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In order to become a financial advisor, a trainee must first realize that the primary job duty will be sales. A Financial Advisor sells their services and their investment products either for a management fee or for commission generated from individual trades. The main job function of a financial advisor is to gain and retain clients with excess money to invest.
To become a financial advisor, the first step is to locate a Broker/Dealer that offers sponsorship to take the required licensing exams. There are two major exams required in order to become a financial advisor; the Series 7 Stockbroker' s Exam, and the Series 66 Uniform Combined State Law Exam. A candidate must receive a passing score of 70%. If this score is not met, the exam can be taken again after a 30 day waiting period.
Once the exams have been passed, a rigorous sales and product training class will begin. These training classes, offered at the broker/dealers expense, typically last anywhere from 17 weeks to 3 years. Most times, the trainee will receive a small salary during the training period. There are usually sales quotas to meet where commissions can be generated and added to the base training salary.
Most Broker/Dealers will require all candidates that desire to become a financial advisor to work 50-65 hours per week. Although this seems excessive, once a book of clients is created, the financial advisor can commit to a regular 40 hour work week. As client accounts are opened; the trainee's base salary will decrease, replaced by commissions and portfolio management fees.
Broker/Dealers spend a considerable amount of money training and sponsoring a candidate to become a financial advisor. Because of this expense, the selection process is extremely competitive. All those seeking to become a financial advisor should adequately prepare their lifestyles for minimal money and long hours in the beginning years.
Financial Advisors come from many different occupational backgrounds; determining success can only come from the drive and passion a candidate internally possesses before entering this demanding field. Dedication and determination are a required aspect of this career position. To become a financial advisor is to become a reliable source of information for others' investments. Candidates must know what to expect before entering this occupation.
Remember to dress in business attire to all interviews. Send "Thank You" emails after each interview. Keep current on equity market conditions. Arrive early to all scheduled meetings. Study hard every day.
Be prepared for long, grueling hours for the first few years. Get comfortable with rejection, this is a sales position. Don't complain