TV and film characters like Don Draper from "Mad Men" and Gordon Gekko from "Wall Street" may have you thinking that their professions are enviably glitzy, but the truth is, they're not all that glamorous.
Job site CareerCast is out with its annual lists of the most overrated and most underrated jobs and with apologies to Messrs. Draper and Gekko, they're both overrated.
"It's all about perception. It's the perception that it's a great job," said Tony Lee, publisher of CareerCast. "Every one of these overrated jobs, people think of as, 'I've got huge autonomy. I'm in control of my day and I manage everything the way I want to manage it,'" Lee said.
"The reality is that either due to a poor hiring outlook, falling salary, rising stress or a number of other criteria, it's not as great as it appears," he said.
To come up with these lists, CareerCast takes a look at 200 jobs, using Labor Department and other statistics. On average, Lee said, hiring in those jobs are expected to increase by about 12 percent during this decade. What's particularly encouraging, he said, is that CareerCast has found more job openings for each one of the occupations on the list than in at least the last five years.
Read on to check out the most overrated jobs of 2013.
1. Advertising account executive
Median salary: $66,913
Hiring outlook (job growth through 2020): 14%
Congratulations, all you Don Drapers of the world, you have the most overrated job for the second year in a row!
"People think of 'Mad Men' and this glamorous world of coming up with ideas and taking clients to lunch," Lee said. "But the turnover rate is the highest of all professions and it's a mentality of 'What have you done for me lately?' "
You're constantly under pressure to bring in a new client,come up with a cool new campaign, and if you haven't, well there's someone waiting in the wings ready to take your spot.
Median salary: $166,400
Hiring outlook (job growth through 2020): 24%
"Everyone thinks you should become a doctor or marry a doctor but it is outrageously stressful," Lee said. "Extremely long hours … on call 24/7 … But talk to a surgeon in their 40s and they're ready to retire!" he said.
Sure, the pay is good and the hiring outlook is twice the average, but the stress and long hours land surgeons squarely on the overrated list. Plus, they now have the added stress of health-care reform.
"Now, you're fearing you're not going to get compensated the way you used to," Lee said.
Of course, if you're the mother of a surgeon, your outlook hasn't changed: You can still say, "My son, the doctor!"
Median salary: $71,720
Hiring outlook (job growth through 2020): 15%
"If you look across the New York Stock Exchange, how many stockbrokers do you see compared to a few years ago?" Lee asked.
A lot fewer, that's for sure.
"Most trading is automated, staring at a computer screen. Compensation, while good, is not phenomenal—they're not rolling in money," Lee said.
But wait, you say. The market is at an all-time high!
In fact, market volatility has taken an already high-stress job to meteoric levels of stress. And you know what the biggest complaint from clients is now in this market?
"They're not making enough money!" Lee said.
Plus, they don't have the budgets they used to, so there aren't as many steak dinners with clients as there used to be.
4. Public relations manager
Median salary: $95,450
Hiring outlook (job growth through 2020): 21%
Like event coordinators, PR is a thankless job. If it goes great—hey, that's what we expected! If it goes badly, oh boy.
"There's more downside than upside," Lee said.
On the plus side, the hiring outlook has stayed pretty consistent—around 21 percent, but the stress level has shot up. Managing bad news is more stressful than managing good news and let's face it, in the past few years, we've had a lot more bad news!
5. Senior corporate executive
Median salary: $168,140
Hiring outlook (job growth through 2020): 5%
"It sounds great. The perception is flying in corporate jets and conferences in Bermuda," Lee said.
They pay is great but the truth is, it's a high-stress job. "You're responsible for the lives of all the people who work for you 24/7—it's nonstop," Lee said.
Plus, the hiring outlook is terrible—less than half the average of 12 percent—and with the recession, a lot of the perks have dried up.
So, you're left with the stress and a weak hiring outlook.
Want to see the full list? Click here for the CNBC's "12 Most Overrated Jobs of 2013."
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