Whole Foods is more than a store. It’s where you go for that obscure lentil, the uber-organic lettuce, and possibly management strategies. How has this company grown so quickly while others are dropping to the beat of Walmart ungodliness?
John Mackey, the CEO of Whole Foods, released an open letter to the employees about recent changes to their salary cap. While most fortune 500 companies pay their top executives enormous salaries, Whole Food exec salaries are tied to the wages of the lowest employee. When the company does well, everyone does well.
However, headhunters are grabbing the execs with offers of huge bonuses from other companies. Come on, leave WF and come to WalMart. Sure your soul will die, but we’ll pay you 10x more salary.
So, Whole Foods increased the salary cap for execs. But not for John. Oh no, he’s reducing his salary to $1 and giving his future earnings to non-profits and setting up an emergency fund for employees who may get stricken in a Hurricane Katrina like event.
One other important item to communicate to you is, in light of my decision to forego any future additional cash compensation, our Board of Directors has decided that Whole Foods Market will contribute $100,000 annually to a new Global Team Member Emergency Fund. This money will be distributed to Team Members throughout the company based on need when disasters occur (such as Hurricane Katrina last year). The money will be placed in a special account and any money not distributed in any particular year will roll over and be added to the following year’s contribution.
The next time you gripe about a $5 organic peach at Whole Foods, remember this is more than a store. It’s a symbol of good over greed and it’s kicking Walmart’s butt.