golden handshake

golden handshake

noun
1.
a special incentive, as generous severance pay, given to an older employee as an inducement to elect early retirement.
2.
the giving or offering of such an incentive.

Origin:
1955–60

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
golden handshake
 
n
informal a sum of money, usually large, given to an employee, either on retirement in recognition of long or excellent service or as compensation for loss of employment

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

golden handshake

Generous severance pay to an employee, often as an incentive for early retirement. For example, With a dwindling school population, the town decided to offer golden handshakes to some of the teachers. This slangy business term dates from the mid-1900s. A close relative is golden parachute, a generous severance agreement for an executive in the event of sudden dismissal owing to a merger or similar circumstance. This expression first appeared about 1980.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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