GYC (Grow Your Capital) Financial Advisory Pte. Ltd. is a leading provider of financial services in Singapore. GYC was started in the late 1980s by Goh Yang Chye, and has now grown into a one-stop financial services center for both companies and individuals.
GYC has a flexible reward system designed specifically for its four types of staff: the support staff, business development staff, partners and practices, and portfolio executives. The support staff receive monthly salaries and yearly bonuses, with their bonuses being calculated based on three factors: their personal performance, the company's performance, and the industry's performance. The business development staff are those who are responsible for servicing the clients, as well as securing business for the company. They are paid a basic monthly salary, as well as "on-target earnings" that are paid based on a percentage of the revenue from new clients that they bring into the company beyond a certain agreed-upon target. Business development staff also receive discretionary bonuses, which are paid based on a percentage of any recurring fees GYC receives from the clients that they bring to the company.
GYC's partners are experienced individuals, who bring with them a pool of clients. These individuals are in great demand in the financial services industry and often do not wish to be full-time employees of any firm. Upon joining GYC as partners, they receive a percentage of the revenue they help secure for GYC. Practices are similar to partners, except that they have grouped themselves into teams. Some practices are formed internally by partners who joined GYC as individuals. Other practices join GYC as preexisting teams. Like partners, practices are paid a percentage of the money they make for GYC.
Portfolio executives are independent advisors or consultants to GYC. They provide professional advice to GYC on various issues. They are paid regular monthly fees called retainers, and are managed by predefined deliverables. This arrangement works well for GYC as it is able to get good advice and insights from these portfolio executives without having to pay them on a full-time basis. It also ensures that they maintain objectivity in the advice they give to the company.
GYC's reward system also includes nonmonetary benefits like flex- hours and shorter working days in order to attract and retain selected talented staff. This is because some of the staff value flexibility more than financial rewards. There is a need to fine-tune the reward system at GYC. For example, the income of some of the business development staff at GYC can be very significant in good years. Past experience indicates that business development staff are prone to leaving the company after receiving the large windfall. Further, they may actually not want all the money to be paid out in that year because they will be taxed very highly. Another challenge that GYC faces is that there is a tendency for business development staff to take undue risks when their rewards are directly linked to the revenue they bring to the company.
- How do GYC's remuneration packages relate to the various motivation theories?
- What are strengths and weaknesses of GYC's remuneration packages?
- Portfolio executives are paid based on retainer fees. Is this effective? What else can be done to reward portfolio executives?
- What advice would you give to Goh Yang Chye to overcome the remuneration challenges GYC faces?
Source: This case is based on an interview with the managing director, Gol Yang Chye.