A succession plan at Jones

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spamfilter's picture
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If you are at Jones and plan to have your son/daughter follow you in the business....that may not be an option. Today Weddle said, "As for your desire to "pass on" a successful branch to a child, we have several great examples of how this can work very well, and we have also experienced some very disappointing failures. It will sound harsh, but your kids inherited a lot from you, but may not have inherited your work ethic. My strong preference is that we transition existing veteran business to individuals. Who have been tested and who have demonstrated both the skills and the work ethic it will take to continue to build that business"

RealWorld's picture
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1. Sounds great, the amount of loser sons/daughters who inherit books far outweighs the amount of successes.2. If Jim wants to hand the book over to veteren financial advisors then why don't we do that now when offices become open? It is much more reasonable for me to believe that transferring assets to new advisors is what is going to happen and that is certainly not in the best interest of our clients.

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Spam,There is NOTHING preventing someone from doing that.  I think Weddle's point was that they don't want to just hire some 25 year-old lackey, get him registered, and unleash him on a $100mm book that took 25 years to build.  That would just be irresponsible - mostly to the clients.  What I have seen work well was where a son/daughter started with the firm, and built their own little book for 5+ years, THEN took over Daddy's book.  Look at it this way, if you built your own independant wealth management firm, would you turn the business over to your kid that didn't have any experience?  You wouldn't.  You would have him work his way up through the firm, doing "research", servicing clients, trading, whatever.  Eventually, he would work his way into the "President's" role, where you would become "Chairman" (I'm using formal titles here), and step back from day-to-day management, until such time as you either died, became sick, or just plain tired of working.Jones has NO problem with handing off books, but they want to see it done the right way.  As it is, they already require (I think) 3 years experience as an FA in order to take a Succession Plan. 

Cowboy93's picture
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The bottom line is that if you RYBLAB, the only logical succession plan is to have some version of independence.  If you are truly answering to the "shareholders" that matter most (the ones you live with).

B24's picture
B24
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WTF is RYBLAB? 

Spaceman Spiff's picture
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I read that same Suggbox entry.  I didn't take it as Weddle saying that all FAs that are thinking they are building their books for their kids should reconsider.  B24 is very close to what I took away from Jim's comments.  I look at my kids now and wonder if any of them are going to want my book when I'm ready to retire.  Maybe they will, maybe they won't.  I'm going to build it as if one of them does.  But I'm not going to just hand it to them.  I want them to figure out if they really want to do this for the rest of their career.  I'd like for them to spend some time in the home office, then become a Goodknight, build their own book for a while, then, once they are 110% committed to this, hand them the keys to the kingdom and walk away.  I figure I've got 25 years to build it to the point that they can just walk in and take over and live on Easy Street for the rest of their careers.  Now, if I've got a lazy kid who just wants to play golf all the time or spend hours a week at the day spa, then no dice.  I'll find some nice young Seg 3 or early Seg 4 and give them a shot.  Or I can do a few Super GKNs and spread the wealth around a lot.   If none of my kids want it, I'd at least like to set up someone who has worked hard and deserves a shot at a good life.  I think Jones would rather have that situation than for me to just hand my $100MM book to a Seg 1 with zero experience.   

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B24 wrote:WTF is RYBLAB? I think you have made my point.  What, did RYBLAB go away along with "Blue Chip" Pringles??!!

Spaceman Spiff's picture
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Blue Chip Pringles...I haven't seen a can of those in years.  Wasn't that some UIT promotional thing that they sent to all of our offices?  Run Your Business Like A Business - it used to be one of those things that Jones would say you have to start adopting into your thought processes.  I don't think they use the RYBLAB phrase anymore.  We'll see it every once in a while, but not very often.  The only reference to it on the system anymore is a newsletter article from 2009.I think it's catching people off guard that Jones is finally taking their own advice.  Normal business owners don't hire or keep salemen who only work 25 hours a week and don't create profit.  They shut down franchise locations that aren't profitable.  Or they bring in new management, which many times is just a successful manager from a different location.  They expect profit.  Weddle said in that same Suggbox response this morning that Seg 3 isn't a worthwhile career goal.  If that's not writing on the wall, then you're pretty dense.  It's a wake up call to everyone that Jones wants you to produce.  They want you doing Seg 4 numbers.  Once you get there they're happy.  But you better be doing them if you want to stick around.  Worrying about succession plans is great, but they're not concerned about your succession plan until you can prove you can succeed. 

Remo Gaggi's picture
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Spaceman Spiff wrote:Blue Chip Pringles...I haven't seen a can of those in years.  Wasn't that some UIT promotional thing that they sent to all of our offices?  Run Your Business Like A Business - it used to be one of those things that Jones would say you have to start adopting into your thought processes.  I don't think they use the RYBLAB phrase anymore.  We'll see it every once in a while, but not very often.  The only reference to it on the system anymore is a newsletter article from 2009.I think it's catching people off guard that Jones is finally taking their own advice.  Normal business owners don't hire or keep salemen who only work 25 hours a week and don't create profit.  They shut down franchise locations that aren't profitable.  Or they bring in new management, which many times is just a successful manager from a different location.  They expect profit.  Weddle said in that same Suggbox response this morning that Seg 3 isn't a worthwhile career goal.  If that's not writing on the wall, then you're pretty dense.  It's a wake up call to everyone that Jones wants you to produce.  They want you doing Seg 4 numbers.  Once you get there they're happy.  But you better be doing them if you want to stick around.  Worrying about succession plans is great, but they're not concerned about your succession plan until you can prove you can succeed.   I could not agree more!  The fact that the number of FA's making above 500k annually (1,000) is 25% of the RED Segment THREE's out there is a testament to EDJ finally waking up!  Wish I could be there to see it, but I got tired of waiting!

N.D.'s picture
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B24 wrote:Jones has NO problem with handing off books, but they want to see it done the right way.  As it is, they already require (I think) 3 years experience as an FA in order to take a Succession Plan. I know two newbs that are splitting an 80mm book in SC. Started in late 2008. She did ask however to require them to work in her office for a year before she handed the keys. Ex-pharma guy moved from two states away and is still there, the other guy is not. So you know, EJ was ready to hand the office over but SHE insisted on a trial period first.

Cowboy93's picture
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Great post Spiff and spot on from what I understand.

B24's picture
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N.D. wrote:B24 wrote:Jones has NO problem with handing off books, but they want to see it done the right way.  As it is, they already require (I think) 3 years experience as an FA in order to take a Succession Plan. I know two newbs that are splitting an 80mm book in SC. Started in late 2008. She did ask however to require them to work in her office for a year before she handed the keys. Ex-pharma guy moved from two states away and is still there, the other guy is not. So you know, EJ was ready to hand the office over but SHE insisted on a trial period first.Let's not forget, there is not always an experienced seg3/seg 4 type person to take over a book.  And I am not saying they always do it the right way.  As we have discussed ad nauseum in previous threads, there is no perfect way to split up a book and make everyone happy.  You give it to veterans that know what they are doing, and everyone complains that this could have gotton a few newbies a great head-start.  You give it to a newbie, and all the veterans (and other newbies) complain that they don't deserve it.  There is just not one perfect way to divvy up or hand off a book.  In an ideal world, I think you would have a few newbie-ish FA's (like 2-5 years out) that have proved themselves already, that come in and work with the book for a year, then take it over.  But again, logistics often prohibit that.  For example, in my area, there are literally only 2 offices (plus my Legacy FA) that I would be able to accept assets from due to distance.  Beyond that, the next closest office is about 20 miles away and in a different market.  So I can't really complain unless I wanted to move.Let's also not forget the inequities at the wirehouses.  Many FA's start from scratch on their own, while others are quickly brought onto $100mm+ teams. 

spamfilter's picture
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Remo Gaggi wrote:Spaceman Spiff wrote:Blue Chip Pringles...I haven't seen a can of those in years.  Wasn't that some UIT promotional thing that they sent to all of our offices?  Run Your Business Like A Business - it used to be one of those things that Jones would say you have to start adopting into your thought processes.  I don't think they use the RYBLAB phrase anymore.  We'll see it every once in a while, but not very often.  The only reference to it on the system anymore is a newsletter article from 2009.I think it's catching people off guard that Jones is finally taking their own advice.  Normal business owners don't hire or keep salemen who only work 25 hours a week and don't create profit.  They shut down franchise locations that aren't profitable.  Or they bring in new management, which many times is just a successful manager from a different location.  They expect profit.  Weddle said in that same Suggbox response this morning that Seg 3 isn't a worthwhile career goal.  If that's not writing on the wall, then you're pretty dense.  It's a wake up call to everyone that Jones wants you to produce.  They want you doing Seg 4 numbers.  Once you get there they're happy.  But you better be doing them if you want to stick around.  Worrying about succession plans is great, but they're not concerned about your succession plan until you can prove you can succeed.   I could not agree more!  The fact that the number of FA's making above 500k annually (1,000) is 25% of the RED Segment THREE's out there is a testament to EDJ finally waking up!  Wish I could be there to see it, but I got tired of waiting!Did you really leave because other FA's were not producing as much as you thought they should?

B24's picture
B24
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I think his point is that they are making a lot of positive changes in order to focus on production growth, not just headcount growth. 

BigCheese's picture
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The problem lies in the history of splitting the assets. When I left, there was in 2006 they gave 2 failing FA's a 200M book. One was a close friend and goodknight of the RL and the other was friendly with someone in the home office . If you leave it up to them, there always will be situations that leave others scratching their heads. The bottom line is they don't care who it really is who sits in the chair. If you want to leave a legacy for family, do it yourself and go independent or go to a firm that values your hard work by paying you for your business.

BigCheese's picture
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The problem lies in the history of splitting the assets. When I left, there was in 2006 they gave 2 failing FA's a 200M book. One was a close friend and goodknight of the RL and the other was friendly with someone in the home office . If you leave it up to them, there always will be situations that leave others scratching their heads. The bottom line is they don't care who it really is who sits in the chair. If you want to leave a legacy for family, do it yourself and go independent or go to a firm that values your hard work by paying you for your business.

chest rockwell's picture
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Joined: 2010-06-02

This may not be the proper thread but I'm a producing transfer from AG.ED who took over a book ($35mill) at Jones from a veteran broker who stayed with Jones and transferred to another city within our region that another FA had vacated (larger book $70mill).  I made this move a little over a year ago and moving my book into MAP and advisory has worked well.  The problem I've encountered is that the former FA (never a stellar producer) is continually contacting my clients (her former clients).  When I accepted this position the Home Office made it very clear that due to the circumstances of the former FA's move that leaving the book behind was part of the deal.  Now, I've been in this business for fifteen years and I knew that some of the clients would inevitably want to follow but now after a year the former FA is struggling to produce and I've lost about seven clients in the past month, totaling about 2.5 million for a grand total of over 10mill now. (About 7 mill left with her off the bat in the two months the branch was vacant, then St. Louis stopped it according to the Trainer)Two of these clients, both in their seventies, called me last week to thank me for teaching them so much about risk, volitility, etc. and were very open about the former FA contacting them and were moving to her now that they had recovered most of their 2008 losses.  Another gentleman, who transferred out , kept shaking his head and telling my BOA that he "wasn't supposed to say" why he was moving back to her.I hope some of the Jones vets that post here can shed some light on whom to contact if this continues.  I just really still feel like an outsider here as much as I've enjoyed the move and I've heard too many horror stories about going to the Reg. Leader (new to the role) about the way these things get communicated between the branches.  My seg. transition manager in St. Louis  said to go to the Region Leader but surely there is someone in St. Louis that could deal with issues like this more tactfully.Any suggestions are greatly appreciated.---Thanks. 

N.D.'s picture
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Dude, that really sucks... I would threaten her life late one night or go indy with the clients that want to do business with YOU as opposed to her/EJ... good luck

B24's picture
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Yeah, you are dealing with personalities now.  That's the downside of any business.  If you feel comfortable dealing with the RL, talk to her.  Or maybe even go to the Area Leader - but that person will likely just go to the RL.  Here's an idea - go to the RL or AL and say "look, this was the deal when i came on, and I know Mrs. X is still poaching clients.  I appreciate that some clients want to stay with her.  That's fine.  No problem.  But some clients have made it clear that they have been ASKED to come with her.  I tell a lot of my old friends at AGE/Wach/WFA about how great Jones is, but now I am really having second thoughts about endorsing this move.  I only moved over with the understanding about what the deal was, and now it's blowing up in my face...."

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You need to call your regional leader or your area leader.  The Jones policy is that we aren't supposed to actively contact another FA's clients.  They'll be able to see the branch to branch transfers and they should put a stop to it.  Of course, you could just call her and ask her what she thinks she's doing.  She'll probably give you some song and dance about those being her clients and THEY wanted to follow her to the new office, but from what you've described that's not true.  I think you'll eventually have to end up calling your RL or area leader and get them involved.  How does someone who goes from a $35 mil book to a $70 mil book struggle to produce?  How do you double your assets and probably your client base and struggle.  That just doesn't make any sense to me at all. 

xej1984's picture
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There are a couple of legacy issue that needs to be asked:1)  How "close" is the female rep with the RL or AL?2)  Is she attractive? Sure neither thing has any bearing,  but no matter what you claim it happens.

B24's picture
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Yeah, it does.  Often, it's more an issue of the RL or other leadership people being too big of a pu$$y to do anything about it.  That's one of the BIG drawbacks of the Jones "Family".  It's like your own family where everyone is too chicken to discuss Uncle Al's drinking problem at the family reunion, even though you all know it's a problem.

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Oh, and the fact that RL are not "technically" compensated is an issue.  Some see themselves as "mentors" and guidance for the region, while others see themselves as the "Boss".  Regional Leaders should be able to kick a$$ and take names (and not be producing reps).  I just think it's an unhealthy dual-role (unless they were strictly mentors and facilitators on top of their own businesses)

chest rockwell's picture
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Spaceman, ND, B24, xej1984,Thank you all for your input - very helpful to know this was the route I had to take on this and nobody at St. Louis dealt specifically with these issues.I did speak with my RL today and faxed him my  documentation.  He was very professional and explained the process.  He thanked me for the detail and I think appreciated that this was not run of the mill whining about losing an account, but rather something that had started prior to my arrival and had been progressing over a year.I have a meeting with him this next Wednesday to follow up after he and home office review some things.  I felt better when he said she had been made aware that when she decided to switch branches that there was documentation both verbal and by wire that her former book did not go with her----(which makes me wonder why something hasn't been done already, but hey, still glad I got this reported.)In response to Spaceman & 1984: She is in mid thirties and quite attractive (Ellen Barkin in Sea of Love)---She worked in her ex-husband's Raymond James office until divorce about four years ago (he sold book)--She took over the Jones office where I am presently.  It had about 30mill at that time and she brought a 401k plan from R. James with over $50mill with her.  She lost the 401k in a little over a year and has basically complained about being too far away from her  old client base (ex-husbands) to generate much business.  A Jones broker across the street from her ex-husband's old Raymond James office left or was fired (depending on whose telling the story) and now works for Wells Fargo.  --- That's how she wound up getting to transfer to a larger book (her home & old office are both in walking distance from EDJ branch)--Coupled with the fact that someone bought her line of BS that she would stick it to Raymond James, as she was a former "owner" of the building and real estate it sits on.  (She loves to tell everyone that line)Since her move over half of her new Jones book is now at Wells Fargo & since January has started lose a ton to Raymond James.  This is the primary reason for the problem I have---Oh, also found out today that she  only had her Series 7 for her last 8 months at Raymond James--Her previous six years were as an assistant---She must have been damn good too.-----------Thanks guys.  Feel a lot better. 

Spaceman Spiff's picture
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It's a shame I don't believe in karma.  Seems like she's been lying about most things in her Jones life and is now paying the piper.  Good luck with it.  It sounds like if she keeps going the way she is, she won't be a problem for you for very long. 

xej1984's picture
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chest rockwellIf this gal can work at the resturant that has a owl in it's logo and has good wings......she'll be around for longer than you think. If the RL or AL don't do anything about the "alledged" activities.......Keep us posted

chest rockwell's picture
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xej1984,You are a prophet.  You must be the guy who moved his book to cash in mid October '07 then went for broke in Ford common a year later.My SEG 4 manager called me around 2 pm EST and made these paraphrased statements:::::::::+ You did the right thing by going to your RL, I just wish you had done it sooner becasue we could have stopped this before it grew to such a problem.+ We are aware of this rep's history and has also been reported more than once from other EDJ FA's+ After a huge fight with the home office her block transfer was finally approved with the understanding that the clients included in the block transfer was it because she made the decision to abandon her old book and assume management of a branch with a larger book.  (She then expained that at Jones the book is not the property of the broker but rather is the sole property of Jones)+ She then put your region's old RL under fire because her BOA faxed individual account transfers to his BOA  "which wound up in an admin stack that a RL must sign daily" under the premise that there were technology  problems with the block transfer that had to be signed individually by the RA.--(He signed them and was pissed due to the deception)--she was sent additional wires, and a phone call from both RL & home office as well as having to sign a document stating that she had been unconditionally warned and undertood to way Jones does business.+ (After asking if she needed further documentation) She said NO. We have plenty to resolve this issue that will no longer haunt you+We sincerely hope that this rare incident will not deter your significant progess nor your confidence in referring former collegues to Jones.I felt good until about an hour later when the AL calledabout an hour later and informed me of these points (paraphrased)+ Congratulations on your progess we are so happy with your decision to join the Jones family as a producing transfer. Were you aware that procuding transfers have a (ridiculously high % rate of success) compared to (a ridiculouly low % of success) for new hires and a (somewhere in betweeen % of success) for a goodnight?? if I understood him correctly.+ We sincerely apologize for inconvenience you are currently experiencing and wanted you to know that actions such as this are taken very seriously by the home office and especially me----But due to the severity and unfortunately the consistentcy of these matters this must be handled in very careful manner.  (????)+ With an advisor of your expericence and success I'm sure you understand that gaining or losing a few accounts could never make or break someone with your talent.  I have confidence that your progress will continue to flourish by running your practice the way you have demonstrated both here at Jones and with your former firm.+ Thank you so much for your hard work and please do not hesitate to contact your SEG leader or RL should you have anymore issues with this matter which I sincerely doubt you will.----And don't forget to remind your friends in the business of the opportunities that Jones offers.???----I guess I'll have to wait and see, but this conversation with the AL definately had a different tone than the previous two conversations with leadership and leads me to wonder that if incidents prior to my employment here about this lady are communicated makes me ponder the question---WHERE DOES THIS FIRM DRAW THE LINE?Thanks again fellows.  

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BigCheese's picture
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CR-The GP's don't care who gets the business as long as it stays on a Jones statement. Then they get paid....you will find just like any other firm (beat you to it Spiff!) that you are nothing more than a descendant of Eli Whitney who invented interchangeable parts.Having said that, your experience borders on sounding like sour grapes especially to those who start with nothing or 5-10M. As an independent advisor with LPL I scratch my head at why anyone would consider Jones as a transfer broker. Jones typically doesn't attract significant producers (because they aren't competitive), so I can only assume you were a marginal producer which is probably why you are challenged by this agressive FA who is taking back her relationships. I don't disagree wtih your premise that it isn't what you bought into, just that your expectations of an easy transition. You have received a heck of lot more than most, if it were me, I would take it personally and get some additional fire in my belly to show them they should have gone to bat for me, but in spite of them I have succeded. That's my defiiniton of karma Spiff.

chest rockwell's picture
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Joined: 2010-06-02

Thanks for the input B. Cheese.  You are right.  I am a middle of the road producer & have moved about 26 mill from my former book which represents almost half of it (I'll probably just move another 5).  This really isn't sour grapes although it must sound that way.  Maybe I should just contact this lady and ask her exactly who she wants to take so I can not waste so much time attempting to contact / service them.  I've seen several of the accounts already (retirees taking distributions) drop about 18% May and that really sucks.  I feel bad for these people and I would much rather she transfer them as to see my name on their statements.  -- I do know that I have a fortunate situation and I really do like Jones.  Regardless of my situation being a good one or my production level.  I've definately paid my dues in this business and know that you must draw the line somewhere when these issues arise.   Just to jump up, get mad and say "ILL TRIPLE THIS LADY'S YEARLY PRODUCTION THIS MONTH" is a bit sophmoric.--- I still don't regret my decision to join Jones and I'll just see how this thing gets handled.  Either way thank you all for your input.  ---And if someday I ever rise above mediocrity I'll make the switch to LPL (where the women are strong, the men are handsome and all the children are above average.) 

BigCheese's picture
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You had me unitl you got to the handsome part...Don't be suprised if management gives you the impression they care and then do nothing about it. After all what can they do, tell the clients to move back? That could jeopardize the relationship with Jones and the client which is far more important. I don't want to give you the impression that i agree with the FA who left, quite the contrary, I would side with you. After 9 years at Jones I left principally because I couldn"t trust management and I saw the inherit conflicts. Don't discount indiependence even now. It's hard work and almost 4 years into it, I am so glad that I left. And if you produce 250K or above, you are a contender.Nothing wrong with loft goals and if you feel you are mediocre or your numbers are, maybe you need a little push like this FA who is stretching the rules. What could be wrong with tripling your biz?

chest rockwell's picture
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Joined: 2010-06-02

Problem now resolved.  Was informed by RL today that last Thursday morning her official punishment was to apologize to me and another FA in our region and to pinky swear it would not happen again.  She instead, informed them that she would take her talents to Stifel Nicolaus. She was clearly just a bad apple and rumor is  that she had going to interviews and actually holding a few of them in her (Jones) office since February according to her BOA.  Just glad this is over now and I can re-focus on the many positives.Have an appointment Friday with one of the clients that she snatched and hopefully they will explain (without me asking) what she said to make them want to transfer so I'll better understand what has undoubtedly been communicated some others in the book.  Hopefully she didn't tell them I was a cross-dressing Satanic priest.  Thank you all for your input and advice. 

Incredible Hulk's picture
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Joined: 2006-03-24

She just gave you a fantastic call list.

N.D.'s picture
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This means she will not stop poaching your clients. You better hang on tight now.

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