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Morning Coffee: How to have the perfect career at JPMorgan. Citi’s method of mind control for junior bankers

Mind control

Klaus Diederichs, the 58-year old M&A banker whom it emerged yesterday is retiring from JPMorgan, had the sort of epic banking career that everyone might want to aspire to.

Diederichs joined JPM straight out university and worked there for 34 years, accumulating various yachts in the process. He spent his junior years acclimatising in London, New York and Frankfurt, until – eight years after joining the bank, he was promoted to co-head of debt capital markets in London. Eight years after that, he became global head of M&A. Four years further on, he became head of investment banking in EMEA. Then he became chairman of the EMEA business and was promoted to JPM’s executive committee. Diederichs worked on Vodafone’s $172bn merger with Mannesmann and HVB’s $22.3bn merger with Unicredit.

And now? Rather than sailing off entirely into the distance, Financial News reports that Diederichs will keep his hand in and become a ‘culture carrier for the firm,’ which we assume will help keep him in his (semi) retirement.

Separately, an ex-Citi analyst has shared some of the methods used by the bank to compel analysts to stay until the work is done. ‘Benjamin’ (not his real name) said his bosses (associates, we presume) would ‘chew him up’ in front of the whole floor. They would also use the technique of refusing to let anyone go home until a perpetrator steps into line. In this case, that was Benjamin, who had to complete his work. “She told [us], ‘If you don’t finish this report, nobody gets to go home,’ he said. “That affects the office environment. It’s not necessarily abusive words but office politics. Your co-workers might not like you that much the next day.” Psychological warfare.


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