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Politically Correct

In the wake of the current financial fiasco, plenty of heads are rolling, and according to an article in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal, the heads of at least eight major US companies turned down their 2007 bonuses. As the proxy season unfolds, there are likely to be many more who take a politically correct approach and forego incentive compensation. The article went on to report that, unfortunately, “a sacrifice by otherwise well-paid chiefs rarely impresses the rank and file.” Apparently, the wiser approach is to insist that the money that is given up be shared with the troops. This is all well and good, but a more interesting analysis would be what percentage the foregone bonuses will be of total compensation. Bite-size I’d bet.

Tony LoPinto is CEO of Equinox Partners, an executive search firm specializing in the real estate industry, and parent company of SelectLeaders. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own.

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