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Jan 21, 2009 8:02 pm

So I am making the career jump from serving as an Army Captain to Financial Advisor. I have applied to all of the major wires within the greater area and have received a lot of positive feedback, but "we are in a hiring freeze". I have two promising options. One is with a team that just left SB for Wachovia and want to bring me on to "step up their marketing efforts and get licensed". We haven't talked any compensation package yet but reassured me that I would be a full advisor, not a CA. What should I expect in terms of a compensation package with the life lessons/maturity (for what it's worth - 2 tours in Iraq), and a marketing degree from a very well known school within the region?

The other lead is Ameriprise. I have read a lot of negative feedback, but given the economy, is it a bad idea to get into the business, get licensed, start to build a book and leave after the initial commitment is met?

Thanks.

Jan 21, 2009 11:23 pm

First, thank you for everything you've done for all of us!



Ameriprise should be a last resort. Have you thought about EDJ? I'd talk to them along with the wires to see where you feel like you can be the most successful.

Jan 21, 2009 11:24 pm

I would go with the team, definitely, so long as you trust the team members.
Good luck and thank you for your service.

Jan 22, 2009 9:05 am

Go with the team.

Jan 22, 2009 9:06 am

Thanks for the kind words. So what can I expect for base from the team...I am outside of Boston in a pretty well off community. Is it ridiculous to think $55K?

Jan 22, 2009 9:47 am

mike4,


Thanks for your service.  Sister in Afghanistan at current time. 


Go with the team.  I think your base is dependent on the size of the team and what they are looking for you to do.  If they're serious about you and you have good rapport sit down with them and visit about what they expect from you and what you can expect to receive from them.  Not just pay but training, support, mentoring, daily activities, etc.


Ask any and all questions.  You need to be comfortable with them and they with you. 


Good Luck!
Jan 22, 2009 10:15 am

your compensation may be determined by the platform they are on at WS. Are they FINET, AGE, or Profit Formula?

Jan 22, 2009 10:42 am

Mike, I am with Jones, and I would say go with the team.  If they are hiring you to help with marketing efforts, that means they either have to pay you a salary, or shift quite a few assets to you (or some combo of that).  Not only that, you have obviously successful veterans teaching you.  Honestly, you can't replicate that opportunity anywhere else, regardless of what your starting base pay might be.

Jan 22, 2009 10:50 am

Just a gut feeling here, but I believe that some kind of team or junior partner/intern approach is going to be the primary way that FAs break into this business in the future.  Don't try to do this on your own.



Jan 22, 2009 10:54 am

Mike:

Thank you for your service. I think you should go with the team.
Jan 22, 2009 11:51 am

Mike

I think you have the answer as to what you should do.  Not your answer on salary but you'll only get that from them. 
Jan 22, 2009 12:04 pm

Yes... the team... avoid Jones.


Thank you for my freedom...
Jan 22, 2009 1:32 pm
Ready2Jump:

Yes... the team... avoid Jones.


Thank you for my freedom...
 
This is disturbing. What basis do you have for making such a statement? I start with Jones in less than two weeks. Can you give me some facts to back up your statement? If you want to help, explain why you said this.
Jan 22, 2009 2:30 pm
maddmatt:
Ready2Jump:

Yes... the team... avoid Jones.


Thank you for my freedom...
 
This is disturbing. What basis do you have for making such a statement? I start with Jones in less than two weeks. Can you give me some facts to back up your statement? If you want to help, explain why you said this.
 
Maddmatt,
You've done your research, you've made your decision.  You should stop reading this forum. 
 
If you have not been in this industry before Jones is not such a bad place to start your career.  IT WILL BE EXTREMELY DIFFICULT.  But it would be anywhere.  EdJones has a particular way of doing things.  Not necessarily right or wrong.  Go in with an open mind and learn all you can but keep an open mind.  You will be taught to sell 20 year bonds and mutual funds primarily American Funds.  For a vast majority of the investing population (obviously by the number of investors they have) this will be just fine.  Point is, stop worrying about what others are saying, go there do your job to the max and you will be fine and you might even like it.
 
Good Luck to you!
a former EdJoneser
Jan 22, 2009 3:13 pm
jkl1v1n6:
maddmatt:
Ready2Jump:

Yes... the team... avoid Jones.


Thank you for my freedom...
 
This is disturbing. What basis do you have for making such a statement? I start with Jones in less than two weeks. Can you give me some facts to back up your statement? If you want to help, explain why you said this.
 
Maddmatt,
You've done your research, you've made your decision.  You should stop reading this forum. 
 
If you have not been in this industry before Jones is not such a bad place to start your career.  IT WILL BE EXTREMELY DIFFICULT.  But it would be anywhere.  EdJones has a particular way of doing things.  Not necessarily right or wrong.  Go in with an open mind and learn all you can but keep an open mind.  You will be taught to sell 20 year bonds and mutual funds primarily American Funds.  For a vast majority of the investing population (obviously by the number of investors they have) this will be just fine.  Point is, stop worrying about what others are saying, go there do your job to the max and you will be fine and you might even like it.
 
Good Luck to you!
a former EdJoneser
 
Actually, this is the best advice I have read.Thanks!
Jan 23, 2009 5:47 pm

Mike4, I was in literally, your exact position two months ago. 4.5 years army active duty, infantry captain, management degree, 1 tour in Iraq (so some slight differences). I went to every wirehouse in town, even the one my wife is a broker at and they were all on a hiring freeze. EDJ gave me a lot of interest, and while they're a great opportunity for some (and love the military officer thing), right now it's a tough spot to start. Nearing the end of my interview process with EDJ I found an independent guy with LPL who had his 24. I told him my story, he offered me a higher salary than EDJ, sponsored me for my licenses (just passed 7 this week) and will be starting me off with a bonus structure like SBs bluechip and a graduated payout structure based on production 40 to start, 50 at 150k, 60 at 200K,... 90 at 450k. Anyways, point of the story, right now you could get on a team, survive in this economy, and possibly be stuck on that team (they have some pretty airtight contracts). Or you can go for broke, go to EDJ or find an indy to sponsor/mentor you. Honestly, things will eventually get better and you want to be in a position to ride that wave. I say go for broke.... provided you have at least a years captains pay (with BAH) in the bank. Good luck man, and keep me updated.