I worked for a company in the office supply industry that was preparing to go public. Like most private companies, the top executives had enjoyed unencumbered raises and compensation, but now those pay scales would be public information. The problem became how to properly pay an executive team, and at the same time reward the team for building the company to this crucial IPO moment. First, I recognized that the pay scales must match the going industry standard for executive compensation and that we would have a disparity that the market place would frown upon. Secondly, I understood the tenuous challenges in adjusting anyone’s pay scale, regardless of the reason. The answer was real, honest communication, a presentation of the facts, and sharing that the public offering would reward the executive team and that the compensation would be a secondary payoff for their hard work to date.

I decided to employ the advice of the law firm working with our board of directors and the brokerage houses to create a pay scale model that we could present to the executive team and the board.  Together, we came up with a compensation package that would match their peers in the industry and reward their effort and time already invested to this point. The law firm approved my financial model, provided impartial advice and their approval paved the way for the company’s compensation filings and the upcoming IPO. The result was a successful IPO filing, happy and motivated executives and our legal advisors were on board. This is what decades of experience in management, HR and operations can do to help everyone win.


I strongly recommend that you consider using the services of S. David Wolfe to help you develop both your organizational and leadership skills.  I have found David to be experienced in a wide variety of organizations, very capable of delivering strong and effective coaching in a manner that is easy to understand with the focus on developing the positive and reducing the negatives of one’s style.  He is direct, available and easy to relate with on both a personal and professional basis.  You will not regret your selection.

Jeffrey B. - Principal

Strong and Effective Coaching