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Apple Shareholders Meeting Raises Questions Over Executive Transparency

The annual Apple shareholders meeting took place this morning, the first Jobs-less meeting in more than a decade. This is the first opportunity shareholders have had to ask the actively present C-suite questions about how Apple handled the news of Steve Jobs’ health, his medical leave, his scheduled return in June, and what happens next at the company. 

Balancing the needs of shareholders with concerns over Jobs’ privacy is likely one of the most difficult challenges the Board has had to face. Since Steve Job’s return to Apple in 1997, he has not only revamped the company to become financially successful but has also caused it to be an attractive place to work (#19 on Glassdoor’s Best Places to Work list). According to the 300+ Apple employee reports on, Steve Jobs is one of the highest rated CEOs (91% approval rating). 

As a result of Steve Jobs’ popularity, we can readily find background information online about where Jobs’ grew up, where he went to school, what religions he is interested in and so on. But does his own private health information become part of public record due to his high profile? Where does the line of workplace transparency get drawn when it comes to public figures like Jobs? 

Since the compensation of Jobs and Apple C-suite is of public record, we pulled the data on some top executive salaries along with information we have for other Apple employees on Glassdoor. As you can see from the salary snapshot below, the C-level employees average annual income shadows over directors, managers, account executives and retail staff within the company. So following our earlier line of thought: Does this mean that a high salary should open up an executive’s life for complete public viewing? Tell us what you think…

Glassdoor Report: Apple Salaries Snapshot
Job Title Average Annual
Total Pay
Annual Salary
Cash Bonus
Stock Bonus
CEO (Steve Jobs*) $1 $1 n/a $0
COO (Tim Cook*) $7,423,694 $718,860 n/a $5,984,384
CFO & SVP (Peter Oppenheimer*) $5,369,447 $600,012 n/a $4,145,732
Senior Director $237, 678 $129,000 – 286,000 $58,000 – 63,000 n/a
Senior Engineering Director $339,675 $176,000 – 209,000 $87,000 – 94,000 $48,000 – 62,000
Senior Counsel $181,828 $165,000 -188,000 $9,000 – 10,000 n/a
Software Engineering Mgr. $185,000 $108,000 – 160,000 $10,000 – $20,000 $10,000 – 100,000
Senior Marketing Mgr $123,667 $110, 000 – 156,000 $5,000 n/a
Global Supply Mgr $114,875 $100,000 – 125,000 $3,000 – $5,000 $5,000
Software Engineer III $108,700 $85, 000 – 130,000 $1,500 – 11,000 $10,000 -15,000
Account Executive $128,000 $45,000 – 92,000 n/a n/a
Mac Genius $35,928 $10,000 – 55,000 n/a n/a


* Steve Jobs, Tim Cook and Peter Oppenheimer salary data provided by Forbes