So I haven’t written in a while. I apologize to the three people who actually read my blog. But this struck me. On Wall Street magazine recently posted an article discussing the wisdom of firing clients. I wholeheartedly agree.
I’ve tried so many cases and handled so many more. Like a disintegrating marriage, there are frequently signs that a broker’s relationship with a client is deteriorating. Phone calls don’t get returned. The client doesn’t respond in the usual manner to seminar invitations. The client becomes more demanding, including demands for significant commission discounts because of account performance. These are all signs.
It is not unusual to hear from a broker, during the course of an arbitration proceeding, “I should have fired the client, but I did not want to make him/her angry.” Well, by that time it’s too late. And it doesn’t matter. Once a client has decided that the broker is the enemy, no amount of being nice is going to repair the relationship. As Queen Else sings in Frozen, let it go. A broker will lose more money and time trying to retain an unhappy client rather than simply showing the client the door, politely of course.
That’s the view of one lawyer from sunny and unseasonably warm Jupiter, Florida. I’m Marc Dobin.