In a story that sounded too good to be true, Dan Price, CEO of credit card processing company Gravity Payments, announced in April that he would equalize all salaries to a minimum of $70,000 a year. He also planned to cut his own $1.1 million salary. A media circus soon kicked off and Price appeared on 25+ TV shows and in mainstream news, including The Today Show and Good Morning America, speaking to the benefits of leveling employee pay.
A lawsuit filed by Priceâ€™s brother, Gravity Payments co-founder Lucas Price, has raised the question of whether this was a true act of kindness or a ploy to gain quick celebrity status. The jury is still out, but what is clear is that due diligence wasnâ€™t done prior to making the â€śgroundbreakingâ€ť decision. Now the company is left trying to figure out how to implement the policy and dealing with employee and customer backlash.
Raising a cautionary tale, the Gravity Payments story spotlights the negative consequences of going too far for 15 minutes of fame.
**This post originally appeared in Y&A’s Spark Newsletter