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Jan 26, 2007 7:37 am

In the process of interviewing for several positions last year, I was rarely surprised. The only unknown that preceeded an interview was what type of vice president the person interviewing me would be. I’ve seen Assistant, Executive, Senior, First and numerous other types of VP. Everyone in any field of business knows how much of a joke this practice is. The “jab” in American Psycho at the practice is somewhat amusing but mainly part of a larger issue: employers attempting to uptitle or otherwise stroke the ego of their employees as a means to make them happy with less pay.

I find that the more a firm tries to lavish employees with meaningless titles or other acoldaes, the less they pay. Anyone ever been with BAC here? Think of the absurd “spirit points.” (Just guess how many VPs there are at BofA…) How about all the “awards” some firms dole out? Why not? You can call 800 people a VP and it costs nothing. Less than raising the same 800 people’s salary by $1 or payout by 1 bp. Same with an award of some sort.

I’m not implying that it’s a “bad” thing per se for employers to recognize their employees for a job well done, just venting about the degree to which many use it as a substitute for compensation and more importantly the degree to which employees fall for it, enabling the practice. Do you think they have “spirit points” at GS? Hell no. There’s actually a great story about Blakefien’s early days pre-CEO when he asked what his title was. He was told “you can call yourself contessa if you want.”

Jan 26, 2007 7:27 pm

[quote=xbanker] Less than raising the same 800 people’s salary by $1 or
payout by 1 bp. Same with an award of some sort.[/quote]

People feel alot better about themselves if their title is “Investment Representative” etc rather then “Fluffer”