Singaporeans need reality check before asking for $6,000 salary

According to a recent survey conducted by, it was revealed that 83% of Singaporeans were not happy with their income. The report also stated that Singaporean workers felt that their pay should be increased by 10 – 20 percent and that their ideal monthly salary should be at least $6,000 in order to sustain the current cost of living in Singapore.
No, I am not crazy but which company on earth would give you this kind of salary increment just because of rising inflation? Singaporeans seriously need to have their head checked and get a reality check.

Most Singaporeans do not understand the principle of ‘perception’ at work. In our workplaces, we tend to have an inflated ego of our own abilities and do not realize that how we perceive ourselves is different from what others perceive of us. We tend to overestimate our intelligence and manifest our contributions to the organization. These are general human fallacies, but I noticed that Singaporeans are never satisfied with their income, no matter how good it is. We always want higher pay as if it is our automatic rights, without linking the increment to performance. Come on, inflation is not a valid reason for pay hike. Only good performance and increased contribution to the company can warrant a pay rise that meets your expectation.

Most of us label ourselves as “kiasu” but in my opinion, I tend to think that we have an individualistic culture. This trait lead us to have strong tendency to rate our abilities and talents too highly. In my career, I have come across Singaporean ex-colleagues who left the company after being over-looked for promotions. Some of them felt that they have become key players in the organization and started to display the classic “indispensable employee symptoms”. They thought that they could hold the organization hostage and expected promotion as a given right after a period of time. What they don’t realize is that there is no such thing as being “an indispensable employee”.

As a solo player, you can  never win an organization. Take Cristiano Ronaldo for example. Sure, he is a world class football player but as an individual, he can never win trophies on his own without the support of his team mates. If you are unhappy with your job, you can always quit but the organization will always find a direct replacement, sometimes at a lower cost. No matter what, the show will still go on for the employer and team will not stop functioning as a result of your departure.

The ideal salary is $6,000? Then you got to work like hell to prove that you are worth the money. There are taxi drivers earning this kind of income but they work long hours on the road. There is no such thing as simple and easy job that pays well, so any job that pays well would require much sacrifice and hard work.

Obviously, any job that pays well would come with higher expectations. So if you cannot consistently deliver in your job, you might be asked to go. An example would be the English Premier League where the football players and managers draw millions of dollars of salaries in the top tier clubs. But if the players or managers could not deliver trophies for these elite clubs, they would be sacked or sold off mercilessly. This is the reality of the society.

So far, I have never come across a Singaporean who question himself whether his pay should justify for a heavier workload. Therefore before you start to look for another job or request for a pay hike from your boss, ask yourself whether you are worth the money to take up larger responsibilities in the organization. This would save you from potential rejections, and disappointments. High time Singaporeans get a reality check!

Magically yours

SG Wealth Builder

7 thoughts on “Singaporeans need reality check before asking for $6,000 salary

  • July 5, 2014 at 5:03 pm

    It is important for one to know the profile of respondents to the survey conducted by jobstreet first. It may be due to the fact that a good number of them are earning quite close to $6000 per month. If the majority of the survey respondents are low wage employees, it is quite likely that their ideal salary would not be anything close to this.

  • July 5, 2014 at 11:30 pm


    Did you read the Jobstreet article? If you did, it stated clearly that 70% of the participants earn less than $3000.


  • July 6, 2014 at 3:16 pm

    There is a reason why they are earning 3K with current mentality. Having say that there will be some who develop or improve their thoughts overtime and arrive 6K later be it job change, promotion etc. There will also be some who truly delivering “6K” tasks. In generally if you ask people of 3K range, most likely their understanding have yet arrive so give them a break.

  • July 7, 2014 at 4:33 pm

    thanks you for the article. It is a good wake up call.

  • July 8, 2014 at 7:41 am

    Too many wants, too little contributions.

    Our society is suffering from the pay me first contribute later syndrome 🙁

  • August 3, 2014 at 9:39 am

    I certainly can see why they feel the need for a higher pay. But, they forget to look around them and also the times. They forget to realize that there are other “cheaper alternatives of energy” walking around and amongst us. It is unfair. Yes, but do not forget that we are working for giant “machines” which have no empathy to if you can feed your kids or not. Just take what you can and work hard. This also means spending your free time studying the field you are in. Do not just think that your shiny degree is your passport to open closed doors. That is one of the biggest fallacies. It is your hands and legs.

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