What is earn to give? Earn to give explained

Earn to give is the practice of securing a well-paid career with the intention to donate a sizeable percentage of the resultant income to charity.

Understanding earn to give

In essence, earn to give is based on the assumption that wealthy individuals have the potential to do the most good in the world. Consider Bill Gates, for example, whose charitable foundation tackles complex problems such as poverty, water security, and access to proper healthcare. 

Would Gates be able to make such an impact if he worked for UNICEF or Médecins Sans Frontières? While some may scoff at the relationship between software development and social good, it is clear that the success of Microsoft has enabled Gates to have a tremendous positive impact on poor and underserved societies.

With that said, it is worth nothing that earn to give is not a practice restricted to the super-rich. When one considers that the average non-profit CEO salary is just $65,000 a year, it would not be difficult for even a moderately wealthy individual to have a positive impact and donate money to their cause of choice.

Earn to give suitability 

Earn to give will not be suitable for everyone and it’s also important to avoid seeing the practice as purely a numbers game. 

We believe earn to give is best suited to individuals in the following situations:

  • Those who consider themselves an ideal fit for a better-paying position. Don’t accept a position as a lawyer, for example, if you hate the idea of practicing law. Employee fit is ultimately determined by their level of excellence. When individuals excel in their roles, they tend to be more satisfied and earn more money.
  • Those who want to acquire new skills in a better-paying position. Skill acquisition is a component of career capital, which also comprises connections, credentials, and financial resources that enable employees to become more productive.
  • Those who are uncertain as to which cause they want to align themselves with. As opposed to working for an NGO dedicated to a specific cause, earn to give enables the  individual to shift where their donations are directed without having to seek new employment.
  • Those who want to donate to a cause that is constrained by a lack of funding as opposed to a lack of talent.

What are some of the best earn to give professions?

There are numerous high-paying professions, but only a few have the proper balance of flexibility, outlook, and income. Two of the most desirable roles that satisfy these factors are tech startup founders and quantitative hedge fund traders.

In terms of industry, earn to give is an ideal fit for:

  1. Data science.
  2. Management consulting.
  3. Early-stage startups.
  4. Software engineering.
  5. Actuarial (statistical) science.
  6. Nursing.
  7. Marketing, and
  8. Allied health, such as optometry, radiography, and pathology.

Key takeaways:

  • Earn to give is the practice of securing a well-paid career with the intention to donate a percentage of the resultant income to charity.
  • Earn to give will not be suitable for everyone. Indeed, it is most suitable for those who see themselves as a good fit for a better-paying position and want to acquire new skills in the process. It is also suitable for individuals who are unsure about the particular cause they want to support.
  • Earn to give works best in professions that have an appropriate balance of flexibility, outlook, and income. The two most desirable professions are a tech startup founder and quantitative hedge fund manager, but many other suitable roles are easier to break into.
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