Compensation Café

Redefining, Reshaping and Reigniting Total Rewards

Agility is not a new concept; it has trended in the past and especially today has true relevance as organizations mobilize towards a redefined way of work. As companies switch gears, reimagining work performance and execution, Rewards Professionals similarly need to reassess “how we do... Read More

Knowledge Is Influence, Not Power

The adage that knowledge is power does not always work in the business environment.  It’s nice to have but if you’re not already a decision-maker that knowledge of yours likely supports others, not yourself. On the other hand, compensation practitioners can use knowledge as a component in... Read More

Cafe Classic: SEP Street and WIIFM Way

Editor's Note:  We bring you Jim Brennan's Classic post on the home of the heartless and self-centered.  Where do performance problems hang out in your organization? Performance problems hang out in specific locations. All the dysfunctional behaviors seem to gather in a toxic cluster... Read More

Promotions Matter, Part 2

I thought I had finished with this topic in my last article, when I got a great note from one of our readers reminding me, ". . . to get managers to plan ahead for the financial part [of promotions] -- that remains a challenge." Of course, there is so much to cover on the topic of... Read More

Cafe Classic: Relax at Your Peril

Editor's Note:  There's no coasting in compensation, as Chuck Csizmar carefully explains in his Classic post. You’ve seen the company’s search ads and heard the pitch from your recruiters; you offer competitive wages.  You figure that that’s got to be a strong hook for attracting... Read More

Compensation Force

Tripwires, Hurdles and Gates... Oh My!

On the plate today: an incentive plan design primer covering the topic of performance gates.   Performance gates (also referred to as "hurdles", "tripwires", "qualifiers" and "knockouts") can play an important role in incentive plan design. When an... Read More

Maya Angelou on What We Want From Work

Compensation wisdom and a terrific quote from none other than Maya Angelou! She says: Human beings are more alike than unalike.  Whether in Paris, Texas or Paris, France, we all want to have good jobs where we are needed and respected and paid just a little more than we deserve. I call this... Read More

The Power of Participation in Your Compensation Review

A recent conversation about management participation in a compensation review brought to mind a client project where we made a big bet on involving managers. I was engaged to conduct a review of the company's compensation and benefits practices.  Managers in one particular division had... Read More

The Potential for Incentive Perversity

Need more proof that carelessly designed incentives can do more harm than good?  Check out Wikipedia's list of perverse incentives.  Perverse incentives, by definition, are those that produce unintended negative consequences.  A few laughs and some solid food for thought. A couple of my... Read More

On Essential Workers, Higher Wages and Work Design

The path to value creation, according to many in the private equity sector, is through return on invested capital (ROIC).  Indeed, they tell us, the best way to create real value in a businessis by making smart capital investment decisions. This should interest us, as HR and reward professionals,... Read More