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Mar 23, 2010 2:33 pm

I have been lurking for awhile and posting little but have lots of questions.  My question to start with is how much should I have put back for a launch into a career with EDJ?  I am only currently making $45K salary plus quarterly bonus & commissions plus fringe benefits.  My wife makes roughly the same and we have after tax  income aprox. $1,300 a month left over.  I have been in the process of eliminating all debt except my mortgage this year and want to have a cushion going into this career move but don't know how much of a cushion I need to make a transition in which I don't have to worry about the next check but can focus on the things I need to do to be successful knowing that the money will eventually follow. 

Mar 23, 2010 8:55 pm

Don't go with Jones.  You could get a much better salary with another firm as well as have better prospects for the future.  Just my 2 cents.

Sounds like you are pretty much ready to start since you have eliminated debt since if you do ok in your first year with the salary and commission you should make 45-65k,

Mar 23, 2010 9:23 pm

The good thing is that you're not used to making a huge salary and your wife works. You probably still want 10-20K or so in the bank so that you don't feel super strapped when you have lean months.  The average first year salary+commissions+bonuses with Jones is 45k.  And Jones is the best.  (Ignore the EJ bashing)! Good luck. --- rc

Mar 23, 2010 11:50 pm

Try to start with a wire and have two years expenses banked and you will give yourself a much better shot to succeed

Mar 24, 2010 8:17 am

Not to disrespect the comments above, but it is easy to say work for this company and avoid this one etc., but another perspective is that some of them are just very different business models and you need to decide which business model your personality will work best in.

For example: Jones you can run your office and feel more like a business owner.  Wires may give you a better name, but they will never give you the feeling you are running your own business.  Would you like the swagger of being part of the herd at Merrill or the swagger of having your own BOA and running a business.  None are right or wrong, just different.

To answer your question, any financial planner will tell you to have at least 6 months of expenses set aside for an emergency at all times.  Try living on your wife's income alone and banking every penny that you are currently making.  Do this for 3 months or so.  If you can live on only her income you will be in great shape.

Good luck.

Mar 24, 2010 10:30 am

I will just say this...if you can't make 45K at Jones, you should not be in this business.  Your first three years, you don't even need to hit 100K gross to do 45K net (assuming you get a starting salary and hit most of the milestone bonuses).  If you hit ALL of the milestone bonuses, it likely means your net will be more like 50K+ (because you had to do decent gross in order to hit the bonuses anyway).

I think it is toughest for people that previously had an established income of 75-80K+ that they rely on.  That's why this Jones is a great firm for people just starting out.

Mar 25, 2010 8:20 pm

Thanks for the feedback!  I figured the standard 3-6 month egg would probably surfice to get started with Jones.  My salary is not that big but I do get commissions/bonuses/company vehicle/all gas within the household (aprox. $500 mo) and cell phones ($150 mo) so it adds up with the perks.  I just want to be sure that when I make the leap I do it with the proper reserves so I don't loose my focus on what I'm doing.  I would like to start today but need time to finish debt off and get a proper reserve established. 

Roxie, thanks for your feedback.  I have looked around at several different business models and feel the Jones model fits me best.  For some of the reasons that you mentioned and for other I believe that's my destiny.  Now if for some reason I can't get on than I'll be considering others. 

I'm going to secure my insurance license along the way so I won't have to get that.  Is there any way to get a "sponsor" in order to just take the securities licenses?  I would love to get that behind me as well.  Is there anything else I should be preparing for as I move in this direction?

Mar 26, 2010 11:20 am

You need a sponser for securities. 

For income, the first year it is easier to make money, it ithe second year that's tougher because the salary goes away. 

Use this time not on the test stuff but on building selling skills.  Read Nick Murrary EIA, Mullins Million Dollar Practice, Schiffman Cold Calling Techniques etc.  Read all the old threads on this site, take notes, build your knowledge and selling skills.  Start to network with Jones advisors.

Good luck.

Mar 26, 2010 12:49 pm

Yeah, don't get wrapped up in the licensing crap.  Jones will get you through all that.  Just focus on your business plan, selling skills, and start networking.

Mar 31, 2010 3:35 pm

Thanks for the feedback.  I'm actually working hard at expanding my network further and continue to learn about sales and am looking more specifically at financial sales study from this site, books, etc.  I've not sold financial services previously but have sold B2B my entire career and currently am VP Sales.  I'm very confident in my sales abilities however I'm constantly learning and expanding that knowledge. 

Roxie, I've heard about the 2nd year being tougher than the 1st financially.  I figure the first 24-36 months are the gut check months.  What kind of variances in pay monthly do you usually see usually as you are getting started?  I'm having a hard time figuring what the variances may be.  Example 1 month $500 and the next $6,000????  I'm making strides daily getting closer and closer

Apr 1, 2010 8:41 am

"Now if for some reason I can't get on than I'll be considering others."
Evidently you have not been reading much of these forums. If EJ does not take you, there's a 99.9% chance no one else will either. People who fail out of Jones are typically done. People who fail out of a wire typically go Jones or bank. At least that has been what I've seen.
Selling financials is like selling everything else. At first you suck because you don't know everything there is to know about the products but eventually you gain enough knowledge about them to do a good job.
The whole Jones "is like being your own boss" and wire is "running with the herd" is kinda bs. It really depends on what you are producing, the office, and the manager when it comes to a wire. In my office we have two guys doing $1 million+. One comes in and works 8-4:45 everyday like clock work. He does not come in early, or stay late. Not bad $ for an 8-5. The other guy comes in some days at 7 and some at 9 all depending upon what's going on with his family. He typically leaves early to go to his kids events (school, sports, etc). As long as you produce no one cares what you do; whether you're at EJ or a wire. Also I've had my own business before and no matter where you go, if you want to be successful you have to run your book as if it is your own business. Put in the time and effort and the production will follow.
Find what works for you, but honestly many people on here are bias one way or another. For me I'm bias towards wire because I could have gone either and looked at it two ways: 1-if I didn't get hired by a wire or failed out, there was still a chance at me getting on at Jones (not saying I would definitly get hired, but there was still a chance) 2-of the 2 wires is was talking to, one had 2 ex-jones guys and the other had 3. What that said to me is that there must be a reason people are going that way, and not the other way around.
Ultimately you have to find what works for you.
From what I have seen:
Jones has the best training. The reps I know are great at selling. They done give you much support financially (salary), which can be good or bad. It gives you incentive to bust it harder, faster. But for others having the extra $ is nice. Wire has better products/platform (one of many reasons the Jones boys in my office said they made the move). Wire has better pay at higher production levels. I could go on and on about the pluses of both but as I said you have to find what works for you.

PS- sorry for writing a novel.

Apr 2, 2010 12:16 pm

Makes sense Sparta