The executives have been earning a lot in compensation money as compared to the non-executive members in the company. Some shareholders are in support of this decision since the company has been experiencing financial challenges due to a drop in product sales in some regions. As long as the decision increases the profitability of the company, it is a good decision.
It is a common trend in modern day business that executives are heavily paid millions of dollars in salary, bonus and stock options, while the low and mid level workers are having their positions cut, salaries reduced and basic benefits taken away. This practice is one of the many contributing factors that threatens to extinguish the middle class way of life. The middle class is vital to the American dream and the shrinking of it is causing more and more families to live beneath the poverty line. This trend is hard on the American economy and the government. If the middle class dies so does the American way of life.
The management of Coca-Cola previously based their compensation on stock options, which were always going to rise constantly given the nature of the stock market. This caused an unnecessary burden on Coca-Cola stockholders, who prefer that they receive performance-based bonuses as other companies have done recently, especially in this increasingly difficult economic climate.
No, Coke should not cut their executives' compensation, because it is a very stressful job to be an executive. It is not something mindless or that requires a low education. Executives for Coke have worked incredibly hard, are incredibly talented, and do incredible damage to their health while working their way up. They should be compensated for that.