Goldman CEO Lloyd Blankfein tried a new tack in his PR offensive about the massive bonuses Goldman is about to pay.
Gone, thankfully, were the cringe-inducing remarks about the firm doing “God’s work.”
Now it’s all about how Goldman is mopping the Street with its hapless competitors and how Goldman employees are the most productive in the world.
This tack is less grating, but it won’t work, either. It will just remind people about how angry they are that Goldman is shelling out $20+ billion after having its butt saved by taxpayers a year ago. It will also be heard as “Goldman people make more than you because they’re better than you.” Taxpayers won’t want to hear that, either.
What SHOULD Blankfein do?
Stop talking about it.
Just say, “We were fortunate enough to have had an extraordinary year.”
If pressed, he can add, “I am grateful to our employees, shareholders, and the U.S. government for helping us through one of the most challenging periods in the firm’s history.” Something, anything, other than the current theme, which suggests that Goldman has earned every penny it is about to pay out, with no help from anyone.
In a month, the $20 billion of bonuses will be ancient history, and everyone will have moved on…
Greg Farrell, FT: Goldman Sachs pays its employees more than other financial groups because its employees are more productive, declared Lloyd Blankfein, Goldman chief executive, at an industry conference on Tuesday.
Mr Blankfein offered a wide-ranging defence of his company on Tuesday to an audience of banking analysts at a conference sponsored by Bank of America. His comments came as public debate continues over Goldman’s power and bonuses, prompting the comedy programme Saturday Night Live to ask the bank: “Can you not read how mad people are at you?”.
“I often hear references to higher compensation at Goldman,” said Mr Blankfein. “What people fail to mention is that net income generated per head is a multiple of our peer average. The people of Goldman Sachs are among the most productive in the world.”