Goldman Sachs accused of bullying culture in £1 million lawsuit

A former Goldman Sachs International employee, Ian Dodd, who served as the global head of recruiting from 2018 to 2021, has lodged a £1 million lawsuit in London, accusing the esteemed investment bank of fostering a “culture of bullying.” Dodd’s allegations paint a picture of a workplace where employees often “sobbed through meetings” and experienced significant emotional distress.

Dodd’s lawsuit states that this “dysfunctional” work environment was a major factor in his own mental decline. He alleges that just a year into his role at Goldman Sachs, the extreme work pressures took a toll on his health. Reports from the Financial Times underscore Dodd’s claim, suggesting that emotional outbursts were not uncommon among employees at the London office.

Adding to these concerns, Dodd, who resigned in 2021, emphasizes in his legal filing that the bank consistently demanded employees work extended hours. A report by Fortune cites Dodd’s account that unsettling comments such as receiving a “slap” or “punch” were often thrown around the office. He even claimed to have heard phrases like “take that as your first punch in the face” directed at colleagues.

Goldman Sachs has countered Dodd’s claims. According to the Financial Times, the bank acknowledged occasional distress among employees, citing a myriad of potential reasons, both work-related and personal. However, they firmly denied these instances as being frequent or typical. The bank’s official stance, as noted in court documents, rejects the notion of any “culture of divisiveness” or internal strife.

In defense of its work culture, Goldman Sachs contested several of Dodd’s assertions. They specifically refuted the claim that employees regularly displayed emotional distress during meetings. The bank further insinuated that any undue work pressures faced by Dodd might have been self-imposed, asserting that he was never mandated to work beyond standard hours.