Are you paid what you deserve?

An article aimed at Brussels Communications and Public Affairs professionals by Mark Dober

"The annual salary of a senior lobbyist in Brussels can top €400,000, according to a new survey from the headhunting firm Ellwood and Atfield, which quaintly notes that even the European Commission President and Commissioners earn less"

As a part-time head-hunter I had great fun working with my colleagues at Ellwood and Atfield to write the first ever Brussels 2010/11 salary report. Through interviews, our proprietary database and internet research we found that top lobbyists in Brussels consultancies, trade associations and companies can earn over €100,000 more than the highest paid EU officials. 

The Key findings are summarized below:

Sector Typical title and salary band


Associate Director
€70,000 - €120,000

€90,000 - €180,000

Managing Director
€180,000 - €400,000


Policy Director
€50,000 - €100,000

Director of Communications
€50,000 - €100,000

Director/Head of Office
€60,000 - €120,000


€125,000 - €150,000

European Head
of Communications
€100,000 - €260,000

European Head
of Public Affairs
€140,000 - €400,000+

Trade Associations

€70,000 - €100,000

Director of Public Affairs or
€130,000 - €250,000

€150,000 - €400,000+

EU Institutions

€126,000 +/-

AD16 Director-General
€200,000 - €217,000

Commissioner or President
€240,000 - €300,000

It did not surprise me that most interest groups seem to be scaling up their Brussels representation which is increasing the demand for talent. This trend is leading to very attractive remuneration for senior lobbyists and communication professionals which often dwarf salaries in national capitals. What did surprise me however, is how much more Public Affairs professionals earn than their counterparts in Communications. What do you think about that trend?

Please go to Ellwood and Atfield’s website to download the full report here:

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