See that's the problem I had (I'm close to your age but a few years back) companies were paying out almost as much as a full time employee for former employees. There was supposed to be a managed fund, but over time managers would raid the cookie jar.
So for a young guy starting out there was never the raises that prior generations got, without incentive to do better a "eh, good enough" attitude prevailed. Not only among workers but in supervisory positions too.
I've found I've only done well in small & hungry companies. Where the founder still has his hands on day to day management. Larger companies that treat employees as replaceable, interchangeable, "labor units" are frankly on a fast track to inferior products and corporate takeover.
I think the problem is, once upon a time we used to let ADULTS run companies (and countries for that matter)