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While lavish executive perks often make headlines because of their excess, extra benefits for key professionals aren’t always gaudy or unwarranted. Many common perks are considered legitimate tools to help attract top talent. Understanding which typical executive perks companies use to improve their compensation packages can help you improve your benefits or negotiate a better deal for yourself.
A company car is a common executive perk that saves the executive from having to buy or lease a car for business use. Depending on the company’s arrangement, it also eliminates maintenance, repair and insurance costs. Moreover, because the executive doesn't have to use the car for personal errands, he can drive clients and associates without having to worry about whether the kids or pets have left behind a mess.
Unlike most workers, executives often receive severance pay and other benefits when they leave a company. This perk, called a Golden Parachute, provides executives with financial security should they ever be terminated. A severance package might be paid in a lump sum or over time, and might also include a continuation of benefits.
Top executives are largely responsible for the overall performance of a company. To motivate executives to make decisions that will increase the company’s profitability, a business will award them company stock as one of their perks. The value of the stock they receive might dwarf their annual pay, depending on the arrangement. This is particularly true of executives who work for publicly traded companies with sharply rising stock prices.
Smaller, but always appreciated, are workplace benefits such as a priority parking space, private washroom and private dining room. Some executives have large offices with connecting bathrooms and lounges, making it easier for them to work long hours and potentially spend the night at work.
A common executive perk is assistance with relocation expenses, such as household moving costs, help with early termination fees on contracts, deposits for new home expenses, personal travel and lodging costs and meals. When an executive relocates, these types of perks let him focus on his new work responsibilities without having to deal with issues surrounding the sale of his home. Some companies even buy the home at market price and sell it themselves so the executive doesn't have to worry about it. The relocation package might also include a country club membership in his new location.
Travel and Entertainment
When executives fly, they often fly first class. Some bring their spouses or significant others at company expense. On business trips, many executives are set up in four-star hotels and can expense all of their dining and entertainment. As part of their compensation package, some executives receive box seats or luxury boxes at sporting venues as well as season tickets to entertainment venues.
Sam Ashe-Edmunds has been writing and lecturing for decades. He has worked in the corporate and nonprofit arenas as a C-Suite executive, serving on several nonprofit boards. He is an internationally traveled sport science writer and lecturer. He has been published in print publications such as Entrepreneur, Tennis, SI for Kids, Chicago Tribune, Sacramento Bee, and on websites such Smart-Healthy-Living.net, SmartyCents and Youthletic. Edmunds has a bachelor's degree in journalism.