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When I Grow Up I Want To Be CEO Of A Bad Company

Posted By Jim On 04/06/2007 @ 10:40 am In Career | 8 Comments

I’m not big on kicking CEO’s and playing “bash the latest CEO compensation report” but this is pretty freaking ridiculous – Ford CEO: $28M for 4 months work [3]. Seriously, some kids want to grow up and play in some sports league and make millions for playing a game. When I grow up… I want to be CEO of a terrible company so that even though they continue to suck, I will still get paid off. Let’s ignore how staggering the losses were over at Ford (though it’d be hard to miss $12.7 billion dollars) and just think about how all the goodwill and morale boosting they try to do over there at Ford can be negated by just one footnote in a financial report.

Last year at my former company I received a 3.9% raise and was told that “raises were bad” in my department. I don’t put in 60-70 hour weeks like some people I know, I’m not the top 5% of the employee pool, and I can accept a weak 3.9% average raise (that lags inflation) but if you show me the CEO getting a 24% raise on an already eight figure salary – I’m going to think you’re full of crap. In fact, I’m liable to say “So long and thanks for all the fish” and peace out (which may have been the plan all along).

I understand the CEO game, they hired him in hopes that he’d be able to turn things around and they had to reward him even though he hasn’t gotten it done yet. If you don’t, no one else is going to come on board after him. The only problem with that strategy is that your front line workers are going to get angry and it’s the front line workers that do the real work anyway.

So, when I grow up, I want to be CEO of a bad company. Oh wait, then I’d have this on my conscience [4] when I cashed my checks.


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[3] Ford CEO: $28M for 4 months work: http://money.cnn.com/2007/04/05/news/companies/ford_execpay/index.htm?postversion=2007040511

[4] this on my conscience: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/01/business/yourmoney/01jobs.html

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