Financial Pros Have Independence on Their Minds, Finds New Schwab Survey

Examining the Mindset of U.S. Financial Professionals, a survey
released today by Schwab Independent Branch Services, finds that while
client-facing financial professionals are generally fulfilled and
optimistic about their careers, they are brimming with entrepreneurial
drive and drawn to independence. The majority of survey participants
care deeply about their work and are pleased with their jobs, yet 76
percent say they have experienced obstacles that have limited their
success, citing lack of support and limited autonomy.

The 994 survey participants, who have worked in the financial services
industry for at least seven years and interact with investors once a
week, prioritize clients’ happiness over everything, yet 73 percent wish
they could better assist clients and had more time to make an impact in
the communities they serve.

Schwab Independent Branch Services launched in December 2011 to
accelerate growth in new markets by attracting successful financial
advisors to run franchise branches that complement Schwab’s existing
company-managed branches. Today there are 44 franchise offices in 24

“These survey findings reflect common perspectives that we’ve heard when
talking to candidates about running our franchise branches,” said Craig
Taucher, senior vice president, Schwab Independent Branch Services.
“Their clients are at the heart of what they do; some want to be
employees within established firms, but many feel they can serve clients
more effectively by operating totally independently. Our hybrid model is
the ideal solution for those who want the best of both worlds.”

Focused on client service and optimistic about the future

By and large, survey participants report that making clients happy is a
top priority and see a bright future ahead for their industry:

Continually improving the client experience through innovation (78%) is
crucial, according to those surveyed. In fact, 86 percent say that the
financial industry has changed more in the last five years than in the
previous 15 years, and 76 percent believe that new technology is
changing the industry to the point where it will be unrecognizable in 10

Fulfilled, but not without frustrations

Those who participated in the survey say their profession is the most
important thing to them (61%). The vast majority (86%) feel successful;
however, respondents did identify a number of obstacles that they’ve
encountered in their careers:

“We frequently hear from those who are confined in the traditional model
that they are drawn to the opportunity to own a Schwab franchise because
they are struggling with competing priorities, trying to be all things
to all people, and hitting a ceiling in terms of their growth,
professionally and financially,” said Christine Baker, head of franchise
sales, Schwab Independent Branch Services. “They see our model as
transformational: one that enables them to create a business that is
based on seeing through the client’s eyes and can fully align with their
personal values and growth appetite.”

A strong desire for independence abounds

When reflecting on their careers, 46 percent of those surveyed wish they
had built something from scratch.

The majority feel that independence is important for those who work in
the financial services industry, and many expressed a desire to gain
more personal control over their careers:

The survey findings reveal some feelings of discontent and frustration;
notably, 80 percent say they are ready to take their career to the next
level, and 63 percent are ready for a change.

To learn more about Schwab Independent Branch Services, visit www.schwabfranchise.com.

About the Survey

This online survey of U.S. financial professionals was conducted by
Edelman Intelligence for Schwab Independent Branch Services. Edelman
Intelligence is neither affiliated with, nor employed by, Charles Schwab
& Co., Inc. The survey is based on 994 interviews and has a 3 percent
margin of error. Survey respondents are U.S. residents over 18 years old
who have worked in the financial services industry for at least seven
years. All data is self-reported by study participants and is not
verified or validated. Respondents participated in the study between
March 8 and March 23, 2018. Detailed results can be found here: www.aboutschwab.com/press/research.

About Schwab Independent Branch Services

The Schwab franchise opportunity is a model for entrepreneurial
financial advisors with deep industry experience and strong community
roots who want to run a business that reflects their values. IBLs
nurture strong client relationships with the operational support, vast
resources, products/services, and brand recognition of Charles Schwab.
Independent Branches are run by Independent Branch Leaders (IBLs) who
are independent franchisees and registered representatives and
investment advisors of Schwab. They are licensed independent
contractors, not Schwab employees.

About Charles Schwab

At Charles Schwab we believe in the power of investing to help
individuals create a better tomorrow. We have a history of challenging
the status quo in our industry, innovating in ways that benefit
investors and the advisors and employers who serve them, and championing
our clients’ goals with passion and integrity.

More information is available at www.aboutschwab.com.
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The Charles Schwab Corporation (NYSE: SCHW) is a leading provider of
financial services, with more than 345 offices and 11.0 million active
brokerage accounts, 1.6 million corporate retirement plan participants,
1.2 million banking accounts, and $3.31 trillion in client assets as of
March 31, 2018. Through its operating subsidiaries, the company provides
a full range of wealth management, securities brokerage, banking, money
management, custody, and financial advisory services to individual
investors and independent investment advisors. Its broker-dealer
subsidiary, Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. (member SIPC, www.sipc.org),
and affiliates offer a complete range of investment services and
products including an extensive selection of mutual funds; financial
planning and investment advice; retirement plan and equity compensation
plan services; referrals to independent fee-based investment advisors;
and custodial, operational and trading support for independent,
fee-based investment advisors through Schwab Advisor Services. Its
banking subsidiary, Charles Schwab Bank (member FDIC and an Equal
Housing Lender), provides banking and lending services and products.
More information is available at www.schwab.com and www.aboutschwab.com.

This advertising, and the franchise sales information within it, is not
intended as an offer to sell, or the solicitation of an offer to buy, a
franchise. It is for informational purposes only. Currently, the
following states regulate the offer and sale of franchises: California,
Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New York,
North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Virginia, Washington
and Wisconsin. If you are a resident of one of these states, or if you
wish to operate a franchise in one of these states, we will not offer
you a franchise unless and until we have complied with any applicable
pre-sale registration and disclosure requirements in that state.

©2018 Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. All rights reserved.

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Registration Number: F-6699


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