ActiBlizz Workplace Commitments Include Bobby Kotick Pay Cut

A press release from Activision Blizzard has the latest on how the company is dealing with allegations of workplace misconduct that has resulted in a couple of lawsuits, an SEC investigation, and a bunch of departures of now-former staff. This comes in the form of a letter to staff from Bobby Kotick on progress being made to create a better work environment. This includes a list of five specific changes being made immediately. These are a new company-wide, zero-tolerance harassment policy; an increased percentage of female and non-binary employees, a waiver of forced arbitration for sexual harassment and discrimination claims, annual reporting of pay equity, and a promise of further progress updates on a regular basis. This concludes with word that the Activision Blizzard CEO will be taking a big pay cut, as his enormous compensation has drawn a lot of criticism while the company has tried to weather this storm. Word is his overall pay, including bonuses, will be lowered to the minimum allowable under California law:
Lastly, I want to ensure that every available resource is being used in the service of becoming the industry leader in workplace excellence. Accordingly, I have asked our Board of Directors to reduce my total compensation until the Board has determined that we have achieved the transformational gender-related goals and other commitments described above. Specifically, I have asked the Board to reduce my pay to the lowest amount California law will allow for people earning a salary, which this year is $62,500. To be clear, this is a reduction in my overall compensation, not just my salary. I am asking not to receive any bonuses or be granted any equity during this time.

There’s a tendency when companies face challenging moments to lose sight of what makes them special, what makes them great. You are a truly special group of people who – through passion, conviction, drive, and determination – keep accomplishing extraordinary things. While the critical work ahead won’t be easy, I am confident our collective commitment to workplace excellence will be achieved.

I truly wish not a single employee had had an experience at work that resulted in hurt, humiliation, or worse – and to those who were affected, I sincerely apologize. You have my commitment that we will do everything possible to honor our values and create the workplace every member of this team deserves.

I am grateful for how much people care about this company, and I appreciate that many past and present employees have reached out with their thoughts, concerns, complaints, and suggestions. Your experiences, so courageously shared, serve as reason and reminder for why it is so important for us to do better. And we will.