What You Need to Know About These Valuable, Complex Benefits
Equity compensation can be an incredibly valuable employee benefit, but it can also be a complex subject matter to get your arms around. Not only are there multiple types of equity compensation, but each has unique characteristics you should keep in mind in order to maximize its value.
Below, we’ll discuss the most common types of equity compensation and dig into the potential challenges and unique benefits of each one so that you can make smart decisions for your financial situation – and avoid costly mistakes, too.
The Key Considerations You’ll Need to Best Leverage this Employee Benefit
Stock options have become a popular way for employers to compensate employees and incentivize high-quality work. Not only are they convenient and cost-effective for the employer, but they provide employees with added value for a job well done. When employees feel valued and do good work, the company’s stock value rises, and everyone wins.
Since stock options aren’t as cut and dry as a normal paycheck, though, many employees don’t fully understand how to make the most of them. Below we’ll discuss how stock options work, when to exercise them, and how to maximize this type of compensation.
The Basics of Employee Stock Options
When an employer offers stock options as part of your benefits package, it means you’ll have the opportunity to purchase a certain amount of company stock for a set price called the “grant price”, and typically within a set time frame. Most often, employers want to incentivize you to stay with the company long-term, so you may have to wait until your stock options vest – that is, until they reach the point in time when they become available to you to exercise. This means new employees usually can’t take advantage of them right away. Once they vest, you’ll have a specific time period in which to use your stock options before they expire.