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Continued: Schafer: Imation board's pay is unhinged from results

  • Article by: LEE SCHAFER , Star Tribune
  • Last update: May 9, 2014 - 7:56 PM

Trudy Rautio, the CEO of Carlson, was just re-elected. The board’s chairman, L. White Matthews III, is a former chief financial officer of Ecolab.

Entrepreneur Glen Taylor, principal owner of the Timberwolves and prospective buyer of the Star Tribune, served on the board for 12 years before resigning in 2012 to spend more time on his own businesses.

But these folks have been in a system that appears unhinged from the kind of accountability most of us have in our jobs.

Maybe compensation comes down, as suggested by Breedlove, but it’s also possible not much will change. A company like Imation is big enough to have plenty of money to shovel to its board members, but it’s no longer big enough to get a lot of scrutiny, from investors or anybody else.

Only two analysts appear to be actively following the company. The largest shareholder is a global electronics company based in Japan. No activist shareholder is threatening an attempt to unseat the board.

Imation isn’t the only small public company in this situation, of course, but there’s a lesson here worth passing to young people now planning for their careers.

If you’re looking for a safe, well-paying and secure profession, dental hygienist isn’t bad, at about $63,000 per year.

Correctional officer? That average salary in Minnesota was just $45,120 in 2012.

But for a fabulously well-paying and secure job that leaves plenty of time for other activities, just try to get appointed to the Imation board.

lee.schafer@startribune.com • 612-673-4302

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