By: Ellen Cans
A new best-selling book on Amazon alleges that the workplace at Goldman Sachsis rife with misogyny.
As reported by the NY Post, author Jamie Fiore Higgins, 46, of Somerset County in New Jersey, writes that she worked for the financial giant for 17 years — during which she says she witnessed spreadsheets ranking female recruits based on their bodies as objects of lust. In her book, “Bully Market: My Story of Money and Misogyny at Goldman Sachs,” which is currently Amazon’s No. 1 bestseller in the “Financial Services Industry” category, Higgins also alleges that she was assaulted by a male colleague, who pinned her against a wall and threatened to “rip your f-ing face off.”
The former high ranking Goldman employee says that the investment bank’s Manhattan headquarters was rife with “out-of-control, lavish parties flowing with never-ending drinks; affairs flouted in the office; rampant drug use; and most pervasively, a discriminatory culture that seemed designed to hold back the few women and people of color employed at the company”, as per the book’s description on Amazon.
As per the Post, Higgins recounts numerous horrors during her employment. She says she was told that she was promoted at work basically because of her female assets. She says her manager discouraged her from breastfeeding. She also alleges that she was the target of “moo” sounds from co-workers, who mocked her for pumping breast milk in the lactation room. Also, she recounts that after a miscarriage, when a doctor warned she was anemic, her boss had said, it “just isn’t a good time” to take off.
The stress took its toll on her so started “popping Xanax like Tic Tacs,” she told the Times of London. But she stayed at the job because she was successful and was making a hefty salary–which at one point peaked at $1 million a year. “I had terrible things happen to me,” she told London Times. “But it would be disingenuous if I didn’t also share what I did to others. I don’t need to complete the circle with that guy [who assaulted her]. I have to show some grace for their bad choices because my husband has shown me grace for mine.”
The explosive book came out August 30th, unabashedly accusing and naming Goldman for an abusive culture. Higgins never seems to have filed a complaint while she was employed there. Higgins says she was dissuaded by her manager from reporting the assault to human resources. “Bully Market sounds the alarm on the culture of finance and corporate America, while offering clear, actionable ideas for creating a fairer workplace. Both a revealing, extraordinary look at the industry and a top Wall Streeter’s explosive personal story, Bully Market is an essential account of one woman’s experience in a flawed system that speaks to the challenge and urgency for change,” reads the book’s description.
Goldman Sachs replied, providing a statement to The Post saying: “Had Ms. Higgins raised these allegations with our human resources department at the time we would have investigated them thoroughly and addressed them seriously.” They added, “We have a zero-tolerance policy for discrimination or retaliation against employees reporting misconduct.” A Goldman spokesperson also pointed out that Higgins writes in the “author’s note” portion of the book that the “Goldman Sachs individuals referenced are composite characters.” “While all of this did happen to me, the timing of some events has been compressed,” Higgins wrote, also adding that quotes are not “verbatim” but rather “re-create the essence of the conversations”.