# times changed firms before going indy

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Nov 30, 2006 5:21 pm

How many times did you change firms before going indy and what aum did you take with you indy?  i.e. 3x and 20 mill aum

Nov 30, 2006 6:04 pm

$$$$$,


I've only been back here one day and you're starting to get annoying.


I don't mean to say "stop asking so many questions!" as if you shouldn't ask reasonable questions. I do mean "do you really need to make a new thread every time a new way to ask the same damn question pops into your head?"


If you have the balz and the business sense, Indy's great. Do it or don't.


You're like the guy who climbs up to the very top rock  and then looks down at the water and says "gee, that's a far jump! Are you sure I won't get hurt? maybe I'll move down to that lower rock." Then when you're there you say "Gee, that looks far! Are you sure I won't get hurt? Maybe I'll just move down to the lower rock there." and so on.


How many? How much? What will happen? Nobody knows!


I can only tell you this, I worked at a wirehouse for three years when I said to the guys I worked with "You know? If three or four of us joined together and we went to one of those high payout firms (at the time I think it was 70%) we could be our own firm!"


At the time the economics didn't work. Phone lines and equipment were expensive and computers were about $5,000 a piece and there was no such thing as a working internet (I know Prodigy was here in the early '80s but no firm was set up to work through the internet). Being in business for yourself today is practically free compared to those days.


But the desire was there! The expectation that I was going to succeed no matter what! I've outlasted every bad manager, every boneheaded corporate move, bear markets, being bearish during bull markets, research "opinions" and every other land mine that was put in front of me. When the bear market arrived one of my clients (a business owner) said "You'll be fine, you are a survivor!" When I decided to leave SB, I knew it was time and I knew I'd make it, NO MATTER WHAT! I'd make it make it. 


Stop asking about the external and start asking about the internal. Do you have what it takes? Do you want it? Do you have the NEED to be your own man? Do you have something to prove to the world, that you can do it? Are you looking for a 'job' as an indy or are you looking to create the best firm in town?


Not everybody does. Be happy being who you are. There are guys like me who would be thrilled to have a guy like you working for them. If they're smart, they'll pay you just enough to make you happy you left the last place and not unhappy enough to leave his place.


I hired a guy, he's happier than he's ever been, but he knows he is NOT the type of guy who wants to run his own business.


Are you?


Mr. A

Nov 30, 2006 6:15 pm

I like your posts.


You need to know or probably already do know that I am full of fear. What if I only take 10 mill instead of 15 or 20 mill? What if I don't provide for my family?


At the risk and fear of being put down. I have to know your stats if you will. What's your background?, aum? When you went indy? How old were you? Wife work? Kids?


Or you tell me to stuff it and go away. And I will for this topic as I know what you're telling me. If that's the case I thank you for the feedback. It is useful.

Dec 1, 2006 9:19 am
$$$$$:

You need to know or probably already do know that I am full of fear. What if I only take 10 mill instead of 15 or 20 mill? What if I don't provide for my family? 


Let me jump in here.  I quit the best job I had had to that point in time to start my own business (non financial).  I did it with three teenagers and a wife making minimum wage.  I had $15,000 savings and that was it.  Everybody likes to talk about doing it but few have the balls to do it.  They want a safety net.  One thing about it is if you try, succeed or fail, it will change you for the better.  You will never be afraid again like you are right now.  Being an entrepenuer changes you.  If I start with nothing today as long as I have my health with God's help I'll make something good happen. I am confident of that. 


What is worse, to try and fail or to go on like you are now?

Dec 1, 2006 9:23 am

And how's it been?

Dec 1, 2006 11:16 am
$$$$$:

I like your posts.


You need to know or probably already do know that I am full of fear. What if I only take 10 mill instead of 15 or 20 mill? What if I don't provide for my family?


At the risk and fear of being put down. I have to know your stats if you will. What's your background?, aum? When you went indy? How old were you? Wife work? Kids?


Or you tell me to stuff it and go away. And I will for this topic as I know what you're telling me. If that's the case I thank you for the feedback. It is useful.



Look, either you're ready to take the leap or you're not.  It seems pretty clear to me from the tone of your constant questions that you are NOT ready at this point.  You should remain an employee.

Some day perhaps you will be ready.  You will know when that time comes. In the mean time, keep building your skills and your client base and your contacts.

Dec 1, 2006 12:51 pm

I appreciate that you can take a punch. Really. Most people would respond in the grandest of negatives to my post.


Nothing about my numbers translates to your situation. I was a wirehouse guy at 45 years old. When I left we were still in the last stages of the bear market. Some clients that I had made 15% per year throughout the Bear Market didn't come.


You just DO NOT KNOW.


Just like you don't know if tomorrow is the day that somebody buys your bank and changes the rules on you again. Just like you don't know if Al Queda doesn't hack your bank's system and steal all the money out of your accounts (even if the bank does put the money back, the time spent and the accounts leaving  mean you are out of business). Just like you don't know if an issuer in your money market fund or a top holding in your equity accounts isn't about to announce that they had 7 billion dollars invested with a hedge fund that imploded and they need to file bankruptsie.


If you're hung up on "knowing" exernal things, you're in the wrong business in the first place.


Mr. A


Dec 1, 2006 2:36 pm

At the risk and fear of being put down. I have to know your stats if you will. What's your background?, aum? When you went indy? How old were you? Wife work? Kids?


You are asking questions that are really impossible for us to answer that will relate to your fear.  I understand your fear.  When I left a cushy bank officer job to go to Jones (which is not indy) it was like jumping off a cliff.  I have a supportive spouse who is self employed.  His advice to me that was given to him over 40 years ago by another entrepreneur is that "If you aren't prepared to go to to wall, put it ALL on the line, then you shouldn't be in business for yourself." 


As a former commercial lender I am used to looking at things in a financial bottom line kind of way and determining if a person was worthy and if their business plan was worthy of getting a loan.  That's how I decided that I would leave Jones and become independent. Cost benefit analysis. That was also how I decided to kick my first husband to the curb.  Cost benefit analysis.  He didn't pencil out anymore


Each one of us has different personal circumstances, lives in different markets with different costs and especially different needs and income expectations.


Only you can decide how much income you require, what your operating costs are and how much you are prepared to lose if the whole thing turns into a sinking black hole.  I believe that Indyone has recommended a book for people in your position to give you things to think about before going indy.


Dec 2, 2006 2:13 am

I'll also mention, and I'll bet everyone who has either moved firms or became independent will second:  you have people who follow you that you figured wouldn't and there will be at least a couple of clients who you figured were absolutely certain to follow you, and don't.  The hurt from the second took a while to get over. 


You'll know when you're ready to get out of there.  For me, it just became a matter of there was no other choice.  When I finally made the decision, it all fell in place amazingly quickly and simply.  I know I'm an old hippy, but wait until the karma is right.


Dec 2, 2006 7:34 am

old lady is right. One thing that I will add is that your 3 month will be a big one. When your moving a book your activity level is so high that you will find a lot of biz. also not everyone will come right away you may have to drip on them a bit before they come

Dec 2, 2006 4:11 pm

17 months in, I'm still moving accounts.  I moved another one yesterday and in the process, completed an ACAT for an EDJ account that I never had from the same client.  Last week, I moved a $350K fee-based IRA that I had been targeting...it took awhile, but he finally came around.  I left a few behind that I thought would come and opened up some accounts that I never expected to (like a bank board member and even the president of my former bank).  I'm at the point where my time is better spent working on new business referrals than trying to move old business, but I still take them if they want to come.  Of the accounts that I really wanted to follow me, there are only three left and only one of those has said no.  There are some other accounts that I'd be happy to take, but really...only three that I had on my Christmas list.  I consider that a successful move.

Dec 4, 2006 7:55 am

I hate this place so much I don't even want to show up at the office anymore.

Dec 4, 2006 12:09 pm
$$$$$:

I hate this place so much I don't even want to show up at the office anymore.


I know that feeling and I'll give you a word of warning.  This is usually when the rep does something exceedingly stupid like tanking production or worse yet, quitting without the next job lined up.  Take a deep breath, plan your move ASAP (READ THE BOOK NOW!!!) and go when the stars are all in alignment.

Dec 4, 2006 5:15 pm

So with 33 million, I'd be lucky to take 15 mill with me. That sounds kind of boarder line for success as an indy don't you think? Even if half that were fee based. Also, worse case scenario it could come in at 12-13 mill. Agin half that being fee based. Pardon me, but i'm trying to get a comfort level feeling about this. Your opinions?

Dec 4, 2006 6:30 pm
Indyone:
$$$$$:

I hate this place so much I don't even want to show up at the office anymore.


I know that feeling and I'll give you a word of warning.  This is usually when the rep does something exceedingly stupid like tanking production or worse yet, quitting without the next job lined up.  Take a deep breath, plan your move ASAP (READ THE BOOK NOW!!!) and go when the stars are all in alignment.



I know that feeling as well.  I felt it for at least the last year that I was with my prior firm.  But, I decided that I was going to put on my game face, work hard, and place my exit to be as successful as possible.

I also came to the conclusion that going indy, even at the chance of failure, was far better than staying somewhere I hated.  It was worth the risk.  Too, I also decided that, if all else failed, I'd built a business once and I could build it again.  So, I looked at it that I was starting over, and that every client that came over was simply a "bonus" that put me one step closer to where I wanted to be.

14-15 mil in assets is certainly not ideal, but it's a darn good start.

Dec 5, 2006 4:20 am
$$$$$:

So with 33 million, I'd be lucky to take 15 mill with me. That sounds kind of boarder line for success as an indy don't you think? Even if half that were fee based. Also, worse case scenario it could come in at 12-13 mill. Agin half that being fee based. Pardon me, but i'm trying to get a comfort level feeling about this. Your opinions?


It really depends on your book and how tight your client relationships are.  My relationships were pretty tight, but my book had a lot of junk (due to a desire for rapid growth without sufficient planning) that I didn't want.  My book also contained a fair amount of fee-based trust accounts (with the bank named as trustee) that could not move with me.  Your book and relationships could be considerably different than mine, so don't take my level of success as a benchmark, since your results could vary significantly...