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A.Word.A.Daywith Anu Garg
noun: An agreement to pay generous compensation to a company executive if dismissed.
From the idea of a parachute softening the blow of an ejection from a high office and the color golden alluding to the large payment received on dismissal. Earliest documented use: 1981.
A hedge-fund CEO negotiated the best compensation package he could. A private jumbo jet, a yacht, and so on. Also, a huge payout if he were to leave the company for any reason. Once he was flying on a trip when the pilot announced, “Folks, both engines have failed. We are going down. Please pray.”
The man asked his assistant to look for his parachute in his carry-on. “Good luck,” she said as she handed him his golden parachute.
“His faux optimism only made Brooke wonder how big a golden parachute the new owners must have opened for him. He was no doubt making a soft landing into a pile of several million dollars.”
Talia Carner; Hotel Moscow; William Morrow; 2015.
“The documentary spends a lot of time on Adam Neumann, who ended up with a $1.7 billion golden parachute. Through various interviews with reporters, customers, and employees, the documentary tries to characterize the man. But my favorite characterization comes from Neumann himself. A montage of clips from public interviews shows Neumann repeatedly telling the same story about what his wife Rebekah once told him: ‘You have a lot of potential, but you’re full of shit.’”
Danielle Abril; WeWork’s Distorted Reality; Fortune; Apr 8, 2021.
See more usage examples of golden parachute in Vocabulary.com’s dictionary.
A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:'Writing' is the Latin of our times. The modern language of the people is video and sound. -Lawrence Lessig, professor and political activist (b. 3 Jun 1961)