The not-too-deferred compensation plan

NorthCountry FCU rewards and encourages loyalty by custom-fitting benefits to exec’s life stage and priorities.

When $580 million NorthCountry Federal Credit Union, Burlington, Vt., with 44,000 members, promoted Bob Morgan, CSE, CCE, to the CEO position in 2012, the board wanted to offer an incentive for him to stay long term.

But they didn’t simply offer him a supplemental retirement benefit, such as some off-the-shelf solutions many credit union boards have turned to. Instead, they launched a comprehensive, 16-month process of developing a compensation philosophy statement, and forming a management development and compensation committee.

The committee found that a traditional supplemental executive retirement plan might not be the best fit for Morgan.

“In our discussions, it became apparent that my financial priorities weren’t solely based on retirement,” Morgan recalls. “Back in 2012 and 2013, you might have heard me say, ‘I’m sure I’ll appreciate retirement benefits in 25 years. But right now, I’m really concerned about my kids’ college education.’”


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