Is the grass greener after leaving Edward Jones?

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Apr 3, 2009 10:19 am

To preface this question, I’m not in the business at all, looking to get in at Edward Jones. I’m just curious to know, if you’d like to share the information I'd appreciate it, thank-you for your opinion. Is the grass greener financially, once you’ve left Edward Jones and why in your case?

Apr 3, 2009 11:11 am

If you leave Jones in good standing, more often than not they will allow you to return if you want to. So most people who have left are going to say that yes the grass is greener or they would have returned to Jones.

Apr 3, 2009 2:47 pm

We had two guys leave and go to ML.  Both burned some bridges.  Both asked to come back to EDJ and were told no.

Apr 3, 2009 2:51 pm

Right, they didnt leave in good standing.

Apr 3, 2009 3:00 pm

A guy in my region resigned before he was let go for low production a couple years ago. He went to work for a credit union for two years and wanted to come back. They jerked him around for a couple months and then said no. The office he offered to fill is still empty. EJ said his numbers were too low. I would say alot of IR's are low considering last year. But I guess maybe his was too too low.

Apr 3, 2009 3:00 pm

I don't see this as being a business where you can leave a firm and then go back.

 
At Jones, your old office will be gobbled up in a matter of hours. Would a person go back to Jones and go to the home office or try to get an open office in another town?
Apr 3, 2009 3:05 pm

The short answer, yes.  The long answer has to be individualized.  If you understand prospecting, have compassion for your clients, understand true business ownership, the sky is the limit and I mean the limit. 


When I was with Jones, I was successful.  However, when I would hear the vets, 15+years,  talk about the amount of money a person can make, I would question their opinion.  More brokers, commissions per product going down..blah blah blah vs touchdown bonds, less brokers etc.  I now realize how blessed I am by choosing this profession and the model I chose, independence. 
 
My wife is in the medical field, pulling down 250k per year.  She has basically topped out, unless she increases her fees dramatically.  If things continue as they have so far, I will net more than her this year.  She has 9 employees, I have one.  Her days run from 7:30-5:30-6, 5 days a week, mine vary. 
 
I guarantee you, I couldn't fathom making this type of money, in a town of 3200, with Jones.  I now know, this profession pays like no other.  Indy is not for everyone...if you think your only worth 35% of what you produce, you will like JOnes. If you think your worth way more..then you won't be happy, and I wasn't happy.
Apr 3, 2009 3:10 pm

Maybe I misinterpreted the question, but isn't he asking if the grass is greener after you leave? (IOW, he's not asking about coming back).

 
I would say it depends.  I think going indy works out in many cases.  It works out for those FA's that are rather low producers (like 250K and lower), that are OK with going indy, having no assistant and low overhead, and not really interested in heavy prospecting or working real hard.  If you can work in this environment and gross 200-300K, you will have a very nice life with good income and less stress than at Jones. 
 
I think it also works out well for big prodcuers that want to put their practice on steroids.  In the Jones model, you are sort of limited as far as growth.  You can higher lots of assistants to help (if you have the revenue to cover it), but you can't really hire other advisors and truly "grow" the practice.  Not to say that you can't make tons of money at Jones - you can, I just think it's easier to grow in a team environment.
 
I think it's s struggle for those that are REALLY low producers that basically got forced out.  My buddy that just went indy is really struggling.  He is having a tough time with all the paperwork and trying to get enough clients over to make any money.  He is doing everything himself, and the system is much less efficient than at Jones.  He only had about 10mm AUM I think at Jones, so while he should be out prospecting, he is in his kitchen trying to put together transfer paperwork and get ACT up and running.  But again, he is a really small fish, so it's going to be tough for him.
Apr 3, 2009 3:23 pm

Depends... I think if you don't have enough assets either way you are screwed...

If your production if over $200K gross, then it makes sense to leave, Under that it kind of evens out(The problem with figuring this out is how expensive or inexpensive you go when you go on your own, if you budget appropriately I think anything after $100K gross(depending on payout, haircuts, business model))..
 
Too many variables..
Apr 3, 2009 3:23 pm

I very rarely reply, or post at all, but this one got me. 

 
You're asking is something is better after you've left an organization you're not even part of yet?  You'll have to excuse me if that makes absolutely no sense at all.  If you don' t even know what the "grass" is like on either side of the fence.
Apr 3, 2009 3:36 pm

Maybe I misinterpreted the question, but isn't he asking if the grass is greener after you leave? (IOW, he's not asking about coming back).

 
I know. I just assumed the entire world would start commenting on how bad Jones is and how sweet it is after you leave and the guy asking the question wouldn't be getting an answer worth anything.
Apr 3, 2009 7:28 pm

I have caused a breakdown in communication with my vaguely constructed question. I wanted to know are things better after leaving Jones. Or was it just as tough and not as financially rewarding? TwoTour it’s just a question of curiosity, just me, wanted to get your opinions on the subject; I’ve read so many negative things about Jones. Again I’m not being degradative of those have tried this, because I haven’t done any of things that former FA’s have done, heck I haven’t even been offered a position. I was just curious.

Apr 4, 2009 3:23 am

Centurion,

 
I guess you'll have to gather your data from the people who have left.  For me, the grass is greener.  It's a lot more to mow, but it is certainly greener.
 
Jones was great for about five months, then it sucked.  My business sucked for about five months, now it couldn't be better. 
Apr 4, 2009 10:54 am

Centurion,

I was at Jones for 6 years and then I left and have been gone for 1 year. I think that the grass is greener for me for a number of reasons. The first is freedom....I own my book now. Second is tax considerations, going from a W-2 employee to a true business owner. Last reason is that I am free from having to go to those required meetings that all they required was for me to waste my time.

Notice that I didn't say anything about compensation.....

Noggin

Apr 4, 2009 11:01 am

Like I said, nobody is going to say they left Jones and wish they wouldnt have.

Apr 4, 2009 11:52 am
noggin:

Centurion,

I was at Jones for 6 years and then I left and have been gone for 1 year. I think that the grass is greener for me for a number of reasons. The first is freedom....I own my book now. Second is tax considerations, going from a W-2 employee to a true business owner. Last reason is that I am free from having to go to those required meetings that all they required was for me to waste my time.

Notice that I didn't say anything about compensation.....

Noggin

 
...but I'm betting that is better also.  My comp was higher in my first full year than it was at my best year at my bank program (never worked at Jones).  I didn't leave for better comp...I left for freedom.  Better comp was just icing on the cake. 
Apr 4, 2009 6:56 pm

If you have the moxy to be a business owner versus and employee then there is no way a rational person would choose to go back to EDJ. Having said that, I am continuously thankful to them for giving me the training (in my case 9 years) to leave. You have to learn to hunt (prospect) first and foremost. Go to Jones and soak it up for at least 3 years. Gather 25-30M then you will have options. You will also know yourself better in terms of this industry, and whether you can fit will in a system like Jones. Some like Spiff, B24 and others will sing from the rafters how great the firm is. Others will have a different tone.


It is interesting why you would wonder if you could go back after you have left when you haven't started. I have a friend who left Jones (he was a goodnight with the RL at one point in his career) took over an existing office and then fled to SSB. He can't stand SSB now 3+ years later and is hoping to leave soon because his grid dropped to 29%. I often tell him that his buddy the RL might take him back (anything is possible).
Apr 4, 2009 9:59 pm
Ron 14:

Like I said, nobody is going to say they left Jones and wish they wouldnt have.


I disagree, I think if they were sad being separated from the greenness that they would say so. I will say the way that Jones has built their culture is really something to behold. It really prevents their attrition from being much higher than it would be otherwise. By the way that is a compliment.

Apr 4, 2009 10:03 pm
Indyone:
noggin:

Centurion,

I was at Jones for 6 years and then I left and have been gone for 1 year. I think that the grass is greener for me for a number of reasons. The first is freedom....I own my book now. Second is tax considerations, going from a W-2 employee to a true business owner. Last reason is that I am free from having to go to those required meetings that all they required was for me to waste my time.

Notice that I didn't say anything about compensation.....

Noggin

 
...but I'm betting that is better also.  My comp was higher in my first full year than it was at my best year at my bank program (never worked at Jones).  I didn't leave for better comp...I left for freedom.  Better comp was just icing on the cake. 


That goes without saying....But since you brought it up, no more haircuts on VA business. I still find it absolutely amazing how they keep that from their advisors.... Let's just say that I make a little bit more than 35% on C share business or 40% on A share business like they do at Jones.....

I send out a weekly email message to my clients and prospects, try that at Jones!!!


Apr 4, 2009 11:45 pm

Noggin, I send out monthly e-mail messages to my clients (I think weekly is overkill).