What Defines Success? Salary of $50K-$70K a Year Majority of workers says fewer than six figures equals success: survey By Kevin Spak, Newser Staff Posted Jun 13, 2012 1:52 PM CDT Updated Jun 17, 2012 7:00 PM CDT 29 comments Comments Americans don't need to make six figures to feel successful. (Shutterstock) (Newser) – Most Americans don't think they need to make six figures to be successful. A new poll of 5,772 workers found that a little less than 30% would define success as raking in between $50,000 and $70,000 a year; another 23% said they'd be happy with less than $50,000. But some still shoot high: The CareerBuilder survey did find that about 10% of respondents equated success with a salary of more than $150,000. So how are Americans stacking up? A little less than a quarter of those surveyed were happy with their current salaries, LiveScience reports. Another 45% did say they were close to the salary they wanted, but 32% said they were nowhere close.