Goldman Sachs Insider Tale Doubles as PhD Thesis

Lloyd Blankfein, chairman and CEO of Goldman Sachs. Photograph by Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

When the latest Goldman Sachs tell-all landed on my desk, my first thought was that Greg Smith had come up with a sequel to Why I Left Goldman Sachs. But this latest addition to the Vampire Squid oeuvre is by Steven Mandis, a former Goldman portfolio manager who casts his insider tale as a more somber, studied look at the bank’s culture. His book, What Happened to Goldman Sachs: An Insider’s Story of Organizational Drift and Its Unintended Consequences, has the added gravitas of being the basis for Mandis’s PhD dissertation on his former employer at Columbia University. That may explain why he’s supplemented his own tale of angst with SEC filings, interviews, and references to sociological research.

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