Goldman Sachs Group Inc has begun scanning internal emails for the term "muppet" and other evidence that employees referred to clients in derogatory ways, Chief Executive Lloyd Blankfein told partners in a conference call this week, according to people familiar with the call.
The company-wide email review comes after an executive director named Greg Smith resigned last week in a scathing op-ed column in the New York Times in which he said he saw five Goldman managing directors refer to clients as "muppets," at times over internal email.
In the United States, "muppet" brings to mind lovable puppets such as Kermit the Frog, but in Britain "muppet" is slang for a stupid person.
On the conference call with partners this week, Blankfein said the company was taking Smith's claims seriously and was conducting a review of his assertions, including the email scan, according to these people.
Goldman Sachs should also scan for Bert, Ernie, Elmo, Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy. If they think the word "Muppet"is the issue, well then they just don't get it.