DEFINITION of 'Golden Hello'

A signing bonus offered to a candidate from a rival company. Unlike a typical signing bonus, a golden hello is specifically designed to entice employees of competing firms to leave. A golden hello is more likely to be extended to executive-level employees than to lower-level employees.

BREAKING DOWN 'Golden Hello'

A golden hello signing bonus may run into the millions of dollars. This is a calculated risk by the hiring company, as they hope that the value and knowledge that the poached executive brings will exceed the cost of the bonus. Following the financial crisis of 2008-2009, such compensation methods have become controversial.

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