Can an employee be paid more
than a supervisor?
Q. I am a creative director
with a mid-sized Internet development company (200 people). I oversee a
department of 10 graphic designers, programmers, writers, and interface
architects. Is it uncommon for one of my department members to be compensated
more than I am?
A. It doesn't happen often, but
from time to time a supervisor may make less money than an employee who reports
to him or her. When an employee earns more than his or her supervisor, it is
normally because the employee's technical skills are worth more than those of
the supervisor. For instance, employees who have very strong technical skills
may be paid more than a nontechnical person who
supervisors a technical team.
However, if there is no market data to justify
the disparity in pay, then maybe you should ask your HR representative whether
and when the company plans to rectify the difference in pay. If your company
does not plan to adjust your pay, ask for the rationale behind leaving your
salary below that of an employee who reports to you.