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职场 - 专栏

董事会虚位以待,应聘者仍须慎重

Eleanor Bloxham 2011年12月26日

工资自己定,时薪动辄上千美元,几乎不会失业,业余时间有保证,事业生活完美平衡。没错,董事的工作看上去很美,而且你可能觉得自己已经做好了准备。但你仍然需记住,并不是所有人都有胜任这份工作所需要的勇气。

    数百万人在Monster.com等求职网站上苦心搜寻更好的工作机遇,但有一种职位他们不可能在网站上找到,那就是公司董事职位。

    但是,如果财富五百强公司的董事会真的在网络上发布招聘广告,一定会得到潮水般的响应。

    你想寻求工作与生活的平衡吗?你希望在家工作(至少是部分时间在家);自己设定自己的薪酬,每小时1,000美元起步;不用担心解雇和裁员的威胁;拥有业余时间,不用发愁没人请。同时还能为退休收入提供绝好的补充。而且不需要申请。

    公司董事会的职位空缺供不应求。尽管最近招聘形势有所放缓,但很快将会出现更多董事会的职位空缺。史宾沙管理顾问咨询公司(Spencer Stuart)进行的一项调查表明,“大概上有三分之二(的董事表示他们的董事会)正在寻找合适人选以替代即将退休的董事。”斯坦福大学洛克公司治理中心和海德思哲国际咨询公司(Heidrick and Struggles)进行的一项调查表明:“有超过半数的董事认为董事会的人员流动率过低。”

    诚然,公司董事会的工作已经今非昔比。董事们的工作时间要比十年前更长了。但对于有意应征董事会职位的人来说,有些方面仍然值得期待。

光鲜的一面

    2010年,公司董事的工作小时数比2009年有所减少【根据全国公司董事协会(the National Association of Corporate Directors)提供的数据,工作小时数减少了9%】,而薪酬则有所上升【根据韬睿惠悦咨询公司(Towers Watson)提供的数据,涨幅达到了6%】。这使得财富五百强企业董事会成员的每小时工资额从约890美元增加到了1,040美元,提高了将近150美元,飙升了17%,这些数据在当前的经济形势下显得很是抢眼。

    最重要的是,薪酬增长的前景也很不错。韬睿惠悦咨询公司的调查显示,财富五百强企业董事薪酬预计今年将再增加10%。由于工作小时数几乎没有变化,公司董事的每小时工资额在短短两年内实际增长了高达28%。

    薪酬丰厚、工作时间灵活,人们钟情董事会职位的原因显然还不仅于此。如果你能够成功得到一个这样的职位,它带给你的满意度可能会非常之高。女性公司董事协会(Women Corporate Directors)和海德思哲国际咨询公司所做的一份调查显示,96%的人都对工作满意。(与此相反,时下大多数职员的对自己的工作满意度极低,两相比较,可见一斑。)

    由于很多公司限制首席执行官和其他高管进入董事会,近几年董事会职位空缺不断增多,因此对于已退休或自己创业的人而言,这是个不错的机会。

    并且,如果你不是在任的首席执行官,那么你将会有更大机会获得董事会职位。实际上,根据洛克中心的调查,与之前的认识相反,79%的董事表示“在任的首席执行官并不比未担任首席执行官的董事会成员更出色。”

    While millions comb sites like Monster.com looking for greener pastures, there is one job opening they won't find there: a corporate board position.

    But if Fortune 500 boards did advertise online for candidates, the response would likely be overwhelming:

    Looking for work-life balance? Work from home (at least part of the time). Set your own pay -- $1,000 per hour and up. No threat of layoffs or workforce cutbacks. Part-time hours and multiple positions available. Excellent way to supplement your retirement income. No application necessary.

    Jobs on corporate boards are filled every day. Although hiring has slowed down recently, more positions could be opening up soon. "Roughly two-thirds [of directors say their boards] are seeking candidates to replace retiring directors," according to a Spencer Stuart survey. And "more than half of directors think that board turnover is too low" according to a survey by the Rock Center for Corporate Governance at Stanford University and Heidrick and Struggles.

    True, working on a corporate board isn't what it used to be. The hours are longer than a decade ago. But there are some really bright spots from the perspective of board candidates.

The bright side

    Board directors' hours were shorter in 2010 than 2009 (dropping 9%, according to the National Association of Corporate Directors) while pay was up (rising 6%, according to consultant Towers Watson). This boosted the hourly rate for Fortune 500 directors by nearly $150, from approximately $890 to $1040; that's a 17% jump, certainly robust in this economy.

    On top of that, prospects for increased pay look good. Director pay is expected to increase another 10% at Fortune 500 firms this year, according to Towers Watson. With similar work hours, that's a 28% boost to directors' hourly rate in just two years.

    Great pay and flexible hours are certainly not the only reasons you'd want a board job. If you can nab one of these spots, you are likely to be really happy with the work. That's what 96% said in a survey by Women Corporate Directors (WCD) and Heidrick and Struggles. (Consider how that compares to the low satisfaction rates among most workers today.)

    If you are retired or working for yourself, board jobs have been opening up in recent years because many companies have adopted rules restricting CEOs and other executives from sitting on them.

    And if you are not a sitting CEO, your chances of getting a spot are better than ever. In fact, contrary to previous wisdom, 79% of directors said that "active CEOs are no better than non-CEO board members," according to the Rock Center's survey.

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