back to article Satya Nadella's $84.3m pay packet: Did he use the 'female superpower' to get it?

Satya Nadella famously told women to not bother asking for pay rises, which now looks a bit rich after Microsoft revealed his $83.4m pay packet. After all, what would you know about asking for a raise when your pay packet is more already than the combined wages of 800 Microsoft minions? Redmond announced its great leader's …

  1. chivo243 Silver badge
    Flame

    Average?

    average miserable employee’s $35,293 salary.

    WTF is the lowest paid employee? $15,000??

    The gap between the Haves and have nots is growing... I smell a revolution in my lifetime

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Average?

      average miserable employee’s $35,293 salary.

      WTF is the lowest paid employee? $15,000??

      The average miserable employee is more than welcome to go and work somewhere else that makes them less miserable.

      And what is the relevance of the lowest paid employee and your "plucked out of the air" number? I'm sure you're not suggesting the CEO's salary should be defined by the salary of the lowest paid employee, or vice-versa?

      1. TheOtherHobbes

        Re: Average?

        >The average miserable employee is more than welcome to go and work somewhere else that makes them less miserable.

        Yes, of course. And if they work really hard they can become CEO.

        Do you actually believe that?

        >I'm sure you're not suggesting the CEO's salary should be defined by the salary of the lowest paid employee, or vice-versa?

        That's exactly the system used in many countries. Sometimes it even does a good job of making sure that upper manudjmunt isn't staffed by posturing, preening dummies promoted far beyond their true level of competence.

        1. chris 17 Silver badge

          Re: Average?

          @TheOtherHobbes can you give examples of where top and low salary are bound by some ratio?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Average?

            > can you give examples of where top and low salary are bound by some ratio?

            The highest and lowest salaries may not be bound by a statutory ratio, but progressive taxation has that very effect on the highest/lowest wage ratio: it acts as a moderator.

            The side-effect being that there is no longer an incentive to pay obscene amounts of money at the top, because most of it ends up being taxed, but there is an incentive to raise the pay at the low end of the pay scale, in order to generate more tax revenue and spur consumption.

            Of course, understanding progressive taxation requires some basic literacy in how finance and economics work. As a bonus, an acquired ability for critical analytical thought would help as well.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Average?

          That's exactly the system used in many countries. Sometimes it even does a good job of making sure that upper manudjmunt isn't staffed by posturing, preening dummies promoted far beyond their true level of competence.

          I don't see why this mandates the need for Government intervention. If a company promotes preening dummies far beyond their true level of competence, then it is the owners who lose out. There's no need to have Government controls on this.

          Let's pick some arbitrary figures to show the folly of the proposition. Let's assume a law is introduced such that the highest and lowest salaries cannot differ by more than a factor of 10.

          Say the company I built up over many years and made many sacrifices to make work, starts to work. I decide I'm going to reap the rewards of my own efforts and pay myself £1m per year. I'm then forced to ensure everyone else is paid a minimum of £100k per year, regardless of their market worth. I could have an administrative assistant being paid far more than competent highly skilled individuals working at competitor companies.

          I'd have a queue of low skilled workers forming a queue at my door to try and secure themselves are lucrative jackpot.

          Or we spin it around. Say my lowest paid employee is on £15,000pa, the multiple of ten would then restrict my salary to £150kpa. Some would say that's more than enough. I would say that for the sacrifices made, the years without salary, and my own money I put at risk, I should be allowed to pay myself whatever I like from my own company.

          You might want to argue over the numbers, they are arbitrary, however, whatever numbers you choose, the principal remains.

          The alternate solutions are I simply don't employ anyone below a certain salary, instead I find a way of contracting those services in. Or I could look to relocate the business to a country without such draconian restrictions - bolster someone else's economy.

          1. Mikerahl

            Re: Average?

            And the solution any government (outside of North America) would be equally appropriate, simply advise the company that they are welcome to sell their products somewhere else. No significant numbers of employees locally should automatically mean a complete ban on all sales of all products by that company. And that means employees right up the chain. They want to move their production to Asia? No problem, please feel free to stop selling anything made there here.

            1. DavCrav Silver badge

              Re: Average?

              "And the solution any government (outside of North America) would be equally appropriate, simply advise the company that they are welcome to sell their products somewhere else. No significant numbers of employees locally should automatically mean a complete ban on all sales of all products by that company. And that means employees right up the chain. They want to move their production to Asia? No problem, please feel free to stop selling anything made there here."

              How exactly would that work with things like software, or music for an even more fun example?

          2. alwarming
            Paris Hilton

            Re: Average?

            > If a company promotes preening dummies far beyond their true level of competence,

            > then it is the owners who lose out. There's no need to have Government controls on this.

            In an ideal world, yes. But remember owners are represented by board.. and boards hire from the old boys network for the top jobs. Boards pays them well not just for competently heading the company but also to earn their loyalty and currying favours.

            Yes, employees can always leave in theory, but how many times have you seen employees leaving because their CXO is getting an obscene pay ? In a large enough company (>10k employees), the damage per employee is usually < 1% which is easy to ignore - if you never received it in first place!

            And regarding dummies: leadership comptency is not really a black and white skill like coding. Some leaders have their own vision and drive (Jobs, Schmidt, Musk) which can result in unprecedented wealth creation but at the same time they can easily run a multi-billion dollar business to ground by making high risk calls that align with their vision (Elop). OTOH, a play-safe dummy can either choke the company in the long run by failing to seize opportunities (Hurd). Or maybe our dummy recognizes their limitations and relies on a smart group of advisors to grow the company in a sustained manner (Dell).

            PS: Free market is the most successful economic model, yes. But once you start treating a theorectical model like your relegion, you get fat bankers gambling away the world's wealth on even fatter CEOs....

          3. mark 177
            FAIL

            Re: Average?

            The CEOs who are paid these ridiculous amounts are rarely the people who built up the company or put their own money into it. They are hired hands getting paid millions without the slightest risk to their own finances, and who often still get the big bucks even when they fail (Meg Whitman, anyone?)

          4. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Average?

            There are other ways to pay yourself when you own a company, via stock options for example.

            That way you could take the 150 K salary and still apply the factor of 10 payscale. If you needed more, you can sell or trade your options. The money then gets reinjected into the economy instead of gathering dust in some fatcat's stock portfolio or contributing to Wall Street flash crashes.

            The problem (as raised by some economists) with astronomical salaries is that it tends to concentrate a very large amount of wealth into fewer and fewer hands.

            There is also the unsettling fact that 80 % of the world's wealth is held by 10 % of the world's people. 39 % of the world's wealth is held by 1 % of the world's people.

            Hence the 99 % vs 1 % vs 0.001 % arguments.

            This doesn't lead to a very good wealth distribution curve. Nor does it give people much hope they can ever climb the ladder. In effect it is a winner takes all mentality, which historically tends to break down whenever the hungry masses decide to overthrow their wealthier overlords.

      2. chivo243 Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: Average?

        Yeah, I heard McDonald's is finally hiring again, maybe they can get in line there for a better life. Not suggesting your drivel at all? Just fair pay for hard work, whether it's cleaning up shit, or walking around giving orders following the Board of Directors script... You must be in management.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Average?

      Whether that be mean, mode or median, that is one low average. And the USA-ians' social security safety net is not famous for its generosity either.

    3. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: Average?

      $35,293. Is that the average miserable employee’s salary, or the miserable average employee’s salary?

    4. Peter Simpson 1
      Childcatcher

      Re: Average?

      The US Gov't says the 2014 poverty level for a family of four is $23k. You can't really live on that, though.

      So $12k above the poverty level is Microsoft's average wage?

      // yes, I realize some of their employees may be single

      // still seems awfully cheap for a company making what they do every year

      1. Zane

        Re: Average?

        Are you really surprised?

        Salary is low, quality is low. Seems to be a perfect match.

        /Zane

  2. codejunky Silver badge

    Really?

    I am wondering what this single guy (beyond working for MS) could have done to deserve article after article attacking him? And now of course he must be hated because he earns money. I can understand debate over his comments as they can be taken many ways especially if you ignore context or pander to feminists. Then what seemed to be an attack against him for pushing for more diversification within MS. And now attacking his pay packet.

    I must ask the question again- have militant feminists stormed the reg and forcing you to write this stuff or have they just tied you up in a corner as they type?

    1. codejunky Silver badge

      Re: Really?

      Wow have I attracted the mute vote. All these people who I assume are either against his wage but unwilling to say something like 'I am a money grabber' or are the militant feminist group at El Reg adding to the downvotes. Or amusingly it could be a loner with multiple accounts. Either way I see a lack of response for why they feel this single guy at microsoft deserves attacking in multiple articles including for his pay packet.

      1. xbit

        Re: Really?

        You must be new here. I can't think of a time when The Register hasn't stuck the boot into Microsoft.

        I doubt that a "militant feminist group" has stormed the news room.

        1. codejunky Silver badge

          Re: Really?

          @ xbit

          "You must be new here. I can't think of a time when The Register hasn't stuck the boot into Microsoft."

          I have been here a while but this seems quite a large jump for me. If it was just MS bashing I would brush it off as the usual daftness and leave it be. But instead it started with the guys poorly phrased comment which was a debatable subject which would also attract angry people. But then there was an article about his promoting of equality which seemed to continue the feeding for angry feminists (the sort of thing I see on the guardian and Jezebel) and now this.

          However this topic isnt just a 'bash the MS guy for his wage' it is a continuation of the feminist feeding as it is clear in the headline as well as the text itself. I dunno if I have missed this in the past but last I checked MS bashing consisted of the many things appropriate to bash them for instead of thoughtless man beating. If they wanted to beat up MS again they could just post an article of win 8

  3. John P

    Couldn't agree more.

    What he said last week was terribly phrased, no denying that, but it must take a massive act of wilful ignorance to not be able to clearly see what he was *trying* (very badly) to say.

    MS CEO gets paid a s**tload of money, not exactly a headline story there El Reg. So far Nadella has made one cock-up, and seems to be receiving a disproportionate amount of attacks for it.

    The MS hate seems to overriding proportionality and reason even more than usual.

    1. Tom Maddox Silver badge
      Holmes

      Yes, he was trying to say, "Don't worry your pretty little heads about asking for raises. The men above you will let you know what you're worth."

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Depressing

    Not picking on Nadella as he's not the only one, but it got me pondering...

    At this rate, in 11 years, he will have made almost a BILLION dollars. And it's not like he founded the company. He's just an employee.

    Put another way, in context for me, that means he makes as much in three weeks as I have made in a lifetime (30 years) of work. And like many sysadmins, I worked a LOT of hours over those years, so it's probably more like 45 real years of work. It's actually quite depressing to think about it.

    1. Mephistro
      Unhappy

      Re: Depressing

      "It's actually quite depressing to think about it."

      The same happens with most of the workings of the Good Old Boys Network. Eighty four million dollars for Satya, cause he is a good chap, plays by our rules and will return the favor.

      Depressing, indeed.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Depressing

      > He's just an employee.

      Yeah... not a founder. Not even an old white guy. Just an employee.

      1. Yes Me Silver badge

        Re: Depressing

        Just an employee who knows that the more they pay uppity underlingettes, the less cash is left for his bonus. So it's better if the underlingettes keep quiet.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    That salary

    just brings to mind expressions learnt at school, like: "fuck a duck". Or "fuck me sideways". Its so absurd I wonder if I got smashed without realizing it, or I've been on that strong a trip I've forgotten what I did.

    Now, this isn't supposed to be snide or detrimental in any way, but a salary like that just seems like when you get to a certain worth, the structure of your head is able to withstand so much more - like the beginning of a super power - that they stop paying you money and just put a compressor hose in your ear and make your head physically larger. When you get to the next level - like the macro version of quantum theory - it can take that much more, so gets pumped up that much more. And when you get to Nutella's level, they actually inflate it to larger than the planet, and you are in space, looking down at the Earth, and naturally high, in a far better way than than you can get with dope or acid.

    Few people know of this - naturally - but it does leak out; the serious bread-head will one day stumble on to this arcane secret that makes the pretension of Freemasonry and Skull and Bones look petty and disturbed, and it vexes them mightily! And the best they can do to compensate is post here defending such extreme remuneration to the likes of you and me.

    But I do dearly wish I too could just float around in space, the Earth in near-me orbit, looking down at all the little insects going about their lives thinking they have free choice and any influence. Talk about mwah ha ha!

  6. samlebon2306

    Well, he got a phallocratic paycheck. If you compare it to those dummies who appear in stupid movies and get $20+ million, then you could Mr. bid dick Nadella deserves that boatload. Anyway, welcome to blind capitalism where nothing makes sense.

  7. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

      re: hard work

      well, they have - just the pay, not the hard work

  8. UNIX translator

    Nadella was showing his Indian but nobody in the media had the cojones to call him on it because of perceived political correctness in the liberal media so they dreamed up a new spin at Microsoft for him that's all! I'm not buying the humble pie spin

    1. Reg T.

      The Dalits

      always complain about Aryan privilege.

      Nadella deserves his wage, since MS is now much improved than before. His improvements to Windows Update and its Tuesday offerings are leaps and bounds....whoops, crap is what I meant.

      Avatars are not accountable to any mere human!

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