Ex-Goldman Sachs banker says Manhattan HQ is rife with misogyny as colleagues ranked women
A former Goldman Sachs analyst has detailed her experience at the company’s Manhattan headquarters in her new memoir, including an incident where her colleagues ranked women by their “f**kability.”
Jamie Fiore Higgins, 46, explored her 17 years in the investment banking business through her book “Bully Market: My Story of Money and Misogyny at Goldman Sachs.”
Higgins writes about the spreadsheet, in which she relates that an employee stated, “I want t*t size, a** shape and leg length,” among other moments of intimidation and physical disagreement.
After removing an employee from an account for having an affair with the customer, Higgins says he grabbed her by the throat and pushed her against the wall.
“If I could, I’d rip your damn face off,” he yelled.
After reporting the incident to her boss, Higgins said the employee would not be fired because her boss “couldn’t afford to lose his golf connections.”
Jamie Fiore Higgins, 46, outlined her 17-year career as a financial analyst at Goldman Sachs headquarters in Manhattan in a new memoir
Higgins’ memoir, “Bully Market: My Story of Money and Misogyny at Goldman Sachs,” describes several encounters with harassment in the investment bank’s workplace
According to an excerpt from her book, Higgins said an employee grabbed her by the throat and lifted her and said he would rip her face off.
Higgins attended Bryn Mawr College and graduated in 1997.
After wanting to become a social worker, Higgins was told by her mother that she needed a better-paying job to pay off her student loans.
In 1998, Higgins completed the Goldman Sachs training program and passed her licensing exam to become a financial analyst. After her freshman year, Higgins was awarded an $80,000 bonus.
Her first promotion in 2006 came with the realization that she will stop having children, she writes.
In response to her promotion, she said an employee disapproved of it, saying “the only reason you got it is because of your vagina.”
“Most guys at Goldman assume that women who get promoted have either filled in a quota or… screwed someone over,” she said.
While attending Bryn Mawr College, Higgins said she wanted to become a social worker before choosing to take Goldman Sachs’ training program.
Higgins was urged by her mother to pursue a career that could pay for her student loans
After her first promotion within the company in 2006, Higgins recalls being accosted by her co-workers who said she only got the promotion because she “had a vagina.”
In addition to her own experience, Higgins adds that other women told her about their experience at Goldman Sachs, including one who said she quit because her work was delegated to the men in the office.
Other women told her how senior members of the company would stare at their breasts or offer shoulder massages.
Because of the stories and moments of misogyny she experienced with her colleagues, Higgins said she often thought about quitting.
Although the environment at Goldman Sachs was treacherous, she said she kept her job because of the annual bonuses given out every January. One year, she added, she reached an annual salary of $1 million.
The salary and bonuses were important for Higgins to support her family.
Although she considered quitting several times during her term, she said she kept the position due to annual lucrative bonuses
While using Xanax to deal with the stresses of her workplace, Higgins said she focused on the bonuses as a way to maintain focus. One year, Higgins received an annual salary of $1 million
To cope with the stress of the workplace, Higgins writes that she would regularly take Xanax.
After she miscarried for a year and applied for leave, her boss told her, “You were barely pregnant and it’s been three days.”
“When my wife miscarried, she was fine after a few days.”
In response to her first poor performance review after 17 years with the company, she was advised to remove her children’s photos from her desk.
“I need a commercial killer, Jamie, not a class mom,” she says.
Higgins said it was more important for her to receive her lucrative salary and bonuses to support her family than to succumb to the work environment
After receiving her first poor performance review, which used terms like “maternal,” Higgins said her “career and reputation were sabotaged” before retiring in 2016.
Her performance rating included phrases like “maternal.”
“It was official: my career and reputation were being sabotaged,” she said.
“There was a purpose behind this madness: to maintain the strongest relationships with management and the biggest customers, and thus influence, with these types of men.
“It maintained the old boys’ club and strengthened its power.”
A Goldman Sachs spokesperson said: The New Yorker: “We strongly disagree with Ms. Higgins’ characterization of Goldman Sachs culture, and we refuse to respond to anonymized allegations.”