Seven Jobs for Social Butterflies
By Charyn Pfeuffer, PayScale.com
Are you a professional who loves to socialize? The salary experts at PayScale.com pulled together this list of seven jobs well-suited to people who take their socializing seriously. From wining and dining to planning and pulling together a memorable party, all of these jobs have some serious socializing potential.
So if being social and having fun are high on your list of job requirements, consider these jobs where (almost) every day offers a chance to mix and mingle and have a good time.
Typical Median Pay: $49,300
What They Do: These professionals play an important role in raising revenue for a cause, organization or company. This work can entail cultivating philanthropic relationships, writing fund-raising letters and coordinating charity events.
Socializing Potential: Almost every nonprofit hosts a major fund-raiser, and a lot of party planning goes into pulling off a successful (read: lucrative) event. In addition, fund-raisers spend time wooing potential donors, whether it’s over a quick cup of coffee or cocktails. Fund-raisers must be “on” a lot of the time, as they pitch people to donate in support of their organization’s cause.
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Hotel General Manager
Typical Median Pay: $49,100
What They Do: Eric Waltz, general manager of the Sandpearl Resort in Clearwater Beach, Florida, makes sure operations run smoothly for the resort’s 350 associates by ensuring that everyone has the resources to do their jobs perfectly. “This doesn’t just mean physical supplies, but also training, encouragement and support,” Waltz says. “If this is accomplished, our guests will have the greatest stay possible while they are visiting Sandpearl.”
Socializing Potential: Waltz got into the business in 1992 because he took a lot of pride in creating memories for people, whether it was being part of a marriage proposal or helping someone surprise a friend or relative with a party. He also uses his creativity to put together events such as an Earth Day beach party. In general, Waltz says it’s fun to be around people who are having a good time and ensure that their vacation is memorable.
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Public Relations Specialist
Typical Median Pay: $46,700
What They Do: Public relations specialists -- also referred to as communications specialists and media specialists, among other titles -- serve as the liaison between their clients and the public. Among their many outreach duties, PR specialists draft press releases and contact people in the media who might broadcast their message.
Socializing Potential: PR specialists must come up with and execute creative promotions and events to get their clients noticed. This work typically involves an element of wining and dining -- usually of the media. In some cases, perks could include travel and fancy hotel stays, as well as invitations to parties, product launches and other special events.
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Typical Median Pay: $46,400
What They Do: Founder of The Invisible Hostess, Sheena Kalso of Seattle has offered behind-the-scenes “party help,” as she calls it, since 2006. “I started my event-planning company to take on the duties of the host or hostess -- for example, replenishing the buffet, refilling drinks, cleaning up dishes, etc. -- so the client would have time to actually enjoy his or her guests.” Kalso’s company has evolved into a team of more than 20 who can staff anything from an intimate dinner party to a 200-person wedding or corporate event.
Socializing Potential: “I don't know another job where you are allowed to try new foods, hear different bands and enjoy a variety of good cocktails and wines -- all while working,” Kalso says. She says the best perk of being an event planner is being exposed to so many new experiences.
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Typical Median Pay: $45,100
What They Do: If being a winemaker sounds like a fun career, it is. “We are constantly opening, pouring, drinking and tasting wine with and for consumers, restaurateurs, sommeliers, wine-shop owners, friends and family,” says Dan Tudor, winemaker for Tudor Wines in Carmel, California. Tudor says making the wine is a kick, too. “We look at the vineyards, walking the rows and tasting the fruit as it is ripening,” he says.
Socializing Potential: Tudor says the day-to-day logistics of his job are fun. “If a winemaker doesn't like socializing, entertaining and sharing their product with people, they are in the wrong business,” he says. Since his wines are sold in a number of countries, Tudor travels quite a bit, packing a case of wine and his kite-surfing gear. “From Sweden to Shanghai, we’re constantly partying, meeting new people and making friends,” he says.
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Restaurant General Manager
Typical Median Pay: $42,400
What They Do: From the minute customers walk through the door until the moment they pay their checks, James Lechner, general manager and wine director of Bastille Café & Bar in Seattle, choreographs the guest experience. In addition, he coordinates all aspects of restaurant operations and buys wine for the restaurant.
Socializing Potential: Lechner says one of the most festive parts of his position is recommending wine to guests. “In most cases, it is like being the friendly local who helps the tourist find the true heart of the locale,” he says. Teaching staff about wine is also very rewarding. “Tasting wine is even more like a party, but drinking wine after work at someone else's restaurant is most like a party,” Lechner says.
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Inside Sales Representative
Typical Median Pay: $41,600
What They Do: A career as an inside sales representative is the perfect sales job, says Courtney Buycks of Phoenix. “You aren’t bogged down with the face-to-face, in-and-out-of-your-car meetings that an outside sales rep would experience,” she says. Instead, inside sales representatives get to “smile and dial” and sell to as many people as they are motivated to over the course of a day.
Socializing Potential: Buycks says that fun games and competitions -- like spinning the wheel for prizes if a rep sells a certain item -- keep inside sales reps motivated. “A monthly happy hour is also imperative for keeping team morale up and encouraging a relaxed, healthy balance of work and play,” she says.
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Source: All salary data provided by online salary database PayScale.com. Salaries listed are for workers with five to eight years of experience and include bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions and other forms of cash earnings. The median pay represents the national median, meaning half of workers in these jobs will earn more and half will earn less.