Fisher Investments - A sales firm that happens to do finance | Glassdoor
There are newer employer reviews for Fisher Investments
There are newer employer reviews for Fisher Investments

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Helpful (7)

"A sales firm that happens to do finance"

Star Star Star Star Star
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
  • Comp & Benefits
  • Senior Management
Former Employee - Associate in San Francisco, CA
Former Employee - Associate in San Francisco, CA
Doesn't Recommend
Negative Outlook

I worked at Fisher Investments full-time (More than 3 years)

Pros

You will specialize in specific areas. You become friendly with most of the people there and its a very open environment. They have 401K matching and relatively good benefits.

Cons

Don't expect that you will learn how to value a company, select investments, become a trader, manage accounts or really do much in finance. Rather you will focus on doing one thing over and over for comp that is simply better elsewhere. However, if you are on the sales side the comp was pretty good but that may have changed. Also don't really expect job satisfaction as the culture isn't easy to deal with.

Other Employee Reviews for Fisher Investments

  1. Helpful (13)

    "Was a good company year and years ago. Today it's a sinking ship."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Mateo, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Mateo, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Fisher Investments full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Good 401K match, good health benefits. You will learn the in and outs of investment management and gain a foundation of capital markets knowledge. Delivers good customer service to clients. Will thicken your skin in a hurry.

    Cons

    As others have said, Fisher embraces a culture of oppression and fear. Ultra low morale -everyone is trying to leave. Heavy micro-management. Very cheap company with no detectable interest in the well-being of the employees, and no perks whatsoever -not even a token holiday party to pump up morale.
    Zero adoption of technology or modern business practices. No laptops, no tablets to take into your meetings, and if you happen to get a cell phone its a Blackberry. The business literally runs on software technology from the 80s. They don't even throw out a wifi signal so you can bring your own Ipad. Internet access on your desktop is denied for virtually all non-management or senior employees.
    The business has two directives 1) manage investment portfolios to beat a benchmark index by a few percent each year for clients and 2) take clients out of the market during a big downturn. The company did neither the past decade -in other words, a complete failure to execute the primary business directives. Fisher has had horrible portfolio performance on a 1,3,5,7,10 year annualized basis, they've lagged their benchmark as well as the S&P 500 benchmark, and missed the biggest bear market of the last 50 years in 2008. They kept clients fully invested in stocks in 2008 leading to massive losses.
    As of 2012, the company is seeing record attrition by customers and employees. This all leads to the worst morale and work environment where everyone is jumping ship around you, and those that stay are on the phones all day making excuses for the horrible performance.
    Multitude of lawsuits/arbitration cases and media scandals that the firm fights hard to bury by publishing fake articles and "research reports" in order to trick the algorithms of search engines.
    Company buys thousands and thousands of Ken Fisher's own books upon publishing to pump up the title on the best seller list. Goes as far as having the employees buy the books as individuals from multiple etailers and ship to their homes to throw off the scent.
    Giant ethical question marks...

    Advice to Management

    Fire yourselves, then hire a team that is experienced and can beat a benchmark index. Think about morale, the work environment and why people are leaving in droves. If you had good performance, you wouldn't need to spend the millions on advertising to rope in new unsuspecting retirees.


  2. Helpful (10)

    "No place for a career. Just a J-O-B. And a bad one at that."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Mateo, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Mateo, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Fisher Investments full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    I honestly can't think of any. Some people have listed the pay as good but it's really just on par with the industry, so don't let that be a major motivating factor. Other people have said the people working at FI are young and fun and they've made lots of great friends. Don't let that sway you either. You'll find friends wherever you go. FI isn't some special friend finding place. You end up becoming close to your co-workers mainly through commiserating about your job situation. On second thought, there is a pro for working at FI. When you leave, you will be so grateful and appreciative of your new job, your new company will think you're the happiest person they've ever met.

    Cons

    There are way too many points to mention in great detail, but here are highlights from my experience at FI:
    - You'll be shuffled around from one position to another, not gaining the so-called "depth" they preach.
    - Your manager will likely be an arrogant 20-something with zero experience. Don't expect to learn anything much.
    - Get used to receiving only negative feedback delivered in the most condescending way. "Thank you" is a difficult phrase for most managers.
    - Prepare to be heavily micro-managed and feeling like a disobedient schoolchild always watching your back.
    - Big brother is always watching. All emails are read. Everyone has extremely limited access to any websites besides Forbes and CNN.
    - FI makes you paranoid as is a lot of secrecy going on. Managers spend the majority of the day whispering in conference rooms. Team members end up feeling excluded and targeted.
    - Teamwork is virtually non-existent. Communication is poor. There is a lot of backstabbing and project stealing. A lot of credit taken away and throwing under buses. Not a supportive, encouraging environment. Everyone is out for themselves as employees are always competing against each other.
    - As much as they tell you FI is a meritocracy, it really isn't. There are plenty of good hard working people who get lost in the shuffle because they don't fit the FI mold for whatever reason.
    - Get used to being overworked. You will be required to work at least 50 hours a week in most departments. 7:00am-5:00pm. Despite the long hours, there is no flexibility whatsoever. Consider yourself lucky if you're let go by 4:15pm on Christmas Eve.
    - After 5 years, you will accrue 20 days of PTO per year. You will never accrue or be gifted any more.
    - There is no tuition reimbursement. Higher education is looked down upon.
    - Don't expect any sort of recognition on your work anniversary. No "congratulations".
    - FI doesn't care about work/life balance. It will be a struggle if you have a family to take care of.
    - Speaking your mind only works if you're telling managers what they want to hear. You run the risk of being blacklisted/"off board" for voicing your opinion.
    - You will succumb to the many levels of bureaucracy. Many are averse to change. Most of my ideas to improve processes were shot down or never followed up on. Becomes so frustrating you just don't bother anymore.
    - Nepotism runs rampant. Good for you if you have a relative or close friend or fraternity brother in management. Or maybe your parents are clients. You will do well.
    - The offices themselves are outdated and cramped with no privacy. The break rooms are uninviting and dirty. I don't even want to get into the bathroom situation. I'm legitimately embarrassed for clients to visit the offices.
    - The San Mateo location has parking problems. Not because of the city itself but because FI gives the other building tenants preferential access to ample parking in the lot. This forces FI employees to park in the furthest spots in the lot or even on the street in 2-hour spots. If you're caught parking in the lot when you're not supposed to, you'll get a ticket and sometimes a talking to by your manager.
    - The Woodside office is depressing. Sure it's nice to go there for a weekend drive but being stuck up on the hill for 5 days a week will make you stir crazy. It is foggy for a good part of the year and the commute can be treacherous.
    - If you're looking for perks, this is the wrong company. FI will only give you the bare bones they are legally obliged to.
    - If you've got an HR complaint, expect for it to be quietly swept under the rug. Their loyalties lie with the company, not you.
    - When you do eventually leave FI, you will be bombarded with resumes from your fellow co-workers who are all of a sudden your new BFF.

    - Some of these issues are bigger than others but all things you deserve to be aware of if seeking employment here. As you browse through these reviews, it should be pretty easy to discern reality from puffery and draw your own conclusions. The bottom line: FI doesn't treat its employees well. I have yet to meet a fellow employee who is actually happy working here. This includes managers. Everyone I know feels unappreciated and taken for granted. These sentiments are expressed by new and old employees alike. So don't expect things to get better. There are absolutely no incentives for long-term employees. In fact, you'll be worse off the longer you stay.

    Advice to Management

    The sad truth is, Management doesn't want any advice. That would mean an admittance of their shortcomings. So really, what's the point? But they should understand this: do we care about FI's Vision & Values? I'd be surprised if employees truly feel valued. Employees are all very aware of the fact they're merely replaceable cogs in the "machine". So until you learn to demonstrate appreciation for what you claim is the firm's greatest asset, then the employees will never have the vision "in their bones".

There are newer employer reviews for Fisher Investments
There are newer employer reviews for Fisher Investments

See Most Recent

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