MiB: Keeping the Lights on During the Pandemic


What happens when you own or pay rent at 15,000 storefronts throughout the country and a pandemic induced lockdown occurs?

If you are Penny Pennington, managing partner (CEO) of the $1.3 trillion investment firm Edward Jones, you keep all 15,000 offices open, with the lights on and staffed during the crisis. While the offices were not open to the public, Pennington notes it was important for clients and the local communities to see the financial system was still up and running, operating on their behalf. The firm made it optional for its 19,000 financial advisors to either work remotely or go into the offices, which are were large enough for 2 or 3 employees to practice work safely while social distancing.

We discuss how interested clients have been hyper-focused on in the election — not so much from a partisan electoral perspective but from the view of what the results might mean to investors’ portfolios, taxes, financial regulation and the fiduciary rule.

Pennington began her Edward Jones career in 2000 as a financial adviser. She is also senior executive sponsor of the firm’s LGBT+ & Allies Business Resource Group, and was recently named No. 33 on the Fortune Most Powerful Women in Business list. She explains what her firm is doing to promote more gender and racial diversity to Edward Jones. She believes increasing diversity will be the future of the financial services industry.

A list of her favorite books are here; A transcript of our conversation is available here.

You can stream and download our full conversation, including the podcast extras on iTunesSpotifyStitcherGoogleBloomberg, and Acast. All of our earlier podcasts on your favorite pod hosts can be found here.

Be sure to check out our Masters in Business next week with Dennis Lynch, Head of Counterpoint Global at Morgan Stanley Investment Management, running $130 billion. Several of the funds Lynch runs are up close to 100% YTD in 2020.



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