In the midst of a weak recovery from a particularly severe recession, many people are wondering whether the United States is in a state of decline, lacking the dynamism it once had. In terms of inventiveness such as patent creation the U.S. still ranks high. In other measures not so much.
“Chauffer-driven limousines, millions in stock options, golden parachutes. It’s no wonder bosses’ pay and perks can rankle,” write Ray Fisman and Tim Sullivan of The Wall Street Journal. The writers argue that “many CEOs are overpaid—or even paid for incompetence, but you can only appreciate good performance once you understand what a leader does.” But is this a balanced understanding of where CEOs are in terms of the reality on the ground?
Editor’s note: To analyze the value of so-called corporate social responsibility, Ethical Chic –from which the following is excerpted--takes an in-depth look at six companies known for CSR qualities—deservedly or not: American Apparel, Apple, Starbucks, Timberland, Tom’s of Maine, and Trader Joe’s.
While use of company aircraft is a common perk for many CEOs, a noted governance expert suggests that a formal policy for its use is the best way to protect the company and the CEO from unwanted shareholder lawsuits.
A decade ago, the average tenure of a Fortune 500 CEO was 9.5 years. Today? 3.5 years. Looking at recent stumbles at Best Buy, Yahoo, HP and elsewhere a pattern of sorts emerges that may be instructive for leaders looking to beat the odds.
Did the significant class of CEOs and business owners who won high office in 2010 make the kind of difference they’d declared they would—cutting government deficits, lightening regulatory loads, spurring job creation and generally goosing economies the same way they grew their companies?