Sarah would soon graduate from Stanford GSB, and had received entry-level job offers from a number of wealth management firms. A tech-savvy Millennial, she wanted a career that would provide both intellectual challenges and a healthy work/life balance. She had five job lucrative offers to evaluate, and needed to weigh her options carefully.
This case describes a hypothetical scenario of a student deciding which wealth management firm is the best fit for her interests, work style, and long-term career goals. The case provides a comprehensive overview of five distinctly different types of wealth management firms, with business models ranging from a traditional private bank with portfolio teams that sold the bank’s products to clients, to an investment firm that delivered institutional-quality management to private clients, to a new venture using a technology-driven model designed to replace individual advisers entirely. The business model and fee structure of each type of firm are discussed in detail, along with additional insights into how the firms operate.