Alan Johnson, CEO of compensation consultancy Johnson Associates, finds Facebook, and particularly Zuckerberg, to be brazen in undertaking personal expenditures that are a cost to the company.
“Facebook, of course, they don’t care what anybody thinks,” he says.
Johnson is also skeptical about the aircraft perk as a security issue.
“He could reimburse the company, and he wouldn’t show up on the list; he doesn’t care about showing up on the list,” Johnson says.
He also notes that the optics don’t quite line up. Zuckerberg’s facing such severe security threats that the company covers the cost of guarding against them gives rise to questions about his personal life. Reports earlier this month show that Zuckerberg just added a $59 million estate in Lake Tahoe to his personal real estate portfolio, as The Wall Street Journal reports.
Add to that the fact that Zuckerberg’s aircraft perks nearly tripled from the disclosed $872,000 in 2016, and “it makes you shake your head like, ‘how much time are these people really working?’” Johnson says.
Johnson notes that the top-spending execs are outliers, and he acknowledges that “airplane perks at a moderate level are OK.”
“Airplane perks continue to be under pressure. It’s a wonderful perk for executives, but shareholders don’t like it,” Johnson says. Johnson explains that it depends on what kind of agreements the company has in place. If it’s an aircraft they own, “you’re not going to stop using it,” he says. But if it’s time for a new plan or a lease is up for renewal, companies are asking, “Is this something we need to do anymore?”
AgendaWeek / May 24, 2019