Originally Published PR Week

Many companies are in a predicament right now. Their financial performance during the first half of the year was fairly strong and, as such, their full-year numbers are good enough to provide bonuses to key staff members who performed well.

But the second half of the year, especially the fourth quarter, has been terrible, with signs that things will only get worse in 2009. In an environment of staff and budget cuts, how can a company also pay out bonuses?

This dilemma raises two questions, one financial, and the other moral. First, is it financially prudent to pay out bonuses, even if “earned” in 2008, when 2009 has the potential to be a financial disaster?

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