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March 14, 2012

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Richard J

Well, you need to tick the right boxes in your annual review to get promoted in places like that. So long as you haven't been foolish to have 'To not kill anyone in the current financial year' as one of your key goals[1], it shouldn't matter to the bods in HR.

[1] Though it is a fairly good one, ticking most of the SMART criterion.

Cian

They will probably fire you if the prior axe murdering is causing you to spend a lot of 'personal days' in court.

Richard J

It's an interesting DDA case, I suppose. Mental illness is definitely a disability for the purposes of the act, and if your mental illness is psychopathy, is the need to take court days a 'reasonable adjustment'?

Cian

In the USA it depends upon whether NY is an at will state. Though to be honest most banks just throw enough money at you to go away, unless you've really pissed them off.

Barry Freed

I see an untapped market for business books in the Sun Tzu Art of War and Genghis Khan as business leader vein here. Something like Lizzie Borden's guide to business leadership.

ejh

Bit odd to see the letter decribed (by Peston and the Guardian at least) as "devastating". It didn't seem to me to say anything that was either new, or which was devastating even if it wasn't new.

Barry Freed

BTW, New York is in fact an at will state.

Cian

The guy's on the advisory side of the business. The cynical part of me sees this as the loser's lament. Those dirty rotten traders...

Goldman's was at the centre of the wall street crash frauds. So its not exactly as if this is a new thing, or for that matter that the arrogant culture at Goldman's 10 years ago was that wonderful.

Chris Williams

Perhaps it's a case of "I have now been promoted far enough that the underlying culture of the place, invisble to me ten years ago, is now clear." See also: Chief Constables who say "Policing didn't use to be political, back when I was an Inspector."

skidmarx

As it says in the preface to Snakes in Suits:

"Hiring managers may mistakenly attribute 'leadership' labels to what are, in actuality, psychopathic behaviours."
Or correctly.

ajay

Goldman's was at the centre of the wall street crash frauds. So its not exactly as if this is a new thing


Hell, they were at the centre of the 1920s bubble. Galbraith had a section in The Great Crash called "In Goldman, Sachs We Trusted".

CMcM

Is it possible that what is supposedly 'devastating' about this article is simply that a Goldman Sacks insider has broken the code of omerta, rather than the rest of us having been propelled into an attack of the vapours at the sheer shock of hearing these obviously completely unexpected allegations?

Cian

Well Nomi Prins is hardly a nobody, and she was saying this kind of stuff before the crash.

I would guess that there is a change, in that the bank used to be a partnership. But if he's been there 11 years (lets discount the internship), that predates him anyway. So I think Chris' explanation is the correct one here.

Guano

Yes, what is news is that an insider has thrown off his cognitive dissonance.

ajay

I find the article is even better if you imagine Stringer Bell reciting it to Avon Barksdale.

dsquared

it's more a Ceaucescu than a Watergate I think - the real danger for GS is that perceptions switch from "nobody got fired for dealing with GS" to "nobody got fired for refusing to deal with GS".

Richard J

Slightly less melodramtically, the 'Arthur Andersen' problem. (Who actually, come to think of it, had a very similar reputation to GS among us beancounters. Still ten years later, there's a very noticeable difference between my bosses who trained at AA, and those who trained at the rest of the Big N.)

Richard J

(NB: This comparison isn't necessarily favourable to Arthur Andersen types.)

dsquared

But the Ceaucescu comparison has tanks! And multiplicitous spellings of "Ceausescu"! With "Arthur Andersen" you only really get one opportunity to spell it differently.

Richard J

With "Arthur Andersen" you only really get one opportunity to spell it differently.

As we managed to do in a client pitch recently. Ahem.

ajay

Richard: at least you didn't launch a German magazine and misspell "Deutsche" in the title of the magazine on the cover of issue one...

Chris Williams

I once misspelt 'Hitler' on an examination paper. Do I win fvie pounds?

Igor Belanov

I hope you didn't put 'Hilter'. He's the one that fought the North Minehead by-election.

Chris Williams

'Fraid so. 200 students attempted the question, and not _one_ of them compared the economic trajectory of North Minehead with that of Fascist Italy. It was when I tried to fail them for it that the trouble began.

ajay

I once had quite a long conversation with a senior executive from ANZ Bank under the belief that he was a senior executive from Air New Zealand.

Chris Williams

Lucky for you both he wasn't from Paribas BNP.

Phil

Eternal Shame* Dept: I once had an interview for a job with a company whose ultimate owner was an American businessman named David Duke. I was offered the job, and accepted - and I never once asked whether it was that David Duke. (It wasn't, fortunately.)

*Obviously not all that shameful or I wouldn't be retelling the story, but I do feel it wasn't my finest hour.

ajay

Lucky for you both he wasn't from Paribas BNP.

"Goldstein joins BNP" - still my favourite headline from the financial press.

seeds

I once had quite a long conversation with a senior executive from ANZ Bank under the belief that he was a senior executive from Air New Zealand.

I once had a long conversation with an Italian engineer that made biplanes. He was a bit confused about my obvious interest in the subject and my constant questions about the possible market for biplanes in the 21st century. And did he have a pilot's license himself? Apparently not. It was when he started talking about the importance of underground biplanes that I realised he was saying "pipelines".

Richard J

I once had a long and very confusing Monday morning conversation with a South African temp which suddenly made sense that she wasn't being obscene, just talking about her weekend in Kent.

Phil

"Yes, er, I suppose I love it too, if you put it like that... So, what else did you get up to?"

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