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    Entries in compensation (16)

    Friday
    Mar122010

    Show Me the Money

    Last night on the HR Happy Hour show we took on the always interesting, sometimes controversial, and seemingly universal subject of Compensation, or put more simply - money.

    Now I know that compensation is not just about cash, that the total value that an employee receives from their employer is a complex mixture of cash, benefits, development, opportunity, and probably a million other things.

    Or maybe it is really just about the cash.

    That is in a way why the subject, and to some extent the show reflected this, can be so frustrating. 

    Compensation seems much of the time a 'Me vs. Them' kind of struggle, the little guy employee fighting for his or her fair piece of the pie, against the faceless corporate monolith bent on sharing as little as possible, all the while funding exorbitant executive comp packages. For some reason the value in the exchange always seems tipped in favor of the employer, that cash, benefits and perks always seem to be perceived as having more worth than the employee's time, attention, dedication, and commitment.

    Whenever the conversation turns to compensation, there is bound to be some discomfort. Whether it is a deal to buy a car, sell software, or negotiate a salary and benefits package, there are some people that will feel uneasy, mostly due to an imbalance of information and power.

    The newest new hire does not know what kind of a deal the last person in their situation was able to swing, so they often go in blind.  The 'man' has the information, the leverage, and the ability to, for the most part, to control the deal.

    Don't like what is being offered?  Ok, walk away then, and good luck.

    Oh, and by the way, the outgoing CEO just walked away with a $25 million package.

    We did not have time to really solve any of these issues on the 'Show Me the Money' show, and I wonder if we talked for another few hours if we really could have.

    But it was, and remains a fascinating topic, and one that will never be completely solved as long as corporations and individuals exchange time and effort for compensation.

    Have a listen to the show, and let me know what you think. 

    Why are these issues so complex, sensitive, and enduring?

    Can we ever just be honest and open about compensation and with each other?

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