Worst stock options offender and customer relations management software maker Siebel Systems(Nasdaq: SEBL) may be taking baby steps to mend its ways. First there was August's announcement of paying cash and stock for high strike-price options, and now the CFO suggests more reforms to come.

Speaking yesterday at a Banc of America investor conference, CFO Ken Goldman reportedly said Siebel is considering canceling some existing employee stock options and would issue fewer options in the future. It's about time. According to one observer, Siebel has issued more stock options as a percentage of shares outstanding -- 50% -- than any other company in the S&P 500.

Step one came in late August. The company announced in an SEC filing that it would offer employees $1.85 per share in cash and stock for options with a strike price over $40, and it would take a $64 million charge to pay for it.

We are hopping mad about stock options abuse, so we think this is positive. The best corporate governance prefers stock grants to options, not the least because they're expensed. Also, when employees know that underwater (below strike price ) stock options will be repriced or exchanged for those with lower strike prices anyway, it's hardly an incentive to align their interests with the performance of the company.

In another refreshing dash of reality, Goldman Sachs(NYSE: GS) reportedly said Siebel "is managing itself on the basis of a not-improving economy." With the company's beleaguered stock hitting a closing high of $37.20 in March, and closing at $6.50 yesterday, perhaps managers are turning their eyes from the ticker to the business.

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