Are Your Executives Mosaic?

For business and personal reasons, I travel quite a bit. And, I almost always travel on jetBlue as they service pretty much everywhere that I want to go. 

A few years back, I qualified for their “Mosaic” level which is their frequent flyer program.  Over time, I’ve spoken to others that are also Mosaic level and universally it is highly regarded. 

It provides the ability to change my flights without extra fees, the ability to change to any available flight within 24 hours of my booked flight, two free luggage checks and 24 hour dedicated Mosaic customer service that actually works! I also get on the flight first so I have early access to the overhead bins and time to get settled in. I even learned recently that my checked bags can be up to seventy pounds each. (Who thinks of these things?) Lastly, I accumulate points for free flights that have no restrictions.

Given the fact that I’m in the executive benefits business, what I realize is that this is a retention program. 

Airlines do this to keep you coming back and have been doing so for many years. However, I would say that jetBlue has taken it to a new level because, for the first time, I care about not losing this privilege. Even though during Covid-19 I am no longer traveling like I once did, I know that I will again someday. Jetblue has made sure to provide options to keep my Mosaic status.

When it comes to your own executives, what are you doing to create retention aspects of their employment that they don’t want to lose? 

Certainly a challenging position that provides promotion opportunities and recognizes achievements is critical, in addition to a competitive compensation and benefits offering. 

But what other areas could be improved?

Some other offerings I would suggest include:

Long Term Incentive Plans (LTIP) – Create bonus arrangements that vest over a longer period of time, generally over a 3-5-year period. If another employment opportunity comes along, an employee should have something on the table that they are going to have to walk away from. The harder it is to walk away from, the more likely you will retain them.

Deferred Compensation – Because of compensation and contribution limits placed on qualified plans and 401(k) savings vehicles, it is highly unlikely that these plans will provide enough retirement benefits for highly compensated employees. Often these plans will only replace 30% or less of pre-retirement income and that includes Social Security. 

A voluntary deferred compensation plan can provide an additional pre-tax, tax deferred savings option and regardless of how much you earn, saving it through payroll deduction is the easiest approach. They help retain because if the employee chooses to leave, these plans will often become immediately taxable which most would prefer to avoid.

Access to ancillary benefits Whether it is insurance products such as life, disability or long-term care, getting access and expertise to these as an individual is difficult. Almost all carriers today provide significant discounts and underwriting concessions when done through an employer. Whether provided with an employer match or on a voluntary basis, the more connections an employee has through their employer the less likely they are to leave.

I hope this helps you to create your own Mosaic level retention program for your executives.

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