1,500-rep IBD FSC Securities has tapped Jerry Murphy to serve as its new president and CEO, replacing Mark Schlafly, who left the firm unexpectedly in March due to a family emergency. Murphy, who most recently served as executive vice president of Advisor Group, which includes FSC, said he plans to grow the firm further, in terms of advisor count as well as the b/d’s profitability.
Murphy said the search for a new president took so long because the firm vetted about 25 candidates from the outside, and it had to do its due diligence on each one. FSC whittled it down to three to four finalists, and Murphy ultimate got the job.
As an insider, he already knows everybody at the firm, including many advisors, Murphy said. “They see me as the hometown guy already,” he said.
Jodie Papike, executive vice president at Cross-Search, said it’s a good thing that they took their time with the hire; they weren’t rushed and could make a good decision. The firm gathered input from a lot of different people, and considered a lot of candidates, from both outside and inside the firm. From what she heard, advisors are happy with the decision.
But another recruiter, who declined to be named, wonders whether it was the right decision:
The head of a BD needs to be a people person that will be respected by the reps and a top notch communicator, but with an accounting/JD background, you have to wonder if that will be the case with Murphy. They are promoting from within which makes me wonder if they had difficulty finding someone on the outside as they did with his predecessor, who came from LPL. AIG has always had an unwritten rule of having the heads of their broker/dealers not be former brokers. The logic behind that is someone that was a former broker, will side too much with the reps and not enough with upper management—giving away the house so to speak.
Murphy said his first task on the job is to get out into the field, listen to FAs, and see where FSC needs to improve. I think that’s a first good step, to get a feel for the reps’ needs and earn their respect. But if he’s already liked, it doesn’t sound like that will be too hard.