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15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

The professions listed on our list of high paying jobs with the highest satisfaction rates are obviously everyone’s dream. But the catch here is this: job satisfaction for one individual will be entirely different from what someone else would consider contentment.

The most prominent example that comes to my mind is that of introverts and extroverts. For an extrovert, a sales job involving abundant interaction with new people may well be the perfect job while for an introvert like me, the same job would be an utter nightmare and I’m speaking from personal experience here. Likewise, the most satisfying careers for introverts (which incidentally you can find here) might not do justice to extroverts. And while we’re on the topic, I have all the sympathy for you introverts so in case you’re really struggling and don’t even have a degree to your name, I would really recommend giving our article on the high paying jobs for introverts without a degree or experience a quick look. Trust me, it’s hard being an introvert, especially in the corporate world, so you should take all the help you can get.

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

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I am deviating from the topic though, as is my norm. The reason for me elaborating how subjective the term “job satisfaction” is, was not to hint to you that our list isn’t reliable. It was simply to make you cautious that these jobs with highest satisfaction rates may not apply to all categories of people. That being said, they are definitely one of the best jobs one can have the pleasure of performing.

So how exactly did we determine the highest job satisfaction 2017? We referred to this comprehensive list by PayScale, which enumerates the job satisfaction rate and job meaning rate of more than 500 job titles based on an extensive survey. Meaning, you can also find out the most meaningful careers here: the top 3 are clergymen/women, postsecondary English teachers, and surgeons, in case you were wondering. If you were to say merely meaning isn’t enough for you and you’re looking for meaningful jobs that pay well too, well then medical specialties are by far the best fit for you, as they pay considerably higher amounts than other meaningful jobs. Even nurses don’t do so bad, something you can examine more deeply in the 7 happiest highest job satisfaction nursing specialties. All these occupations require higher education though, so fulfilling jobs without a degree might be a little difficult to find. One could always go for the clergy, but then again, not everyone is into religion. In that case, community and social service jobs would be suitable since they have the highest meaning rate among job categories and do not require much education.

To give you more perspective, let me tell you what meaning and satisfaction actually mean here. Well, the former represents the percentage of affirmative answers when asked the question “Does your work make the world a better place?”, while the latter means the percentage of positive replies when asked: “How satisfied are you in your job?” With that in mind, we sought to determine the list of careers with the highest job satisfaction. However, due to some ties, we ended up with 19 jobs. From there we ranked them on the basis of their mean annual wage, the numbers of which we extracted from Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Although PayScale also provided median salary amounts, they pertain to the year 2015 when the survey was conducted, so we decided to update the numbers using the BLS website. And like that, we incorporated the effects of both earning and contentment in our list of high paying jobs with the highest satisfaction rates.

15. Airfield Operations Specialists

Mean annual salary: $52,380

Job satisfaction rate: 83%

We start off with airfield operations specialists who are hired to ascertain an airplane’s safe landing and departure. That puts a lot of burden on their shoulders if you ask me, but only 52% thought it was a meaningful job! That happens to be the lowest number on our list, though I fail to understand how an apparently low meaning job could yield such high satisfaction. Well, that mystery aside, someone has got to do it, and safety always comes first!

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

Andrey Khachatryan/Shutterstock.com

14. Rotary Drill Operators, Oil and Gas

Mean annual salary: $57,140

Job satisfaction rate: 93%

Rotary drill operators are a major resource for oil and gas exploration companies who need experts to set up and operate the drills that will consequently help in the extraction of these natural resources. Their job satisfaction rate stands at 93% making them one of the high paying jobs with the highest satisfaction rates.

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

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13. Foresters

Mean annual salary: $60,300

Job satisfaction rate: 85%

With the Earth screaming for more trees to be planted on its surface, foresters have a highly important job. They basically manage forested land, which means they are not only responsible for planning to grow more trees, they are also to be cautious of environmental laws and timber procurement.

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

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12. Cartographers and Photogrammetrists

Mean annual salary: $66,160

Job satisfaction rate: 97%

With the highest satisfaction rate among all the jobs within the survey, cartographers and photogrammetrists seem to be ecstatic about the work they do. Personally, I don’t see the pull of preparing maps and studying photographs but whatever works for you, right?

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

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11. Arbitrators, Mediators, and Conciliators

Mean annual salary: $72,730

Job satisfaction rate: 90%

These are the men/women who have taken it upon themselves to settle conflicts through discussion and mutual consent rather than through court. Their job meaning percentage is merely 69%, but I think this job is worth more than that, don’t you?

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

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10. Postsecondary Teachers

Mean annual salary: $73,990

Job satisfaction rate: 83%

Ah, college teachers: they could be the boon or bane of your existence, but they do enjoy high satisfaction rates on average. Bear in mind that these postsecondary teachers belong to the “all other” category, i.e., other than those teachers whose subjects have been separately listed as an occupation by BLS.

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

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9. Emergency Management Specialists

Mean annual salary: $78,060

Job satisfaction rate: 86%

Next up on the list of high paying jobs with the highest satisfaction rates we have emergency management specialists that do exactly that: they manage emergencies. They are to prepare plans for times of natural disasters, wars, pollution disasters, etc., and work on their implementation.

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

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8. Radiation Therapists

Mean annual salary: $84,980

Job satisfaction rate: 86%

At the 8th spot on the list of high paying jobs with the highest satisfaction rates are the people essential to radiation therapy and hence essential for killing cancerous cells among people who have been diagnosed with the disease. While radiologists diagnose the patient, these therapists are heavily and personally involved in readying the equipment and performing the actual treatment.

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

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7. First-Line Supervisors of Police and Detectives

Mean annual salary: $88,400

Job satisfaction rate: 85%

Yes, police and detectives are also kept in check by a supervisor, and that supervisor happens to be surprisingly content with the job and reasonably well paid too. While supervisors are not responsible for the fieldwork, they are bestowed with the job of coordinating the police force in the best possible way.

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

Pixabay/Public Domain

6. Education Administrators, Elementary and Secondary School

Mean annual salary: $95,390

Job satisfaction rate: 88%

The salary of education administrators is quite unequal among different levels of schooling. At the preschool level, they get $52,150 annually while at postsecondary level that number amounts to $105,770, which leaves us with elementary and secondary school education administrators, who are extremely content with their jobs, giving them the 6th  spot on our list of high paying jobs with the highest satisfaction rates.

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

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5. Pediatricians

Mean annual salary: $184,240

Job satisfaction rate: 89%

What job can be more satisfying than treating sick, helpless children and helping alleviate their pain? This is really one of the jobs that make a difference and pay well too. I’m sure the appearance of pediatricians on our list of high paying jobs with the highest satisfaction rates didn’t astound anyone.

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

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4. Chief Executives

Mean annual salary: $194,350

Job satisfaction rate: 88%

Chief executives in simple words run the corporate world. Without them, the whole world of business would come toppling down, and we can’t have that, can we? So it’s no surprise that chief executives seem to have a sense of satisfaction that has landed them in the 4th spot.

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

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3. Psychiatrists

Mean annual salary: $200,220

Job satisfaction rate: 85%

Even though they enjoy a hefty salary and high satisfaction, America is suffering from a severe shortage of psychiatrists since the past few years. No doubt it is because of their growing demand as more and more people have gained mental health awareness over the years, though of course we still have a long way to go.

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

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2. Surgeons

Mean annual salary: $252,910

Job satisfaction rate: 83%

Job number two on the list of high paying jobs with the highest satisfaction rates belongs to surgeons, who reported the highest percentage of meaning in their job compared to the rest of the professions on our list, standing at 96%. You can’t really argue with that. Where would we be if not for surgeons? The mortality rate would surely be much higher without them.

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

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1. Anesthesiologists

Mean annual salary: $269,600

Job satisfaction rate: 83%

Anesthesiologists are the nice people that drug you before a surgical procedure, and with a whopping average salary almost touching $270K, they certainly have it good, which is exactly why they close off our list of high paying jobs with the highest satisfaction rates.

15 High Paying Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction Rates

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