Some interesting comments made by the presenter prior to my interview, with which I completely disagree.
The comparison between Hayward and Goodwin at Royal Bank of Scotland in entirely inappropriate.
It was the latter's ego which was directly responsible for the near collapse of RBS. Indeed his ill-timed purchase of ABN was simply on deal too many, which almost literally broke the bank. The situation was compounded by his apparent refusal to admit reponsibility or show any contrition, and the fact the British taxpayer ultimately footed the bill. Hubris as much as anything else was the big factor here.
Hayward on the other hand had been CEO since only 2007, and was hitherto highly regarded with a strong track record. Unlike Goodwin, while it must be acknowledged while their safety record was poor, BP's current problems are due ultimately to an unfortunate accident. Hayward, it must be said, has accepted full responsibility, as this has happened on his watch. His ill-judged comments were most unfortunate, and his handling of the PR side appalling. (Not to mention setting himself up as a convenient scapegoat for Obama to pursue his own broader political agenda.) But this whole mess was not entirely of his making.
While the quantum of his £12m payout might seem excessive, the majority comes from pension entitlements accumulated during a 28-year career with the company. Anger at the size of any payount was probably inevitable, but is nevertheless misplaced. The time has now come to draw a line in the sand and move on.
Hopefully this process has now begun.
Disclosure: I own BP shares