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Aug 18, 2007 11:50 am

Alright, I've spent quite some time reading these posts (and the bantering) and I would like to ask the veterans to further explain something. I've used the search button, don't worry.


Regarding Jones: Please elaborate as to what you mean when you say don't drink the kool-aid. It's been said many times but I couldn't find specific examples.


I've only read very positive remarks concerning starting at Jones, and I feel that in my position it is the best place to start (I'm26- fresh out of 4 yrs military/ 4yrs school). With that said, my goal is to be independent some day after I establish my business.


What I would specifically like to know is things to look out for during my years there.


Please refrain from simply stating why Jones sucks unless you can give examples.  When I stop getting more out of Jones than Jones gets out of me, I know I'll be ready to move on.  Thanks in advance.

Aug 18, 2007 1:01 pm
chaz:

Please refrain from simply stating why Jones sucks unless you can give examples.



You could more easily turn back the tides.  It's much easier to find a needle in a haystack than to find intelligent comments about Jones on this forum.

Aug 18, 2007 1:21 pm

chaz-I have left Jones within the last 6 months and will give you my take on why people bash them so much.  they have a very standard investment philosophy, buy things with very long track records, stick a small number of what the call preferred fund companies, sell as many A shares as humanly possible, and do a good deal of bond business.  this is how I saw them.  they are (or were) not interested in fee based anything, as their veteran reps have been combating this for the better half of 10-15 years or so.  how can they sell against it under the premise that it is a horrible deal for the client, then try to add it to their practice.
i think many of the jones reps who have been there forever, and are ver successful, have never been at another firm so their opinion is a little jaded.  jones helped make them successful, so why would anyone think it is bad. 
I do believe their sales training is exceptional.  You will be taught from day 1 what is most important in this profession, prospecting.  They will beat it into you and rightly so 90% of your time is suppose to be spent talking to people.  On the product side, it is more up to you to reach out and ask questions.  Use wholesalers, mentors, other FA's.
I think most people who truly want their own business sour on Jones after a short time due to the lack of freedom product wise, and low payout.  We (myself included) think we know enough at a certain point that essentially giving Jones 50-60% of our gross, for what they RETURN, is not making us happy anymore.

Ideally, if I was starting new tomorrow, I'd look for an Indy firm trying to hire junior associates.  But if I wanted the sales training, Jones is not a bad place to start.  Just make sure you sell yourself and the relationship, not Jones-makes moving easier.

Aug 18, 2007 3:38 pm

Datoo- I actually expected the first reply would be you and it woudn't have anything to do with what I posted.


theironhorse- thanks for the informed reply.  How do you pitch a c shares now after selling a shares at Jones? Why are c shares better for clients, in your approach? 

Aug 18, 2007 3:51 pm

I think the kool aid joke is from the old Jim Jones cult that drank the kool aid and died many years ago. I would imagine a lot of reps would rather gather assets with the new approach to the business. Doing C shares and wrap accounts and Jones likes to stay with the old ways.

Aug 18, 2007 4:25 pm

chaz-I never changed my philosophy.  I did alot of C shares.  A shares at certain breakpoints for clients already invested and looking to do more.  Right now I am doing alot of C shares making sure the client knows when we reach certain $ amounts we will convert to managed accounts.  That being said, I do not do much fund business.

Aug 18, 2007 5:11 pm

Don't drink the kool aid and the jokes about kool aid are from the Jim Jones cult.  When people say don't drink the kool aid in conjunction with Edward Jones, they mean to keep your eyes wide open and don't believe everything that they tell you.  They will feed you information that is filtered to their own business model.  You know the old joke about being a mushroom....kept in the dark and fed sh*t.


Jones is a good place to start. They will give you some mediocre product training and do a good job in teaching you how to prospect and run your office.  What you need to do is to continually be learning on your own.  Read as many industry publications as you can.  Study for the Series 63, 66.  Take the CFP courses.  


Iron Horse is right.  Many at Jones after a few years feel cramped at the small product line and parochial attitudes from the main office.  There are a lot of guys and gals who are very happy there. Maybe you will be one...or maybe you will decide to move on after some time.   Moving from one firm to another is not easy and you will be surprised at the clients who you thought would come with you who won't and those that will.  

Aug 18, 2007 6:54 pm

Thanks for the replies. I really appreciate them.


I understand completely not to listen to everything they preach. Considering they have a good training program, I want to have a level head on being able to decipher what is valueable information and what is better served left in the 1980's communication system.  Any suggestions as to how to weed out the kool-aid?


Thanks again.

Aug 19, 2007 8:08 am

You'll be fine.  You sound like you won't believe the implication that EJ is the only firm where the FAs do what is right for their clients and there is nowhere else to be in this business.  The truth is that if you take care of your clients, they will take care of you in about 100 different places you could set up shop.  For a new person, the biggest challenge is getting people to LET you take care of them and not let the short term income potential influence your long term business building (ie taking care of the clients' long term best interest).  Take EJ's training and go with it, but don't incorporate the parts about your firm being the ONLY place to get good help.

Aug 19, 2007 11:26 am

Thanks again for the informative posts.  I hope I'm not asking the same questions that have been posted 1000 times.  I know  \Jones will have a lot of valueable advice but also a lot of bs. I'd like to be able to decipher the two without wondering if I'm being brainwashed or fed good advice.

Aug 19, 2007 12:17 pm

You had wrote: "Ideally, if I was starting new tomorrow, I'd look for an Indy firm trying to hire junior associates"



I was wondering if you had any indy firms worth mentioning here. 



Thanks




theironhorse:

chaz-I have left Jones within the last 6 months and will give you my take on why people bash them so much.  they have a very standard investment philosophy, buy things with very long track records, stick a small number of what the call preferred fund companies, sell as many A shares as humanly possible, and do a good deal of bond business.  this is how I saw them.  they are (or were) not interested in fee based anything, as their veteran reps have been combating this for the better half of 10-15 years or so.  how can they sell against it under the premise that it is a horrible deal for the client, then try to add it to their practice.
i think many of the jones reps who have been there forever, and are ver successful, have never been at another firm so their opinion is a little jaded.  jones helped make them successful, so why would anyone think it is bad. 
I do believe their sales training is exceptional.  You will be taught from day 1 what is most important in this profession, prospecting.  They will beat it into you and rightly so 90% of your time is suppose to be spent talking to people.  On the product side, it is more up to you to reach out and ask questions.  Use wholesalers, mentors, other FA's.
I think most people who truly want their own business sour on Jones after a short time due to the lack of freedom product wise, and low payout.  We (myself included) think we know enough at a certain point that essentially giving Jones 50-60% of our gross, for what they RETURN, is not making us happy anymore.

Ideally, if I was starting new tomorrow, I'd look for an Indy firm trying to hire junior associates.  But if I wanted the sales training, Jones is not a bad place to start.  Just make sure you sell yourself and the relationship, not Jones-makes moving easier.

Aug 19, 2007 5:17 pm

I've been with Jones since December '05 and have been licensed since April '06. Regardless of what the has-beens say, Edward Jones is a fantastic investment firm--just look at client- and employee-satisfaction surveys from this year and years' past.


The bottom line is that this is an extremely tough business, and your first year will be completely over-whelming; then, to top things off, you'll lose your monthly salary, and it get's tougher.


I'm certainly not "out of the weeds" by any means, but I have zero complaints about my choice of firms. After 15 months of being licensed, I'm going to have another "Net $10,000" month.


I realize numerous guys on this forum do much better than that on a regular basis, but after living for many years on police officer income, that's a pretty darn good paycheck!


Aug 19, 2007 6:06 pm

BB,


Congrats on posting Seg 4 numbers after 1.5 years.  That's an awesome success story.  Did your success come from doorknocking, seminars, a super goodknight, or networking?


Borker Boy:

I've been with Jones since December '05 and have been licensed since April '06. Regardless of what the has-beens say, Edward Jones is a fantastic investment firm--just look at client- and employee-satisfaction surveys from this year and years' past.


The bottom line is that this is an extremely tough business, and your first year will be completely over-whelming; then, to top things off, you'll lose your monthly salary, and it get's tougher.


I'm certainly not "out of the weeds" by any means, but I have zero complaints about my choice of firms. After 15 months of being licensed, I'm going to have another "Net $10,000" month.


I realize numerous guys on this forum do much better than that on a regular basis, but after living for many years on police officer income, that's a pretty darn good paycheck!


Aug 19, 2007 10:58 pm

BB in addition to the question about how you've gotten your clients posed by Edward Pwns (EP) please tell us if you used a particular product, product mix, or messaging to get off to your fast start. I'm also with EP in being interested in the details but would also find it interesting to know if your practice has a high focus on business owners, did you hit a rich vein of HNW individuals, does it come through a high volume of individuals or a smaller number of larger investors?


Congrats on your success.

Aug 19, 2007 11:23 pm

I appreciate the props, but I wouldn't necessarily consider myself a success story. I took over a big office ($16 mil.) and know a lot of people in the area.


I'm a huge mutual fund fan, and that's what I've focused on building my business with. I've had success by opening a lot of accounts with average people rather than dealing with only a few rich folks.

Aug 19, 2007 11:30 pm

I've never understood the complaint about Jones only using the eight preferred fund companies and having a "limited number of products" available to the brokers/clients.


I spend every waking hour just trying to keep up with what we do offer, and I feel that our clients are much better served by having advisors who know the investments they offer very well, as opposed to knowing a little about a lot of things.


Aug 20, 2007 8:42 am

BB,


There you go again with the higher and mightier than thou attitude that anyone who has chosen to leave Jones is a "has-been". 


Chaz, this is one of the reasons that there are so many negatives about Jones on this board. 


BB, I left Jones 1 year ago and have had 5 10-net months, 2 20-net months and a 50-net month.  And, no, it wasn't because I don't do what's right for my clients, I continue to provide services to them just as I did at Jones.  I just don't have Jones haircutting everything I do.


Chaz, in BB's 10-net month (a much covetted experience at Jones, They even have a special award for your first time), he forgot to mention that the GPs kept $15,000 or more of his production.


BB, I don't really think that after 1 1/2 years of selling that you have an un-biased opinion to offer.  At about the 4-5 year point, if you still feel the same way about Jones then more power to you, but don't be so stupid to call those who have left Jones "has-beens" especially whe your lucky a$$ took over a $16 million dollar office.


Chaz, watch out for posters like BB.

Aug 20, 2007 11:43 am

At what point did he call anyone a has been? 


Nobody has an unbiased opinion to offer on this board.  You have an axe to grind since you left Jones.  Get off your high horse. 


BTW a $16 mil office doesn't get earn you seg 4 numbers.  Hard work does.  Don't downplay BB's numbers and work ethic.  To be 15 months in and having "another 10,000 net month" is great even with the office he took over.


BB - congrats on a great month.  The only question I have left for you is this:  Fiji, New Zealand, Paris, Hawaii, Amsterdam, Cancun, Captiva, Costa Rica, Bahamas, Tahoe, New York (a great trip I highly recommend it), Nuevo Vallarta, Rome, or St. Maarten?

Aug 20, 2007 1:40 pm

Spiff, look straight up on this page.  The following is a quote from BB:


"I've been with Jones since December '05 and have been licensed since April '06. Regardless of what the has-beens say, Edward Jones is a fantastic investment firm--just look at client- and employee-satisfaction surveys from this year and years' past."


(emphasis mine)


I have no axe to grind, just don't earn less money than me and call me a has-been.  You know that's the same B.S. that easily flows from all newby's mouths.  It flowed from mine until I figured out just how insignificant most IRs/FAs are in the whole scheme.


Wow, Spiff, is EDJ the only company that offers trips for good producers?  NOT!!


Aug 20, 2007 1:49 pm

Borker, you've got to be kidding.   You take over an office, which it probably took 2-3 years of hard work to build. You walk into it and move accts around, make some good commish doing it...and then want to come on here and say what a great company the cult is.  You need to come back here in 2-3 years, with 30 million under management and still doing seg 4 numbers, and maybe, just maybe, I'll not laugh at your posts.