After hearing Ken Bates’ complaints that players were stalling contracts because they see a pay increase coming if we’re promoted, I thought it may be worth offering a suggestions to Mr. Chairman that could be mutually beneficial for both parties.

Thanks to some random company called Qinetiq for this definition of a performance based contract – something that has clearly passed the management and owners of Leeds United by;

The idea behind Performance Based Contracting (PBC) is simple; incentivise behaviour by tying contract payment to contract performance.

I’ll break that down into more palatable English for the slower-than-average people dealing with Leeds United’s contract negotiations.

  • Incentivise This means to provide people with a good reason for doing something. Y’know, like… get promoted?
  • The Bait – Now we have our motivational tool, we need a structured way to reward, or indeed, punish individuals for meeting or failing our (the club’s) objectives. Luckily, footballers are pretty simple folk who perform best when a new Lincoln Navigator is within touching distance. It’s the thing that helps the world turn – money.
  • The Reward – A promoted Leeds United means our income will grow rapidly. This means we will be able to reward our players with the funds to buy the afore mentioned Lincoln Navigator by increasing their salary. This is where contract performance (achieving promotion) and contract payment get particularly interesting. All this requires is a simple clause in the contract that states Leeds United Player A is paid X amount of money in the Championship and Y amount of money in the Premiership. (The X amount being smaller than the Y – Unless you’d rather be in the Championship that is)
  • Safety First – Now the brilliance of a performance based contract is the safety net it provides. Should said player fail to achieve his goals, then his salary doesn’t improve. This may leave the player a little upset as he won’t have enough to buy a Lincoln Navigator AND blow thousands on cocaine and whores. What do you care though? You have them tied down for another four years. If they want to leave, someone better be getting the chequebook out!

You’d think a self-proclaimed master of finance like Ken Bates would be able to get his head around such a simple idea, but the old age is clearly creeping in so we’re more than happy to help explain things further if needs be.

What really seems to be escaping our chairman is how much a players long-term future can affect their performance. When there is so much doubt and speculation surrounding an individual, performances often slip. If the doubt and speculation was replaced by security and incentive, I have no doubts whatsoever that we’d see a marked increase in performances from certain individuals over the coming weeks.