What to Ask the Manager

It will be assumed that you have done your homework and spent time learning about the company you are meeting with by reviewing their website and reading the recent articles in the Wall Street Journal and local newspapers.  Asking questions meets two objectives: 1) gets you information and 2) shows how interested you are in their firm.

Below is a list of questions you can consider for your meetings:

Initial Meeting

  • How many Advisors are in your branch?
  • What are your recruiting goals for this year?
  • How would you describe the morale in your branch?
  • How are the Advisors reacting to the most recent news on your firm?
  • How long have you been in your current position?
  • How many recruits have they brought on during your tenure?
  • How have the new Advisors in your office done in terms of transitioning their book and growing their business?
  • How many teams compared to individual Advisors are there in the office?
  • What is the policy with regards to bringing my assistant and team with me?
  • How do you think I could leverage the platform and products to grow my business more quickly than I would be able to at my current firm?
  • Why is now the best time to join your firm?

Product Meeting

  • Will the product heads be available to meet with my largest clients to help me pitch their product?
  • If product X is not available to my clients, when, if ever, will it be available?  Is there a build out or a policy issue in its not being available?
  • What are the fees for this product?  To the client?  To me?
  • Is there a minimum transaction size or quantity limit?
  • Where am I (and my clients) in line to receive this product?
  • Who are the support people I will contact if there is an issue with this product?
  • How would you compare the functionality and performance of your product with the comparable one at my current firm?  With the competition?

Senior Management Meeting

  • Please comment on the most recent announcement at your firm.
  • What is the strategic direction of the wealth management business within the larger context of the firm?
  • To what extent, if any, are you available to meet with my larger clients?
  • Can you share with me the long term strategic plan for your firm?
  • How would you position your firm against my current firm?  The competition?
  • Why is now the best time to join your firm?

Deal Presentation Meeting

  • When are the payments for the loan due, monthly or annually?
  • Who is responsible for the interest payment?
  • How does tax withholding on the loan/note work?
  • Are the back-end payments paid against actual production or the recognized T12?
  • Is the “salary” a draw or a true salary?
  • Where do I have flexibility in this deal?
  • Can I move the front-end back or back-end forward?
  • Can I lower the back-end hurdles?
  • Can I increase the deal in its entirety?