Saturday, April 15, 2006

The Billion $ Executive

It seems that it is only a matter of time before a CEO gets a $ Billion pay package. This past week it was announced that Lee Raymond, CEO of Exxon Mobile earned a total of $686 Million from 1993 to 2005, or $144,573 for each day in his job. Of course Steve Jobs earned $775 Million in 2000, but from the appreciation of stock options (and $1 in salary).

Perhaps we should just accept that compensation is not related to value or performance. There are firefighters who earn little, but save many lives, while TV personalities earn many times what they do. Is the person who presents the network news really worth quite so many times what the person who presents the local news is? How much of their value is due to their ability, and how much to their celebrity? Is the same true of top executives? Their value becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

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