Lloyd Blankfein on Careers and Global Economic Issues

Lloyd Blankfein, Goldman Sachs Chairman and CEO, spoke with David Rubenstein, president of the Economic Club of Washington D.C., on July 18, 2012, in an interview that can now be seen on the website.

In the interview, Lloyd discussed his college days, his career trajectory, and today's top global economic issues. Here are some of the comments Lloyd made about his background and career path:

On leaving his hometown of Brooklyn to attend Harvard on a scholarship: (2:30)

“I wanted to see the world. I knew there were other things to do, and I didn’t know who I was. Frankly, I wanted to get out and have my eyes opened.”

On trying out for the Harvard swim team after a successful high school
swimming career: (4:13)

 “All I remember was that when I got out of the pool, the people I started with were already dressed. So I got myself out of the water, and without turning around—I didn’t even dry myself off—I walked out of the building and over to the boat house, and I said ‘I’m going to try something else.’”

On finding his way to Goldman Sachs after beginning his career as a lawyer: (5:12)

“I never lived my life looking ahead at the next thing and trying to plot and plan where I should be. I decided early on that I was getting too old to keep deferring gratification; I had to enjoy what I was doing at any given moment.”

On the benefits of beginning a career at Goldman Sachs: (25:40)

“What we have provided to generations of people is great training. In other words, we bring people in, [and] we work them very hard. They learn presentation skills, how to think, how to learn rigor.”

Lloyd also discussed the future of the investment banking industry, the firm’s continued ability to attract the best talent, and global economic issues including the "fiscal cliff" in the US, the European debt crisis, U.S. job creation, the effects of regulation, and the outlook for capital markets this year.

See the entire video on