Jane Genova
Jane Genova

The position of "Business Manager" in the NYC office of global ad agency Ogilvy requires 3+ years of experience in project management and finance or operations. The professional who is hired will be responsible for $5 million to $10 million of business. The pay range starts at $35K.

This is in a HCOL city where you will still probably have to have a roommate even if you are earning $135k annually. According to RentHop, as of this month, on the average, a Manhattan-area studio goes for $3,550 and a one-bedroom for $4,386. At $35k you couldn't even afford the monthly commuter train ticket from Jersey.

The "Mad Men" AMC series was patterned on Ogilvy. That aura has likely gone kaput since the help-wanted had been posted. The disgraceful bottom range for such a demanding managerial job is being duly noticed by the media like the New York Post as well as social networks such as LinkedIn.

And here's a surprise—there have actually been applicants. Only eight but still eight have applied. Incidentally, the upper end of the salary range is $65k. Yeah, $65k. The whole thing is no joke. In the late 1980s, I was earning a lot more than that for a communications position in the New York Metro area (not in Manhattan per se).

Meanwhile at law firms in NYC such as Cravath and Paul, Weiss, lawyers with no or very little experience, right out of law school, are hired into entry-level jobs at $225k for the year. Plus there could be a bonus. After the first year the compensation keeps going up.

But even with that seemingly comfortable annual salary, those recent graduates in their first job still balk about money on professional anonymous networks such as Reddit and Fishbowl. They report their struggle to make ends meet (and maybe pay off a bit of student loans) in that HCOL setting. For instance, they post on those networks questions about which firms provide free food so that they can at least save on that expense.

In my coaching, it's universal that the clients know that they better be in the big bucks to take a job in NYC.

Speculation: Will Ogilvy pull down that help-wanted?


Jane Genova is a results-driven content-creator/editor and intuitive career coach. Complimentary consultations (Text 203-468-8579 or [email protected]).