What does Your Asst Do for You??

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newrookie's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-04

I have a PT (8-12) Registered Asst.  She is new, as I am, so we are learning the ropes together.
I'm curious what other people have their assts do.  Right now she books and confirms my appts, and will pre-qualify if the bank will allow shortly.  She enters the new account info into the B/D system, faxes, copies, helps with seminars, etc.
She's made some comments that all she does is fax and copy, and she's been sneaking out to Chamber functions (during her work hrs), asking me after every appt. what we talked about, what I chose for investments, why, etc.  She made a comment to my Mgr that she doesn't see why SHE should have to open the new accounts online, that I could just as easily do that.  Well, yeah, I could just as easily do everything myself, but my role is to produce.  And the time I spend doing admin work, I am not producing.  As it is, because she is only PT I spend a fair amount of time doing admin.
I've asked her how she sees her role - what she likes, etc. does she ever want to go FT, and she says she doesn't know.  I sense some disenchantment or even jealousy though from her.  Do all SAs think the brokers have such an "easy job"?
I want to use her in the best way possible, but she has to realize that part of an assistant's job is to do just that - assist the broker - and alot of the time that mean copying and filing, and opening new accounts online.  She has complained because I use Outlook Task Mgr., and thinks I should just give her stuff for her to do and not have a workflow system.  Sorry, but that's how stuff falls through the cracks.  I've got so much going on if I give her 10 things today, I won't remember tomorrow what they are.  And again, with her PT, I'm the one responding the the client when they ask the status of something.  Every successful broker I know has a system for things.  Am I wrong?
Any suggestions appreciated.
 
 

FreedomLvr's picture
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Joined: 2006-02-10

I think that ultimately the role of a sales assistant is to handle all of the tasks that are not directly revenue-generating.  Anything that isn't researching investments or meeting with clients should be passed off (if possible) to your SA.  An Indy would also be responsible for managing the business as a whole.
Now, with that being said each advisors relationship with their SA is going to be different.  At a bare minimum the SA should be answering your phones, filing, and data entry.  If the SA proves themselves competent you might have them manage your calendar and take on additionally challenging tasks.
One of the simplest ways to encourage a SA to take on additional tasks (and increase their performance levels) is to bonus them based on your production.  There's a good chance that they'll start asking you for more responsibilities when they realize it means their income will increase as well!  The more often you pay the bonuses the easier it will be for them to link it directly to their performance (ie. monthly, quarterly, semi-annually or annually).
I've also always found that the simplest things make the biggest differences.  If they go above and beyond take them to lunch.  A gift basket is always nice.  Gift certificate's are good as well as tickets to sporting events (if they're into that).
Anyone else?

newrookie's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-04

Understand what you are saying about the above - bonus, etc.  Not there yet, and the asst. makes a VERY nice salary through the bank.
Gifts have been forthicoming, as well as luncheons, etc.
One of the problems I see, and don't know what to do about it, is it appears that my asst. doesn't want to be an asst.  Maybe because she is registered.  But she feels copying, faxing, opening new accounts, filing, is above her.
The bank program is new, so can't bring her on as a Jr. broker - yet, but told her would have no problem when the time comes, if she is interested. 
She seems more interested in attending Chamber meetings, schmoozing with staff, etc., than supporting me.  I know there was an issue with the last asst and the last rep, where she thought she should be a rep, and thought the existing rep should be the one to let her do that - not that bank - and when he didn't mention it, she quit doing half his work.  This old asst. has filled MY asst. with all these tales, so I'm trying to avoid going down this road.

blarmston's picture
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Joined: 2005-02-26

Fire her. Your job is stressful enough as it is. Find someone new...

newrookie's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-04

Unfortunately, in a bank program, I don't have that opportunity.  I am NOT her boss, half of the problem.....  My Mgr. on the bank side thinks she has "alot to offer" so I'm stuck with her. 
I think half the problem, as I said, is definition of roles.  Does she want to be an asst. or a Rep.?  If a Rep, the bank has to deal with that, as it can barely suuport one.  If an asst., she has to step up and start doing the work an asst. does and stop complaining....
That's my take and I'm sticking to it...

troll's picture
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Joined: 2004-11-29

newrookie wrote:Unfortunately, in a bank program, I don't have that opportunity.  I am NOT her boss, half of the problem.....  My Mgr. on the bank side thinks she has "alot to offer" so I'm stuck with her. 
I think half the problem, as I said, is definition of roles.  Does she want to be an asst. or a Rep.?  If a Rep, the bank has to deal with that, as it can barely suuport one.  If an asst., she has to step up and start doing the work an asst. does and stop complaining....
That's my take and I'm sticking to it...Take her out to lunch and explain to her that, at this point, her road to success and expanding her role comes through you...unless she is planning to leave the bank and go become a rep elsewhere.  (If she does, she might face issues with a non-compete if the bank paid for her salary.)Tell her "Hey no offense but I want to be right to the point...."  That if you become more successful you'll gladly share credit with her and lobby for them to give HER an assistant so she can take a more proactive role in building your business, but that for now she needs to suck it up and SUPPORT you so you can go out and make rain.  If she wants to go to Chamber events it damn well better not be behind your back, as it would be very easy for you to point out to her boss who loves her so much that she has been doing so ON COMPANY TIME.It sounds like she's already bucking the bit anyway, so it appears to me that you have little to lose.  Carrot AND stick.  "You have a LOT of potential and I'd love to have you on board when things start really firing on all cylinders.  You need to decide right now if you are FOR me or AGAINST me.....there is no in between.  Can we work as a team or not?"

Ashland's picture
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Joined: 2007-03-06

I've given my assistant 5 roles --

1 -- Set 5 appt's per day. For appt's she sets she has the acct statements printed out prior to the meeting & the Morningstar Principia done for positions. I have her focus on DWF acct's as my computer is really slow & it's totally frustrating to deal w/ statements & DST Vision. 2 hrs per day.

2 -- Help create training. I sit down w/ each of my PB's weekly for 10 minutes to give them a focus for the week. I ask my assistant to get materials together & sell me on the idea of the training as well as how it should be delivered. This helps me keep myself up to date on good marketing materials & helps her understand how to sell the concept vs the product. This takes her 2-3 hrs per week.

3 -- Marketing Coordinator. Mailings, birthday cards, and making the most of what we have as a firm. This also includes helping create seminars, etc. We're not doing seminars right now because we're seeing 4 - 5 people per day after the market declines. 4 hrs per week. She provides me w/ the mailing list for the previous week which is my calling list above & beyond my follow-ups. We don't do letters, but brochures & planning or investment information. This gives me the opportunity to reinforce the right relationship w/ 10 - 15 of our best clients or potential clients per week. 3 - 4 hrs per week.

4 -- Handling the tough stuff & maintenance. I do my own paperwork at acct opening. This way I know it's done right the first time. Not that she won't do it right(Sometimes I wonder! Last week she ordered business cards w/ the wrong # on them!), but the acct opening process often allows for further selling to occur. I set 4 - 5 appt's for her a week on things that clients need to get done that aren't selling related. She often works as a nurse in this way. She'll meet with the client to get the service work done & then I'll check in to make sure nothing has changed in their lives. A lot of time!

5 -- Handling sub-C clients. Yeah, those $5000 - $10,000 acct's. Gotta serve 'em cause they'll one day be $50 - $100,000 acct's! Thankfully, a lot of these folks don't demand attention. As much time as needed.

We meet weekly for 1 hr to discuss the above, and email throughout the week. She wasn't always like this. I inherited her from a couple of reps who used her just for admin stuff. I think the reason she has improved is that she has VERY clear daily goals & we weekly talk about the direction we want the business to go. She plays a very active role in this process & feels that her role is important and contributes to the bottom line.

I try to make her feel that she's the most important person in the business because, to me, she is! She sets 12 - 15 appt's per week. I've asked her to focus on having me sit w/ 2 B clients(250K - $500K investable assets) per day & 1 A client(>$500K investable assets) per day. She's getting better at talking w/ HNW people. I think she'll help me increase revenue by $100 - $150K this year. With her help I may earn her full time next year!

newrookie's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-04

Ashland -
What are DWF accounts, and what are your "PBs"?
Thanks all for the info.
 

EDJ4now's picture
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Joined: 2006-02-08

If it isn't selling, you shouldn't be doing it.  Here's a quick exercise.  Figure out your annual income (or what you expect it to be in a couple of years if you are just getting started).  Say for example, $100,000.  If you work 2000 hours a year, that's $50 an hour.  If you wouldn't pay someone $50/hour to do the job, it should be her job not your job (and if you have a $50/hour job available for filing, faxing and making copies available let me know, my wife could use some part time work at that pay level)!

BankFC's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-27

If you are just starting out, then you have some obstacles:
1)  Keeping her busy (no time to gab) for the 4 hours she is there
2)  Having her not only do things that are needed (like filing, copying etc) but also productive
If she wants to be more involved, sit with her and coach her through a couple sessions of calling on maturing CD's.  Especially ones that have been simply rolling over at the base rate.  She should be approaching this from a service standpoint, and just SUGGESTING that she meet with you to see if you can help her earn more money.
What about calling the large balance accounts that are not tied to loans or construction folks?  Just be careful here not to step on the toes of any comm lenders.  But I'm sure there are plenty sitting there earning just about nothing.  I'm working on one right now with a guy with 1.1 million in checking earning .25%, and a bank IRA with 126,000 earning 1.2%.
What about dormant accounts?  She could be calling those too.
What about building a calendar for you so you're touching everyone when you are supposed to.  An email every morning with your scheduled client calls would be nice.
If she is asking why you did this or that, TELL HER.  She is trying to show an interest in what you are doing, and you should encourage that, not shoot it down.  Explain to her how what alphas and betas and sharpe ratios are.  Explain to her why correlation is so important.  She will see you as a TEACHER, even a MENTOR.  But moreover, she'll realize there is more to this job than she thinks. 
You're right, you are not her boss directly.  However, you must still CONDUCT yourself in a manner that is both respectful and direct.  She must understand the "pecking order" and act accordingly.
Let her put in your trades and fill out the tickets, it'll make her feel more important.  Make her a big part of your practice, and she'll feel good about you.

newrookie's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-04

Bank FC - thanks.  Ideally, this is what SHOULD be happening, but I hesitate to give her too much, as she gets totally stressed out, and rolls her eyes if I give her more than 5 things to do each day.
I may have an account to open, 2-3 appts for the following day to confirm, reports to run in MS for those appts, and she can't get to it all.
I have people who have assets transferring in that she is supposed to monitor, and she "doesn't have the time" to tell me that the money has arrived.
Consequently - and I no this is wrong, but I see no other way out - I do alot of stuff myself that I shouldn't have.  I can't have stuff sitting for weeks on end like that.
She scoffs at ANY procedures (like task flow management) and thinks that I am checking up on her.  She doesn't realize it is good business and I need to know what is going on in the business. 
I've thought about having her do my trades, but frankly, I worry about the liability.  If she screws up I am the one who has to pay the error.
I've thought of just giving her everything she should be doing, and letting it pile up, but I don't think that's professional, and not certainly in the best interest of the clients.
She doesn't WANT to be calling clients - we don't unfortunately have ANY access to the bank clients - she really doesn't want to do much.  She applied for the receptionist job, and then they talked her into this job because she is registered.  I think it was a mistake, because I think she doesn't really want to have to work hard.
I need to grow the business, but trying to do her work and mine is killing my production, and my Mgr. wants to baby her and not "stress her out".
I feel caught here.  How about not stressing me out?  I want this to work, I really do, because I like the girl, but as anyone on this board knows, this industry is fast-paced, intense, and requires focus, interest and work ethic.  Someone who takes off during the day without telling me when I need them to go to chamber meetings, and I find down in the break room sitting reading the paper don't show much respect or work ethic to me.
 

BankFC's picture
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newrookie wrote:Bank FC - thanks.  Ideally, this is what SHOULD be happening, but I hesitate to give her too much, as she gets totally stressed out, and rolls her eyes if I give her more than 5 things to do each day.
The situation sounds bad.  I have to wonder why it has come to that.  Did
you "set the expectations" of what she was supposed to do?  If my
assistant ROLLED HER EYES at ME when I was giving her tasks to do, the
sh*t would hit the fan.  I don't want to seem like I'm placing all the
blame on you, but you must demand respect in this life.I may have an account to open, 2-3 appts for the following day to confirm, reports to run in MS for those appts, and she can't get to it all.Again, I wouldn't do it or let it pile up.  I'd stay on her *ss until she got it done.  After a few weeks to a month of this she'd either come around or quit.
I have people who have assets transferring in that she is supposed to monitor, and she "doesn't have the time" to tell me that the money has arrived.Why do you accept that as an answer?
Consequently - and I no this is wrong, but I see no other way out - I do alot of stuff myself that I shouldn't have.  I can't have stuff sitting for weeks on end like that.Obviously you've never trained a dog.  Dogs are just like people...YOU TEACH THEM HOW TO TREAT YOU.  If you let them disobey, give in to them when they beg at the table, etc etc then they will do it again and again.  If you are consistent and firm they obey, love, and respect you.
She scoffs at ANY procedures (like task flow management) and thinks that I am checking up on her.  I'd tell her I AM, because she's not getting it done.She doesn't realize it is good business and I need to know what is going on in the business. 
I've thought about having her do my trades, but frankly, I worry about the liability.  If she screws up I am the one who has to pay the error.This isn't the typical set up in a bank.  But if that is the case, do your own trades, but make her confirm they went through.
I've thought of just giving her everything she should be doing, and letting it pile up, but I don't think that's professional, and not certainly in the best interest of the clients.I'd pile it on, but I wouldn't let it pile up.
She doesn't WANT to be calling clients - we don't unfortunately have ANY access to the bank clients WOW.  That isn't the norm.  We have FULL ACCESS.- she really doesn't want to do much.  She applied for the receptionist job, and then they talked her into this job because she is registered.  I think it was a mistake, because I think she doesn't really want to have to work hard.Again, I'd force her to work hard...your program manager SURELY wouldn't have a problem with her doing what she's supposed to.
I need to grow the business, but trying to do her work and mine is killing my production, and my Mgr. wants to baby her and not "stress her out".I don't know if it's "killing your production" or not, I share 1 person with 2 other people and send her very little and I'm doing fine.  However, it is probably a drag for sure.  Just don't let her be a mental block to your success.
I feel caught here.  How about not stressing me out?  I want this to work, I really do, because I like the girl, but as anyone on this board knows, this industry is fast-paced, intense, and requires focus, interest and work ethic.  Someone who takes off during the day without telling me when I need them to go to chamber meetings, and I find down in the break room sitting reading the paper don't show much respect or work ethic to me.
Leaving in the middle of the workday is unacceptable.  It is OBVIOUS she a)  has no respect for youb)  is not enrolled or endeared to what your trying to buildUntil you correct a and b, your problems will continue.

Ashland's picture
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newrookie...

BankFC is absolutely right. It sounds like you have the worst kind of trouble on your hands. Someone who thinks they can do your job better than you but does not have the work ethic for you to help her get there. I hope that you've posed these specific concerns(not just the she's not working out) with your mgr. He has to have the up or out conversation with her or he may be having that conversation w/ you in 6 months!

There is, unfortunately, very little you can probably do until your mgr has established that you set the tone and pace & that she has to keep up with you.

I disagree with some on the board that you should have the tough conversation with her. Banks are political places. Sides are chosen & you don't know what she is saying while you're not around.

Finally, the SA Asst job is first and foremost to enhance sales in my mind. This means getting on the phone, etc. If she's not doing that she has no place in my business!

To answer your questions: DWF = Direct with fund. PB = personal banker.

Sucks that you don't have access to bank clients... How large is your book?

AirForce's picture
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Joined: 2006-10-12

Man if she is going to Comerce then she is looking for a new job?

You don't have her respect. My team askes me quesitons about the investments and assists me. I am there to bring in the assets.

This is a great post.

newrookie's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-04

I have a meeting with my Mgr and my SA this morning.  I told my Mgr some of the things going on - the leaving early and not telling me, the sitting downstairs and reading the paper, etc.  She talked to her alone, and my SA told her she didn't understand why she always had to do things over (I had given her a fax to resend because I had sent it myself and it said "transmission not complete").  I guess the guy called and asked why SHE then sent it (he did get mine) and she got all upset. 
She also lied about having to book my appts, and said she had to put them in 5 different places.  Not true.  We had a system problem, and had to use a paper system for awhile because 2 people SHE booked showed up and I didn't even have the appt on my books.
I don't think she is looking for another job - I wish.  She comes in in new designer outfits daily and parades around, and I think goes to the CoC meetings to get out of the office and be seen.
The 2 major problems as I see it are:
1) She seems for some reason to have the sympathy of my Mgr - (she's very concerned with how people feel), who babies her, and told her if things were getting to be too much, she'd see how the job could be juggled to accommodate her.  She reminded ME (my Mgr) that she IS only part time, after all, and applied for a "nothing" job, implying that we can't expect her to do too much.  She (my SA) actually came to me yesterday and told me she couldn't do anything for me, because she had CE tests to get done and she had told me Mgr she couldn't do them after work (12-5 for her), nights or weekends like everyone else does because she had to be there for her husband.
2)This same thing happened with the last SA who was there, who my SA has gone out to lunch with.  She was told (supposedly) that if the bank program got big enough, she would be in like to be #2 Rep.  Well she took it upon herself to decide when that would be, and started meeting with people when the rep was out, opening accounts, doing trades, and he flipped out (rightly so as this had never been discussed).  This squashed her hopes of being the other broker, so she stopped doing his work.  Poor guy was caught in the middle, because he was in the right, and should have gone to management and had her fired, but management didn't like him....
It's not the same with me with management (yet) but I no longer trust my SA or what she says or does when I am not there, and I am concerned my Mgr is so protective of her.  We'll see what happens today.
I am going to stand my ground as I know what the program needs for it to work, and it is not this.  If they can't see that, that's a major problem....

newrookie's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-04

p.s.  I think one of the major (unsaid) factors with this girl is she was hired as an asst. to the guy before me and a month after that, he was fired.  They had been talking to me for some time, and I was offered and accepted the job that week. 
When they  brought me up to meet her (that same week he was let go), she looked me up and down and said "that was quick".  I don't think she was sorry she was gone - she actually went to management and outed him on some stuff (questionable) that he was doing - that was the crowning touch for his demise.  I think now that she is miffed that they didn't offer her at least (she said she wanted PT, why would they?) the job, and I squashed her chances.

BankFC's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-27

Let us know how it goes...

Indyone's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-30

Having some assistants is worse than having none...I think yours falls into that category.  I had an assistant at the bank that was series 6 licensed and had come to me from a branch management position.  She was excellent, but she understood her role and had no political aspirations.  Yours sounds quite the opposite.
She's probably embezzling too.

troll's picture
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Joined: 2004-11-29

This whole situation sounds like a nightmare.  Hate to sound like a broken record, but it makes me appreciate being indy, so that if someone doesn't get the job done I can give them their walking papers without worrying about politics or a touchy feely manager getting in the way.One of my bigger headaches at my prior firm was my SA.  She was very poorly organized, had no sense of discretion and spent her days bs'ing with the rest of the support staff about how tough her life was.  I kept trying to address issues professionally but nothing was ever done about it because when the BOM needed a special favor she was always there.  I don't miss that at all.

troll's picture
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What you seem to have run into is a violation of Parkinson's Law.<?:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
The solution is exceedingly simple. Hire a second part timer to share the duties of the first.
What this does is establish in the mind of the first part timer that you and she are NOT at the same level (which seems to be her major malfunction). You are her superior and this is evidenced to her by the fact that there are two of her and only one of you.
Parkinson used this observation to explain the geometric growth of any bureaucracy. By taking advantage of this law you enhance your reputation as a problem solver and you have, indeed expanded you own "empire' within the system. All of your superiors will start to see you as an equal in that you are now a "supervisor".
It'll be worth it to you over the long term even if you have to pay out of your pocket (not to mention, it'll scare the poop outta' the existing steno) but, try to get the branch manager to assign a teller part time or something!

newrookie's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-04

The meeting didn't happen today, scheduled for tomorrow.
I had a very good meeting with the bank President, though, reviewing his vision for the program.  He was exceedingly complimentary of me and what I have done so far, and told me I have his total support.  I didn't go into the SA issue, probably should have, as I hadn't met with my Mgr. yet and didn't want to step on toes.  He sees me as the Department Head, and is interested in any ideas I bring to the table (firing my SA?)
Anway, I had another episode with her (the SA) to add fuel to the fire.  I was at another branch and came back to have the meeting that never happened, walked in and said Hi to her, and she ignored me.  Then I go to my Mgr's office to attend the meeting, and the bank President is in there, along with HR, and all I could think was WHAT did she say about me while I was gone?  I loaded her with tasks last night, so I thought she was probably pissed as usual at me that I gave her work.
Well, while waiting for them to conclude their meeting, Lending calls, and my phone was still set to Out of the Office.  My SA takes the call, and next thing you know, she's walking back to HER office with the prospect!  I was FURIOUS.  She starts talking to him, and qualifying him, and going on and on about college planning.  It was all I could do to sit there.  I would have barged in, but it would not have looked good to the guy.
So when he left, I called her in and said "What was that all about?"  She told me he wanted to talk about financing for college, not investments.  I asked her why she was meeting with him, and she said "Don't worry - it wasn't anything to do with investments".  I told her that wasn't the point, that I was here, and why didn't she tell me he was coming in and I could have met with him.  She said that I was in a meeting.  I told her no, she saw me walk in, and I was right there the whole time.  She then said Lending couldn't reach me by phone.  I asked her "why didn't you just pop in, let me know the situation, ask me if I wanted to meet with him" rather than just meeting with him herself.  She had this totally EVIL smirk on her face, and said to me "I told you, it wasn't about investments". 
It's not that I don't want her meeting with potential prospects.  But the deal has been I meet them, and then she sets up an appt for them to come in at a later time for a real meeting.  There has NEVER been any discussion about her taking people on and sitting down and discussing needs, etc.  Again, I am not at all opposed to that, what I am opposed to is someone just doing whatever the heck they feel like doing, rather than checking in and asking first.
The other day I asked her to compile the statements I had requested for a cost basis issue for a client and instead, I found when I got in (again this happened while I was away at another branch), she spend the WHOLE morning, calculating cost basis which got nixed by compliance, because we can't do those calculations, the CPA has to.  She just did what she wanted when I had asked her to do something different.
I think - as others have pointed out - that she has a VERY hard time being an asst.  She doesn't realize that it can grow into more than that, but the admin work comes first, and that she has to learn to take direction - from ME.  I can't have someone just going off doing whatever they please.  We have to work in concert, and first and foremost her job is to SUPPORT me.
In retrospect, I wish I HAD brought it up with the President because he is much more of a business person rather than touchy-feely and I think would understand that the roles HAVE to be clarified to her, so that she - for lack of better words - knows her place.  That is not meant to demean her.  There just can't be two chiefs.  Someone has to be one, and they picked me.  It's clear she doesn't like that, but not her choice.
Will post again after the meeting tomorrow.
 
 

troll's picture
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Joined: 2004-11-29

Sorry, but you're starting to sound a little drama queenish here.
And then I said, and then she said, so I said. Oh no you di nt!, Oh yes I di id! You go girlfren!
Sorry, just keepin it real! 

goforbroke's picture
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Joined: 2007-02-02

She's trying to take over your job, the b*tch.  She's not to be trusted and doesn't look like you can work with her. ...That's why Johnny didn't like Joan Rivers and he gave her her first big break.  Ask for a new assistant and tell her to hit the road jack and don't you come back no more no more no more no more.

Ashland's picture
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Yah, bro... just git r done, now! This is taking too much of your space!

troll's picture
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Whomitmayconcer wrote:What you seem to have run into is a violation of Parkinson's Law.
The solution is exceedingly simple. Hire a second part timer to share the duties of the first.
What this does is establish in the mind of the first part timer that you and she are NOT at the same level (which seems to be her major malfunction). You are her superior and this is evidenced to her by the fact that there are two of her and only one of you.
Parkinson used this observation to explain the geometric growth of any bureaucracy. By taking advantage of this law you enhance your reputation as a problem solver and you have, indeed expanded you own "empire' within the system. All of your superiors will start to see you as an equal in that you are now a "supervisor".
It'll be worth it to you over the long term even if you have to pay out of your pocket (not to mention, it'll scare the poop outta' the existing steno) but, try to get the branch manager to assign a teller part time or something!I like your solution!

goforbroke's picture
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Ashland wrote:I've given my assistant 5 roles -- 1 -- Set 5 appt's per day. For appt's she sets she has the acct statements printed out prior to the meeting & the Morningstar Principia done for positions. I have her focus on DWF acct's as my computer is really slow & it's totally frustrating to deal w/ statements & DST Vision. 2 hrs per day. 2 -- Help create training. I sit down w/ each of my PB's weekly for 10 minutes to give them a focus for the week. I ask my assistant to get materials together & sell me on the idea of the training as well as how it should be delivered. This helps me keep myself up to date on good marketing materials & helps her understand how to sell the concept vs the product. This takes her 2-3 hrs per week. 3 -- Marketing Coordinator. Mailings, birthday cards, and making the most of what we have as a firm. This also includes helping create seminars, etc. We're not doing seminars right now because we're seeing 4 - 5 people per day after the market declines. 4 hrs per week. She provides me w/ the mailing list for the previous week which is my calling list above & beyond my follow-ups. We don't do letters, but brochures & planning or investment information. This gives me the opportunity to reinforce the right relationship w/ 10 - 15 of our best clients or potential clients per week. 3 - 4 hrs per week. 4 -- Handling the tough stuff & maintenance. I do my own paperwork at acct opening. This way I know it's done right the first time. Not that she won't do it right(Sometimes I wonder! Last week she ordered business cards w/ the wrong # on them!), but the acct opening process often allows for further selling to occur. I set 4 - 5 appt's for her a week on things that clients need to get done that aren't selling related. She often works as a nurse in this way. She'll meet with the client to get the service work done & then I'll check in to make sure nothing has changed in their lives. A lot of time! 5 -- Handling sub-C clients. Yeah, those $5000 - $10,000 acct's. Gotta serve 'em cause they'll one day be $50 - $100,000 acct's! Thankfully, a lot of these folks don't demand attention. As much time as needed. We meet weekly for 1 hr to discuss the above, and email throughout the week. She wasn't always like this. I inherited her from a couple of reps who used her just for admin stuff. I think the reason she has improved is that she has VERY clear daily goals & we weekly talk about the direction we want the business to go. She plays a very active role in this process & feels that her role is important and contributes to the bottom line. I try to make her feel that she's the most important person in the business because, to me, she is! She sets 12 - 15 appt's per week. I've asked her to focus on having me sit w/ 2 B clients(250K - $500K investable assets) per day & 1 A client(>$500K investable assets) per day. She's getting better at talking w/ HNW people. I think she'll help me increase revenue by $100 - $150K this year. With her help I may earn her full time next year!
Well, actually that would be 'doubling' the expenses:  2 part-timers: = one fulltimer.  I like Ashand's way of handling an assistant best out of the other ideas presented here...: clearly stating goals, expectations, working on motivating the assistant so she/he sees how the fit into the overall picture.   Make her feel like she's part of a team.  Besides a pool of (2 part-timers) can both go against the boss and then where's the "empire". 
If she's working against you, then, she's not for you.  Have a little chat and make sure she knows your expectations for her; otherwise, get another assistant.  Communication is key.  A bad job is a job where you can't communicate with the boss and vice versa.
oh well...back to downloading songs for my ipod. fer sure, fer sure.

BankFC's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-27

He doesn't have the opportunity to hire/fire another assistant because of the structure of the bank environment.  The BANK must fire her, and in this litigious day and age, they must have solid grounds for firing anybody.  Bank are conservative by nature (in some ways, in others not), so they aren't just going to kick her to the curb as quickly as, for example, an indy might.
Hiring two assistants isn't the answer either.  Why should he pick up the bill for another assistants salary and let the first girl coast???  That is a slippery slope he doesn't want to go down (picking up expenses) on a bank grid.  He already has no access to bank clients, he might as well go indy if he's going to start paying for an assistant.
Best thing to do is keep leaning on her like he has started.  It will get worse before it gets better, and it may take a blow up from a bank customer, but eventually the situation will come to a boiling point, and it will be dealt with then.
 

troll's picture
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Joined: 2004-11-29

"but eventually the situation will come to a boiling point, and it will be dealt with then."
Which will be him looking for another job!
He's MUCH more the path of least resistance. Which of these two would you let go? The go getter that steals clients or the (sorry) whiney one who chronicles every non said hello?
Maybe his path should be to get her moved on up and out to a branch of her own.
Another idea is to pass her name on to headhunters and tell them she's a real up and commer, she ought to be working at a real bank someplace!

babbling looney's picture
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Joined: 2004-12-02

Questions and Suggestions
1. Is your SA licensed and registered with the B/D? or does she just hold a license.  My BOA at Jones was licensed but she was not allowed to do anything remotely resembling IR work.  If you SA is meeting with clients and giving them information about college plans, that is investment advice.  Even just doing hypothetical planning is a sticky wicket because we can call ourselves planners without a 66 or 65.   Non compliance should be a big worry for the Bank and the B/D if this is the case.
2. Is she employed by the Bank or the Broker Dealer?  It makes a big difference on who pays her as to who you need to contact about her activities.   The B/D should be concerned about her non compliant, if they are that, meeting with customers.
3. Why are you not going to Chamber meetings yourself?  This is your opportunity to network and shine.  Don't delegate that.
I would:
Write demand to see her job desciption.  If there isn't one then write one yourself and/or demand the bank or b/d do so.   It should include detailed description of the SA duties, expectations, goals including time lines and especially detail the activities that your SA is not allowed to do.    I expect you have a job description as well. If not you should write one for yourself (for your position) with the same details. 
Write a letter (in a professional and not whiney way) that lays out these expectations and the deviations your SA has from them.  Leave out all the stuff that seems personal.  It isn't about personalities. It is about the job, the efficency of the program and being able to present a professional face to your supervisors and to the general public. Attach the job description for her and the one for yourself.  You should stress that the point is to make the program more efficient and profitable.  If the SA and Rep can work together as a team the BANK WILL MAKE MORE MONEY . The bank is always about the bottom line. 
In addition you should stress that you are also outlining the non  issues because it is causing confusion in the clients as to who is their account representative and to cover yourself when the clients complain or if it is discovered that the SA is breaking the rules, being non compliant and putting the Bank, the B/D and yourself in jeopardy.  That should get their attention.

babbling looney's picture
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Joined: 2004-12-02

non  issues  =  non compliance issues    

BankFC's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-27

Which one would I let go?  LOL, I am not quite sure...
Door #1)  A broker who gets run over and disrespected by his assistant to the point it becomes an issue to be addressed by management...
Door #2)  A very aggressive (prehaps a loose cannon?) sales assistant that has shown a lack of respect for her superiors...

BankFC's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-27

BL,
These days a lot of folks have "dual employee" status, especially at smaller banks that must contract out their B/D, such as with UVEST/LPL, INVEST, SSN, etc.
Commissions are generated at B/D, they take their cut and send the bank the rest, and then they pay the broker along with their other bene's, and the rest is profit.

babbling looney's picture
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Joined: 2004-12-02

BankFC wrote:
BL,
These days a lot of folks have "dual employee" status, especially at smaller banks that must contract out their B/D, such as with UVEST/LPL, INVEST, SSN, etc.
Commissions are generated at B/D, they take their cut and send the bank the rest, and then they pay the broker along with their other bene's, and the rest is profit.

It was that way at my bank brokerage long ago. Dual employee.  I know some do now contract from outside and some are internal. Was just wondering for the OP which way it was for him.  It would make a difference on how he would approach this issue.
The other solution is antifreeze in the cream filled pastries. 
 
Joking!!! don't waste good pastries.

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