Morgan Stanley Smith Barney

  www.morganstanleysmithbarney.com
  www.morganstanleysmithbarney.com

Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Reviews in Chicago, IL

487 Reviews
3.1
487 Reviews
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Morgan Stanley Smith Barney President Greg Fleming
Greg Fleming
144 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Good understanding middle management about work/life balance (in 15 reviews)

  • Good benefits/PTO, fast-paced learning environment, great advisors (in 22 reviews)


Cons
  • There is a disconnect between the companies desire for Financial Advisor Associates to succeed and their actions (in 20 reviews)

  • Invariably, unless you are part of a team you will not make it through the training program (in 13 reviews)

More Highlights

5 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Formerly an excellent company but has gone downhill

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Financial Advisor in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Financial Advisor in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Formerly well-managed, could possibly become so again
    Good corporate culture with well communicated initiatives
    Good benefits

    Cons

    Frequent changes in structure, products, services which negatively affect customers
    Company claims to make optimal use of employees skills and experience but this is not true, if you are in a position beneath your abilities it is almost impossible to become better matched
    Be careful if you are hired as a financial advisor because their business model is set up to use you for your contacts and network and then give them to "tenured" advisors.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Change your business model so that you have specialized each of sales/marketers, portfolio managers, and service personnel instead of making your advisors do all of these roles at once. Because advisors have to constantly bring in more business, they neglect their clients portfolios and performance suffers. Also, make it mandatory to re-assign the over qualified employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    Great learning opportunity and chance network with wealthy individuals

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Culture & Values
    Former Employee - Private Wealth Management Intern in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Private Wealth Management Intern in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Prestige of working for one of the top investment banks, great learning opportunity, great networking, beautiful office

    Cons

    Long hours, unhappy employees, definite hierarchy structure

    I worked with one CSA (essentially secretary) who was completely incompetent, rude, and moody yet had not been fired, let alone spoken to about her unprofessional and rude actions

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Provide incentives for lower level employees (CSAs) to actually complete their work in a timely matter

  3.  

    Good Training Poor Follow Through

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Financial Advisor in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Financial Advisor in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Good training program that allows you to get licensed and trained to be a financial advisor. Co-workers are some of the best advisors in the industry.

    Cons

    Managements lack of understanding of the business. Focus is on top level producers and not trainees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus on the future of the business which are your trainees. Baby boomer FA's are nearing retirement, then what?

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5.  

    Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Review

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Compliance in North Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Compliance in North Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    large company opportunity in sales

    Cons

    non-sales opportunity is all in NY

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    na

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. 2 people found this helpful  

    Good place to obtain securities licenses

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Financial Advisor Trainee in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Financial Advisor Trainee in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney

    Pros

    If you can get your foot in the door and can live on a very modest salary for a year, you'll have benefits and a chance to study and take your securities and insurance license exams.

    Cons

    If you don't pass your series 6 and 7 the first time you are immediately terminated. Commissions and trails on mutual fund sales are only around 1%. Morgan Stanley gives you about 30% of that 1%. So if you have a million dollars in assets under management you'll earn $3,000. Pretty tough. Life insurance sales are around 4%. This information is from 2008, so compensation might a bit different

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Trainees might do better if they had some guidance from a salaried trainer. Otherwise, the trainee ends up "pairing" with a senior broker who hopes that he'll snag all of the trainee's accounts when he leaves or is terminated. Maybe that is the plan to increase the bottom line. Gain revenue and decrease expenses (e.g., health insurance benefits).

    No opinion of CEO

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