Previous research has shown that top executives often rise to the peak of their organizations after a long-term employment relationship, and that internal promotion to the top is reflected in enhanced baseline salaries. Using data from a representative sample of UK companies, the links between the fixed and variable elements of the Chief Executive Officer's compensation package are examined and whether the appointment has been promoted internally or recruited from outside of the company. From this analysis, it is concluded that the positive impact on basic pay of elevation to the top job from within the company is not present in total compensation or the structure of pay. It also emerges that although tenure does not significantly impact on the structure of pay, it does alter total reward through its impact on the value of options granted: longer company tenure reduces both the award of share options and the total value of the remuneration package; job tenure, on the other hand, raises the executive's reward primarily through its positive impact on baseline salary. Though share ownership reduces the performance sensitivity of earnings, increases in baseline salary are reflected in greater exposure to the use of share options.