I’m quoted in "Using Social Media in Your Job Search: Look before you Tweet"

 Usually I’m the interviewer, not the interviewee. So I felt more anxious than usual during the interview for “Using Social Media in Your Job Search: Look before you Tweet.” Luckily I was interviewed by a capable reporter. Writer Janet Aschkenasy’s article appears on the eFinancial Careers site.

I know and like several of the writers for eFinancial Careers. So I recommend checking out the site if you’re job hunting.
The next session of “How to Write Blog Posts People Will Read: A Five-Week Teleclass for Financial Advisors” will start in April. For more information, sign up to receive “Information on upcoming classes, workshops, and other events” as well as my free monthly newsletter.
Copyright 2010 by Susan B. Weiner All rights reserved

Institutional equity research job hunters, check out this site!

If you’re an analyst looking for a job in institutional equity research, you should read the ResearchWatch blog published by Integrity Research.

The blog will help you stay current on trends and players–especially independent research firms–in institutional equity research. Some recent topics included 

You can subscribe to ResearchWatch by email or RSS feed.

Reader question: How can I share my investment commentary on LinkedIn?

You can use LinkedIn, yet stay within your compliance officer’s guidelines, by sharing approved materials through your LinkedIn “status line.” I often suggest this to investment managers and financial advisors.

So I wasn’t surprised to receive an email saying, “Help! Please remind me how to share a link to my investment commentary on LinkedIn.”

Here’s my answer.

Step 1 Shorten the URL that takes readers to your commentary. The URL for your commentary is probably too long for the limits of LinkedIn’s status updates, especially because you need text to lure readers to your commentary. This is when link shorteners come in handy. You can use a free service, such as TinyURL.com. To shorten your link, simply follow the directions at the link shortening website of your choice.

Step 2 Enter your text into LinkedIn. When you go to your LinkedIn home page, you’ll see below your Inbox the Network Updates section.  Type your text into the box. If your commentary is provocative, you might say something like “You won’t believe what I’m saying about the stock market  http://tinyurl.com/…..” LinkedIn automatically converts URLs beginning with http:// into live links.

Hit the Share button and your investment commentary becomes available to folks on LinkedIn.

Related posts
* The LinkedIn status line is your friend, whether you’re looking for clients or a job
* My top tips for LinkedIn newbies who want to attract financial clients, referrals, and jobs

Guest post: "The Lost Art of the Thank You Card"

I’m a big fan of saying “Thank you.” So I’m delighted to feature this guest post by Suzanne Muusers of Prosperity Coaching. Suzanne is a consultant to financial advisors. I met her through Twitter.

The Lost Art of the Thank You Card
By Suzanne Muusers

What would happen to your referrals if you wrote five thank you cards per week? Would your client relationships deepen? Would you spread goodwill and kindness?

I’ve been sending out a lot of hand-written thank you cards lately. I find really nicely designed thank you cards at Trader Joe’s and AJ’s and I just get the urge to send them. You wouldn’t believe the response I get when the recipient receives the card. I usually get a phone call from them gushing about “taking the time to send a hand-written card” and “thank you so much for thinking of me.”

We have become such a digital world we forget about the impact such a simple action can have.  We now have email, ezines, newsletters, evite.com, and the like.  While it’s nice to save paper on such niceties and be “green,” getting a card in the mail is like getting a present.  When you send someone a card through the mail, I am betting that it stays on their desk for quite some time.

As I glance over my desk, I see a hand-written card I received from a financial advisor I met last month at the Financial Planning Association meeting. He asked me for advice on where he should get coach training. I gave him a few choice pointers and several days later received a beautiful zen-like card from him thanking me for the tips. You can bet that I’ll keep that card for a long time.

So how can you use thank you cards in your business? What occasions would be suitable for a thank you card?

How about:

  • Birthday cards
  • Nice to meet you cards
  • Thank you for the referral cards (as part of a written referral program)
  • Congratulations for your achievement
  • Sympathy cards
  • Wedding cards

Maybe thank you cards should be part of your Marketing Plan and part of your week!

Suzanne Muusers is a business coach, marketing expert, and a sales and marketing speaker based in Scottsdale, Arizona. Her coaching program for financial advisors, The Prosperous Advisor™ , focuses on revenue-building activities.

Susan B. Weiner, CFA
If you’re struggling to pump out a steady flow of good blog posts, check out my five-week teleclass for financial advisors, “How to Write Blog Posts People Will Read,” and sign up for my free monthly e-newsletter.
Copyright 2010 by Susan B. Weiner All rights reserved

Some ammo for job-hunting — and client-seeking — CFA charterholders

Employers–and potential investment management clients–don’t understand why they should hire a CFA charterholder instead of a non-charterholder. That’s the lament of some job-hunting and client-seeking colleagues of mine in the Boston Security Analysts Society.

Fund managers with CFAs take fewer risks than those with MBAs, study says,” an article by Ian McGugan in Canada’s The National Post, provides one reason for choosing a CFA charterholder. Charterholders are going to take fewer risks in portfolios compared to MBAs.

“This result is surprising and may have something to do with the ethics instruction that is part of the CFA course but not most MBA programs,” writes McGugan.

This newspaper article is based on research by Oguzhan C. Dincer of Illinois State University, Russell B. Gregory of Allen Massey University – Department of Commerce, and Hany A. Shawky of SUNY at Albany – School of Business and Center for Institutional Investment Management.

You can download “Are You Smarter than a CFA’er?”  from the SSRN website, where registration may be required. 

Thank you, Matthew Andrade, member of the Calgary CFA Society, for bringing the National Post article to my attention!
Susan B. Weiner, CFA
If you’re struggling to pump out a steady flow of good blog posts, check out my five-week teleclass for financial advisors, “How to Write Blog Posts People Will Read,” and sign up for my free monthly
Copyright 2010 by Susan B. Weiner All rights reserved

"You" can help your job hunting "thank you"

Which “thank you” are you more likely to read? The note that opens with 1) “Thank you for meeting with me” or 2) “Your company’s disciplined approach to…”?

Number 1 makes me yawn. “Another lame thank you note,” I say to myself, although I’m impressed the writer bothered to write when so many people don’t.

Number 2 makes me think, “Hey, this person listened to me! They’re writing about one of my company’s key messages.”

Recruiters and career counselors tell job hunters their communications should focus on the company that they’re pitching instead of on themselves. One way to achieve this is to start your “thank you” note with the words “you” or “your,” and then convey your appreciation later.

A friend tried a variation on this when requesting an informational interview from a senior executive. He opened by citing an article that had quoted the exec. “You said ‘…’ in this article, which interested me because…’ ” He got the interview.

The power of “you” isn’t just for job hunters. It boosts the power of most communications–blogs, brochures, articles, websites, white papers, and more. Try it and see!

Related posts
Which topic should you discuss in your client email’s first paragraph?
Your mail has three seconds to grab your reader’s attention
* To “dear” or not to “dear” in your email

Susan B. Weiner, CFA
If you’re struggling to pump out a steady flow of good blog posts, check out my five-week teleclass for financial advisors, “How to Write Blog Posts People Will Read,” and sign up for my free monthly e-newsletter.
Copyright 2010 by Susan B. Weiner All rights reserved

Five-Week Writing Teleclass for Financial Advisors: "How to Write Blog Posts People Will Read"

Blogging has become a “must” for many independent and fee-only financial advisors. It’s a great way to connect with current and potential clients. Blogging also helps drive traffic to your website and cement your reputation as a leader in your field. But many advisors struggle to crank out a steady flow of compelling blog posts. That’s why you need to enroll in “How to Write Blog Posts People Will Read,” my NEW five-week teleclass for financial advisors.

You will learn how to
Generate and refine ideas for blog posts that will engage your readers
Organize your thoughts before you write, so you can write more quickly and effectively
Edit your writing, so it’s reader-friendly and appealing

The inaugural class will be offered exclusively to my newsletter subscribers and to clients. Participants in the initial class will receive a 50% discount in return for participating fully and providing detailed feedback.

When you participate fully in this class, you’ll end up with one polished blog post–and a process you can follow to generate many more.

How you’ll get there
o Small class–limited to 12 advisors–so you can participate, not just listen passively. Research shows that people learn best when they act on new information.
o Classes will meet on five successive Thursdays–Feb. 25, March 4, March 11, March 18 and March 25– on a teleconference call from 1:00 p.m.-2:00 p.m. Eastern Time
o Convenience because you can dial into the weekly phone calls from anywhere–and classes are recorded, in case you can’t attend “live”
o Guidance through a step-by-step process of writing blog posts, including
Generating blog post topics
Organizing your thoughts before you write
Positioning your blog post to appeal to readers
Editing your posts to boost their reader-friendliness      

“Hands on” practice through completing your weekly homework assignments
Resources for the future because you can download
o  Class recordings
o  Class handouts
o  E-booklet

o Feedback from a seasoned financial writer-editor whose clients range from the country’s largest asset managers to solo professionals to trade and retail publications

Register Now!

What advisors say about other workshops by Susan Weiner, CFA

o “I found this presentation very helpful because it focused on key elements to being an influential but understandable advisor.”
o  “Susan’s presentation brought to life the benefits of better writing.”
o  “Great tips for jump starting my client communications”
o  “Susan’s presentation made me want to go back to my office and juice up my emails and letters.”

Contact Susan at learn@investmentwriting.com or 617-969-4509.

Register Now!

Guest post by Roger Wohlner, a top advisor on Twitter

Because some of my blog and newsletter readers still wonder why an investment or wealth manager would bother with Twitter, I jumped on the opportunity to feature “Financial Advisors and Twitter,”  a guest post by financial advisor Roger Wohlner who works in Arlington Heights, a Chicago suburb, about what he has gained from Twitter. 

The Top 10 Twitter Feeds for Career-Minded Advisers recently named guest blogger Roger Wohlner one of the top 10 people whom career-minded financial advisors should follow on Twitter.  I knew that already. I’ve been tracking Roger for awhile. I’ve even had the pleasure of speaking with him on the phone.

By the way, one Twitter advantage that Roger does not mention. His Twitter feed ranks high in a Google search for “Roger Wohlner.”

Financial Advisors and Twitter
By Roger Wohlner, CFP

Recently an article entitled The Top 10 Twitter Feeds for Career-Minded Advisers was published in the FINS section of the online Wall Street Journal. The article listed the top 10 Twitter feeds for financial advisors to follow. I was fortunate enough to be included in this list. I heartily recommend that anyone even remotely interested in personal finance follow the other nine folks listed.

Beyond the good natured ribbing that I am taking from some of my fellow advisors on Twitter about my new “celebrity” status, this article has made me stop and think about why financial advisors in general and me in particular are on Twitter.

I suppose the initial thought was that I would get on Twitter and clients would flock to me. That hasn’t happened and I think most other advisors on Twitter have had the same experience. However I think Twitter is a very worthwhile tool for several reasons:

I have met (in person and online) a number of fellow financial advisors from whose Tweets (posts for you non-Twitter users) I learn something new every day. Whether from their blogs or article links Twitter is a great source of information. Additionally I feel that I have greatly expanded my network of experts to whom I can turn with questions in areas where I may not have the direct expertise.

I do think Twitter is an excellent PR tool and I feel that my name is out there a much more than it was when I first signed onto Twitter this past April.

Twitter allows you to follow and participate in the “conversation” about any number of topics. I am particularly interested in the Fiduciary movement; 401(k) plans, investing, and financial planning. Twitter is filled with information about thousands of topics and companies, plus politics, entertainment, culture, and sports to name a few.

As a financial advisor I am always careful not to recommend specific investment vehicles or courses of action. Twitter to me is just not a medium to provide specific advice. Financial advice is best given in a one-on-one situation, each client and their situation is different.

Lastly let me share some of the folks that I follow in addition to those listed in the article above. Some are fellow financial types, some not. This is a Twitter idea inspired by Gini Dietrich ginidietrich a Twitter superstar and a bright young Chicago CEO. If you follow Gini you will move up the social media learning curve very quickly. Below is a great “Follow Friday” list:

My “Core Favorites” List

davegalanis Dave is one of the sharpest financial and business consultants I know. Dave is the one who turned me on to Twitter in the first place. We were cubicle neighbors back in the day at our first jobs out of school. Dave is a connoisseur of most foods served on a bun.
gtiadvisors Greg is into due diligence, corporate security, espionage, and also maintains a cooking recipe blog. When my daughter was traveling to Russia he indicated that he had contacts that could be of help if she found herself in a bad situation, Greg is a great guy to know.
IKE_DEVJI Ike is an attorney and advisor focusing on asset protection. Really knows his stuff.
venturepopulist Jeff is a private equity and hedge fund guy with some interesting opinions on investing.
dgvelaw Danielle is the mother of three, a really sharp estate planning attorney, plus she is a Packer fan by marriage.

Other folks I suggest following listed by Twitter name


If you are new to Twitter or have been on for awhile, this list plus the folks listed in the article are a great group to follow.

There are many other people and organizations that I enjoy following on Twitter as well. One tip that helped me early on was to look at the followers and those followed by the people I was following. I still do this to this day. The new Twitter list function is another way to do this as well.

Check out Twitter and join the conversation. You’ll meet some interesting people and you might learn something in the process.

Investment management job outlook for 2010

There are glimmers of hope in the investment management hiring outlook for 2010, especially for job applicants who help to generate revenues or who are in an area where cuts have been too deep. That’s what I gathered from exchanges with three observers, Michael Kulesza, managing director of Horton International‘s Boston office; Bob Gorog, partner in CT Partners’ Boston office; and Michael Evans, president, FUSE Research Network in Boston. This updates my 2008 posts, Three recruiters talk about hiring at investment management and mutual fund firms” and “Who’s hiring CFA charterholders.

“I do sense an uptick in hiring for 2010,” said Kulesza. “Many companies scaled back heavily, so now they and are planning to add people to their organizations.” That’s particularly true in the areas of sales, new business development, mutual fund wholesalers, and advanced sales support, he said.

Smaller firms hiring to grow market share 
Small- to medium-sized firms are hiring more aggressively than bigger firms, added Kulesza. They’re taking advantage of large-company layoffs to upgrade their staff and to increase market share. 

Given the big banks’ involvement with mergers and TARP funds, some smaller banks see an opportunity to expand their  high-net-worth businesses. “Customers are gravitating toward more local or regionalized high-net-worth services,” he said. 

Aside from these sales and marketing opportunities, Kulesza believes there may be additions to investment research and analysis. “Back office operations will stay lean,” he said. 

Privately held and mutual companies are freer to take advantage of hiring and market share expansion opportunities, said Kulesza, because they aren’t answerable to the stock market. Meanwhile, it will take four to five years before investment management hiring returns to its previously high levels, he predicted. 

Some niches offer more opportunities  
“The better firms are coming back into the market,” said CT Partners’ Gorog. On the investment side, he sees more searches for international equities than for domestic equities. Opportunistic hiring is also happening in fixed income areas such as credit and distressed debt.

Some hedge funds are beefing up their distribution. They’re trying to upgrade their clients to include institutions as well as the high-net-worth, fund-of-fund, and family office clients with whom hedge funds typically launch. Funds that have survived three years and delivered decent relative performance over that period figure they have a good shot at expanding their client base. 

Hiring in product management
Fuse’s Evans shared the hiring outlook uncovered by the firm’s recent research report on product management at asset management firms. His comments are reproduced below with his permission.

Increased Activity – Two areas in which product leaders anticipate increased activity is improving web content and capabilities, and hiring of additional staff. A review of firm websites indicates that much of the research and marketing content is dated. In terms of the actions listed, improving web content and capabilities was among the least time-consuming and least expensive actions firms could take, but its impact could be great in that it would signal to advisors and investors that the firm is moving forward.

In terms of hiring, firms indicated a strong desire to add back staff. Fully 50% of respondents indicated that they plan to hire in 2010. When asked the areas to which they planned to add staff, responses included:
·  Product managers
·  Marketing managers
·  Associates/analysts
·  Junior product managers
·  Manager research/due diligence

This suggests that firms may be feeling the burden of carrying out new organizational initiatives using skeleton staffs. Recent analysis by Russell Reynolds Associates concurs that hiring should resume in 2010; particularly on the sales and marketing sides of organizations, as these were among the hardest hit in terms of headcount reduction.

For wealth managers and financial planners 
Wealth management professionals and employers should check out Bill Winterberg’s “Your Next New Hire: By Providence or Planning?” Bill lists some resources that may help both job hunters and those who are looking to hire. He also links to some trade publications suggesting that hiring in this arena will pick up in 2010.

By the way, Winterberg hopes that operations hiring is more robust than Horton International’s Kulesza suggests. “If anything, firms need to support additional capacity ahead of growth, rather than hire after growth exposes bottlenecks in operations.” 

Good luck to all of you job hunters out there!


If you’re willing to be interviewed by a reporter–and you fit the criteria mentioned below–please contact Emma Johnson at the email address she provides.

“Hey Wall St., what’s the job market really like? For a story, looking for those currently or recently employed in finance to comment on job outlooks. Anonymous sources OK. emma@emma-johnson.net

Private equity job hunting tips from four professionals

Don’t bring me a resume. Bring me a deal,” said Daniel Meader, founder and managing partner, Trinity Advisory Group. Meader offered his advice during the Q&A following “The State of Private Equity: Opportunity through Crisis,” a sold out presentation to the Boston Security Analysts Society on November 5.

Other advice from panelists:

  • In New England, the best job prospects are in venture. The corporate growth and buyout styles of private equity are stagnant locally, said Martin Grasso, CEO, Pearl Street Capital Group.
  • It’s good to have consulting experience as well as investment expertise, according to Scott Stewart, MS in Investment Management Faculty Director, Boston University School of Management.
  • Get operating experience in turning around a distressed company, suggested Norman Rice, partner, ConsensusCapital Group.

Do you have more tips for private equity job hunters? Please add them in the comments.