female minorities

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kaymac's picture
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Hi All,
Although this topic has already somewhat been discussed:
What are the odds for a female minority for being sucessful in this industry?  I'd like to hear from those who have dealt with this and what/how it or didn't work out.  How long did that individual last at the wirehouses?

Soon 2 B Gone's picture
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Joined: 2006-09-27

I am of the opinion that it is wrong to even offer the job because failure is preordained.

That is at the retail financial advisor level.

A great many other areas of the business--including institutional
sales--does not depend on being able to get by a prejudice that
influences about 95% of the population.

In a vaccuum we should be able to get past all these issues, but the
reality is that when you're dealing with somebody's future that
somebody is going to be selfish and yield to every stereotype that is
out there.

Life is not fair, and one of the things that may never be within the
reach of a great many people is success as a retail financial advisor.

It has nothing to do with the individual, and everything to do with our society.

kaymac's picture
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I most certainly agree with you.  Yet, do you not think there is a market out there for this type of individual?  Where are the sucessful female minorities? Are they doctors, attorneys, small biz owners?  If so why couldn't the fmfa reach out to these people?

ymh_ymh_ymh's picture
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I think a female minority with the right educational background and personality could do well as a broker/financial advisor but she must be VERY selective about what firm and what branch office she goes to work at. If the firm is serious about making improvements (thanks to too many lawsuits/bad press) and the branch manager knows his or her career/bonus depend upon no more discriminatory actions, then maybe you could do real well.
Yes, there are successful minority small business owners, doctors, lawyers, professors in larger metro areas and I imagine they would like to have an advisor who's of similar background as long as that advisor knows what she's doing.
If you're a recent college grad/MBA and are considering financial services, there are other career paths which aren't as hard to succeed in, however.

kaymac's picture
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Joined: 2006-09-25

ymh, do you have a co-worker at your firm? Secondly, give me some ideas of what these other career paths are.

Soon 2 B Gone's picture
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kaymac wrote:I most certainly agree with you.  Yet, do you not
think there is a market out there for this type of individual? 
Where are the sucessful female minorities? Are they doctors, attorneys,
small biz owners?  If so why couldn't the fmfa reach out to these
people?

They could, and they should.

But--and it's a big BUT--are there enough of them to make a practice go?

You have to be able to gather tens of millions of dollars, hundreds
even.  How many minority females will you have to convert to
clients to get that kind of money?

Keeping in mind that they are not necessarily going to fall in line in
some sort of loyalty deal--even though that is often talked about as a
way for "the community" to advance its own best interests.

The prejudices against women and minorities are held by minority women as often as any other "group."

My advice is that if you want to make a career of Wall Street it is
better to come into the business in almost any other area except retail
financial advisor.

Not just minority women--anybody would find the sledding easier in any of the other paths of achievement.

ymh_ymh_ymh's picture
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Joined: 2005-09-05

I am not a broker, Kay. Yes, I have co-workers.
I would suggest possibly institutional sales or maybe research (equity research is more "tame" than fixed income with respect to gentlemen conducting themselves professionally).
If you wish to e-mail me, Kay, I could give you a little more info on where I think you might have a good chance of a happy/balanced and successful career:
LoveLEHGirl@aol.com (am not a broker or headhunter)
I haven't heard of many (if any) issues at Raymond James with minorities or women. Not sure why that is. Might be a good place to make initial inquiries if you really are considering retail brokerage as a career.
 

JCadieux's picture
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I am so sick of this topic.  This is a FAWOMFT.I have met many, many successful female and/or minority financial advisors.  I have heard rumors that female brokers are MORE likely to be successful, because they have slightly better than average long-term retention rates among clients.  I have no substantiation, but I would not be surprised if it was true.I have also heard that there are far fewer NASD complaints about female and minority brokers.Yes, there are bad apples and clueless dinosaurs out there.  And no, I don't believe that the numbers are as balanced as they could be.  But I think that these issues arise in virtually every industry with a sales force.

troll's picture
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ymh_ymh_ymh wrote:
If you wish to e-mail me, Kay, I could give you a little more info on where I think you might have a good chance of a happy/balanced and successful career:
 
Keep in mind when you read her advice she's never been in this business and most everything you'll hear from her comes secondhand.....

troll's picture
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JCadieux wrote:I am so sick of this topic.  This is a FAWOMFT.I have met many, many successful female and/or minority financial advisors.  I have heard rumors that female brokers are MORE likely to be successful, because they have slightly better than average long-term retention rates among clients.  I have no substantiation, but I would not be surprised if it was true.I have also heard that there are far fewer NASD complaints about female and minority brokers.Yes, there are bad apples and clueless dinosaurs out there.  And no, I don't believe that the numbers are as balanced as they could be.  But I think that these issues arise in virtually every industry with a sales force.
 
There you have it....

blueopaqueglass's picture
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JCadieux wrote:I am so sick of this topic.  This is a FAWOMFT.I have met many, many successful female and/or minority financial advisors.  I have heard rumors that female brokers are MORE likely to be successful, because they have slightly better than average long-term retention rates among clients.  I have no substantiation, but I would not be surprised if it was true.I have also heard that there are far fewer NASD complaints about female and minority brokers.Yes, there are bad apples and clueless dinosaurs out there.  And no, I don't believe that the numbers are as balanced as they could be.  But I think that these issues arise in virtually every industry with a sales force.
I am a Japanese female.  B.S. in Chemical Engineering from a top school in the U.S. private university.  Bilingual - English/Jajpanese.
Not young.  Trying to succeed.  I don't care what other people say, think, or do.
Someone has to be the first .....
 
BlueOpaueGlass

Soon 2 B Gone's picture
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blueopaqueglass wrote:
I am a Japanese female.  B.S. in Chemical Engineering from a
top school in the U.S. private university.  Bilingual -
English/Jajpanese.
Not young.  Trying to succeed.  I don't care what other people say, think, or do.
Someone has to be the first .....

How is it going?

Indyone's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-30

HS, do you even know who Condoleeza Rice is?!!

kaymac's picture
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Joined: 2006-09-25

JCadieux and All,
Forgive my stupity, what does FAWOMFT stand for? Why cant we all get along. Wouldn't it be the firms' advantage to team up with these individuals to define new markets that could be worthwhile?

JCadieux's picture
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kaymac wrote:JCadieux and All,
Forgive my stupity, what does FAWOMFT stand for?Frequently Argued Waste of my ... Time.

Soon 2 B Gone's picture
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One of the issues is the statement, "Could be worthwhile."

Get the confidence that you can say that, "Will be worthwhile" and you'll be able to persuade a manager to hire you.

Also it's not stupidity about FAWOMFT--I don't know either, but perhaps
Financial advisor with out mutual fund trails.  But it could be
something completely meaningless, or even feeelthy.

No wait, Jeff is a Baylor Bear, that means he goes to church several
hours a week, so he wouldn't say anything feeeelthy, even in code.

Soon 2 B Gone's picture
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See, I told you.

Helter Skelter's picture
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Indyone wrote:HS, do you even know who Condoleeza Rice is?!!
Is she a broker?

Indyone's picture
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Helter Skelter wrote:Indyone wrote:HS, do you even know who Condoleeza Rice is?!!
Is she a broker?
Do you doubt she could be?

Helter Skelter's picture
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Indyone wrote:Helter Skelter wrote:Indyone wrote:HS, do you even know who Condoleeza Rice is?!!
Is she a broker?
Do you doubt she could be?

Nope. I think that any minority woman who was Sec. Of State would probably be able to do a lot of business. Last time I checked, there was only one minority woman who qualifies and the topic starter didn't specify Dr. Rice. YOu are an idiot to throw that red herring into the fray.  Any black woman CAN be a broker. I just don't think it will be easy for them to raise much money. If I'm wrong, where the hell are they?

Indyone's picture
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I think you qualified as the idiot in the room by saying "black - no way".  You've just acknowledged the possibility.
...and it's hardly a red herring...she is black and female.  When you try to make a sweeping generality like you did, you open yourself up to rebuke and correction.  Do you even know what red herring means or do you just like throwing around terminology to pretend to be intelligent?

Helter Skelter's picture
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Indyone wrote:
I think you qualified as the idiot in the room by saying "black - no way".  You've just acknowledged the possibility.
...and it's hardly a red herring...she is black and female.  When you try to make a sweeping generality like you did, you open yourself up to rebuke and correction.  Do you even know what red herring means or do you just like throwing around terminology to pretend to be intelligent?

Zacko, what's it like to lack the guts to take a stand and tell it like it is? WHere are all of the black female brokers? Please explain how they can be as successful as a white male, all other things being equal. Do you really think that your fellow liberals won't draw the line when it comes to their own money? Especially if nobody would find out their reason for not doing business with the black woman?
This should be good....

Silence's picture
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Joined: 2006-09-20

The point you seem to be missing is that everyone doesn't think like you. Some people do, some people don't. So you take your thoughts and run with them but don't try to make it seem as if that's just how it is. It's not. In some places yes- in other places no. A black, blue, brown, purple, orange person can network and build relationships just as easy as a white person. Sure, some people will prefer a certain race but that's SOME not ALL.  Everyone that does not agree with you is not an idiot. I'd say they're someone with an open mind. Do you really have stats on the race and gender of every single broker/advisor in America?

Helter Skelter's picture
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Silence wrote:The point you seem to be missing is that everyone doesn't think like you. Some people do, some people don't. So you take your thoughts and run with them but don't try to make it seem as if that's just how it is. It's not. In some places yes- in other places no. A black, blue, brown, purple, orange person can network and build relationships just as easy as a white person. Sure, some people will prefer a certain race but that's SOME not ALL.  Everyone that does not agree with you is not an idiot. I'd say they're someone with an open mind. Do you really have stats on the race and gender of every single broker/advisor in America?
Where are the black women, then?

Soon 2 B Gone's picture
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Is it a sign of an open mind to deny realities?

babbling looney's picture
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This job is difficult for anyone and harder for a woman because of many things not least among them is cultural stereotyping.  In addition to the hurdles that men in upper management either purposefully or subconsciously put in the way, women tend to put up their own barriers to success in the financial industry.
As to being a woman of ethnicity it is even harder depending on which culture/ethnicity you are from.    In some cultures women do not participate in business at all and are actively discouraged from any participation in anything outside of their home life.  It think it would be extremely difficult to become a successful woman broker/advisor in a culture where women are not allowed basic freedoms or where they are looked upon as second class citizens.  In other cultures ethnic women can become quite successful.
As an example:  I have a colleague who is a very successful female broker. She is of Chinese heritage (3rd generation American, Stanford educated) and speaks several languages and dialects of Chinese, French and Vietnamese.  Her niche is in the SF Bay Area dealing with the large immigrant population and the many "Mom and Pop" type businesses they have established.  She does very well, where I would never be able to break into that market.  They trust her because she is "like them".
However, as talented as she is, she would NEVER be able to do business in my market.  The reality is that people want to do business with people like themselves.  Is it unfair?  Yes. But, you all know my feeling on that......life isn't fair....get over it.  This also relates to the  Smith Barney lawsuit.   It is true that some men will not want to do business with a woman, just as it is true that some women would prefer to do business with a man.  Cultural stereotyping again.  This seems to be more of a problem with the older clients than the younger ones.  Should SB distribute clients to advisors that they feel will not be able to retain the accounts in the name of political correctness.  I think not.
Should companies actively recruit and encourage ethinic minorites to become brokers (men or women), of course.  But we need to keep in mind that broker/dealers are in business to make money and if the niche market isn't profitable (for a man or a woman) or if the cultural bias of the ethnic market is such that a woman can't be successful, then the reason there are few or no brokers there is not discrimination.  It's just good business and financial decisions that make it so.

Soon 2 B Gone's picture
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No she's not.  What she is is prejudiced in the sense that she as
pre determined points of view--she has "pre judged."  We all do
that, the very act of engaging in a transaction with anybody involves
prejudging.  Choosing a entree at dinner is prejudging, choosing a
bottle of wine at the liquor store is prejudging.

The only people who do not prejudge are small children and moronic adults.

ymh_ymh_ymh's picture
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Joined: 2005-09-05

Babs, that gal out in SF sounds like one I know whose intials are D.J.
If it's the same gal, she does very well in her niche (mom and pop small business owners who are primarily Chinese-Americans).
Like it or not, people do tend to prefer doing biz with "their own kind" and that's not just on gender or racial lines. It applies if you're from back east, raised in the midwest, or California. It applies if you were raised middle class, upper class, or with a platinum spoon in your mouth. It applies to religious affiliation, too, in many cases.
 

Silence's picture
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Helter Skelter wrote:
Where are the black women, then? You are talking to one which is why I am asking if you have statistics of the race and gender of every FA or broker in America? If you do, then that's great. But the point still remains that there is room for everyone. That's why this wonderful world has niches. Everyone doesn't appeal to everyone but that doesn't mean you shut a whole race or gender out of the game just based upon that. Find your niche. Run your business. Move on.

Registered Rep's picture
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Silence wrote: Helter Skelter wrote:
Where are the black women, then?
You are talking to one which is why I am asking if you have statistics of the race and gender of every FA or broker in America? If you do, then that's great. But the point still remains that there is room for everyone. That's why this wonderful world has niches. Everyone doesn't appeal to everyone but that doesn't mean you shut a whole race or gender out of the game just based upon that. Find your niche. Run your business. Move on.
AAAAMEN SISTAH GURRRRLLL

Soon 2 B Gone's picture
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The topic of diversity is high on the agenda of every firm and organization on Wall Street.

It is nonsensical to think that anybody is being excluded by design. What is excluding is society's attitudes.

I have been a participant in so many seminars and discussion groups
about this that I can't remember them all.  I've had a Vice
President of Diversity tell me that the reason her constituency was not
represented in appropriate numbers was because the exams were too hard
and that it was my duty to do what I could to get the exams made easier.

That same woman would routinely come argue that we could not fire a
potential producer just because they failed Series 7, even though the
firm's policy was to fire anybody who failed Series 7.  There's a
dirty little secret for you, not everybody gets fired if they fail--in
fact normally everybody except white males are given multiple chances.

So the exams are a stumbling block for sure.

But once the exams are passed the next stumbling block is society's
attitudes and prejudices.  It's there, in battle, that so many die
on the vine.  As has been said by several others, at the retail
level the decision is made by Mr. and Mrs. Jones and they are carrying
a boat load of "issues" and when it all shakes out they're going to
choose a financial advisor who is not sterotyped as not being good at
numbers and that pretty much eliminates everybody but white males.

Fair?  Of course not.  Real?  You bet.   What is the greater misjustice?

If somebody wants to fight the odds, to deny what I see as reality,
then they need to get into the business at a level where they are not
asking an employer to guarantee them two or three years worth of
salary--go to an insurance company first.  Settle for the lower
guarantees and prove yourself.

If a woman, or a minority, wanders in with a track record of success it's, "a whole 'nuther game."

But it's a Catch 22 unless it's done just right.

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Silence, assuming you are who you say you are (unfortunately, there are a lot of pretenders on the internet), I think that's great.  It's a sad commentary that we're not past the blatant racism we sometimes see on these boards, but I hope you flourish in your niche and do well.  Dirk/knucklehead/helter skelter loves controversy and I'm glad you decided to contribute and provide a little balance.

kaymac's picture
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Thank you All for your views and opinions. 

Soon 2 B Gone's picture
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Indyone wrote:Silence, assuming you are who you say you are
(unfortunately, there are a lot of pretenders on the internet), I think
that's great.  It's a sad commentary that we're not past the
blatant racism we sometimes see on these boards, but I hope you
flourish in your niche and do well.  Dirk/knucklehead/helter
skelter loves controversy and I'm glad you decided to contribute
and provide a little balance.

What do you see as blatant racism?

menotellname's picture
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Soon 2 B Gone wrote:Indyone wrote:Silence, assuming you are who you say you are (unfortunately, there are a lot of pretenders on the internet), I think that's great.  It's a sad commentary that we're not past the blatant racism we sometimes see on these boards, but I hope you flourish in your niche and do well.  Dirk/knucklehead/helter skelter loves controversy and I'm glad you decided to contribute and provide a little balance.What do you see as blatant racism?
Well...Put Trader, Marvin Maven, NASD Newbie, and Soon 2 B Gone...you have been a blatant racist for the past couple of years that you have been on this forum.
 

Soon 2 B Gone's picture
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menotellname wrote:Soon 2 B Gone wrote:Indyone wrote:Silence,
assuming you are who you say you are (unfortunately, there are a lot of
pretenders on the internet), I think that's great.  It's a sad
commentary that we're not past the blatant racism we sometimes see on
these boards, but I hope you flourish in your niche and do well. 
Dirk/knucklehead/helter skelter loves controversy and I'm glad you
decided to contribute and provide a little balance.What do you see as blatant racism?
Well...Put Trader, Marvin Maven, NASD Newbie, and Soon 2 B
Gone...you have been a blatant racist for the past couple of years that
you have been on this forum.

Nonsense, the racist is you.

menotellname's picture
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Soon 2 B Gone wrote: Nonsense, the racist is you.
If we polled the members of this forum as to the individual qualities of each poster and had "racist" as a choice, I am sure that a vast majority of those polled would label you as a racist...and rightfully so.
I seriously doubt that I would get 5 votes as a racist and all of those would either be in jest or by misinformed racists such as yourself.

Soon 2 B Gone's picture
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menotellname wrote:
If we polled the members of this forum as to the individual
qualities of each poster and had "racist" as a choice, I am sure that a
vast majority of those polled would label you as a racist...and
rightfully so.
I seriously doubt that I would get 5 votes as a racist
and all of those would either be in jest or by misinformed racists
such as yourself.

What is a racist?

Registered Rep's picture
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This subject has been beat to death on this forum & it always ends up with allot of name calling back & forth. The fact of the matter is it takes 10 quality white hires male or female to find 1 or 2 that will stick. It takes the same number of quality minority hires male or female that will stick also. One of the highest producers in my region is a black male & 99% of his clients are white. No skin color can replace a good work ethic and determination. This business is hard enough regardless of skin color or gender without all the other garbage that people try to add into the recipe for success. 
It's hard enough to find enough quality whites to hire let alone enough quality minorites, that's one of the reasons wall street is struggling right now to right the ship because the statistics for women & minorities is abysmal. There are very few branch managers that are willing to take on the number of minorities in order to find the 1.

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It is very tough for any female to make it, but it can be done.  I suggest you look for a company with a strong Women's Network like Raymond James and Assoc.  They walk the talk.  They have a good deal of female branch managers and hook up with one of them if you can.
The ways a Branch Manager can help you or hurt you are endless.  The most important one is when they are handing out accounts.  They have the complete ability to hand out where they see fit.  It is not always to the best performers, but often times to their buddies.
Very tough to be one of the guys, and actually it is impossible. 
Although I am not a minority, I have not seen as much problems with race as sex.
See if you can be assigned a mentor who is NOT at your branch, preferably someone who is very successful and very powerful.
At the branch level, many times they want you to fail and can cause you to fail - - -so they can keep your accounts when you are fired.
OH, there is a good lead story in RR on this subject and some of the fallout at MS.
Best of luck.

JCadieux's picture
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Joined: 2005-01-23

I apologize if I seemed abrupt before.  I don't want to minimize the problem.  Women and minorities DO face challenges in many industries, including this one.Recruiting qualified women and minorities has been a priority for all of my clients.  I'm frustrated that so much media attention seems to imply otherwise.Great strides forward have been made in recent years.  More are still to come.  But I'm frustrated by the suggestion that we have stopped walking.

ymh_ymh_ymh's picture
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Am not shilling for RJF here, but I, too, have heard of no issues there with EEOC litigation. Am sure there are a few isolated cases, but overall, they seem to have few problems.

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JCadieux wrote:I am so sick of this topic.  This is a FAWOMFT.I have met many, many successful female and/or minority financial advisors.  I have heard rumors that female brokers are MORE likely to be successful, because they have slightly better than average long-term retention rates among clients.  I have no substantiation, but I would not be surprised if it was true.I have also heard that there are far fewer NASD complaints about female and minority brokers.Yes, there are bad apples and clueless dinosaurs out there.  And no, I don't believe that the numbers are as balanced as they could be.  But I think that these issues arise in virtually every industry with a sales force. Hit the nail  right on the head....

troll's picture
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ymh_ymh_ymh wrote:Am not shilling for RJF here, but I, too, have heard of no issues there with EEOC litigation. Am sure there are a few isolated cases, but overall, they seem to have few problems.
 
I'm not here to knock RJF, or anyone one else for that matter, or to defend anyone, but I think it’s futile, this sort of issue to pronounce this firm or that as “clean” and another as “not clean” because there are or are not ongoing cases.. <?:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
 
These sorts or problems don’t emanate from boardrooms, there aren’t any firms that have let’s-pick-on-the-women/minorities policies. The complaints, to the extent that they’re genuine, all come from the environment at the branch or department level, and always seem to involve a contravention of firm policy. Given that, so long as firms employ humans, there will be issues and no firm is immune.
 

maybeeeeeeee's picture
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Ignore Helter Skelter

troll's picture
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maybeeeeeeee wrote:Ignore Helter Skelter
 
Always a good idea....

maybeeeeeeee's picture
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Thank you Mike, it is easy as he adds no value.

JimmytheRocker's picture
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babbling looney wrote:
This job is difficult for anyone and harder for a woman because of many things not least among them is cultural stereotyping.  In addition to the hurdles that men in upper management either purposefully or subconsciously put in the way, women tend to put up their own barriers to success in the financial industry.
As to being a woman of ethnicity it is even harder depending on which culture/ethnicity you are from.    In some cultures women do not participate in business at all and are actively discouraged from any participation in anything outside of their home life.  It think it would be extremely difficult to become a successful woman broker/advisor in a culture where women are not allowed basic freedoms or where they are looked upon as second class citizens.  In other cultures ethnic women can become quite successful.
As an example:  I have a colleague who is a very successful female broker. She is of Chinese heritage (3rd generation American, Stanford educated) and speaks several languages and dialects of Chinese, French and Vietnamese.  Her niche is in the SF Bay Area dealing with the large immigrant population and the many "Mom and Pop" type businesses they have established.  She does very well, where I would never be able to break into that market.  They trust her because she is "like them".
However, as talented as she is, she would NEVER be able to do business in my market.  The reality is that people want to do business with people like themselves.  Is it unfair?  Yes. But, you all know my feeling on that......life isn't fair....get over it.  This also relates to the  Smith Barney lawsuit.   It is true that some men will not want to do business with a woman, just as it is true that some women would prefer to do business with a man.  Cultural stereotyping again.  This seems to be more of a problem with the older clients than the younger ones.  Should SB distribute clients to advisors that they feel will not be able to retain the accounts in the name of political correctness.  I think not.
Should companies actively recruit and encourage ethinic minorites to become brokers (men or women), of course.  But we need to keep in mind that broker/dealers are in business to make money and if the niche market isn't profitable (for a man or a woman) or if the cultural bias of the ethnic market is such that a woman can't be successful, then the reason there are few or no brokers there is not discrimination.  It's just good business and financial decisions that make it so.

You hit it right on target!!
I am an asian american young yuppie.  It took me a full year to figure out that my success ratio with other asian american yuppies is 10 times easier.  Yes, I can acquire old white men as clients, but I don't have to fight much for a 33 year old asian professional yuppie.  It's a no brainer.  I had a mentor when I started my first month who told me to not turn my back on my people.  My people meaning those who look, act, think the same way I do. 
I am sure there are those that do well with people who are not similar to themselves, but I ask why would you want to work that inefficiently?
 
 
 

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