Behavioural differences between Google and Goldman employees

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Are you best suited to working for a Google, or are you best suited to working for a Goldman Sachs? Are you an off-beat eschatologist who wants to earn money in preparation for an environmental meltdown? Or are you a top student who’s been on track for an elite career since puberty?

If you fit the first description, go to Google. If you fit the second, go into banking.

A new set of profiles of Google employees, published by Bloomberg, suggests them to be far more eccentric than the sort of privately educated high achiever who gets recruited by an investment bank.

For example, there have been several Google employees who have slept in nearby vans. There was a pony-tailed 44 year-old ex-Google employee who lived in a van for a year whilst working to save money and retire aged 45 to a farm in Hawaii where he could survive a climactic apocalypse. There was another 27 year-old who lived in Google’s parking lot. There’s a whole Quora page devoted to sleeping at the Googleplex.

The distinctions aren’t just down to sleeping arrangements. The 44 year-old van-sleeping ex-Google employees in Bloomberg’s profile eschews shoes, let alone Ferragamo loafers. He’s not interested in physical possessions. At Google, he ate for free at the company canteen, which served up organic ingredients sourced within a 150-mile radius.

It’s a far cry from the Seamless orders and ready-meals of junior bankers. Silicon valley staff are overwhelmingly interested in the quality of their code, suggests Bloomberg. In banking, exemplary work is also important, but so too is grooming and conformity to social norms. If you’re normative, banking is for you. If you’re ‘different’, you could always try a large tech firm instead.

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Deutsche CEO John Cryan may be a bit less easy on Deutsche’s fixed income staff when he announces the strategic overhaul at the end of this month. He’s already warned the bank not to expect only “sweetness and light in the coming months” and said he’ll close down unpromising business lines.

Enough Already (Financial Times)

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At The Sharp End (Bloomberg)

Citi is predicting that Barclays will make big cuts to the investment bank. 

Heir Today, Gone Tomorrow (WSJ)

CFO and Heir apparent to Brian Moynihan as CEO at Bank of America has left.

Big e-Trading hire at Goldman (Financial News) 

Goldman Sachs hired Ben Coward-Talbott, most recently head of electronic trading product for European equities and global listed derivatives at Morgan Stanley for its European electronic trading division.

New Rokos Star (WSJ) 

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A Big Expense (Bloomberg)

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Quote of the Day:

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