David Solomon, CEO of Goldman Sachs, speaks at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, January 23, 2020.

Adam Galasius CNBC

Goldman Sachs is giving its top executives a new bonus, more common in the technology industry: the ability to take as much time off as they want.

Last month, the investment bank told executives and partners that starting May 1, the new “flexible vacation” policy would allow them to take vacations, “if needed without a fixed vacation day,” a note received by CNBC said. Starting next year, ordinary employees will receive at least two more days off a year, according to a separate note from the bank.

“We are pleased to announce improvements and changes to our global vacation program designed to further support leisure and exercise,” the bank said.

While the new policy theoretically means unlimited time off from work for senior executives, in practice it will lead to career self-harm, especially during market turmoil. The Wall Street elites often have the opposite problem – not to use the rest they are given.

Perhaps that is why Goldman requires all employees to take at least three weeks off a year, including at least one week in a row, according to a note previously reported by the Telegraph.

Bonuses for executives and partners – Goldman’s two oldest and most elusive titles – are similar to flexible vacation policies at technology firms including Netflix and LinkedIn.

The move could be a way to give senior talent some flexibility as Goldman CEO David Solomon encourages his employees to return to the office. Earlier this month, Solomon said personal visits to U.S. offices were still below pre-pandemic levels of about 80%.

Here is an excerpt from the memo:

April 22, 2022
Improvements and changes in our global vacation program for partners and executives

As a firm, we strive to provide our people with differentiated benefits and offerings to support well-being and sustainability. As we continue to care for our people at every stage of their careers and focus on the experiences of our partners and executives, we are excited to announce improvements and changes to our global vacation program designed to further support leisure and exercise time:

For partners and executives

  • Flexible vacation: From May 1, we introduce flexible leave for all partners and managers, which allows, if necessary, to take leave without the right to fixed leave.
  • At least three weeks of rest each year: Starting January 1, 2023, it is expected that all our employees, including partners and executives, will be absent from work for at least 15 days (three weeks) in a given calendar year or your required minimum if greater – at least one consecutive week recreation (or more if required by compliance with your role or applicable local law).

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