AG Edwards Interview and Feedback

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spintofish's picture
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Joined: 2007-07-30

Had an on-site interview at the local AGE and I'm looking for some feedback. I spent a couple of hours with the branch manager and he asked me to speak with a 15+ year vet who is not in mgt., but who's opinion he obviously values.
The vet and I spent a lot of time talking and he all but told me to not bother entering the business if I did not have a minimum of 100 solid names to begin networking and that 150-200 would be waaay better. (solid names = individuals who to the best of my knowledge would either have some serious assets to invest or who could refer me to those who would meet that qualification). He said that 50 names wouldn't be enough and that building a practice using traditional prospecting methods was inadequate. For context he told me that based on his read of my abilities I would stand a good chance of success but that without the network...
I'm in my 50's and let him know that I needed to get off to a fast start. 
What opinions are out there on his advise?

entrylevelFA's picture
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Joined: 2006-06-05

Why didn't you just go interview at Wachovia Securities, AG Edwards won't exist in a few more months.  The culture is going to change big time.

sbanes's picture
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Joined: 2007-08-28

I've had the same kind of discussion with a local BM, though not AGE.
Most guys think in terms of your natural market, who do you know in the area you'll be working who will likely invest with you?  That being said, I've talked to guys who started businesses in cities where they knew 5-10 people total.  The nice thing about natural market is that you know people to call who will call you back.  The bad thing is they've already formed an opinion about you, and it's not as their trusted financial advisor.  Repositioning their view of you into the guy that handles their money can be tough.  In a lot of cases, people I've talked to say that you're more likely to get a referral from someone you know, but they're less likely to open an account with you if they've seen you "howling at the moon" or something in your social time.
IMO, you can't read too much in to any one guy's opinion.  If you're willing to push it and not get discouraged then you probably have the personality to do it.  If you get taken off track easy you probably don't.  More something to know about yourself than anything else. 

maybeeeeeeee's picture
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Joined: 2005-02-24

Hey he is doing you a FAVOR, but you should be interviewing at RayJay.
Look, you need to bring in about $5million in assets your first year and do about $60,000 in revenue.  So if you don't already have 100 names (those are $50,000 each) you will fail.  And you are wasting your time, your sponsor's time and probably suffering along the way.
Ask yourself if you really can convince people to trust you with their money.  Why would they do that?  If you get solid answers to both of those, go forward.  If not, you are in the wrong field.
This is a sales job.

Gaddock's picture
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Joined: 2007-02-23

Not trying to be cynical but … natural market … at the end of the day you will burn through that like it’s nothing. To use the networking tract in AGE training you have to have a natural market of just under 1000 people. I don’t even have 1000 that DON’T like me let alone 1000 that do. And those that did, in short order are in the same category as the rabble like myself … cold calling my brains out. Of course there are exceptions I’m sure, just none I know of. My take is the number two guy fishing for what kind of friends and family accounts you can bring in that they can split if you don’t make it.
 <?:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
My 0.02
 
PS That’s not close to the interview experience I had
 Don’t know if that helps or not but at least it’s honest.

maybeeeeeeee's picture
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Joined: 2005-02-24

Gaddock wrote:
Not trying to be cynical but … natural market … at the end of the day you will burn through that like it’s nothing. To use the networking tract in AGE training you have to have a natural market of just under 1000 people. I don’t even have 1000 that DON’T like me let alone 1000 that do. And those that did, in short order are in the same category as the rabble like myself … cold calling my brains out. Of course there are exceptions I’m sure, just none I know of. My take is the number two guy fishing for what kind of friends and family accounts you can bring in that they can split if you don’t make it.
 <?:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
My 0.02

PS That’s not close to the interview experience I had

Don’t know if that helps or not but at least it’s honest.
There is some honesty.  The minute they want you to open the NEW accounts you bring in with a split code--tell them to shove it.

deekay's picture
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Joined: 2007-05-15

maybeeeeeeee wrote:
Hey he is doing you a FAVOR, but you should be interviewing at RayJay.

Seriously, do you know anything about any other firm?  Or have you just drank so much RJ kool-aid you can't see past your own doors?

vbrainy's picture
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Joined: 2006-07-26

Where do you think he should interview?  AGE is certainly not the place to start now.

maybeeeeeeee's picture
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Joined: 2005-02-24

deekay wrote:maybeeeeeeee wrote:
Hey he is doing you a FAVOR, but you should be interviewing at RayJay.

Seriously, do you know anything about any other firm?  Or have you just drank so much RJ kool-aid you can't see past your own doors?

When I find something negative to say, I will let you know.  When you work at a company that has grown 20% for each of the last five years, something is right.
We lost like 2 advisors last year.  I get an e mail every week telling me who is coming on board from AGE, Merrill, Wachovia, Hillard Lyons, you name it.
Who has your firm recruited lately?  Or do most people eventually leave your firm?

deekay's picture
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maybeeeeeeee wrote:deekay wrote:maybeeeeeeee wrote:
Hey he is doing you a FAVOR, but you should be interviewing at RayJay.

Seriously, do you know anything about any other firm?  Or have you just drank so much RJ kool-aid you can't see past your own doors?

When I find something negative to say, I will let you know.  When you work at a company that has grown 20% for each of the last five years, something is right.
We lost like 2 advisors last year.  I get an e mail every week telling me who is coming on board from AGE, Merrill, Wachovia, Hillard Lyons, you name it.
Who has your firm recruited lately?  Or do most people eventually leave your firm?

I don't know and I don't care who they recruit or who leaves.  The only growth in business I care about is mine.  But usually, they go indy or RIA.

maybeeeeeeee's picture
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Joined: 2005-02-24

Well, Deekay.  Have fun on that island.
Who are you going to tell that you are dating Cindy Crawford??

deekay's picture
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Joined: 2007-05-15

maybeeeeeeee wrote:
Well, Deekay.  Have fun on that island.
Who are you going to tell that you are dating Cindy Crawford??

Think about it - how does recruiting a ton of advisors to my firm help me?  It's great for marketing the firm, but I don't market my firm.  I market me.

maybeeeeeeee's picture
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Joined: 2005-02-24

deekay--well just go work out of the bank then.  or at Ameriprise.  If your company's reputation is not helping you build your business what good are they?

deekay's picture
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Joined: 2007-05-15

maybeeeeeeee wrote:deekay--well just go work out of the bank then.  or at Ameriprise.  If your company's reputation is not helping you build your business what good are they?
Let me restate:  Clients choose to work with ME.  My firm does have alot of name recognition, but never has anybody decided to work with me because of the firm I represent.  Therefore, I tell them that they are buying into working with me.  I don't rely on my firm's name recognition at all.  It may open doors, but the work that I do for my clients is much more important.

Indyone's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-31

Why I'm not with Ray Jay...
http://www.investmentnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/200 70507/FREE/70507007

maybeeeeeeee's picture
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Joined: 2005-02-24

If you know of a more intelligent, finer man than Tom James--at the head of a major B/D let me know about it.

deekay's picture
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Joined: 2007-05-15

Care to restate that 20% comment?  Seems like life at RJ isn't all it's cracked up to be.  Which was my point to begin with - I had a feeling you drank a ton of the kool-aid...

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