Close
Learning Methods
Classroom
A traditional classroom couples on-site learning with the added value of face-to-face interaction with instructors and peers. With courses and exams scheduled worldwide, you will be sure to find a class near you.
Interaction
Highly Interactive
On-going interaction with instructor throughout the entire classroom event
Interaction with peers/professionals via face-to-face
Components (May Include)
Onsite
On-site instructor-led delivery of course modules, discussions, exercises, case studies, and application opportunities
Supplemental learning elements such as: audio/video files, tools and templates, articles and/or white papers
E-course materials available two weeks prior to the course start date; printed course materials ship directly to the event location
Duration
One + Days
Varies by course ranging from one to multiple days
Technical Needs
Specific requirements are clearly noted on the course page
Virtual Classroom
Ideal for those who appreciate live education instruction, but looking to save on travel. A virtual classroom affords you many of the same learning benefits as traditional–all from the convenience of your office.
Interaction
Highly Interactive
On-going interaction with instructor throughout the entire virtual classroom event
Interaction with peers/professionals via online environment
Components (May Include)
Live online instructor-led delivery of course modules, discussions, exercises, case studies, and application opportunities
Supplemental learning elements such as: audio/video files, tools and templates, articles and/or white papers
E-course materials available up to one week prior to the course start date. Recorded playback and supplemental materials available up to seven days after the live event.
Duration
Varies by course ranging from one to multiple sessions
Technical Needs
Adobe Flash Player
Acrobat Reader
Computer with sound capability and high-speed internet access
Phone line access
E-Learning
A self-paced, online learning experience that allows you to study any time of day. Course material is pre-recorded by an instructor and you have the flexibility to view content modules as desired.
Interaction
Independent Learning
Components (May Include)
Pre-Recorded
Pre-recorded course modules
Supplemental learning elements such as: audio/video files, online quizzes
E-course materials start on the day of purchase
Optional purchased print material ships within 7 business days
Duration
120 Days - Anytime
120-day access starts on the day of purchase
Direct access to all components
Technical Needs
Adobe Flash Player
Acrobat Reader
Computer with sound capability and high-speed internet access
Close
Contact Sponsor
E-Reward
Online
Paul Thompson
Phone: 1 44 01614322584
Contact by Email | Website
Close
Sorry, you can't add this item to the cart.
You have reached the maximum allowed quantity for purchase in your cart or the item isn't available anymore.
Product successfully added to your cart!
Price
View your cart
Continue shopping
WORKSPAN
WORKSPAN DAILY |

A Grand Experiment: Axon Rolls Dice with Risk-Reward Equity Plan

Image

More than 50% of eligible Axon employees have agreed to gamble a portion of their salary on the long-term success of the Scottsdale, Ariz.-based law enforcement technology company.

The eXponential Stock Performance Plan, presented to all eligible U.S.-based employees in December, guaranteed that every employee received 60 special eXponential stock units (XSUs) in January. All U.S.-based employees who make over $100K in OTE (on-target earnings) were also eligible to put between 5% and 50% of their compensation package into the plan. The company announced Thursday that 300-plus eligible employees elected to invest a portion of their compensation for a payout several years down the road that is contingent upon the company and the stock market's performance.

Employees chose to allocate about $75 million of guaranteed compensation over the next nine years into at-risk performance-based XSUs, Axon said in a press release.

The plan is modeled after Axon CEO and Founder Rick Smith’s own compensation plan, which he announced in February of 2018. Smith agreed to relinquish his salary and get paid only if the company meets specific milestones under the 10-year plan. Smith could net $1 billion if all the milestones are reached, which will be paid out in restricted stock options, while his employees would be paid in stock.

Smith said the plan’s enrollment of more than half of eligible employees was a little higher than he expected.

“There was a lot of skepticism externally that people would opt into this because of the risk and the timeline — it’s a nine-year plan,” he said. “So, especially when a lot of our more senior technical and software leaders signed up for this, that was really a positive surprise.”

After Tesla announced its 2018 compensation plan for CEO Elon Musk, the chairman of the compensation committee for Axon’s board of directors, Hadi Partovi, approached Smith about the idea. Once the plan was put into place, Smith had interactions with employees whom he said were excited for him and eager to help him reach his goal. Smith said that made him feel like he was on an island.

That put the wheels in motion for the eXponential Stock Performance Plan.

Given Axon’s position in the tech space, most of their competitors are Silicon Valley and Seattle startups. Smith felt his compensation model, on a lesser scale, would appeal to those employees looking to take on the risk-reward profile that startups offer, but with the inherent stability and resources of a public company.

“That was really the impetus,” Smith said. “I wanted to give everyone in the company who was clearly enthusiastic about the plan I had gotten on, the opportunity to get on something very similar.”

For the plan to fully succeed, Axon must combine 12 market cap milestones with 12 business performance milestones tied to revenue and profitability. The market cap milestones start at $2.5 billion and rise $1 billion per milestone until the market cap reaches $13.5 billion. The revenue milestones begin at $710 million of annual revenue and the profitability milestones begin at $125 million of adjusted EBITDA. Axon has exceeded the first market cap milestone, but Smith and the employees will not earn any stock until the company reaches either the first revenue milestone or the first profitability milestone.

“If we hit the milestone, then the payout is pretty predictable because we’re a publicly traded stock,” he said. “Whereas with a startup there’s all sorts of risk about a liquidity event that might not ever happen. So really it’s just the risk of can we achieve growth milestones.”

The plan has its obvious benefits from a retention standpoint: If employees want to collect all of their stock, they have to remain with the company for the plan’s duration. However, because of its high-risk, high-reward profile, Smith said he anticipates it being a tremendous recruiting tool for the types of talent Axon hopes to attract.

“Anyone who has the right experience for a senior position that we need to help us to figure out the challenge of scaling up to the next level, those people have almost universally made enough money that they don’t really need to work,” Smith said. “So, for most of them, if they’re going to work, they look at it as wanting to swing for the fences, which has traditionally meant a startup. Now they can swing for the fences at Axon.”  

Smith said even though it is in the early stages, the energy around Axon’s headquarters is palatable and that if the plan works like he envisions, it will unlock the creative energy of hundreds of people. 

“It’s certainly a game-changer and we’re pretty proud of it,” Smith said. “I’m excited because I think of this as a grand experiment. I’m not aware of another public company that’s been able to create a program that’s so powerfully aligned to transformative growth goals.”

About the Author

Brett Christie is a staff writer at WorldatWork.


About WorldatWork

WorldatWork is a professional nonprofit association that sets the agenda and standard of excellence in the field of Total Rewards. Our membership, signature certifications, data, content, and conferences are designed to advance our members’ leadership, and to help them influence great outcomes for their own organizations.

About Membership

Membership provides access to practical resources, research, emerging trends, a professional network, and career-building education and certification. Learn more and join today.