What does Goldman Sachs look for when it hires people? Is it intelligence? Not necessarily. Is it extracurricular extravagances? Not always. Is it teamwork? Kind of. Is it diligence? Sort of. Is it a willingness to stay with the bank for a long, long time? YES.
At yesterday's London School of Economics event on banking culture, the Goldman MD in attendance, responsible for hiring on the American East Coast, said the bank is no longer attracting the "best people by a mile" who are all going off to join Facebook, Google and Amazon instead.
Now that Goldman can't lure these high performers, it's settling on a different kind of person altogether said the MD. "We're recruiting people who are sensible, work in teams and won't leave us after three years," he said. Staying for more than three years has become really important, he stressed, echoing our comment earlier this week from a London Business School student who said what banks really want now are people who are committed and will stick around.