You can tell what a CEO is hired to do and how long they plan on him being around based on the CEO’s pay package. The new Interim CEO of BlackBerry, John Chen, just had his pay package revealed in an SEC filing. Essentially he is getting a $1 million a year salary with up to $2 billion in performance bonuses. He is also getting 13 million shares of restricted stock with a quarter of it vesting after 3 years, another quarter after four years, and the remainder after 5 years. That is about $88 million in total that he could be paid.
In other words you can tell that they want him to stay around longer than the 1.5 years they are giving him to turn around the business. They also threw in a $6 million termination fee if they fire him without cause. At least they based some of his compensation on performance. Hopefully they have some other metrics in there too. Thorsten Heins supposedly left BlackBerry with a termination package valued at $14 million.