Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

PghUSA

Jetset discovering Pittsburgh

Recommended Posts

After living in San Francisco, Hong Kong, London, Paris, and DC a global m&a specialist wants to make Pittsburgh home and "put us on the map" with global M&A finance. The last part of the article is pretty good as well where he explains how Pittsburgh is one of the greatest areas he's seen (better then Paris? maybe I'm not crazy after all ;) ) and that the region only lacks for not "being on the radar screen" of international travelers and fitness/outdoor fans. Hmmm why is it that every time I turn around I see jetset business people, international players and world travelers state in articles and stories how Pittsburgh is fantastic, too bad it's not "on the radar screen". Maybe I should postulate a theory that though this region should improve in many ways, it's not the 'burgh but the radar screen that is broken. Radar screen, could that be Madison Avenue, Hollywood Blvd. and the like? At the constant risk of sounding conspiratorial some days, I do shift blame to the imagemakers too busy to leave their lattes on Hollywood Blvd. or Madison Ave. The reason? Every month local papers are printing quotes from VIPs and trendsetters in shock and awe over how great this town is and that we shouldn't be "off the radar screen", I hate blaming others for our loss in this way, but we don't run the "screens", there is legitimate blame for our poor and highly undeserved image and it doesn't rest with us for the most part.

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/05254/568964.stm

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


I agree with you. This is a great city. Most of the world just finds it easier to go by old stereotypes than to find out for themselves.

I just hope that our attempts to get on people's radar doesn't ruin those things that make the city great. Although, ironically, if we did make the whole city a cookie-cutter of what's trendy, we'd probably be seen as totally cool by your average Joe MTV-watcher.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This article is a bit less flattering to Pittsburgh:

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/05219/549992.stm

One of the highest-ranking women at PNC, LaVelle was an extreme commuter -- flying into Pittsburgh at the beginning of the work week, staying several nights at the Duquesne Club and catching commercial flights back to New York or New Jersey at the end of the week. The ex-chief marketing officer, who came to PNC from New York-based JP Morgan Chase, did that week after week and stayed at the bank for five years.

As it turns out, logistically challenging commutes are not uncommon at the highest reaches of PNC, the region's largest bank and employer of more than 7,000 people locally. LaVelle is gone, but at least four other top PNC executives still work in Downtown Pittsburgh during the week, staying in apartments and hotel rooms, and then travel great distances to more permanent homes at the end of the week, according to sources close to PNC.

The habits of PNC's supercommuters touch on the sensitive topic of how Pittsburgh is perceived nationally. It remains difficult, local headhunters said, to bring in top-line executive talent, especially in banking, when much of the action still takes place in New York.

"Pittsburgh is not the center of the universe in banking," said local recruiter Tom Flannery, managing director of the Pittsburgh area office for Boyden Global Executive Search. "As a consequence, the Pittsburgh banks will go to the center of the universe, which is New York, and recruit the best people they can find.

"If the talent you recruit doesn't wish to relocate, do you go out and look for lesser talent, or do you accommodate that individual?" Flannery asked.

'It's a Pittsburgh thing'

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What's that quote at the end? "It's a Pittsburgh thing"? Is that part of the article?

Because I think you could take any mid-size city and plug it in there and it would be just as true.

When you start trying to compete with NYC, not many places will be able to pull it off. There will always be some people who can only be happy in New York. It's not Pittsburgh thing it's a New York thing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I did read that article a few months ago, I think it would be fantastic if we could lure the NYers here to move in full time, however I don't see it as a slight against us, just that telecommuting partly and super commutes are becoming more and more a way of life for corporate VIPs (Alcoa has increasingly been doing it between Pittsburgh and NYC). I am not overjoyed about it, but I'd rather have half the time of a NY powerbroker then none of it and see PNC get bought out by a BA or Wachovia because they INSISTED that the bluechip talent move here for good.

Also please be careful about how much we quote, thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As the article implied, much of the reason why entities like Alcoa and PNC have remained competitive in this era of mergers and consolidation has been because they have been able to recruit East Coast talent. Let's face it, many of the nation's most prestigious business schools are on the East Coast and that's where the talent is. Also, many East Coasters would never live anywhere else. Thus, you have the situation of people who work for Pgh corporations commuting in from the E.C.

There are other metros where the heads of the major corporations are local. However, those corporations are nowhere near the status of an Alcoa or a PNC.

In many ways, Pgh is fortunate enough that it is clsoe enough to the E.C. to be able to legitimately recruit E.C. talent, even if some fo that talent insists on continuing to live on the E.C. and commuting to Pgh.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We could put a different spin on it, too. A lot of cities would claim it as a positive that people commute there from NYC every week. We have some companies here that are big and important enough for people to do these kind of commutes for. Yay us!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It truly is a double edged sword as you put it Gerbil. I tend to think of it almost like "tourist dollars", all that top flight talent commuting in is one reason why the Airmall, high class restaurants, the Duquesne Club, downtown retail, hotels etc. are making some big bucks. Given we split their buying dollar with NYC (for now) and do get almost all of their professional skills and talent to enrich a Pittsburgh based business.

Urban I got confused some on your second sentence. Not sure what you mean by it, did want to clarify though that PNC's CEO and COO etc. are Pittsburghers through and through and Alcoa from what I can tell still has about 2/3rds of its senior management being local residents (though the new CEO since O'Neal is splitting time with NYC). Pittsburgh though does have PPG, Heinz, USSteel, Wesco, and Mellon as fortune 500's and I haven't heard of any such commutes from NYC or Boston at those of late though Mellon keeps major offices in NYC and Boston.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.