I know that I have heard that if you want to make money you need to get into management. Being a good manager is not the same skill set as being a good database professional, and there are many people who do not want to be managers. According to the data in the survey, you can be in the top 5% of wage earners and not be a manager. How about telecommuting? What is the impact on telecommuting and the top 5%? Well, it depends if you are looking at the much smaller female population. The majority of females in the top 5% telecommute. Those who commute 100% of the time do very well, as well as those who spend every day at a job site. Males report working more hours and telecommuting less than females do as well. If you look at people who are in the average category, they do not telecommute. The average category has 25% of people who work less than 40 hours a week too. If you look at the number of items in the category by country you can determine that in many cases, like Uganda, there are not enough survey respondents to draw any conclusions about salary in locations.
Another area of importance here is in trying to normalize salaries for standard of living: it’s a lot easier to get a $100K/year job in Manhattan, NY than Manhattan, KS, but $100K in the latter goes much further. Based on my little digging into the set, it’d be tough to draw any conclusions on that front, but it is an a priori factor that I’d want to consider when dealing with salary survey data.