He called them "spectacular by any standard."
Listen up Goldman Sachs employees: CEO Lloyd Blankfein could replace you in a heartbeat.
When discussing the importance of social good and entrepreneurship at Fortune’s Most Powerful Women summit on Tuesday, Blankfein pointed to Goldman’s 10,000 Women program. The initiative provides female entrepreneurs around the world with capital, management education and mentoring resources.
Blankfein said the program’s participants are “spectacular by any standard,” and could do the job of Goldman’s nearly 37,000 employees. “You could take the population of Goldman Sachs, brush them aside, give them a few more weeks of training, and we could replace them with this crowd.”
No need to worry if you’re a Goldman employee — Blankfein was kidding of course, adding “I said ‘could,’ but that would be a little bit of a radical step.”
Two of the women who participated in the 10,000 Women program joined Blankfein on stage. Ciiru Waweru Waithaka is the founder of FunKidz Limited, a manufacturer of children’s furniture and learning tools inspired by African stories. Through the program, Waithaka received a business loan to renovate her factory and double her production capacity.
Rima Koteish El-Husseini was also recognized at the MPW summit. She leads Blessing, a company specializing in chocolates and gifts for luxury events. El-Husseini co-founded the company with her sister and has expanded the business from Lebanon throughout other areas in the Middle East. She is now planning to expand to the U.S. and Europe.
“I believe that power is the ability to have a positive impact on people around you and to help them grow. This is also leadership,” El-Husseini said.