How to Become a Financial Advisor

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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.

Things You'll Need

  • Many Hours
  • Determination
  • Passion for Investments
  • 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.

Tips & Warnings

  • 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


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