A CAP report was referenced when discussing director pay level trends based on the 2021 proxy disclosures. The report was produced by Partner Dan Laddin, Partner Matt Vnuk, and Associate Whitney Cook. Key takeaways include the median total board compensation remaining flat versus the previous year along with the fewest increases to board cash and/or equity retainers of any year during the last decade, in reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic. Looking ahead, they predict many companies to increase director pay levels and return to historic norms.

Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance highlights key insights from CAP’s memorandum on executive pay actions taken in response to COVID-19. The piece, written by partner Melissa Burek, partner Eric Hosken, principal Bonnie Schindler and senior analyst Whitney Cook, examines, among other things, the prevalence and type of incentive changes in companies with fiscal year ends near September 30. It also compares these results with earlier research of companies with fiscal year ends in June.

Partner Margaret Engel’s memorandum on early human capital management disclosures is summarized by Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance. Engels found that most disclosures to date depend heavily on a qualitative description of core values, programs and practices. In fact, very few companies are disclosing actual objectives and/or metrics used to manage the business.

Partner Melissa Burek and Senior Associate Mike Bonner conducted a survey of over 250 U.S.-based directors of publicly traded companies to gauge how board members think performance should be measured and incorporated into incentive compensation plans.