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JAL president becomes famous as modest executive on YouTube

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Haruka Nishimatsu, president & CEO of Japan Air Lines (JAL), is now one of the most popular Japanese figures posted on YouTube since CNN reported on him as a modest CEO. CNN covered his commuting by public transportation and lunch at the company's cafeteria together with other employees.

“We have been receiving emails and phone calls from in Japan and overseas. Some of them are from people showing their respect for Nishimatsu, while others say he is a role model for CEOs," says a spokesperson for JAL.

In November, CNN reported on Nishimatsu's working style and the fact that he commutes every day by train. His salary is 9.6 million yen a year, which is much less than the CEOs of America's Big 3 automakers, for example. Nishimatsu says: “I'm just doing the right thing.”

A spokesperson for JAL explains: “Mr Nishimatsu reduced his own salary because the minimum annual salary for employees in management positions, who were offered early retirement, was 9.6 million yen.” He adds, “That measure, however, was a temporary thing for 2008. We changed the policy in 2008, and he now returns 60% of his salary as other executives do. He of course uses the company car when it's necessary.”

Nishimatsu's wife told Shukan Post after she took her husband to the nearest station from their house: “It's natural that his salary has been decreased in the current difficult economic situation.” (Translated by Taro Fujimoto)

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Not sure what the point of this article is. Bill Gates used to make $100K/year when he was still C.E.O. of Microsoft. Oh, did I mention he accumulated billions in stock options and bonuses?

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Sounds like propaganda from JAL.

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His salary is 9.6 million yen a year, which is much less than the CEOs of America’s Big 3 automakers, for example.

In 2007 Google CEO Eric Schmidt and co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Sergey Brin received a $1 annual salary.

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Good for you, Nishimatsu. It's this attitude that I would like to see from other CEOs, especially US ones. If the people in your company are being laid-off and your company is hurting financially, it is best to show some modesty and a hell of a lot less exuberance.

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Put options much Mr Nishimatsu?

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Good example Mr. Let’s hope other CEO’s follow your lead and live a humble and sufficient lifestyle as well. Especially you Son Masayoshi (Owner of Softbank) how dare you travel in your global 5000 private jet and rent presidential suites and vacation with escort and mistresses around the world without your wife and children knowing. You married man should be ashamed of yourself. You will get your public fame about your addiction with those women you leisure your time with. JAL is good, but I won’t agree with the 13% rake hike next year for international flights. Frugal is the key to success. Good example.

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"Mr. Nishimatsu reduced his own salary"

Great. Now if he would just reduce the fuel surcharges.

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So modest that he is raising the fares ! Be modest and lower the fares because JAL is no the no.1 airline in the world.

Happy 2009

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John Lasseter, president of Pixar, does more than queue up with other employees: he serves the food. Also, Steve Jobs makes $1 a year as CEO of Apple (of course, with stock options...)

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Sorry, Lasseter is the chief creative officer, not the president. Ed Catmull is the President. My mistake. But Lasseter still is a food server for the lunch crowd.

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Catch a train in Japan to go to work as a CEO, I give him that. My work doesn't start until 10.00 and it is still packed like crazy.

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JAL president could act as consultant to the US CEOs on how to gain customer loyalty by their taking lifestyle and money sacrifices for the companies' health. For a fee per consultation (in Japanese) of course.

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This subject has been addressed in several vernacular news articles, which pointed out that Mr. Nishimatsu still gets plenty of cozy corporate entitlements and is not suffering unduly.

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somehow i believe nishimatsu is getting other perks, more than salary, this figure is misleading I am sure still, he could be a relatively modest CEO when compared to that idiot Tilton who makes tens of millions running that crap airline called United

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awesome story. Good man...

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Well..I don't find this man an 'unusual' example at all. My Company's Chairman lives in a normal apartment, travel by subways, eat at our canteen, no branded suits, share the Company's car with the President, Vice President and other top Executives. And I'm working in a Company as huge and famous as JAL.....

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when compared to that idiot Tilton who makes tens of millions

Glenn F Tilton (60): base pay $1.27 (Million) + $2.25 (Million) in exercised (company stock) options.

Yeah...he's definitely running that company like a well oiled machine.

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Moderator:

If I flared like 'jalways' did about softbank when it is a JAL issue, you would have removed it. So why not remove his/hers???

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Bill Gates has $50 Billion, mostly Microsoft stock and options. Similar story with Google. What's your point? That you think nobody would notice?

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This is a great post. you got cheap shoes online .I like cheap designer shoes as well give you designer shoes outlet

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