Generosity and business do not usually go hand in hand; big money companies are typically run by power-hungry CEOs. These 5 people are very different.
As we all know, there are always exceptions to any rule. And what better rule to break than the rule that states corporate leaders shouldn’t care about their employees and should only be preoccupied with the bottom line. These are a few of those rule breakers, a few corporate leaders that were so generous that you might mistake them for hippies on humanitarian missions than corporate shills. Here are amazingly generous bosses that will inspire you.
1. Dan Price
You’ve probably heard all about Price. He was the CEO of Gravity Payments who cut his own inflated salary by almost $1 million to pay every single one of his employees (including himself) a monthly salary of $70,000. He did so to take a stand against income inequality and because of a 2010 Princeton University study that concluded that emotional and financial health tied closely up to $75,000.
2. Jeffery Hildebrand
Jeffery Hildebrand is the founder and CEO of gas and oil production company Hilcorp Energy Company – which isn’t that amazing. What is amazing, however, is the fact that Hildebrand gave each of his employees a $100,000 check when the company met all the goals it had set five years before. Oh, and this isn’t the first time he pulled a CEO-Santa. Just six years ago, his company gave every single employee the choice between a car worth $50,000 or a cash gift of $30,000. Hilcorp has since been voted the Best Place for Millenials to Work and was ranked among the very honorable Best Workplaces for Diversity.
3. Ken Grenda & Sons
So, what do really ridiculously rich people do when they sell their companies? Do they bring garbage bags full of money home, spread it out on a bed, and roll around in it? Do they fill their three-person bathtubs with paper currency and take a relaxing dip in it? Or do they give a huge chunk of it to their employees? Well, Ken Grenda and his sons gave each and every one of their employees a cash bonus when they sold their 66-year-old bus company. Employees received between $30,000 and $100,000, depending on their service with the company. The bonuses in total were worth $15 million.
4. Stephen Cloobeck
I’m not sure if you’re familiar with a TV program called Uncover Boss but, basically, it shows a boss that goes undercover (thank you, Captain Obvious). Okay, to be fair, it’s pretty elaborate. Basically, a boss volunteers to be transformed with make-up, facial prosthetics, and bad wigs, and starts working at their own company as an employee to see how things are going on the ground level. The thing is: most assume they are going to catch lazy, listless employees red-handed, stealing, fornicating, and drinking on the job. Instead, most of them see that the problems their companies are experiencing are organizational and not necessary because of their employees, which is a pretty sweet foot sandwich for most of these bosses and infinitely satisfying to watch happen.
Usually, the boss’ redemption comes in the form of a raise or the promotion of an exceptional employee. Cloobeck, on the other hand, spent a total of $2 million (a million of which was completely personal funds) to create a crisis fund and, with the help of every single one of his 5,600 employees, he actually saved one of his employees’ life by paying for his cancer treatment. Upon his second appearance, he paid for an employee’s child’s surgery… and then bought her a car and a house. On his first appearance, although he stormed out, he helped the person he worked with pay for daycare and he even set up a trust fund for his employee.
5. Richard Branson
Okay, maybe I was a little unfair to the corporate shills in the intro. There are many companies out there that offer their employees extremely generous benefits, including the infamous Google death benefit that pays a Google employee’s family their salary for close to a decade and helps with their children’s education. Well, Richard Branson of the famous Virgin Group offers unlimited vacation days and an entire year’s worth of parental leave to new parent employees.
See Also: How to Be a Better Boss
Can you think of any other extremely generous bosses? Let us know in the comments section below!