Showing posts from November, 2005

Ronald McDonald House is Not What You Think

Recently I visited the Nashville Ronald McDonald House, along with Tami Heim and Dawn Stanton, to tour their facility and receive their thanks for last year's sponsorship of their telethon. What I found there surprised me. Most of us think that McDonalds supports Ronald McDonald House via the coin boxes under their drive-in windows and probably some corporate help since the houses bear the corporation's name. Actually, that's not at all the case. For the naming rights to the RMH facilities, McDonalds leverages their vendor relationships to get free or drastically reduced cost materials and equipment to open each house. That does not even begin to cover the capital expense of opening a house, but it certainly helps. McDonalds also passes along customer generosity from their coin drops, but again that doesn't even cover a fraction of each house's operating expenses. Each RMH is a free standing, self-funded charitable entity that relies on financial support and volun

The Dangers of a Moralistic Approach to Compensation This article in today's on-line NYT ties in eerily with an experience of mine several years ago and another earlier this week. If you read about halfway down the first page you'll see that while the article says "GM", it's really discussing drastic cutbacks in employment, wages, and benefits at the GM subsidiary Delphi. One of it's largest divisions is Delphi Packard Electric, which is direct competitor with one of my former employers. In 1996 I had an altercation with an engineering manager who was losing an Engineering Technician to Delphi Packard. His tech was making $7.50 an hour for us and left to work at a nearby DPE plant for $15.15 an hour. It was one of those conversations that you get used to when managing compensation, with the manager taking the moral high ground that the corporation