I remember this one time

Greg Smith: Goldman Sachs Interns Taught Harsh But Important Lessons By Demanding But Affable Managing Directors

Lesson 1, according the first chapter of Why I Left Goldman Sachs (“I Don’t Know, But I’ll Find Out”): the difference between a sandwich and a salad.

You needed to be very entrepreneurial and creative. Adding value as an intern often began with getting coffee for the desk every day; frequently, interns also did breakfast and lunch runs. You would literally take a pen and pad and go around to the ten or fifteen people on the desk and take everyone’s order. It’s a strange concept, but Wall Street looks at attention to detail as an indicator of how people are going to do in their job. If a kid keeps messing up the lunch order, he’s probably going to mess up something else down the line.

I remember one managing director– a few years after I’d started working at the firm– who was very sensitive about his lunch orders. He didn’t eat onion or certain other things. One day he asked an intern for a cheddar cheese sandwich, and the kid came back with a cheddar cheese salad. The kid handed it to him so proudly: “Here’s your cheddar cheese salad.” I was sitting next to the MD, so I remember the incident well. He opened the container, looked at the salad, looked up at the kid, closed the container, and threw it in the trash. It was a bit harsh, but it was also a teaching moment. The managing director joked about it with the kid afterward; he didn’t make a big deal about it. The lesson was learned.

Earlier: What Else Does Goldman Sachs Have In Store For Greg Smith?; Goldman Sachs Unimpressed By Sophomoric Writing Efforts Of Former Employee; Resignation Letter Reveals Goldman Sachs Is In The Business Of Making Money, Hires People Who Don’t Know How To Tie Their Shoes; Jewish Ping-Pong Tournament Participant / Sixth-Year Goldman Sachs Vice President Is Looking For His Next Challenge; Goldman Sachs Accuser Greg Smith (Might Have) Lied About That Which He Holds Most Sacred

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86 Responses to “Greg Smith: Goldman Sachs Interns Taught Harsh But Important Lessons By Demanding But Affable Managing Directors”

  1. Guest says:

    He is more masculine than you.


  2. Guest says:

    Sounds like a really good read so far, glad they leaked the highlights.

    -No one

    • guest says:

      what did you expect?
      -everyone who read the op-ed

    • Guest says:

      Would it surprise anyone that he got the 7 figs to write a salacious book and then squeezed 7 figs from GS to pen something innocuous?

      -fellow crafty Jew

  3. Everyone says:

    The fuck is a cheddar cheese salad?

  4. B2b MD says:

    Back in the old day; MD takes dump in said container and then hands it back to the kid and tells him that consulting might be a better career choice…

    -Not Geazer Gas trader, but an old veteran of WS trading floors

    • Intern says:

      Can't wait til Geazer Oil Trader realizes you confused him with a gas guy…

      Mind the details, Tonto.

  5. PermaGuestII says:

    "It's a strange concept, but Wall Street looks at attention to detail as an indication of how people are going to do in their job."

    Attention to detail is a strange concept that is unique to Wall Street?

    Memo to self: never fly South African Airways.

  6. guest says:

    worst hazing story ever

  7. Im_a_Dude says:

    Intern should be thankful he didn't get it dumped on his head.

  8. Guestido says:

    Don't quit your day jo… Oh wait

  9. Lambs says:

    All my MD ever asked me to do was to put the lotion in the basket

  10. hopeful says:

    Why I Left Goldman Sachs : Liar's Poker :: Cheddar Cheese Salad : Cheddar Cheese Sandwich

  11. Guest says:

    Issuing a preemptive "cool story, bro" to all forthcoming leaked chapters

  12. lb says:

    I don't get it, it could be much worse if MD had tossed kid's salad


  13. Guest says:

    I toss intern's salads all the time

    -L Tilton

  14. guest says:

    That was an amazing, really awesome Wall Street anecdote! And the MD joked about it with the kid, even!! Note to self: get this on Kindle asap!

  15. Guest says:

    This book sounds like amateur hour.

    – Maccabi games silver medalist

  16. Sean says:

    That MD was being pretty lactose-intolerant towards this poor interns mistake.

  17. hardeeharhar says:

    no story about searching for upticks or quotes on underwater aviation, inc?

    • PermaGuestII says:

      He couldn't get the upticks because he couldn't find the keys to the clearinghouse– even when he went to Jersey City.

  18. guest says:

    Tough but fair.

  19. Guest says:

    If Goldman has come to little fucks not getting railed for messing up Shake Shack orders or god forbid Chiptole orders then maybe I will give some credence to this whole "Lost their identity bull shit"

  20. Annoyed says:

    Completely off topic, but any TV Ad Exec that approves the running a J.G. Wentworth should be subjected to public flogging while the damn ad runs on continuous loop on his ipod.

    There. I feel better now.

  21. pazzo83 says:

    One time the guy at my local deli put mayo on my sandwich after I EXPLICITLY asked for no mayo, so I stabbed him in the hand.

    – WB Jennings

    • Hakuna Matata Guy says:

      Was it Uncle's? Vavala's? God forbid Tony's in New Canaan?

      Either way, I'm sure the lesson was learned.

  22. Guest says:

    Goldman's official position on Smith's book just changed from nervous to embarrassed.

  23. VonSloneker says:

    Hell yes.

    – Sleestack

  24. Matt L. says:

    This guy gets a seven figure advance and I can't even get the bar to let me put on a like, 2X leveraged forward marg position* without posting cash collateral, meh.

    *And they weren't even interested in all the potential upside for them vs. just selling me regular margs, and I had made all the charts and everything, what gives?

  25. Guest says:

    Can't wait for his follow-up book: "Why I Look Like a F***ing Googly-Eyed Cantelope from Outer Space."

  26. Ricky says:

    He looks like Karl Pilkington…and writes like Karl Pilkington

  27. pmco says:

    At least they buy they own food. Back in the days when I was an intern, my MD used to eat my muffin every morning.

  28. MIT says:

    Goldman Sachs not top bucket shop on Wall street no more. They HR say english too poor, so I no offer. I get offer from JP morgan and purchase dream exotic car in first year. I drive my bmw z4 by goldman building laughing, you lose, again lol. I sometimes put top down even when weather chilly lol

  29. Guest says:

    In Soviet Russia, intern wears cheddar cheese on face after major screwup.

  30. Milton the MD says:

    I said: no salt, no salt.

  31. Main Street says:

    I feel like the entire episode could have been avoided if the MD didn't explain his order like a faggot. Next time maybe he'll ask for, you know "a grilled cheese."

  32. I WIN says:

    Our MD always made us get his coffee. When we got the full time to analyst, we had our coffees delivered by the new interns.

    Also, interns could NEVER write down the orders. Imagine remembering 6 people's exact orders, and let me tell you – some of them wanted the strangest most detailed combos.

  33. Charlie says:

    Where is the leaked content?

  34. guest says:

    his eyes are too far apart.

  35. Ms. Smith says:

    Best leaked part went down his Mama's leg…. should have been a bl*wjob.

    -His Mom

  36. Goodstorybro says:

    Chapter 2: How you took a dump in the Goldman bathroom could make or break your career. I remember this one associate who was top of his class at Wharton and wicked smart. He walked into the can with an Us magazine discreetly tucked under his arm. A Managing Director passing him out the door pulled it from his arm, tossed it in the garbage and handed him his copy of the Bank Credit Analyst. A harsh lesson indeed but a valuable one.

  37. Walter Sobchak says:

    wall street is boring

  38. Jamie says:

    Wanted Cheddar Cheese sandwich, intern brought CDX.NA.IG.9 instead

  39. Bobito says:

    Dude was an a*****e and wasted perfectly good food. Has my complete disrespect, and clearly has no idea how to properly run a business, or be a manager. Bad with people, and wasteful with resources.

  40. John says:

    First intern who actually believed the "attention to detail" line about getting lunch. They really just want someone to get their lunch and not screw it up. No one actually believes its an indication of being a good banker.

  41. guest says:

    Chapter 3: Once I stayed in the office all night fixing the fonts on a powerpoint deck – and nobody ever said "thanks".

  42. Guest says:

    We fronted $1.5mm for this crap?

    -Who ever thought it would be a good idea to give this guy a book deal.

  43. Betty Crocker says:

    The officical GS Intern Cheddar Cheese Salad Receipe

    1 can (29 oz.) green gage plums, drained and pits removed
    1/4 cup lemon juice
    2 tablespoons sugar
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
    1 cup chilled heavy cream, whipped
    1 or 2 drops green food coloring

  44. Nice Title. Great Read. added to my feed on stocks