When is it age discrimination?

When can we ask applicants for their dates of birth? Many employers feel that asking for the Date of Birth for a Criminal check is a violation of EEOC. Can you help me justify my need to check employees out before hiring and screen their background which requires disclosure of Drivers License and Date of

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How the Charisma Factor Affects Executive Pay

Can mere economics explain the meteoric rise of CEO pay since the 1980s? If we liberate our minds from that warped construct known as “perfectly competitive markets,” then the answer is yes. As we’ll soon see, economics can even explain the effect of such disparate influences as government intervention and charisma. Taking nothing for granted,

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Why Boards Often Fail To Curb Executive Pay

Last fall, Richard Grasso, the chairman of the New York Stock Exchange, was forced to resign following disclosure that he had accepted a $187.5 million compensation package. The chairman didn’t set his own salary, however. The board of directors set it. What was their rationale for approving a package of that magnitude? Was he being

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Employees Don’t Respond To Most Performance Plans

It’s no secret that many performance-management systems aren’t working. This goes from the top to the bottom of organizations, from boards who adjust executives’ performance goals so they can receive pay that appears to have no relationship to company results, to levels lower down, where large numbers of employees are indifferent or unmotivated by the

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Journal Review: When Boss Resembles Beast

Feeling growled at, bullied and preyed upon? Readers won’t come away from Richard Conniff’s “The Ape in the Corner Office”with a simple guide to surviving a beastly boss. But they’re likely to learn how their boss’s moves, not to mention their own, grow from mankind’s evolutionary roots in the animal kingdom.

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Executives’ Pay Faces New Tactics

Activist shareholders are trying new tactics to rein in executive pay at U.S. companies, with proposals they hope will appeal to a broader group of investors. The new strategies include simpler, less prescriptive holder resolutions that don’t dictate executives’ pay packages. Instead, the new proposals seek to more closely align executive pay with corporate performance,

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Executives’ Pay Faces New Tactics

Activist shareholders are trying new tactics to rein in executive pay at U.S. companies, with proposals they hope will appeal to a broader group of investors. The new strategies include simpler, less prescriptive holder resolutions that don’t dictate executives’ pay packages. Instead, the new proposals seek to more closely align executive pay with corporate performance,

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Groups for Gay Employees Are Gaining Traction

For years, companies have created employee-resource groups for women and racial and ethnic minorities, aimed at boosting recruitment and retention. Now, employers increasingly are creating similar groups for gay and lesbian employees. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Morgan Stanley and Intuit Inc., among others, created groups for gay employees in the past year. The Human Rights Campaign,

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A Cheaper Alternative To Outsourcing

When calls to the reservation line at Choice Hotels International Inc. surged after an ad campaign earlier this year, Don Brockway, Choice’s vice president of world-wide reservations, found his call centers short-staffed. So he quickly arranged to add as many as 20 agents per shift.

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Focus Heightens On Retaliation Complaints

The Supreme Court hears arguments today in a case testing how managers may react after an employee complains about harassment or discrimination. But legal specialists say employers can take steps to minimize retaliation complaints through beefed-up training, investigations and follow-up efforts. The touchy issue confronts many companies. Complaints to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission that

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New View of Retirement Takes Shape Overseas

When should an executive retire? The question is gaining urgency in Europe where, for years, companies and governments have pushed people to retire earlier than their American counterparts. The mindset in Europe was that this cleared room for younger executives and brought in fresh ideas. Now, in a shift, some European companies are pushing to

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One Question, And Plenty of Debate

It is a hot business idea of the moment, a growth formula embraced by General Electric Co., American Express Co., Progressive Corp. and many others. But a growing chorus of skeptics question the value of the “net promoter” concept advocated by consulting firm Bain & Co., market researcher Satmetrix Systems Inc. and author Fred Reichheld.

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Pre-Hire Tests Aim To Stop ‘Fakers’

Psychology professor Richard Griffith is on a mission to stop “fakers.” To Dr. Griffith, of the Florida Institute of Technology, fakers are people who misrepresent themselves on personality tests increasingly used to screen applicants for entry-level jobs at call centers, retail stores and other customer-service positions. The tests typically ask candidates to agree or disagree

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Should CEOs Still Get Big Bonuses After a Bust?

Give back that bonus! That angry cry has been heard for years from governance consultants and shareholders seething at the way some chief executives grow rich as investors suffer. Usually, such shouting is futile. Bosses defend their pay or simply ignore criticism. Either way, they keep the cash, perhaps agreeing to take leaner pay packages

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Their Names Liveth Forever, Just Not on Latest Firms

What’s in a name? Plenty. Just ask people who have to compete against their own names. These entrepreneurs can face uncertain, confused customers, as well as harsh competition from businesses they no longer own that still bear their monikers. Consider what happened to executive recruiter Russell S. Reynolds Jr. at a recent cocktail party in

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