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May 9, 2007 12:39 pm

Can anyone tell me about the interview process and expectations at Bernstein.  I am looking to make a career change to financial services and have secured an interview with this firm in a week or so.  I am also interviewing with Edward Jones and also independent wealth management firms.  Thanks.

May 9, 2007 11:15 pm

Average Bernstien Advisor brought in $137 million in assets last year.


Jones is a door to door local yokel type operation, from what I know.


If you have $135 million in assets in a career, at most wirehosues, (Merrill, Smith Barney, etc) you will make decent money -


At Jones you are a stockbroker, at the wirehosues you are an Advisor (HOLISTIC), and at Bernstein, you are a relationship manager, and asset gatherer, definately not an asset manager.

May 9, 2007 11:37 pm

Pratoman:


Thanks, I appreciate your insights.

May 10, 2007 9:57 am
pratoman:

Average Bernstien Advisor brought in $137 million in assets last year.


Jones is a door to door local yokel type operation, from what I know.


If you have $135 million in assets in a career, at most wirehosues, (Merrill, Smith Barney, etc) you will make decent money -


At Jones you are a stockbroker, at the wirehosues you are an Advisor (HOLISTIC), and at Bernstein, you are a relationship manager, and asset gatherer, definately not an asset manager.



Seriously, I'm not sure if the original post is for real.  I don't know why anyone interviewing with Bernstein would even consider Jones.  At an average of $137 mil a year in new deposits, that's like saying, I'm either going to run for the U.S. Senate or my homeowner's association president.  People who get into Bernstein scoff at Jones. 


Plus, at Jones, you really are just a relationship manager in a sense.  St. Louis tells you to sell GFA, ICA, WAMU, CIB, and some select stocks and bonds.

May 10, 2007 9:58 pm
braves fan:
pratoman:

Average Bernstien Advisor brought in $137 million in assets last year.


Jones is a door to door local yokel type operation, from what I know.


If you have $135 million in assets in a career, at most wirehosues, (Merrill, Smith Barney, etc) you will make decent money -


At Jones you are a stockbroker, at the wirehosues you are an Advisor (HOLISTIC), and at Bernstein, you are a relationship manager, and asset gatherer, definately not an asset manager.



Seriously, I'm not sure if the original post is for real.  I don't know why anyone interviewing with Bernstein would even consider Jones.  At an average of $137 mil a year in new deposits, that's like saying, I'm either going to run for the U.S. Senate or my homeowner's association president.  People who get into Bernstein scoff at Jones. 


Plus, at Jones, you really are just a relationship manager in a sense.  St. Louis tells you to sell GFA, ICA, WAMU, CIB, and some select stocks and bonds.



Good point. I ,  agree with you, its wierd to even see the two names in the same post!. The Bernstein guys not only scoff at Jones, they scoff at Merrill!!!


Wonder what a guy who brings in $137 million a year makes? I'd assume its a different comp model that the wirehouses.

May 11, 2007 10:41 am

Seriously though, how did you get this interview with Bernstein?  They don't even have a career section on their website.  I'm very curious to see how someone ends up interviewing with Berstein and Jones.  You really couldn't get two shops that are farther apart.

May 11, 2007 11:31 am

Good point. I ,  agree with you, its wierd to even see the two names in the same post!. The Bernstein guys not only scoff at Jones, they scoff at Merrill!!!"


I wouldnt say that.... Bernstein FA's tend to be more high-end, but they must respect the heavy hitters that are out there at other firms... They know that a successful team at SB, ML, UBS, or MS can compete with them on every item out there...

May 18, 2007 9:55 am

Jones and Bernstein in same post - like I said, former executive making career change and looking at all, I mean all opportunities, in past I would only work in top tier, large firms, then CPA at tax time told me the guy in overalls sitting beside me in waiting room made better than $500K or much more than I did in 2006 driving a bulldozer, overseeing a few other bulldozer operators and owning an small excavation business - thats when I decided to look at all opportunities, thus EJ in financial services as well as many others - as we all know, there are many ways to make a buck and I do not want to miss one because of a personal or environment bias...


Secured the interview via old fashioned networking...  Knew a few people in NYC on Wall Street, looking for new career, networked and then Bernstein recruiter called me and arranged interview.  Bernstein's M.O. as I have been told is they seek successful sales professionals with no "street" experience and train them from ground up - i.e. want people who can sell and then profess to teach them the business.


What I like about them is that they are a top tier, white glove firm that is well respected for their excellent global research, unique about them is that they only invest in their vehicles and appear to sell it well, belive they call it discretionary managment - once client provides money, they agree to let Bernstein allocate within their model vehicles...


Income, I am not really sure, but it is not 100% commission like most others in early years or even tiny salary or draw, significant base 1st 4 years, then some percentage of A.U.M.  I have been told that you are well compensated if successful at Bernstein, but then again, expected to deliver big numbers year in and year out for a career, as compared to how I perceive other firms and individuals - at other firms I obsearve individuals can reach their comfort level and relax and manage A.U.M. without growing any more if they so choose...


And, I believe that all  heavy hitters respect other heavy hitters, regardless of business they are in...

May 18, 2007 10:06 am

Aside from the fact that the initial income at Bernstein is likely to be higher, it ultimately comes down to what sort of job you want to have.  The business models are substantially different.  At Bernstein you will largely be building relationships with referral centers, meeting new clients, raising assets and placing them in proprietary(but generally very good) Bernstein programs.

At Jones your business model is much more 'hands on' when it comes to management of client accounts and the ongoing relationship.  If you like seeing the fruits of your labor on an ongoing basis, you will enjoy this.  You also have more freedom with how you build your business and how you spend your time-presuming you're meeting the established goals.

May 18, 2007 10:53 am

Joe D:


Thanks, I see it the same way...  two models and I like both - love the concept of one broker, one office working in my community; also like the top tier firm networking for high net worth folks.  I have to be careful as I make my decision - the internet gang here likes to beat up EDJ, although when I speak to their brokers (several) - all love the company and the business...  Books ranged from $25M with a lady working 7 years to a $72M book with a EDJ FA working 4 years...  EDJ Interview process is a bit trying, but I am trying to understand and remain humble...


I have always worked in high pressure, "deliver the numbers" environments and comfortable doing what needs to be done in the Financial services business to get started, I must say there is a strong urge to build a book that provides for me and my family, then simply help my existing clients, who should have become friends invest well and retire well - an allow me to do the same...


I am still exploring opportunities...

May 18, 2007 6:02 pm
Change1:

Jones and Bernstein in same post - like I said, former executive making career change and looking at all, I mean all opportunities, in past I would only work in top tier, large firms, then CPA at tax time told me the guy in overalls sitting beside me in waiting room made better than $500K or much more than I did in 2006 driving a bulldozer, overseeing a few other bulldozer operators and owning an small excavation business - thats when I decided to look at all opportunities, thus EJ in financial services as well as many others - as we all know, there are many ways to make a buck and I do not want to miss one because of a personal or environment bias...


Secured the interview via old fashioned networking...  Knew a few people in NYC on Wall Street, looking for new career, networked and then Bernstein recruiter called me and arranged interview.  Bernstein's M.O. as I have been told is they seek successful sales professionals with no "street" experience and train them from ground up - i.e. want people who can sell and then profess to teach them the business.


What I like about them is that they are a top tier, white glove firm that is well respected for their excellent global research, unique about them is that they only invest in their vehicles and appear to sell it well, belive they call it discretionary managment - once client provides money, they agree to let Bernstein allocate within their model vehicles...


Income, I am not really sure, but it is not 100% commission like most others in early years or even tiny salary or draw, significant base 1st 4 years, then some percentage of A.U.M.  I have been told that you are well compensated if successful at Bernstein, but then again, expected to deliver big numbers year in and year out for a career, as compared to how I perceive other firms and individuals - at other firms I obsearve individuals can reach their comfort level and relax and manage A.U.M. without growing any more if they so choose...


And, I believe that all  heavy hitters respect other heavy hitters, regardless of business they are in...




Interesting comparison. Working at Jones vs driving a bulldozer.  Very similar in many respects.

May 18, 2007 6:32 pm

if you like the bernstein model, you may want to look at fisher investments.

May 18, 2007 11:48 pm
Change1:

Joe D:


Thanks, I see it the same way...  two models and I like both - love the concept of one broker, one office working in my community; also like the top tier firm networking for high net worth folks.  I have to be careful as I make my decision - the internet gang here likes to beat up EDJ, although when I speak to their brokers (several) - all love the company and the business...  Books ranged from $25M with a lady working 7 years to a $72M book with a EDJ FA working 4 years...  EDJ Interview process is a bit trying, but I am trying to understand and remain humble...


I have always worked in high pressure, "deliver the numbers" environments and comfortable doing what needs to be done in the Financial services business to get started, I must say there is a strong urge to build a book that provides for me and my family, then simply help my existing clients, who should have become friends invest well and retire well - an allow me to do the same...


I am still exploring opportunities...



Though I am no fan of Jones, if I had to pick between the two for a place to strat it would be them over Bernstein.

May 19, 2007 12:24 am
joedabrkr:

 Though I am no fan of Jones, if I had to pick between the two for a place to strat it would be them over Bernstein.


Joe-


What the F are you drinking tonight?

May 19, 2007 12:42 am
Rugby:
joedabrkr:

 Though I am no fan of Jones, if I had to pick between the two for a place to strat it would be them over Bernstein.


Joe-


What the F are you drinking tonight?



It comes down to a question of business model.  I have no desire to be a glorified salesman/relationship manager, and that is precisely what you are at Bernstein.

I enjoy working with clients on an ongoing basis and tailoring portfolios for them. You can't do that at Bernstein.  You just court them, open the account, and plow the money into Bernstein prop products that you can't control.

At least for me, once you get to a point in life where you have acheived a certain level of financial security it's not just about the money it's also about loving the job.

May 20, 2007 1:07 am
joedabrkr:
Rugby:
joedabrkr:

 Though I am no fan of Jones, if I had to pick between the two for a place to strat it would be them over Bernstein.


Joe-


What the F are you drinking tonight?




It comes down to a question of business model.  I have no desire to be a glorified salesman/relationship manager, and that is precisely what you are at Bernstein.

I enjoy working with clients on an ongoing basis and tailoring portfolios for them. You can't do that at Bernstein.  You just court them, open the account, and plow the money into Bernstein prop products that you can't control.

At least for me, once you get to a point in life where you have acheived a certain level of financial security it's not just about the money it's also about loving the job.


Joe-


Two slight problems with your post here.


1.  Once you went to Jones, you'd probably never have the chance to go to Bernstein.  However, I'd be willing to bet you could make the jump from Bernstein to Jones.


2.  You say that once you get to a certain point of financial security, flexibility is more important.  My guess is that if this guy is just breaking into the biz, he's not at that point. 


I think this is a no-brainer.  No offense to Jones as they get beat up on by most quite a bit, but I really couldn't see many people ever turning down Bernstein for Jones.

May 20, 2007 11:52 pm
braves fan:
joedabrkr:
Rugby:
joedabrkr:

 Though I am no fan of Jones, if I had to pick between the two for a place to strat it would be them over Bernstein.


Joe-


What the F are you drinking tonight?




It comes down to a question of business model.  I have no desire to be a glorified salesman/relationship manager, and that is precisely what you are at Bernstein.

I enjoy working with clients on an ongoing basis and tailoring portfolios for them. You can't do that at Bernstein.  You just court them, open the account, and plow the money into Bernstein prop products that you can't control.

At least for me, once you get to a point in life where you have acheived a certain level of financial security it's not just about the money it's also about loving the job.


Joe-


Two slight problems with your post here.


1.  Once you went to Jones, you'd probably never have the chance to go to Bernstein.  However, I'd be willing to bet you could make the jump from Bernstein to Jones.


2.  You say that once you get to a certain point of financial security, flexibility is more important.  My guess is that if this guy is just breaking into the biz, he's not at that point. 


I think this is a no-brainer.  No offense to Jones as they get beat up on by most quite a bit, but I really couldn't see many people ever turning down Bernstein for Jones.



I would never want to move from Jones to Bernstein, so the point is moot.

This guy won't have any financial security if he can't make the right connections to meet the extremely high new asset goals at Bernstein.

May 23, 2007 8:57 am

You also may want to look at other private wealth management programs.  Goldman has a great program.  Morgan is getting better as well.


May 26, 2007 2:56 pm

OK, interview complete, went OK.  Asked to complete the battery of psychological/personality tests and completed - now in a holding pattern to see if I move forward...


Joe D, agree, it is about loving the work and to working hard to gain financial security and control of my time away from home...