment Banker 

The average salary for an investment banker and financial manager in 2024 is $125,00 before tax, but bonuses may push this higher.  

After average expenditures, the average income is $56,854 per year. An investment banker would earn a million dollars in around 17 years and seven months. 

Investment bankers generally hold degrees in business administration, finance, or statistics, MBAs, and on-the-job training and experience.  

They must also be licensed by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). 

  • Cardiologist 

These professionals earn an average salary of $421,330 before tax and $288,783 after tax.  

Their income after average expenses is $221,855 per annum. It would take a cardiologist around four years and six months to earn a million dollars. 

US cardiologists must hold medical degrees, have passed the United States Medical Licensing Exams (USMLE), have completed a medical residency program, hold board certification, and have spent three years in a cardiology fellowship program in order to practice. 

  • Orthopedic Surgeon 

The average annual salary for an orthopedic surgeon is $371,400 before tax and $257,503 after federal tax.  

Income after average expenses is $190,575 annually. An orthopedic surgeon would earn a million dollars in five years and three months. 

Orthopedic surgeons in the US must be qualified doctors of medicine (MDs) or osteopathic doctors (ODs) and complete a 5-year residency in surgery and orthopedics.  

They must also complete fellowships, pass the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) or the Comprehensive Osteopathic Medical Licensure Examination (COMLEX), and achieve board certification with the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery (ABOS) and the American Osteopathic Board of Orthopedic Surgery (AOBOS).  

  • Athletes and sports competitor 

A US athlete’s average annual salary is $358,080 before tax and $249,158 after tax.  

Their average income after expenses is $182,230 per annum. An athlete would need to work for around five years and six months to earn a million dollars. 

Talented athletes are usually selected by scouts who seek out talent at colleges and schools.  

A professional athlete or sports competitor must display excellent coordination and reflexes, have good eyesight, perform reliably under pressure, and offer skills such as discipline, competitiveness, and the ability to travel and relocate frequently. 

  • Airline pilot 

The average annual salary for an airline pilot in the US is $225,740 before tax and $165,666 after tax.  

Their annual income after expenditures is $98,738. A pilot would take around 10 years and one month to reach millionaire status. 

Airline pilots must gain a bachelor’s degree in aviation or an FAA-approved related degree, earn a commercial pilot’s license, gain instrument and multi-engine ratings, and earn an airline transport pilot certification (ATP) after logging at least 1,500 flight hours. 

How to invest as a high-earner 

If you choose a career that will make you wealthy, you can manage and grow your wealth by using smart investment strategies. These include retirement planning strategies, intelligent tax strategies, and wealth preservation strategies.  

Many high-income professionals choose 401(k) or 403(b) investment plans or Roth IRA investment plans to minimize their tax burdens and maximize their savings. 

Additionally, a large number of high earners choose to hire a financial advisor to assist them in selecting the best investment, tax, and wealth preservation strategies to protect their wealth and navigate legal investment requirements. 

What are the challenges and considerations in high-earning careers? 

It’s important to note that there can be potential challenges and downsides when pursuing millionaire jobs.  

Many top-paying careers demand long hours and can entail significant amounts of job stress. Some of the fields listed above are highly saturated due to many people pursuing high salaries, which can make it challenging to find new positions due to high rates of competition. 

While pursuing financial success, remember to consider these challenges.  

Assess your personal strengths and preferences and seek out careers that pose challenges that you can confidently handle. Researching the potential downsides of the careers you are considering can help you make the best choice for your needs and your future. 

Get expert financial advice  

Some of the jobs that will make you rich in the US in 2024 include anesthesiology, radiology, chief executive, engineering, and law positions. Cardiologists earn some of the highest salaries of all US-based professionals, at an average of $421,330 per year before tax. 

If you are considering entering into a high-paying career, let Unbiased connect you with an expert financial advisor to ensure that you can manage and preserve your wealth effectively. 


Unbiased team

Our team of writers, who have decades of experience writing about personal finance, including investing and retirement, are here to help you find out what you must know about life’s biggest financial decisions.