As anyone who's ever been enveloped in a Jamie Dimon hug knows, when you're with James, you're safe. Yes, he can be demanding and yes, he expects a lot from people and yes, if you fail to deliver, you're going to be held accountable and no, he's not here to coddle you. But the trade off is that Jamie Dimon protects his cubs. Come near one of them, threaten them in anyway and he'll scratch your eyes out.
Where did this instinct come from? Birth, likely, and then honed from an early age, when Dimon would "stand up to bullies who threatened his smaller twin," Teddy. These days he still looks out for Ted, in addition to his three biological daughters, and his approximately 230,000 adopted children. The boys and girls of JPMorgan.
Dimon has a reputation as a cost cutter; it’s a term he hates and one that obscures his protective feeling toward the organization. Linda Bammann, who served a stint as deputy chief risk officer, recalls that when he hired her, he took her to dinner and said: “Every single person in this firm is our responsibility. If we ever have to lay people off, it’s because we haven’t done a good job.” No one would call Dimon cuddly: he is profane, snappish and sparing with praise. What comes through, according to a large sampling of colleagues, is his passion for the organization. His wife’s word for him is “maternal.”