The saga of Jamie Dimon at JP Morgan Chase raises questions about the value of a good reputation.
Reputation is something every leader possesses. What he does with it matters to the organization.
Case in point: Jamie Dimon, CEO of JP Morgan Chase. The reason he has so far survived the derivative trading episode that cost his company over $2.5 billion and may cost twice that, is his reputation. He is the last lion standing from the heady pre-2008 financial meltdown days. His reputation for integrity, until now, has been beyond reproach.
That reputation is taking a hit with new reporting by The Wall Street Journal that reveals that Dimon knew all about the derivative trading model but was negligent in supervising it. In fairness it was not his job to supervise the details, but the question arises: Should he have been more engaged? Hindsight is 20/20 and the answer would seem to be yes.
His reputation also is not enhanced by his sense of entitlement. Dimon stood down the shareholders and was allowed to keep his dual job as chairman and CEO. Worse, he was allowed to keep his $23 million bonus from last year. To me, that dings his reputation–but worse it affects our perception of his character. [read]