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Dan - As a veteran of multiple start-up companies, the issues you describe are indeed real. That said, it's really more of a communications problem, rather than a compensation issue. Startup CEO's have typically not attended CEO school, and they sometimes fail to understand the power of off the cuff comments they may utter when among their employees. I've seen it time and again; CEO's sitting down with employees and unknowingly making commitments they didn't realize they were making. Deliberation, clarity and a written agenda with scripted comments goes a long way in preventing the unintentional blurb that could very well seriously bruise their credibility.


I totally agree. In fact, fellow Comp Cafe'ers Margaret O'Hanlon, Ann Bares and I are putting the finishing touches on a new ebook titled "Everything in Compensation is Communication."

Whether it's inadvertent commitments, programs intended to do one thing, but designed to something totally different, or just simple avoidance of the issue, communication and compensation are tied to this particular type of failure.


From childhood for any work we say we will do it tomorrow....but tomorrow never comes.

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