June 15, 2008

Rebuild Your Database Marketing Department: Part 7 (Salary Information Included)

Create A Career Path

Near the end of your first year, you know your people, you know them really well. Some have "it", that special intangible skill that enables them to become Executives. Some have "that", that special technical skill that allows them to be a subject matter expert at what they do. And then you have all the valuable employees who are needed to make sure the company keeps running.

You'll need to have multiple career paths for folks.

Folks will need to know what it takes to have your job.

Folks will need to know what it takes to have another leadership position in another department.

Folks will need to know what it takes to become the imperial wizard, the subject matter expert revered by all.

All three paths require "the juice", a combination of compensation, recognition, autonomy, authority, and accountability. "The juice" must be clearly stated, must be good enough for folks to stretch themselves to strive toward. And you must follow-through on "the juice" --- it isn't a carrot you dangle in front of folks forever.

You'll partner with Human Resources to develop the career paths. And if your Human Resources team (or Executive Leadership) fail to provide you with the authority to compensate folks, promote folks, or given them what they need, you need to communicate this fact to your staff --- allowing them to make decisions that are in their best interests.

Too often, the Human Resources / Compensation department carry out the wishes of Sr. Management --- by suppressing expense. How is a 3% cost-of-living increase going to pay for the gas required to get you to work? They aren't on the side of your employees --- YOU have to be on the side of your employees, defending their interests.

Part of the career path includes compensation. Entry level analysts will probably fetch $40,000 to $60,000 per year. Sr. Analysts and Managers might fetch between $60,000 and $100,000. Directors could earn $100,000 to $150,000 per year, and might command a 20% bonus. A well-qualified Vice President probably earns between $150,000 and $225,000 per year, with a 30% bonus.

The challenge is to create a career path for non-management folks, one that can get them into six-figure territory without having to manage staff. One might consider a significant incentive-based salary, one that depends upon the incremental profit the individual contributes to the organization.

So create some sort of career advancement plan that benefits them, be on their side!