John Borrowman, CPC
Borrowman Baker LLC
When you need guideline companies, you look carefully to make sure you’re making a defensible choice and that you’re getting data from businesses very much like your client’s. Why would the search for reasonable compensation “comps” be any less challenging?
And yet, BV professionals are always asking: “So, how much should someone with X years’ experience, currently doing Y work, earn?”
Is it any surprise, then, that the answer is: “It depends.”
It’s a typical ‘forest for the trees’ reaction to believe that others must have their practices organized much like the one where you work. Not so. There is more variety in organizational structure and individual roles than you might think.
Just as you look for the distinctions in businesses, you need to train yourself to look for the differences between you and other professionals. Your engagements might not be as big as in a larger firm. On the other hand, you may get to do bigger chunks of them than if you were in that larger firm. Small or large, your role in revenue generation will depend mostly on your boss’s willingness to have you involved. And that, in turn, is a key component of compensation.
That’s why, as a general rule, BV salary numbers you may see or hear about don’t have the context to let you know how applicable they might be. In some cases, they’re already an average of an average.
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