I went to graduate school to study Chemistry, and found my position by applying online.
Run and design experiments, present research to CEO and customers.
Seeing the technology you helped design and implement actually work or be made into a product in real-time.
Industry research is unfortunately not the same as academic research. Experiments and further investigations must have a “business” rationale. Also, maybe the hardest part of the job is dealing with management and having to explain why experiments need to be done.
Earning potential can be larger if you are willing to take on more responsibilities outside the lab.
Be open to any of all opportunities. You may not fit perfectly in terms of experience, but this can be overcome by your analytical abilities, communication skills, or other strengths.
PhD in Chemistry.
Researching new technology will always be in demand, but you have to be willing to always learn and develop new skills.