- Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon said on Tuesday that his side-gig as a DJ taught him about the power of showing his human side while leading the bank.
- Solomon, who took over the chief executive role from Lloyd Blankfein on Monday, gave remarks at Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Event in Laguna Niguel, California.
- “It’s all about being human and opening yourself up,” he said.
For new Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon, moonlighting as a DJ has had some added benefits, besides making the Billboard charts.
Solomon said that for years as a senior banker, he’d walk into the elevator at Goldman and would be met with blank stares. “I’d say hi and most people would look at their feet and cower in the corner,” he said on Tuesday as part of a panel for Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Summit in Laguna Niguel, California.
“When people started seeing I had this hobby and was into music, a 24 year-old analyst would say ‘Hey David, I saw your post on this and I heard your track,'” he said. “They want to connect with you, talk about how they got to the firm. It’s about being human and opening yourself up. We all used to keep our private lives so separated from what we were doing in business and that’s changed.”
Solomon, who took over as Goldman’s chief executive from Lloyd Blankfein on Monday, released his first single in early June, called “Don’t Stop,” a dance remix of the popular song first released by Fleetwood Mac in 1977.
Solomon hasn’t shied away from the hobby. On an episode of the podcast “Exchanges at Goldman Sachs,” Solomon described himself as a lifelong audiophile intrigued by the modern music industry.
He’s also said that finding and exploring a passion is crucial to longevity in a career known for grinding people down and burning them out with its long hours and endless travel.
Solomon has encouraged senior employees to open up to their junior staff and share personal aspects about their lives to facilitate trust. He’s also said that Goldman should make better use of internal social networks to cultivate a more welcoming atmosphere for millennials employees that make up the majority of its workforce.
He’s pushed for culture initiatives to put more women in powerful committees and has also worked to ease the firm sweatshop culture to retain junior bankers.
“To be a really attractive organisation today you need to be one that has soul,” he said on Tuesday. “You need to have heart.”
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