In February of 2011, Jamie Dimon, the chief executive ofﬁcer of JPMorgan Chase, approached the podium of one of the ballrooms at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Key Biscayne, Fla., where 300 senior executives from around the world were attending the bank’s annual off-site conference.
The New York Times reports that that day, Dimon took the opportunity, according to a bank employee in attendance, to try to inspire his team, to rouse them from the industrywide sense of malaise. Yes, there were challenges, Dimon said, but it was the job of leadership to be strong. They should be prudent, but step up — be bold. He looked out into the audience, where Ina Drew, the 54-year-old chief investment officer, was sitting at one of the tables. 'Ina', he said, singling her out, 'is bold'.
One year and three months later, and there were tears on the trading floor. Drew's team had been bold, so bold that along with Dimon, she had become the public face attached to a $6bn mistake, a trading loss so startling in size that it dominated the business press, put Dimon on the defensive and cost Drew her job.
Over and over again, online and on television, in stories about the loss, the same corporate headshot appeared: a woman wearing a hot pink bouclé jacket, showing a smile so faint it was almost frank in its discomfort.
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