Knowledge @ Wharton’s latest issue contains an interesting article on Title Inflation. There is a proliferation of Chief Titles today – Chief Marketing Officer, Chief Privacy Officer, Chief Diversity Officer, Chief Innovation Officer, Chief Geek, Chief Hacker etc.
Earlier, companies had layers of hierarchies and employees looked forward to promotions every year or two. It helped in their career progression and satisfied their self-image. With the flattening of organization structures, the only way to motivate employee is to devise new and interesting titles.
At the same time, new titles like Chief Innovation Officer serve the purpose of reiterating the importance of key initiatives like innovation. Everyone knows company is serious about it.
So creative titles have their own benefits. But titles are not the end in itself. They have to be backed by appropriate benefits including competitive salaries and of course, a meaningful role.