We have always been told that America is the land of opportunity. That if you work hard, and remained focused you can rise to the top. It is what, seemingly, draws so many people to migrate to the United States. The reward of high salaries for hard work makes sense. However, in one of the nations most sought after industries, banking, that seems to not be the case.
Recently, J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. has come under a great deal of controversy after hiring the son of China’s Commerce Minister Gao Hucheng despite his poor performance during interviews, which included sending a sexually explicit email to human resources (http://www.wsj.com/articles/in-j-p-morgan-emails-a-tale-of-china-and-connections-1423241289?mod=trending_now_5). A definite no-no, and an easy way to get let go in most cases.
“The hiring has drawn scrutiny from U.S. prosecutors and regulators who are investigating the Asian hiring practices of J.P. Morgan and several other banks, according to people briefed on the investigation” (http://www.wsj.com/articles/in-j-p-morgan-emails-a-tale-of-china-and-connections-1423241289?mod=trending_now_5).
So why are these banks, or companies in general, hiring people that may not necessarily be the most qualified? Just smart business practices it seems. Although in some cases it is illegal.
“J.P. Morgan hasn’t been accused of wrongdoing in the investigation, which focuses on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, a U.S. law that bars giving anything of value to foreign government officials for a business advantage” (http://www.wsj.com/articles/in-j-p-morgan-emails-a-tale-of-china-and-connections-1423241289?mod=trending_now_5).
In an industry focused on satisfying the needs of clients and establishing a good rapport, hiring a client’s son or daughter may be the best way to do that.
This is a very difficult issue to address, in my opinion, with firms receiving hundreds if not thousands of applicants a year from so many people having similar, if not identical qualifications. It is easy for a company to find a way to justify hiring the relative of someone, even if they are slightly less qualified.
You may be asking yourself what you can I do to fix this system of favoritism based on whom you know, rather than what you know. Well, there does not seem to be an easy fix in the immediate future. Wealthy and powerful individuals have the means to ensure that their family remains that way. My suggestion, work hard, really hard and hope that one day you can attain enough education and know enough people to get your son or daughter their dream job. Once you are in, it seems increasingly difficult to fall from grace.