Last year it was reported that Kentucky State University’s interim president, Raymond Burse, had agreed to take a $90,000 pay cut in order to boost the pay of his minimum wage employees. Earlier this year, Dan Price, who is the CEO of Seattle-based company Gravity Payments, agreed to take a 90 percent pay cut in order to ensure all of his employees made at least $70,000 annually over the next three years. While both of these executive acts are beyond commendable, they are also very uncommon.
To prove just how uncommon they are, the career review site Glassdoor examined the ratio of CEO wages to median worker wages for companies listed in the S&P 500. The total CEO compensation used in the project is from Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filings and median worker pay is based on Glassdoor salary reports. Since 2008, Glassdoor has collected voluntary and anonymous salary reports from employees with the goal of encouraging pay transparency in the workplace. To ensure statistical accuracy, analysts only included companies with at least 30 salary reports on Glassdoor.
Based off the results, CEOs earn approximately 204 times the median pay of their employees, with the average CEO earning $13.8 million per year and the average worker earning about $77,800 per year. Topping the list was Discovery Communications, where their CEO David M. Zaslav earned $156 million in 2014, compared to his employees who earned an average pay of $80,000.
As the debate continues about income inequality, the growing wealth gap, and whether or not America’s CEOs are overpaid, take a look at Glassdoor’s chart below to see what companies are being spotlighted for their ridiculous CEO-to-employee pay gap.