Family Business Review vol:26 issue:2 pages:140-160
Although classical agency theorists claim that pay-for-performance is not relevant in the context of private family firms, the authors provide empirical evidence of the opposite, using a sample of 529 privately held U.S. family firms. The results suggest that objective performance-based measures play a significant role in CEO compensation. Additionally, the authors find that in private family firms CEO compensation is more responsive to firm performance in firms with low ownership dispersion and in the controlling-owner stage. Furthermore, the positive pay-for-performance relation is slightly stronger for nonfamily CEOs than for family CEOs.