Network Rail: backtracking on bonuses

There must be some relief this morning that common sense has prevailed and the four Network Rail directors set to share £300,000 in bonuses have at last decided to defer them until after the investigation into the Cumbria rail accident has been concluded.

I say at last because the bonuses of more that 100 staff directly and indirectly linked to the incident had already been frozen. The directors, among them FD Ron Hendersen, had thought otherwise about their own annual payouts, however.

To freeze some, but not their own bonuses was always a thoroughly naive move by the Network Rail chiefs. In one single stroke of genius they managed to alienate their staff and the unions, as well as provide more ammunition to those who like to sling mud at ‘fat cat pay’.

You’ve really got to wonder whether they sat back and considered even for a moment the rather subtle, but oh so significant question of, ‘How is this going to look?’

Fair play for putting things right, but only after putting a bullet through their collective corporate feet. Best to spend a little money in future on PR training, I think.

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