Royal Caribbean Thanks Its Employees In Tangible Ways
Bruce Parkinson, Open Jaw
Royal Caribbean stock shot up once more yesterday, not only in response to a solid earnings report, but apparently due to a healthy dose of humanity exhibited by the company.
Chairman/CEO Richard Fain explained during this morning's fourth quarter earnings call: "In order to reach...aspirational goals, we had to raise our game in many, many areas."
He cited upgrades in all areas ranging from surpassing financial targets to onboard product. Fain then went on to describe how the line is raising its game in terms of how it rewards employees.
"Because this achievement would not have been possible without the passion and the commitment of our people, the company has decided to give them a surprise reward,” Fain said. “Every one of our 65,000 employees will receive a bonus equal to 5% of their salary. We're calling this, ‘The Thank You, Thank You’ bonus.”
The $80 million program is not a cash bonus. "It will be in the form of equity grants vesting over three years, thereby giving every employee a stake in the company's future," said Fain. "The program also includes major upgrading of crew facilities and recreation areas. Our people are what make our business. We wanted to show our appreciation in a tangible way, and we wanted it to reach every employee regardless of level of the organization."
Later, Fain noted, "Ethical leadership is an important part of our world view."
It also helped that business is strong. "We're heading into another record year," said Fain. UBS financial analyst Robin Farley: "2018 bookings are ahead of last year's record levels and at higher prices."
Bruce Parkinson Editor-in-Chief
An observer and analyst of the Canadian and international travel industries for over 25 years, Bruce uses the pre-dawn hours to prepare a daily news and information package to keep industry members up to date.