Going insane at Jones

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May 24, 2010 8:05 pm

I can't be 100% specific but here's my situation:

Started with Jones recently and I took a decent offer. Unlike a lot of younger Jonesies I have not sold knives, vacuums or books door to door. I have quickly realized that I hate doorknocking with a passion. I know it works and I am not derisive of those who passionately pursue it. But I think it's effective only for those who are willing to relentlessly knock on doors, repeatedly visiting some folks to the point of getting a gun pulled on them or a check handed to them. I, however, have had enough crazies and cops called on me that it simply is not worth it.

With that being said, I enjoy this business. I have no problem selling and "asking for the order". The only thing I can't sell is myself, on the doorstep. My question, then, is am I just not cut out for a career at Jones? I am not in it because it's "cool" or because one can make piles of money. This field has been a passion for over a decade and I don't want to get out of it. All that being said, I simply cannot see myself doorknocking for the next couple of years. I have a very respectable AUM to work with but it won't make anyone a living. I need to be adding prospects and eventually clients.

Can this be done at Jones without doorknocking being one's primary marketing strategy? I'm comfortable and experienced on the phone and am contemplating buying a list but I know it doesn't stop there. Any ideas and constructive criticism/advice would be appreciated.

May 24, 2010 8:19 pm

Here is the deal:  Do it anyway you  want.  BUT, if you struggle your way, you are on your own.  There are 100 ways to do this, EDJ just has one that works, but not for everyone.  I never sold knives or books either, but had no better way to get up to speed, so way back when I was there, that is what I did.  You may grow out of it, but if want to do mailings, etc., hope you get lucky quick!!

May 24, 2010 8:32 pm

I agree with Remo.  Jones REALLY doesn't care how you do it, as long as you produce.  If you CAN'T produce, they will basically pull a big "I told you so".  This is simply how they get FA's started, not hwo they expect them to prospect throughout their careers.  In fact, most in the home office will tell you that if you are still doorknocking after 2-3 years, you might be doing something wrong (you should have enough people in your pipeline after that long). 

So do whatever you want, as long as it works.

May 24, 2010 8:33 pm

Sorry for posting this twice, my computer was screwing up.

Thanks Remo. I read about a guy who bought lists, made calls and then his repeat contact was a face to face visit. I would have no problem with that - it's even on the Jones website. I can do that. There are a lot of other things I'd incorporate as well. I just don't want to doorknock.

May 24, 2010 8:42 pm

Thanks B24. I would say I know the Jones system inside and out already- I know and have heard about the recipe more times than I can count.  I've heard time and again "do it for x number of years and then you're on to bigger and better things", etc.

As far as production is concerned, my situation is fortunate enough that I can produce enough from the existing book to hit production standards for quite a while. But I don't want to just hit standards for a while and then jump ship. I want to do well and serve clients I just want to know the likelihood of doing it by allowing doorknocking to be an ancillary form of marketing. I've heard of some seg 5's who got there with a small book and a lot of creativity - and little or no doorknocking.

May 25, 2010 9:04 am

I would wager that the "old-time" big-producers (like, started pre-90's) mostly got there doorknocking.  Most of the newer big producers got there through inheritance, hard work, doorknocking, seminars, cold calling, being connected, etc.....pertty much the same as top producers at most firms.  So no, I do not think doorknocking can or should be your only means of prospecting (if at all).

May 25, 2010 9:38 am

There are plenty of folks that have built their businesses without doorknocking.  There's a lady in our region who took over about $10mil 7 or so years ago after leaving the home office.  She called me one day and asked if I would take her doorknocking because she'd never been through KYC and wanted to see how it worked.  Well, she did it for about an hour and decided she never wanted to do it again.  Today she's a strong Seg 4 and runs a very good office.  She's been very involved in Chamber and local charities.  She's great at getting referrals.  She found what works for her. 

I like doorknocking.  I'd rather doorknock for three hours and get two or three decent prospects than dial the phone 100 times and get 5 suspects.  But that's just me. 

Build your business however you want.  I don't believe you'll get any negative feedback as long as the numbers are there.  Even if they aren't from time to time, if you can show those folks who care how you are prospecting and that you are trying to do enough work, they won't really care how you prospect. 

I'd agree with B24 - most of today's top producers didn't get there through doorknocking alone.  I'm sure you've already taken this step, but you might want to talk with some of the younger superstars in your region and find out how they got to their level.  You may get some great ideas from them. 

May 25, 2010 10:28 am

Whether you like doorknocking or not what cannot be argued is that it is the cheapest form of personal advertising that you can do. Find out what suits you and then run with it. You have to be memorable enough so that when that prospect has a need that they think of you first. Good luck!

May 25, 2010 1:11 pm

How wierd a newbie and most likely a 23-24 yr old kid (got that idea by the '86) takes over an excisting office and is looking for ways to keep his/her job without doing the work.

FA86 - My advice is to quit and go work in a bank.  Seriously you don't have to doorknock .... that is if you are really good at referals and most 23 yrs olds aren't. Or maybe you have a lot of friends and family. Other than that , you have already mailed it in. You will be like the other 100% of people who take over a book that is big enough to get them to Seg 2-3 but ends up being the #1 problem in getting them to actually BUILD anything. You my friend are EXACTLY what I hate about the firm and I look forward to you working for someone else. I mean that.

May 25, 2010 9:52 pm

86 is actually a lucky number. A meaningful number to this Red Sox fan.

Anyway, I haven't mailed it in. I've reached out to people who also have struggled when they started with Jones. I know of more than a few seg 5's who were ready to mail it in when something clicked and they grabbed the bull by the horns and built great businesses. I understand your frustration with folks like me but face it, we're brothers RealWorld. I'm not throwing in the towel.  

May 26, 2010 7:19 am


86 is actually a lucky number. A meaningful number to this Red Sox fan.

Anyway, I haven't mailed it in. I've reached out to people who also have struggled when they started with Jones. I know of more than a few seg 5's who were ready to mail it in when something clicked and they grabbed the bull by the horns and built great businesses. I understand your frustration with folks like me but face it, we're brothers RealWorld. I'm not throwing in the towel.  


Dude, '86??  WTF?  How bout changing that to FA04??  I have bad memories of watching the games down in my basement with my buddies, seeing my Dad kick a chair over during game 6 and nearly crying (he grew up in Boston).  For some reason, I still can't watch the Mets without getting annoyed.  And I won't even mention one particular 1st Baseman's name.

But hey, it WAS a lot of fun up until "the play".  And kudos for being a Sox fan.  Not a lot of us on this Board.  You might be the only one that now knows what the "24" in B24 stands for.  Dewey was my boy.

May 26, 2010 10:30 am

FA86- we aren't brothers. We aren't even partners most likely. So really what you do out there is currently a reflection upon my business.

When I see an FA who isn't willing to do the work, I assume this will be the same co-worker who doesn't learn anything about financial planning or does anymore research than looking at his wholesaler's handout. Seriously - you can reach out, but my advice is to either grab the bull by the horns in terms of WORK ETHIC and understand what it is that we are supposed to be doing for the nice paychecks or I would prefer you to relocate before I have to sit next to you in a meeting sometime and listen to all the dumb [email protected]#$ reasons you will give for why your numbers are better than the guy next to you who took over 5 million.

Do the work now and your habits will be formed to where you will learn and grow as an advisor which should be hard work. IMHO

Start small, make small changes but let your goal be to be better at your job.

May 26, 2010 10:30 pm

I appreciate the advice RealWorld. I was ribbing you a bit with the brother's comment but I do appreciate the candor.

Jun 2, 2010 3:36 pm

I have a couple options for you.  One within a trainee spot at a Major firm another in the Wealth Mgmt Div of a major Bank.

I am a recruiter that specializes in the Financial Industry and can probably help you out.  Send me an email with your contact info.  One phone conversation and we'll see if I can provide you with alternatives.

Shirley McKinney

[email protected]

Jun 10, 2010 4:57 pm

Maybe this can help you out, and stay out of realworld's way.  There are sheep to be culled for the used car sales persons at EJ.  Some loaded funds and wrap fees please, Baaah!  Baah!


Jul 1, 2010 7:27 am


suck it up chief.  no one hates door knocking more than i do but i'm out meeting 25 people a day.  what makes you think you're special enough to get away with not working as hard as i am?

just suck it up and do it and quit wasting your time on the internet complaining about it.  no one really wants to hear it.

sorry if i'm being harsh here but sheesh don't be a pansy.

Jul 2, 2010 9:55 am

  So you are probably a Goodnight 1 or 2...had assets "given" to you, and you don't want to do the work....Huh, I have heard it all before, too many times.  You can always build your business like the majority GK's do in my previous region.  Just sit back and sham until  another FA falls short and is canned....which will happen as you know.  Put on a show like you drank the Kool-Aid, and butter up the RL and move in on his/her assets once they are gone.

Next thing you know, you have a nice office, more AUM and you stand a better chance or making it without having to do the work you were hired to do.

Get your resume ready.

Jul 2, 2010 11:29 am

Actually, that's exactly how most veteran wirehouse FA's built their businesses.  Inheriting from the weak.  Except the difference is that half their crap assets are in C-shares so they actually make money off them.

Jul 2, 2010 12:38 pm

Knockin, you'll notice I posted here in May about this. A couple times? Not exactly spending hours a day on here wasting my time.

Wrong on all accounts headsup. Not in the situation you described and there are no folks around me who are even close to failing/getting canned. I'm going to have to make it on my own, which as you can see from my post count on here lately, I've resolved to do.