Brand New At Edward Jones

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Aug 7, 2005 6:58 pm

I have just finished my second interview with E. Jones and want to know, how long it takes to have an offer extended. I also would like any advice, on how to avoid some of the pitfalls of this business.

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I have a financial background from working in banking and account management, but I still would appreciate any advice, as I will be a new/new IR if the position is offered.  Thanks for your help!

Aug 8, 2005 3:07 am

Don’t take an offer to be a new/new.  Hold out for an open office or a Goodknight. 

Aug 8, 2005 4:44 am

I have been with Jones a little over a year.  Go ahead and take the job if it is offerred.  The good part about starting out as a new/new is that you have to meet a lower sales standard, which helps you if you dont feel like you know what your doing at first.  However, you need to be willing to move to another town if the office has over 10 mil left in it.  You will still get your base pay for a year.  If you take a goodnight you better figure out everything in six month because that is when the base pay runs out. 

You will find no matter where you start out with Jones that it will be the hardest job you have ever had in your life.  However, if you dont mind working hard and doing what they tell you to do, it will be the most satisfying job you have ever had.  Good luck.

Aug 8, 2005 11:06 am

Forgive me if I'm being obtuse, but how on earth can a job be "the most satisfying job (I've) ever had" if the requirement is "doing what they tell (me) to do"?  Further, why would I be interested in what is the lowest sales standard?

With all due respect, I fail completely to understand the allure of Edward Jones.  Could someone articulate it for me without the canned emotionalisms?  (And please, if your response is "Jones is the only firm that does what's best for the client", save the bandwidth.)

Aug 8, 2005 2:23 pm

There are reasons people love/hate Jones (and the business for that matter). Jones offers very step by step training, in a fabulous structured environment, and they truly want you to succeed at this job. I believe

After 18 months with them, and 2 years at ML. Here is my own personal finding. If you have the ideal "JONES" scenario, The job can be alot of fun. I've seen real mediocre people make a killing because they had a good location, where ther is good name recognition, little competition. My Regional Manager was doing $80,000 /mo in a town of 6000. There was him and the bank, and the bank referred customers to him! That's Fun!

At ML the big advisors, 99 percent of the time have inherited the lion share of their book.

The real problem is, when you begin in this business, you don't realize that behind these big producers, there is a story. It's not just hard work or above average talent that made them. It's that they have a pivitol connection with a client feed, or management hooks them up.

So you do what I did, you say "i'm a hard worker, people like me...I'm smart and ... I can do this. After 3 years I am still wondering what hit me!! It is a very difficult thing to get people to trust you with their money, and the rewards are too few and far between to keep most new brokers interested. You have to have an above average amount of patience and perseverance, and hard work and luck to stick around.

It does not matter what firm you look at.. The monster producers almost always have some reason that propelled them.... and the rest of us can kill ourselves trying....but it may take a career to reach an above average level of success. And maybe it should....

Why should our business be unlike Lawyers and Doc's or Business owners, or dentists or architects... where after 20 years they are making their $250,00 or more.

I believe the reason so many new people fail is because they have this vision of making $150,000 their first year in, and hiring managers feed this. Then after 18 months of prospecting, you realize that it is nearly next to impossible to consistently open accounts...and the newbies drop out.

Bottom line: good training will help, working for a strong firm helps(I love ML, it's the business that's treaturous) If you have an advantage.... example, A strong Good night program can literally make you...A releationship with a retiring advisor at any frkn firm in the world will make you... if you worked at the phone company for 15 years then become a broker, and oh by the way.... used to date the HR manager at the phone company - That could be a career maker.

New New.... almost brings a tear to my eye.......without the above mentioned advantages, relying on shear door knocking, phone calling, seminar holding, product mailing and self have a better chance at becomming the next CEO of microsoft, than making a lot of money in this business.

That being said.... it can still be done. What keeps me in the running.... I love to help people, and I am intrigued by the markets, I am proud that I have the ability to create wealth for my clients. I have great examples in my office of where I want to be. How great to be able to work a modest work week, make 3,4,5 hundred thousand dollars a year or more...have no employees...not have to work weekends or late nights, and this is a job you never have to retire from..

Aug 8, 2005 4:41 pm

Make sure you are totally comfortable with their prospecting system (mostly cold walking and knocking on doors) and with entering 25 names a day and 125 a week into your system.  There seem to be many here who have left EJ or want to leave.

Aug 8, 2005 5:14 pm

What Moneyadvisor said. 

Plus, be sure that you have a good cash buffer especialy if you are a new/new.  You will need to have a substantial cushion, because you have many out of pocket expenses that the company doesn't disclose or help you with and your income will not not be substantial in the first year.  A goodnight office can give you a better quick start....obviously.   If you are married and have small children, be sure your wife (I am assuming you are a man) is on board with the amount of time you will need to be focusing on your business and not your family. You will need all the emotional and moral support from home you can get.  

Good Luck

Aug 9, 2005 2:29 am

Good advice posted by all. Make sure that if you have a chance to start with assets that you consider that. I have been with Jones for right at 3 years now and it can be done without starting with assets but that makes it more difficult. Good luck.

Aug 9, 2005 4:28 pm

See what nice conversations we can have and how we can help each other when Put is not around.  This is what this board is about.  Proud of you all.

Aug 10, 2005 1:45 am

I would like to thank you for your responses. It is very refreshing to receive a balanced view about a company without people totally bashing a company that someone is considering joining.   I appreciate your candor and resourcefulness in helping to formulate my decision. I know it is going to be hard, anything worth going after where you could potentially benefit for life is.  By no means am I approaching this opportunity with a “pie in the sky” attitude, having been in sales for a very long time I kind of know what it is going to take.  Again thank you for the balanced commentary.

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Just one question!  What in the heck is a goodnight office or goodnight program?

Aug 10, 2005 2:15 am

A Goodnight office is named after an actual person Jim (I think) Goodnight.  He was the first in the EDJ system to split his book, and bring on a younger broker. In the Goodnight scenario, you would work for a while with a broker who has too many clients.  He will bring you on and introduce you to the clients he is going to peel off and give to you. Eventually you will get  your own office and bring the bottom of the book with you. Generally it is the lesser performing accounts.  The theory is that you will have more time to develop them, and at the same time be prospecting for new people for yourself.

Sometimes this works out.....sometimes not.  One thing to be very careful of IF you do become a Goodnight is to not get a swelled head about your instant success.  You'd better believe that the rest of the people who worked their ass off from zero dollars will NOT be impressed by your production when you have been handed 20 million or more dollars in assets from day one.

Aug 10, 2005 2:35 am

How do you find out if one of these types of offices are open. I don’t want to hold out and blow a potiential opportunity. Thanks for the quick response.

Aug 10, 2005 11:49 am


Obviously you aren't a realative of a GP (General Partner) or a RL (Regional Leader) otherwise you would have known by now.

If you are in a small town (no other brokerage firm representation) then Jones might be a good place to start.  If there are other firms check them out as well.

Jones is good place to start out at, but after three years you might start to wonder if you made the right choice.

Aug 10, 2005 2:24 pm

A Goodnight office allocation has a lot of nepotism and good ole boyism with it.  You need to know someone who knows someone, know the rep who is going to do the Goodnight, or be related to someone.  It isn't fair, but that's the way it is.

Jones is good place to start out at, but after three years you might start to wonder if you made the right choice

I agree.  You will get a good start at Jones and learn more about the business. After a while you may realize that it isn't everything that Jones makes you believe it is in the beginning.  Many people are perfectly happy at Jones and will be there for their entire careers.  Myself and some others on this board, decided that we wanted and deserved more and took other avenues (independent usually).  You won't know until you try.  Some of the people (player) are very bitter and angry at Jones for misleading them.  I take it with a grain of salt.  I was misled, but I also didn't do enough  due diligance to understand what I was getting into.  Live and learn.  Also as I have stated before, coming from a bank brokerage and bank officer environment; if I had gone Indy immediately, I would have failed miserably.  Jones was a good launching pad for me.  Perhaps another firm like RJ may have been a good or better choice, but it wasn't available to me in my location.


Aug 10, 2005 5:33 pm

new new,

You won't know what it's like to be wet until you jump in the pool. There are way too many moving parts and edges of the business, training, how firms differ, what makes one person soooo much more successful than another person. Not to mention the psychological rollercoaster you will ride month in and month out....being excited one moment terrified the next. Believe it or not..knowing product and actually managing money is the easier part.  wondering if you really are able to make a living in this business. I don't think it is just me.

If your young, I would suggest getting paid and trained by Jones. They hold your hand from the beginning and you will get a good foundation there (Both on product and how to talk with people about money). ML does not train. you have 24 months to hit goals..there is some in house "training" but it is pretty much sink or swim, and if you can swim, they will send you to Princeton AFTER you graduate for advanced training. Also the training experience differs drastically from Branch to Branch, depending on how involved the manager is in the program. At Jones, everyone who comes through the program has had pretty much the same experience. The reason I say if your young...give the career 2-3 years. You may love it, you may hate it. But you can do something else if it does not work. And you won't truly "UNDERSTAND" the business and it's workings...or it' s incredible opportunities - until you have been in it.

Talk to different people with different scenerios. I did not..I became involved with Jones through a friend, who was a SUPER goodnight-an awesome situation. OF COURSE he was gung ho on the business and Jones...He will never leave Jones because he got hooked up huge.(segment 4 in 12 months) translation....some salary plus new account bonuses, plus 15,000 - 30,000 gross per month form the get go. He had to make over $100,000 the first year. It is a completelty different business when 80% of your production is passive, than if you have to dig for everything you get.

Concentrate on how to prospect. It really is the only thing that matters. If you can find some repeatable process that gets you to open accounts, and learn to love doing will be successful anywhere!

Just worth mentioning....There is a ton of lore in this business. Brokers are not "hiding under there desks"....everyone I know at any firm, bank, regional or indy is constantly trying to find Biz. Jones is not the only firm that cares for their client. You know Charles Merrill was actual the first broker to be credited with bringing "Wall street to Main street" I think most of the advisors out there want to do the right thing for the client. It's just that there are 1000 interpretations for what's right for who. Jones definately has their nitch, they have struggles too. Where I am, we have a ton of representation from all channels, Jones has poor name recognition. They have tried to get a foot hold here for 10 + years with 6-7 offices. They probably have been through 40 brokers, 5 in some locations. Of the 200 or so Jones reps within a 500 mile radius, I bet there are not more than 10 who make more than $250,000. I have to believe the average "successful" rep is making $80,000 - $150,000. The only REALLY successful Jones Reps I know of (guys making $600,000 +) are in the middle of Knowhere.

Aug 10, 2005 7:00 pm

"Not to mention the psychological rollercoaster you will ride month in and month out....being excited one moment terrified the next. Believe it or not..knowing product and actually managing money is the easier part.  wondering if you really are able to make a living in this business. I don't think it is just me."

"Concentrate on how to prospect. It really is the only thing that matters. If you can find some repeatable process that gets you to open accounts, and learn to love doing will be successful anywhere!"

those are 2 of the most accurate and productive quotes I have read on this board..

Aug 10, 2005 7:32 pm

Thank you Blarmston, I knew I was not alone!

Aug 11, 2005 12:11 am

Super posts, y’all!

Aug 11, 2005 1:02 am

Thanks for the up front comments  I think I’m going to take the offer. One reoccouring theme that everyone hit’s upon is training. I think that in itself is worth it. I’ll be checking with you all on what works best for prospecting soon. Time to get this journey started. Happy Hunting everyone!

Aug 11, 2005 6:48 pm

Wow money that is a wonderful post. Good job… For sure I agree you have to love and live financial mgmt if you are going to succeed.