As much as it pains me to admit it, Ford is a company to be admired. When bailouts were handed around like doobies in the Summer of Love, they didn’t partake (argue that point amongst yourselves, but you know what I mean). Their cars are interesting (to say the least) and their reliability is now being thought of in the same vein as Toyota, Honda and Hyundai. All of this is down to one man, Mr Alan “I bet you wish to made me CEO now! Eh, Boeing?!” Mulally. He put forward a vision of Ford divisions and subsidiaries working together to create a global product. He pared down the extraneous brands. He put the axe to Mercury and he didn’t need a bankruptcy to do it. In short, Mr Mulally has done well at Ford. The question is how well?
Business Standard Motoring reports that Alan Mulally picked up $17.9 million in pay during 2009. In comparison, Aiko Toyoda earned less that $1.1 million (this is inferred, because he wasn’t named in a company filing to the Japanese Finance Ministry), Carlos Ghosn picked up $9.9 million, Honda’s Takanobu Ito walked away with $1.3 million. However, what makes this story interesting is that some people think that Mr Mulally’s pay packet is a good thing, something Japanese companies should emulate.
“Because of globalisation, competition is intensifying, and there is a greater importance placed on strong and decisive management,” said Katsuyuki Kubo, an associate professor of economics at Waseda University in Tokyo who specialises in compensation and corporate governance. “Without the pay incentive, Japan could lose out on competitiveness.” Active advocation of higher CEO salaries? Well, Toyota is struggling to keep their image of quality & reliability, Honda is struggling in North America due to its failing “Acura” brand. So maybe Mr Mulally is now starting to look like good value for money. Maybe that could be their next tagline?
“Buy a Ford, they’re great value for money. Just like our CEO!” Well, it’s better than “Drive one”…