Day: April 16, 2010

Gillett & Hicks: Overpaid, Over-leveraged And… Over

At a time when stock market flotations were all the rage in top football circles, performance-related pay (PRP) was all the rage in public sector/civil service offices. Both ideas proved to be rubbish (see “bankers’ bonuses” for details). But not before both wrought considerable damage. A key part of PRP where I once worked was the concept of “SMART” objectives, which won the “misleading acronym of the year” award so often in the early-90s it got to keep the trophy. SMART stood for “Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timeous.” And while this contained an element of superficial common-sense, it failed utterly as a measure of determining pay, for reasons to numerous and dull to detail here. However, with the “Gillett and Hicks” era at Liverpool coming to a close for the 94th time (although this time, it looks like they mean it), I thought it might be informative to apply SMART objectives to their “lively” three-and-a-bit years at Anfield. This can be done because the share offer document produced by the Americans and their “people” back in February 2007 actually set out a couple of key objectives which met the SMART criteria. And it will surprise no-one that under SMART objective-based PRP, both Gillett and Hicks would owe money. The “Background to and reasons for the offer” section of the offer document ignores “background” until it has dealt with...

Read More

World Cup Preview: Group A

The 19th FIFA World Cup kicks off in nine weeks today, and as such Dotmund continues his almost-in-depth look ahead to this summer’s festivities. Today is the beginning of his preview of each of the eight groups, having been sent foraging for facts on the internet with only his trusty huge mackerel baguette for company. Predictably enough, we start with Group A.

Read More