Friday, June 11, 2010

Corporate Safe Rooms: What Lies Beneath?

"Not just for celebrities, businesses often use hardened safe rooms for potential harboring of executives..."

Hmmn.  I have mixed feelings about providing executives a bunker in which to save themselves when a criminal attack or other disaster strikes.  While there are a few companies whose fortunes rise and fall with the physical and emotional well being of their "rock star" CEO, a sumptuously appointed corporate safe room, provisioned for days of use, and equipped with alternate escape tunnel smacks of an Enron-sized ego. Who would like to work for an executive who plans to hide behind a locked door and leave the rest of his staff to face the threat?  More to the point, what board of directors of a publicly traded US company is spending the sort of money this solution requires instead of implementing precautions that protect the entire workforce.  Perhaps this sort of perk is popular with royalty and oligarchs who are spending their own money, but I'd like to think real leaders will make arrangements to look after every member of their teams, whether they work in the lobby or the boardroom.

1 comment:

  1. I agree with many of your points. To answer the question of what board of directors
    would spend that sort of money: the boards of directors of the 350 biggest public U.S. corporations that voted for exorbitant CEO compensation in 2005 that averaged 240 times more than the compensation earned by the average worker. That sort of inequity follows for all perks. Average employees don't get protection details when they travel or security drivers in armored vehicles to and from work either. These perks may be viewed by an average person as inequities that place different values on the lives of people based on their pay grade. They do. That's a fact whether you're talking about old-world royalty or new world American "royalty". I'm sure there are some CEOs who would not accept such levels of protection because of the points made above, perhaps for other reasons. Other CEOs may see such protection as an inequity and simply not care and accept the added protection of a safe room while those with the biggest egos would not see any issue whatsoever. Granted there's little difference between the last two. This doesn't make them bad people or even bad leaders, just not the type of leaders you or I would prefer to follow.