As many of you know, here at Dealbreaker we consider ourselves the preeminent scholars on Goldman Sachs president Gary Cohn’s grundle. Specifically, the grundle-to-face conversations he reportedly enjoys having with employees on the trading floor. So we were more than a little delighted to hear that Greg Smith’s book, Why I Left Goldman Sachs, contained a passage describing Cohn’s preferred position to assume while havin’ a chat. Sayeth Smith:
Gary had a very distinctive signature move, one he had become famous for within the firm; I must have seen it ten or fifteen times in action. It didn’t matter if the person he was talking to was male or female; he would walk up to the salesman or saleswoman, hike up one leg, plant his foot on the person’s desk, his thigh close to the employee’s face, and ask how markets were doing. Gary was physically commanding, and the move could have been interpreted as a very primal, alpha-male gesture. I think he just thought it was comfortable.
Having pored through every piece of empirical evidence regarding GC’s G-T-F tendencies at least 500 times, one of our research assistants noticed that Greg’s prose sounded moderately familiar.
Cohn, 6-foot-3 and 220 pounds, can be intimidating, two former colleagues said. He would sometimes hike up one leg, plant his foot on a trader’s desk, his thigh close to the employee’s face, and ask how markets were doing, they said.
As the foremost experts on this topic, what you’re seeing here may be proof that there is only one way to describe Gary’s oft-repeated sequence of actions, a finding that will appear in our next academic paper, “The Effect of the Cohn Grundle on Bond Market Liquidity During the Financial Crisis of 2007-2008.”
Earlier: Succeeding Blankfein at Goldman May Be Hurdle Too High for Cohn [Bloomberg]