Market for new FAs?

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Jun 10, 2009 12:20 am

So I just graduated from undergrad last month and have an interview coming up with Merrill Lynch. I know I have a lot working against me being right out of school with little experience and interviewing at ML.

I spoke to a current financial advisor who was giving me some tips and practice interview questions to try to help me out a little. One of the questions he asked was what do you think of the market and how, as a new advisor, do you think you can succeed in this rough economy?
Was looking for some help with an answer to this question??
Jun 10, 2009 3:25 am

Would you want to get into this business at the high before it goes down?



or
 
Would you want to get into this business at the low before it goes up?
Jun 10, 2009 9:27 am

If you can't answer those questions without any doubt or reservation, then maybe you should consider pursuing another line of work.  Not to be rude, but those aren't questions that any of us can answer for you.  Sure, we can tell you what might sound good to ML, but unless you truly believe it, you're going to get started in this biz with one foot out the door already. 

 
I've seen people start in this business at the high and do well, at the lows and fail, and vice versa.  It doesn't matter what the "market" is doing.  It only matters what you are going to do about it. 
Jun 10, 2009 10:09 am




Spiffy-
 
You are sounding like a sage old veteran. Could not agree more with you.
 
If it were me and I was interviewing...hold on Spiffster...I would consider Jones before ML. ML/BA are not through their transition yet, and I would doubt they would train college grads without any sales or industry experience. Jones prepares you for the next transition in 3-5 years and by then if you survive , you would much more attractive to any firm.
 
Learn how to hunt. That's what will make or break you. Jones is a good place to do that.
Jun 10, 2009 10:40 am
Spaceman Spiff:

If you can't answer those questions without any doubt or reservation, then maybe you should consider pursuing another line of work.  Not to be rude, but those aren't questions that any of us can answer for you.  Sure, we can tell you what might sound good to ML, but unless you truly believe it, you're going to get started in this biz with one foot out the door already. 

 
I've seen people start in this business at the high and do well, at the lows and fail, and vice versa.  It doesn't matter what the "market" is doing.  It only matters what you are going to do about it. 



 
Come of Spiff, the guy's right out of school.  I'm happy he can even spell economy.  How could someone who has no training on the stock market and probably nothing but an intro class on micro and macroeconomics expect to give a finely tuned answer to a question like that without some deep thought and maybe a little advice from someone who's, hmmm, been an advisor in a good economy AND a bad economy? 
 
I see no problem with the question, the only dumb questions are those that aren't asked. 
 
He just as easily could have come on here as an ML interviewee and tried giving prospecting advice to a veteran who is looking for marketing tips.  How would something like that have gone over vs. a young guy asking some old bucks for advice?
 
By the way, I like Haulin's answer.  Tell the guy you are like a wise investor.  You're buying low and think this is the time to get in and YOU want to reap some of the benefits of the recovery.
Jun 10, 2009 10:57 am

I don't mean to be rude the the recent college grad, but coming on here to get the answers to his interview questions really isn't helpful to him.  This isn't the type of career where you can take an interviewing 101 course, give all the right answers, and then hope for the best.  I would hope that before you sign on to an industry with a 90% failure rate, where you are dealing with people's life savings, and when you are interviewing with one of the most colossal failures in modern history that you'd know what you are getting into. 


I guess it's the difference between ML and EDJ in the initial interview.  I don't believe Jones would ask any questions about his thoughts on the market or the economy.  They'll want to know about his drive, his sef-starter attitude, his willingness to do the work, his fear of rejection.  The market and the economy are really irrelevant to a new FA, whether at Jones or at ML. 


foot - of course I agree with you wholeheartedly. 
 
Jun 10, 2009 11:02 am
bb1515:

So I just graduated from undergrad last month and have an interview coming up with Merrill Lynch. I know I have a lot working against me being right out of school with little experience and interviewing at ML.

I spoke to a current financial advisor who was giving me some tips and practice interview questions to try to help me out a little. One of the questions he asked was what do you think of the market and how, as a new advisor, do you think you can succeed in this rough economy?
Was looking for some help with an answer to this question??
 
OK, here's how I'd answer.  Mr. Interviewer, I didn't have the luxury of choosing whether the market was high or low when I graduated.  It is what it is.  I understand that many people are unhappy with the market and the returns it has given them.  I can't control that.  I can only promise to focus on the things I can control, which are my work ethic and my determination to succeed in this business.  I'm sure in my career the markets will go up and they will go down.  If I choose to focus on that, then I'm doomed for failure.  If I instead choose to focus on doing everything in my power to bring in new clients, then I'm sure I'll be successful.  I'm positive that with the backing of a company like Merrill Lynch I can be successful in any market in any economy. 
Jun 10, 2009 11:03 am

Very good Spiff!  Now was that so hard?

 
 
Jun 10, 2009 4:57 pm
Spaceman Spiff:

I guess it's the difference between ML and EDJ in the initial interview.  I don't believe Jones would ask any questions about his thoughts on the market or the economy.  

 
Maybe the reason that ML is asking questions on the market and economy is because they're looking for a potential new CEO from today's college grads.  I mean, even with college grad as CEO, they couldn't do much worse...
Jun 10, 2009 7:42 pm

If I were looking for a job as CEO of MER, I'd probably apply as a teller for BAC. 

Jun 10, 2009 7:45 pm

Give me that job for one year.  I can't possibly screw it up as bad and I'd make a ton of money!  Corporate CEO's best job in the world.  Zero responsibility for the performance of your company.

Jun 12, 2009 2:22 am

In any economic enviroment, there are always those that are winning.