Tag Archives: Goldman Sachs

Daily Thought 3/15/12: The Power of Theatrics

Yesterday we visited a very intense letter from a resigning Goldman Sachs employee, Greg Smith. Smith argued that Goldman was losing sight of who they are and what made them that way.

Forbes put together a nice analysis of the piece that compares this letter to a scene from AMC’s hit series Mad Men. The point that the Forbes article makes is about drawing a line in the sand and being dramatic. In both examples we see and ethical dilemma. The leader understands that in the short run “doing the right thing” will cause the bottom line to take a hit. He also understands the long term need to do what is right.

By drawing this line in the sand, in a very dramatic way, the leaders are able to make their point very clearly. This shows their followers the difference between right and wrong and that doing wrong will not be tolerated. It is tough to stand up for what you believe in like this, but as a leader it is necessary.

Tagged , , , , ,

Daily Thought 3/14/12: Culture and Client Trust

Whew, it has been quite a since I last shared some thoughts here. Some times life gets really busy, but it is good to be back.

As I am sure some of you have seen, the New York Times printed quite the thought provoking OpEd piece today. This piece is a reflection by a former executive director at Goldman Sachs about why he has decided to leave the firm.

The writer, Greg Smith, proposes two amazing thoughts. The first is that internal culture has the most impact on the way a business operates. The second is that without creating and maintaining trust, your clients will only do business with you for so long. He goes on to say that because the leadership has done nothing to lead by example in either area, the company is now full of individuals who are “morally bankrupt”.

It is a great read and shares some great insights about the impact of culture and the importance of leading by example. When you are a leader everyone looks at you and mirrors what you do, whether it is right or wrong.

It astounds me how little senior management gets a basic truth: If clients don’t trust you they will eventually stop doing business with you. It doesn’t matter how smart you are. -Greg Smith

Tagged , , , , ,