Thursday, May 22, 2008

Stock Broker Adopts Stock broker follows the Southwest Airlines People Strategy

American Portfolios Financial Services, Inc. (APFS) is a full-service broker/dealer and registered FINRA/SIPC member firm whose primary function is to support independent financial professionals in private practice. The firm currently has close to 500 highly seasoned affiliated representatives located in over 200 branch locations throughout the nation.

APFS has created a decidedly competitive presence in the industry as one of the top 50 independent broker/dealers in the country. The firm offers a full range of: 1) non-proprietary investment products, 2) personal services such as insurance planning, retirement, estate and college planning, 3) full service securities brokerage through dual clearing relationships with Bear, Stearns Securities Corp and Pershing, LLC and 4) fee based asset management services through parent company subsidiary, American Portfolios Advisors, Inc. (APA).

Lon Dolber, president of American Portfolios, loves everything about the way Southwest Airlines does business. He flies with the carrier every opportunity he gets, appreciates it safety record and even likes its customer service policy.

But what impresses Dolber most about Southwest is that employees have ownership in the airline. Ownership, Dolber said, motivates employees to make the business successful.

On Sept. 10, 2001, Dolber and another founder, Russell Clark, opened American Portfolios Financial Services. 200 brokers or "registered representatives," who were previously at Nathan & Lewis, joined them quickly. Prior to this business venture Dolber worked at Nathan and Lewis and made his business model known to his superiors as well as colleagues.

According to Dolbers, The brokers own the company and therefore they care about it.

While employees are given stock options, brokers are issued units of participation that are only of value at the time of a triggering event - such as an acquisition or an initial public offering.

He gives employees a copy of "Nuts!: Southwest Airlines' Crazy Recipe for Business and Personal Success."

Dolbers recruit only brokers with good track records, and if necessary, he helps brokers get space and equipment. He provides an attorney to negotiate a lease, pays for the license transfer and assists with obtaining errors and omissions coverage. And, like a franchisor, he provides training for being in private practice.

according to Tom Wirtshafter, an investor in American Portfolios who sits on its board Lon created a place where brokers feel wanted and respected. He adds taht Lon understands how to treat brokers because he was one himself.

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