Here’s another tip for our Make the Most of Unemployment guide: if you’re going to get fired, be a CEO. HR World has rounded up 15 of the most shocking golden parachutes given out by big corporations to their departing leaders. Some of our favorites, inside.
Let’s say you run a toy company. Your retarding poison toys earn you a well-deserved public flogging, which you escape by scapegoating Chinese workers. The media doesn’t realize, until it’s too late, that the real culprits are the dangerous domestic designers you employ. Sales inch up marginally. Do you deserve $12.2 million, a 68% raise? Mattel’s Board of Directors thinks so!
Pass the hat around, Comcast CEO Brian Roberts is only going to make $20.8 million this year. [Philadelphia Inquirer]
The author of the BuisnessWeek article “Sprint’s Wake-Up Call”, Spencer Ante, has posted his entire interview with Sprint’s new CEO, Dan “At Least I’m Not Gary Forsee” Hesse.
“I feel we are well positioned for an economic downturn,” Scott said. “Our low prices and low-cost business model should give us an advantage over other retailers if things get more difficult for consumers.”
Bad at your job? So was Aylwin B. Lewis, president and chief executive of Sears Holdings Corp..
The fact that Eddie Lampert isn’t even a CEO didn’t stop Herb Greenberg at Marketwatch from slapping the coveted “Worst CEO of the Year” award on him. Eddie beat out such unemployed luminaries as Chuck “Whoops” Prince, formerly of Citigroup, and Ed “I Hate My Customers” Zander, formerly of Motorola.
Fortune magazine has an Q&A with CEO Brian “Bad Install” Roberts in which he expresses his hope that Comcast’s reputation for horrific customer service isn’t “universal”:
Merril Lynch CEO resigns, interim nonexecutive chairman chosen. Sub-prime meltdown spares none. [NYT]
Rumors are flying that Stanley O’Neal is being forced to step down after a disastrous third quarter— making him the most prominent casualty of the subprime meltdown.
Delta’s CEO Richard “Anybody Wanna Buy An Airline?” Anderson, formerly the CEO of Northwest, has finally started shopping Delta around for a merger buddy like we all knew he would.
AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson told the Atlanta Journal Constitution that his customer just aren’t interested in ultra-cheap internet service. AT&T is required to offer $10 DSL throughout 22 states, a concession made to the FTC as part of a deal to acquire BellSouth. AT&T has been accused of hiding the $10 DSL option, which, apparently, they did for the sake of their customers. From the Atlanta Journal Constitution:
On Tuesday, Steenland outlined the steps being taken to address the cancellation problem, and said he hopes those steps will prevent a recurrence of the cancellation problem in late August.
I have attached a photo of something that arrived in the mail for me from Comcast. I had a problem with a bill where they had charged me twice for something. After exhausting the normal channels, I e-mailed the CEO. The very next day a nice woman from his office called me and said someone from the local office would be in touch. Not half an hour later did I get a call from the local office. Of course, it wasn’t just that easy, but eventually the situation was sorted out. So I was surprised to see a box with a big tin of popcorn waiting for me when I got home along with a card that says “Thank you for being a Comcast customer. We’re sorry for any inconvenience you may have experienced. Our goal, as always, is to give you our best service. We appreciate your understanding.”
A piece in the Wall Street Journal the other day about Motorola’s desperate search for a successor to the Razr reveals a “favorite refrain” of Motorola CEO Ed Zander, “I love my job. I hate my customers.”
We have, on occasion, heard tales of people emailing Steve Jobs and magically, as if carried on the wings of angels, a new laptop appears at their door, along with 12 lbs of really good salami, a bubblegum machine, and one of those rare Star Wars posters that everyone wants. Apparently, there is a little bit of truth to the legend. Don’t worry vegans, there’s no salami.
Members of the House Financial Services Committee, led by Rep. Barney Frank (D., Mass.), approved a bill last week that would give shareholders an advisory vote on pay.