There was a new sport in the halls at Barclays bank HQ on Thursday: trading scuttlebutt about the fate of Justin Kwan, a second-year analyst whose arrogant email to interns setting out the “Ten Commandments” for Wall Street success went viral.
Insiders tell [email protected] that the early money was on the hapless investment banker — whose tone-deaf note began with “Welcome to Power!” and instructed interns, among other things, to sleep under their desks — being let go.
On Tuesday, the junior money man wrote to the incoming summer interns in the bank’s Global Power and Utilities Group, saying “for nine weeks you will live and die by these (rules). Respect them, love them, learn them,” wrote Kwan.
By Wednesday, the leaked memo had spread around the world.
The list included jokey dictums such as, “Men: On your first day at the desk, it is customary to wear a bowtie and/or suspenders.” It also had warnings about the grueling schedules the students should expect.
“Remember: this is a summer internship for a full-time offer,” wrote Kwan. “If you can’t handle the heat, get out of the kitchen.”
“We expect you to be the last ones to leave every night … no matter what. That’s what good summer analysts do,” he said, explaining, “(Also getting in earlier than me would be a power move — You should enjoy your casual 9:15 a.m. PT arrival time this Friday, but I wouldn’t get used to it).”
Kwan also wrote in the two-page missive, “You will be assigned junior ‘mentors.’ It is much appreciated if you would bring breakfast in for your respective ‘mentor.’ ”
“I recommend bringing a pillow to the office (yoga mat works as well),” he said. “It makes sleeping under your desk a lot (sic) more comfortable, in the very likely scenario you have to do that.”
“Whether serious or satire, I’d say the real story is that 24-year-olds who have only had one job don’t exhibit great judgment,” a Wall Street insider told [email protected] “Avoid having them become the accidental face of your bank.”
In a statement to [email protected], a Barclays representative said, “This email communication was in no way authorized by Barclays. Barclays is fully committed to creating an environment where both our bankers and our business can thrive. We have implemented policies and training guidelines to enable employees to gain valuable experience while at the same time maintaining a healthy work-life balance.”
“We will decline to comment on (Kwan’s) employment status,” they added.
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