Background Check

or Register to post new content in the forum

38 RepliesJump to last post

 

Comments

  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
May 23, 2008 6:51 pm

Currently I am in the interviewing process with a brokerage firm and had a quick question regarding the background check. <?: prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />


 


When I as twenty years old I was arrested for underage drinking, for which I spent four hours in the "drunk tank" (even though I had only had one shot of vodka) and received pre-trial diversion. In addition I had six months of unsupervised probation. It has been approximately 5 years since this situation.


 


I have not withheld this information from the brokerage firm but I was worrying about how it might affect my ability to be hired. I know alone it might be petty but in conjunction with the arrest I have had some credit issues, i.e. automobile repossession, that I am in the process of clearing up. I have never filed bankruptcy nor have I had any judgments filed against me, just immaturity. 


 


For the last couple of years I have been trying to take care of my bad debt as-well-as increase my credit rating but it is a slow process.


 


My question is simply, would the combination of the bad debt (low credit score) and the criminal charge stop me from being hired or only make it that much more difficult?


 


Thanks for your help.

May 23, 2008 10:17 pm

How does your inability to responsibly manage your own money qualify you to manage other people's money?  

May 23, 2008 11:21 pm
Morphius:

How does your inability to responsibly manage your own money qualify you to manage other people's money?  



Damn, it's always a tough crowd on this board LOL!

May 23, 2008 11:56 pm
Bummerific:

Currently I am in the interviewing process with a brokerage firm and had a quick question regarding the background check. <?: prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />


 


When I as twenty years old I was arrested for underage drinking, for which I spent four hours in the "drunk tank" (even though I had only had one shot of vodka) and received pre-trial diversion. In addition I had six months of unsupervised probation. It has been approximately 5 years since this situation.  This is an issue that can be overcome.  People make mistakes.  However being that it happened so recently does not bode well for you.


 


I have not withheld this information from the brokerage firm but I was worrying about how it might affect my ability to be hired. I know alone it might be petty but in conjunction with the arrest I have had some credit issues, i.e. automobile repossession, that I am in the process of clearing up. I have never filed bankruptcy nor have I had any judgments filed against me, just immaturity. This is a much bigger issue.  Immaturity is not a good excuse as you are still only 25.  I'm not trying to bust on you, but it is a valid question to ask if you can't take care of your own finances, how can you take care of others?  Firms take on a tremendous amount of expense with a trainee and a lot of liability with a broker.  If you interviewed a contractor to build a house for you and he told you his roof on his own house collapsed 5 years ago but he was young and immature, would you hire him?


 


For the last couple of years I have been trying to take care of my bad debt as-well-as increase my credit rating but it is a slow process.


 


My question is simply, would the combination of the bad debt (low credit score) and the criminal charge stop me from being hired or only make it that much more difficult? You would have to make a hell of an impression to overcome your issues, not impossible but very difficult.


 


Thanks for your help.

May 24, 2008 7:24 am

Be honest an upfront about everything.  Someone will hire you.  It may not be your choice of firms.  Work your ass off.  Become successful and then you can work where you want.

May 24, 2008 11:25 am

I greatly appreciate the views that each and everyone of you have shared with me.

 
I completely understand that my past experience coupled with the fact that they have not been so far in my past is going to be a large liability but I never expected it to be easy, it seems that nothing in this industry is easy especially the first few years.
 
I am making great strides to overcome the mistakes in my past, by taking care of the bad debt as-well-as establishing good credit. I currently have a couple of loans that I have been paying on for just shy of 18 months that have been paid as agreed.
 
To answer the question of why I want to be a Financial Advisor, I would by lying if I were to say that the possibility of high earning potential was not a reason for my desire to work as a Financial Advisor. But that is not the only reason. I go to church with a couple FAs and speaking with them about what they do and how they do it is very exciting. Simply put I want to be a teacher. Though I may not make loads of money at first the satisfaction of being able to help someone out, by teaching them how to reach their financial dreams is important to me.
 
Through the conversations I have had with a couple of FA's has cemented my view on the profession, I firmly believe that teaching each client is the core of each FA's responsibility.
 
I hope that explains where I am coming from clearly enough. Again, I would like to thank each of you that have responded for it reaffirmed my thought on how my past history would play a great deciding role in this hiring process.
 
May 24, 2008 12:34 pm

"I firmly believe that teaching each client is the core of each FA's responsibility."

 
Be a teacher instead.   Teaching a client does not get them to take action.  The core of our responsibility is to get the client to take action.  Educating a client does not make this happen.  To steal an old saying, our clients want to know the time; they don't want to know how the clock works.
 
 
 
May 24, 2008 1:20 pm

anon,

I was going to post the exact same "telling the time" metaphor.  Once again, you post exactly what I would have posted.  Sure does save me some time, but it's a bit scary too.

I guess great minds think alike. ( And my mind, too.)

May 24, 2008 2:54 pm
Bummerific:

Currently I am in the interviewing process with a brokerage firm and had a quick question regarding the background check. <?: prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />


 


When I as twenty years old I was arrested for underage drinking, for which I spent four hours in the "drunk tank" (even though I had only had one shot of vodka) and received pre-trial diversion. In addition I had six months of unsupervised probation. It has been approximately 5 years since this situation.







 
 This won't affect you at all.  It's probably not even on your record, plus nearly every 20 year old drinks.  No big issue....  
 
That 6 months of probation was probably to have it swept off your record after being good for 6 months.
May 24, 2008 10:56 pm

Aside from the good points already made here, may I ask what your motivation is for wanting to be an FA?

 
I mean, if I had 4 at-fault car accidents, 2 speeding tickets, and a DUI in the past year, I certainly wouldn't apply to teach driver's ed. @ my local high school!  Why is there such a glut of people that want to be FAs that have shown nothing less than complete financial stupidity (no offense) to this point in their personal lives?
 
Is it just the allure of the $$$?  If so, I think that's a poor choice - especially since you are going to likely be pretty disappointed for a few years.
 
I vote for c) burb.. 
 
 
As I recall, there was a financial expert (was it Dave Ramsey?) who is now considered a financial expert and who  has written best selling financial books who previously lost everything and had filed bankruptcy...so, just because you have lousy finance skills BEFORE (training) for this career field doesn't mean that you wouldn't be be a great financial advisor AFTER taking this on.  Besides, there are stories of fa's who may do a good job helping others with their finances but perhaps overindulge, overspend and just don't follow their own advice (and their client's never know the difference).   
 
Fact is many jobs are being offshored/outsourced and perhaps the choices for decent jobs are just dwindling, with fewer choices.  Being an FA, teacher or going into the medical field are just a few of the career choices left that aren't being outsourced.
 
I'd research and make sure this is what you want to do and that you would be good at it before you put time, effort and expense in; although, if you're younger, why not give it a try and see if it's for you.  However, as you get older, you may not have the luxury of investigating possible career fields unless you absolutely know it would be a good fit for you.
May 24, 2008 11:07 pm
megamonet:

Aside from the good points already made here, may I ask what your motivation is for wanting to be an FA?

 
I mean, if I had 4 at-fault car accidents, 2 speeding tickets, and a DUI in the past year, I certainly wouldn't apply to teach driver's ed. @ my local high school!  Why is there such a glut of people that want to be FAs that have shown nothing less than complete financial stupidity (no offense) to this point in their personal lives?
 
Is it just the allure of the $$$?  If so, I think that's a poor choice - especially since you are going to likely be pretty disappointed for a few years.
 
I vote for c) burb.. 
 
 
As I recall, there was a financial expert (was it Dave Ramsey?) who is now considered a financial expert and who  has written best selling financial books who previously lost everything and had filed bankruptcy...This is the exception not the rule so, just because you have lousy finance skills BEFORE (training) for this career field doesn't mean that you wouldn't be be a great financial advisor AFTER taking this on.  Besides, there are stories of fa's who may do a good job helping others with their finances but perhaps overindulge, overspend and just don't follow their own advice (and their client's never know the difference).   
 
Fact is many jobs are being offshored/outsourced and perhaps the choices for decent jobs are just dwindling, with fewer choices.  Being an FA, teacher or going into the medical field are just a few of the career choices left that aren't being outsourced.
 
I'd research and make sure this is what you want to do and that you would be good at it before you put time, effort and expense in; although, if you're younger, why not give it a try Why not give it a try!!!!  You have got to be kidding me!  I'm sure retirees would be glad to know you were just seeing if this was the job for you as they collect welfare. and see if it's for you.  However, as you get older, you may not have the luxury of investigating possible career fields unless you absolutely know it would be a good fit for you.
May 24, 2008 11:25 pm

Mega, you remind me of Paul Abdul.  No matter how bad the sh*t stinks, you always find a way to comment on what a nice shade of brown it is.

May 25, 2008 11:40 am
Primo:

Mega, you remind me of Paul Abdul.  No matter how bad the sh*t stinks, you always find a way to comment on what a nice shade of brown it is.


Yeah, but with one huge difference.

Paula offers opinions on something she knows about from first hand experience - performing.

Mega offers opinions on something for which he has no meaningful first hand experience.

May 25, 2008 1:15 pm

How true.

May 25, 2008 3:49 pm
anonymous:

"I firmly believe that teaching each client is the core of each FA's responsibility."

 
Be a teacher instead.   Teaching a client does not get them to take action.  The core of our responsibility is to get the client to take action.  Educating a client does not make this happen.  To steal an old saying, our clients want to know the time; they don't want to know how the clock works.
 
Although it can be a satisfying profession, teaching doesn't pay worth a sh*t when compared to even a modestly successful financial advisor. My experience is that teaching a client OFTEN gets them to take action.  There are plenty of clients who don't care how things work, but when it makes sense, I use a teaching style of advising and there are a lot of clients and prospects who seem to really appreciate the information.  I believe it helps them get comfortable with making investment decisions.  Sure, you can overwork the education part, so you should keep it pretty simple, but just pushing a client to take action without telling them why a product or strategy works for them doesn't work for me.  The upside of all of this is that clients who need to be pushed end up with anonymous and clients who want to be educated end up with the likes me.  It really does take all kinds of advisors to serve all kinds of clients.
 
At the same time, teaching is not the core of what we do; understanding the client/prospect's financial situation and recommending appropriate investments and strategies is what we do.  For me, education is a method I use to help the client/prospect become comfortable with what I am recommending.  There are plenty of consumer advocates telling our clients and prospects that they should be able to explain, at least in general, what they are investing in.  Some people are incapable of understanding and for those, yes, we must lead.  However, a little client education can make a client/prospect feel reassured that (1) they are making a good decision and (2) I'm not just feeding them a line of crap to make a quick sale.
 
To the original poster, why not try working as a licensed assistant or junior team member for a successful advisor?  Other than sheer impatience, I can't understand why more 20-somethings don't consider such a path, as it would seem to me to hold a much higher probability of success.  Use the time to get your financial house in order and put your troubles further behind you.  That alone will increase your odds of making it.
May 25, 2008 7:14 pm

Good post, Indyone.  From the volume of my posts, you may be able to tell that I actually like to teach people.   My favorite clients are some of the ones that need to be educated.   If that's what it takes to land the client, that is what I'll do.  Our job is to get the client to take action, not to educate.  If educating the client is the best way to get a particular client to take action, by all means, educate, educate, educate!  The point is that it's education for a specific purpose.  It is not knowledge for knowledge's sake.

May 25, 2008 10:04 pm

have got to be kidding me!  I'm sure retirees would be glad to know you were just seeing if this was the job for you as they collect welfare.


And to this:  I say BUYER BEWARE.  Need to do your homework.  This liability should be placed on the wirehouse the young advisor works for to ensure he/she is properly trained and looks out for best interests of their clients.  (But, the retiree shouldn't count on it!)
 
On another note, I'd like to offer an opinon on a Suzy Orman comment of "finding a good advisor"  that I disagree with.  Suzy says to never use an advisor who works out of their home.  I say:  never judge an advisor by this alone.  This just reflects that the advisor is thrifty, economical, wants to reduce costs and doesn't necessarily mean that they don't have any clients or wouldn't be a good advisor.  All people are different, including fa's, and by Suze unfairly categorizing fa's because some fa's (indy's) may want to work out of their home and save on expenses is just unfair.  I can understand her saying hire CFP's only but this categorization of not using an fa who works out of their own home is just unfair.  Who says that people have to always meet at an office and perhaps an advisor might be better off renting a space to avoid losing business due to Suzie's bad press.  (Just my opinon.) 
 
Re:  PA --Paula Abdul is great at balancing out the very negative (bad for your self-esteem) Simon:  now, if someone goes into the "teaching" profession, I'd offer the opinion to be more like Paula since she is very good at seeing the best in others.  She's positive minded and this of course is a good attribute for an fa to have:  who in the heck would want to hire an fa who says..."yeah...you might make a little...or break even" (glass half-empty) sorta person.  Thanks for the compliment.
 
When the newbie's or people investigating this field log on to ask questions here, some of you might want to follow Paula's example and be a little more "uplifting" and encouraging instead of so negative and making a point of bringing down someone's confidence as well as totally turning them off of this career field. 
May 25, 2008 10:16 pm

So if you want to "try out being a financial advisor" you can because it is the client and the employer who should take responsibility?  Let me impersonate Paula for you.  What you lack in intelligence, you more than make up for with.... oh crap I got nothing.  Your just stupid. 

May 25, 2008 10:42 pm

oh Dear. Implied--Of course, the young fa should be responsible for their clients or why bother with all of the studying for their licenses.  My point is if you're not sure what you want to do and if you're young, investigate other career fields if you have the interest and inclination.

 
Call me stupid...whatever makes you feel better about yourself.  I pity you since you seem to feel better putting others down.  Sad. 
May 25, 2008 11:09 pm
And to this:  I say BUYER BEWARE.  Need to do your homework.  This liability should be placed on the wirehouse the young advisor works for to ensure he/she is properly trained and looks out for best interests of their clients.  (But, the retiree shouldn't count on it!)
 
Failing to see where you implied the FA should be responsible.  Seems to me you said buyer beware and wirehouse should be responsible.