This excerpt taken from the GCO DEF 14A filed May 17, 2006.
It is the committees general policy to approve competitive base salaries for its executive officers. Salary ranges are established for each executive officers position, the mid-points of which are intended to approximate the median base salary ranges for positions of similar scope, complexity and responsibility in comparable companies. The committee annually reviews and, if deemed appropriate, adjusts executive officers salary ranges after considering the advice of senior management and compensation consultants who are not affiliated with the Company or its management and who are retained by and report to the committee. The principal comparative data underlying the consultants advice to the committee are limited neither to companies in the specific industries in which the Company competes nor to the companies included in the S&P weighted average industry index included in the stock performance graph. The committee believes that the Company competes with employers outside the specific industry in which it does business to hire and retain qualified executives. The companies in the comparison group considered by the committee in Fiscal 2006 were selected by the consultants with input from senior management and committee members, subject to final approval by the committee. In making individual base salary decisions, the committee considers, in addition to relevant market survey data, a mix of factors, including (i) the executives experience, management and leadership ability and technical skills; (ii) the executives compensation history; (iii) corporate or, if appropriate, operating unit performance; (iv) individual performance; and (v) such other factors as the committee deems appropriate in its subjective judgment. While the committee typically gives greater weight to the objective, market survey data, the weight to be given to the more subjective factors in particular cases is within the committees discretion.