Bonus Watch '14: James Gorman Is Proud Of Y'All

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In late January, in the year of 2012, Morgan Stanley had a lot of unhappy employees on its hands. Bonuses had just been announced, and the majority of the team was displeased. But while some bank CEOs might've paid lip service to the group, telling them how important they are despite what their bonus might suggest, or promised the slight would be made up next year, or simply ignored the grumbling and gone about their merry way, Morgan Stanley chief James Gorman was having none of it. "STFU or GTFO," he essentially told MS employees, during an appearance on BloombergTV, "and don't let the door hit your ass on the way out." (Actual words: "You’re naive, read the newspaper, No. 1, No. 2, if you put your compensation in a one-year context to define your overall level of happiness, you have a problem which is much bigger than the job. And No. 3, if you’re really unhappy, just leave. I mean, life’s too short.")

Now, nearly three years later, with what was no doubt a tear in his eye, Gorman had this to say:

Morgan Stanley Chief Executive Officer James Gorman said the U.S. bank is paying staff “competitively” after managers turned the business around over the past five years. Gorman, speaking in an interview in Singapore today with Bloomberg Television’s John Dawson, cited four or five years of growth “and profitability continuously improving.” “We have a tremendous management team,” said Gorman, 56. “I think they’ve been killing themselves for five years turning this thing around and it’s worked. And, God bless them, they deserve all that comes from that success.”

Daddy Jim knows he doesn't say it too often, but he's truly impressed with the men and women you've become. He was tough on you growing up and he probably didn't need to ground you for a month that time you borrowed the car without asking and, yeah, maybe he could've eased up on the "I ought to break my foot off in you ass" talk but you know what? It was all worth it in the end.

Morgan Stanley Pays Competitively After Turning Corner [Bloomberg]

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James Gorman Will Say Something Nice About Wall Street When Wall Street Earns It

If you're looking for a cheerleader, go bark up another tree. “Say you want to be out ahead of it and give a lot of speeches and talk about all the good we’re doing,” Gorman said today at an industry conference in New York. “And then some trader does some stupid thing like this guy at UBS did and he’s in jail and all bets are off,” Gorman said. He was referring to Kweku Adoboli, the UBS AG trader convicted of fraud this month in the largest unauthorized trading loss in British history...Traders at New York-based Morgan Stanley had too much latitude in the past, “what I call having an outsized sandbox,” Gorman, 54, said at the conference, which was sponsored by the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association. “Until we can be really confident we’ve got discipline around the sandboxes, I think you have to be really careful not to be holier than thou,” Gorman said. “We’re going to be in the doghouse for a while.” Incidentally, this would a good time to mention that Gorman's bonus policy instituted last January-- STFU or GTFO-- still stands.

Bonus Watch '13: Jim Gorman Gives Employees The Option To Either Take Their Bonus In Three Easy Installments

Since taking the reigns at Morgan Stanley in 2010, CEO James Gorman has guided the firm with a managerial style that boils down to telling people, more or less: You'll get it when you've earned it, "it" being anything from personal space to money to his respect. On the point of compensation, last year he told employees complaining about what they were paid to either open a newspaper and get over themselves or do everyone a favor and quit. Today brings news that this year, he's doubling down on that mandate and daring anyone to make something of it.

Layoffs/Bonus Watch '12/13: Morgan Stanley

Back in January, Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman sent a simple messages to his employees, who had been grumbling about their pay: STFU or GTFO. "You're naive, read the newspaper, No.1," Gorman told Bloomberg he would say to any members of his staff that wanted to give him lip about their compensation to his face. "No. 2, if you put your compensation in a one-year context to define your over all level of happiness, you have a problem which is much bigger than this job. And No. 3, if you're really unhappy, just leave." Today, in an interview with the FT, Gorman reiterated his stance and added that in addition to reducing compensation for current employees, the bank will likely be drastically cutting pay for future analysts. If anyone has a problem with that, consider applying for a gig at Bank of Mythical Pre-Crisis Era Bonuses. Alternatively, Gorman is happy to discuss a compensation plan in which you'll be awarded shares of his foot in your ass, which vest immediately. In the latest sign of the pressure Wall Street is under to cut costs and address high pay levels, James Gorman, chief executive, said that staff and remuneration would have to be sacrificed as banks cope with lower profits. “There’s way too much capacity and compensation is way too high,” Mr Gorman said in an interview with the Financial Times. “As a shareholder I’m sort of sympathetic to the shareholder view that the industry is still overpaid.” Morgan Stanley itself is already axing 4,000 jobs, 7 per cent of its workforce, by the end of this year. In the new year, Mr Gorman said, the bank will consider its next round of cost-cutting, including lower pay and bonuses. News of further pay cuts, including potentially for new entrants at the investment bank, comes just weeks after Goldman Sachs confirmed it was overhauling its well-known entry-level programme for analysts. Goldman was said to have tired of the number of analysts in the programme who left the bank for hedge funds. Mr Gorman said that Morgan Stanley will probably keep its own analyst programme, but pay could be reduced significantly. Morgan Stanley Chief Warns On Wall Street Pay [FT] Earlier: James Gorman To Employees: STFU Or GTFO