I started my career at Prudential Life Insurance and then transitioned into financial services with Dean Witter Reynolds, which later became Morgan Stanley. During my twenty-one year tenure at Morgan Stanley (Dean Witter), I witnessed a tremendous shift in company culture. Furthermore, across-the-board pay cuts forced my hand. I conducted a nationwide job search looking at both regional and wire house firms. Ultimately, what sold me on Capitol Securities was a weekend of dove hunting with a friend from my hometown in Virginia who had recently joined the firm. It was clear that Joe Jianos, Chairman and CEO of Capitol Securities Management, had created a firm with the culture I was seeking.
Change of any kind always presents challenges, but the overall reaction was positive. Some of my clients had felt squeezed with too many corporate fees, and they were just as ready for change as I was. Other clients were delighted that Capitol Securities showed a personal interest in them. For example, I thought it would be great if someone from the parent office could reach out to one of my biggest clients. I didn’t have to beg, plead or borrow; in fact, they were happy to honor the request. Within a week, Jay Donlin (COO) flew down to Wilmington to have lunch with that client.
There is a simplicity and straightforwardness that I really enjoy: the Capitol Securities Management payout pamphlet is a simple 2-page document—what a contrast to the thick, complex compensation guides my previous employers had! I also like talking directly to middle and back office employees who treat us well and respect our role as the architects of our clients’ financial futures.
I suggested that the firm sponsor a community event which is perfect for our target demographic. The corporate office immediately embraced the idea and supported our regional office in the effort. At Capitol Securities, you don’t have to endure eight-to-nine levels of politicking before something gets done; you can approach Senior Management and have an open dialogue about what’s best for marketing your business and helping your clients.
Be prepared for the transition and be ready for surprises and disappointments. Always take the high road with both clients and former colleagues at your previous firm. Capitol Securities will give you the support you need to make the transition.
I have three children and I’m a Cub Scout leader. I also love being outdoors, and I enjoy hunting and fishing. I appreciate that Capitol Securities allows me the flexibility to spend time with my children and indulge in my passions.
Well, I just got back from St. Lucia, so my next trip will be a bit closer to home: fishing in Ocracoke, NC.