You have the greatest chance of getting big raises, big promotions – and eventually, a six-figure income – if the work you do has a positive impact on your company’s bottom line. In general, that means being a salesperson, marketer, product creator, or profit manager. If you are not currently (or haven’t been trained to be) in one of those positions, don’t despair. You can keep your official job and still make the transition over to the money side.

Here’s how to do that: Ask yourself which people in your company make the most money. Identify at least three distinct jobs. Now ask yourself which of those jobs you would most like to do.

It may seem like a stretch at the moment, but it’s entirely possible that you could do that job. So, starting today, learn something about it. Find out what it takes in terms of hours and days. Find out what it typically pays and when it pays more and why. Ask about the daily routine, the common problems, the biggest challenges, and the best rewards. Ask. Observe. Read.

Keep it up, day after day, until you start to feel as if you understand the job. When you feel ready, talk to your boss about your plans. Then approach key people in the department you’re interested in. Tell them (honestly) that you think their field is something you’d be good at. Say you’ve been learning about it in your free time and you’d like to volunteer to help them out whenever you can so you can learn even more.

People will be impressed by your willingness to dive in and give them a hand. If your intentions are sincere and your follow-up is diligent, you’ll soon enjoy a reputation for being an up-and-comer.

[Ed. Note: The above was excerpted from Michael Masterson’s New York Times best-seller Automatic Wealth for Grads… and Anyone Else Just Starting Out.

If you know a young person who’s graduating this year… or if one of your 2008 goals is to increase your income… pick up a copy. Learn more about this and all of Michael’s books at his website.] [Ed. Note: Mark Morgan Ford was the creator of Early To Rise. In 2011, Mark retired from ETR and now writes the Palm Beach Letter. His advice, in our opinion, continues to get better and better with every essay, particularly in the controversial ones we have shared today. We encourage you to read everything you can that has been written by Mark.]

Mark Morgan Ford

Mark Morgan Ford was the creator of Early To Rise. In 2011, Mark retired from ETR and now writes the Wealth Builders Club. His advice, in our opinion, continues to get better and better with every essay, particularly in the controversial ones we have shared today. We encourage you to read everything you can that has been written by Mark.

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