With the holiday party season in full swing, bankers across America are faced with a dilemma: Do I tell people what I do for a living?
Bankers today fall just below lawyers and persnickety salespeople in the public’s esteem. Even President Obama pulled out the old pejorative “fat cats” to describe Wall Street types – and remind the public that these portly felines were at the root of the financial crisis we’ve endured.
Bankers aren’t used to this kind of scrutiny. No longer answerable only to shareholders or directors, bank leaders now have to consider how their institutions are being viewed in Washington and in communities across America.
So how can bankers burnish their image at a time like this? Here are three ideas: Read
In a speech Tuesday night, Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein reportedly apologized for his company’s role in the financial markets crisis, saying, “We participated in things that were clearly wrong and have reason to regret.”
Apologies are always tricky business for people or organizations under siege in the media. Sometimes they can be helpful. When an individual or company is clearly at fault for something, a quick apology, full explanation of what went wrong and why, and commitment to correcting the error can stanch public disapproval. Read
Finance Perspectives Practices Public Affairs
Does Goldman Sachs have a God problem? A God complex? An ungodly headache?
Goldman, once a venerable institution known for keeping close counsel, is now a lightning rod for populist criticism of the financial sector. And its latest public relations efforts don’t seem to be helping.
The bank’s very success – turning a profit in excess of $3 billion last quarter – is exacerbating the problem. Americans are in no mood to celebrate Wall Street success. With deepening bonus pools and bulked up compensation packages, Goldman isn’t winning any friends. Read