How are you attracting FAs from the wirehouses to Baird?
We have a great story to tell and a great record of success. We’ve performed extremely well in the worst environment in a long time.
We’ve gotten people’s attention, and it’s really one of the main reasons why we had record recruitment in 2009.
We’ve been very careful to manage the business. We’re passionate about protecting the reputation of the franchise. It’s a very powerful model, especially in times like last year. That’s what differentiates us from many of our competitors.
What makes Baird stand out from other broker-dealers?
We are careful in how we manage the business, because about half of the associates own a piece of the company, which is privately held. This is taken into account in every decision that’s made. And that sets us up to have a very dynamic partnership with the associates. Again, this is powerful and differentiates us from many competitors on the Street that are publicly traded.
How does Baird recruit?
We do not use external recruiters. It’s an internal effort handled by our 60 branch managers and four regional directors.
How did recruiting go in ’09 and how is it going this year?
We recruited just over 100 advisors in 2009; the majority were from the wirehouses.