Morgan Stanley Smith Barney

  www.morganstanleysmithbarney.com
  www.morganstanleysmithbarney.com

Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Reviews in Chicago, IL

493 Reviews
3.2
493 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Morgan Stanley Smith Barney President Greg Fleming
Greg Fleming
145 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

21 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Terrific

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

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

    Pros

    I like the feel of the group and the provided me with the encouragement to make me believe I can achieve anything.

    Cons

    Very stressful and they had a very lenient workplace dress code. People would always show up late.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Consider enforcing a tardy policy

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 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
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    The people I worked with at Morgan Stanley were great, and that made coming into work enjoyable.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Client Service Associate in Barrington, IL
    Former Employee - Client Service Associate in Barrington, IL

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

    Pros

    Morgan Stanley has a great work environment where everyone is willing to help each other out. The employees work very hard and in turn get rewarded for it.

    Cons

    I was only working at MSSB for a short period of time so I don't really have anthing negative to say about the company. However, just like at any other large company your role can seem very small.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I enjoyed the management at my office.

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    My experience with Morgan Stanley Smith Barney has been great.

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

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

    Pros

    Service-minded culture which includes not just our customers, but an active participation toward charitable organizations as well.

    Cons

    Recent company software updates sometimes hinder branch workflow.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Fix company software issues.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Wealth Management Intern: MSSB

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

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

    Pros

    The hardworking and welcoming staff made the office culture and overall environment a great place to work. Any and all questions I had were welcomed and thoroughly answered, and the staff as well as management team made accommodations to ensure I received full course credit for the work I did.

    Cons

    I truly cannot think of a negative aspect as the experience I had was extremely educational and rewarding.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    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

  8.  

    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
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Horrible company!

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

    I worked at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    None to praise about after joint venture with MS. Things just went downhill fast!

    Cons

    - Healthcare was changed Blue Cross Blue Shield to United Healthcare for benefits... costs went up as well
    - Technology and policies cumbersome
    - Management does not listen... it's all about the bottom line
    - No room for advancement at branch level- approached management to try something new in career- was constantly told... yes we'll work on that, and yet nothing happened. Just getting lip service
    - at mercy for advisors to pay you extra and bonuses. Firm base salary very low
    - It's all about the FA"s.... operations and other staff are a line item... extra cost for the firm.
    - no recognition for doing good work
    - absolutely no flexibility for work/home life balance. Only the FA's get that luxury.

    after the merger, things only got worse, horrible management, backwards policies, more paperwork.
    Overall stressful place to work in. After 15 year at Smith Barney, it was time to leave. Leaving the firm was my own personal decision. It was a dead end job to nowhere.

    There was also frustration with FA's in the office as well, they were not listened to by management.
    Payout was decreased.... for certain accounts. They are all for pushing their own MS products.
    Also frustrating to FA's was the abundance of fees being charged to clients with assets lower than a million.
    MS is trying get into Wealth Management and get the million and over clients.... majority of millionaire clients are already established. There first choice would not be MS.... most wealthy affluent people manage their assets with other high end banks that do cater to the rich no fees, elegant offices etc.

    MS is a wanna be and they should just give up......

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Recognize your employees for a job well done--- whether it be a lunch, bonus, extra time off.

    More flexibility for operational staff and support staff- with work and home life balance.

    Increase pay!!!!--- the only people you pay well are the fat cat FA's and managers with insane salaries and bonuses.

    Listen to your employees.... however... I take it most of the management are "Yes" people for corporate in New York

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10.  

    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
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great Company

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

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

    Pros

    They hire some of the most intelligent professionals in the industry. The learning potential is massive, turn over is not very high and employees are loyal. This is a fantastic company to work for.

    Cons

    I cannot think of any cons other than typical company politics.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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