This time we’ll continue the story with my introduction to the ‘trading’ world.
So with no further ado, I give you ‘The Prop Firm’.
So why stocks?
I was in a bad place after quitting that dehumanizing Financial Analyst job. How people can sit in these cubicles for $40-60K a year I have no idea. Maybe we’re spoiled. In India, having a job that pays $30K in American Dollars means you are BALLING out. It means you have cooks, cleaners, and drivers. It means, you can even get a white girl in Delhi if you were so inclined.
Ok, maybe I’m exaggerating but you get the picture…
I had broken up with my girlfriend and quit my job. My life was definitely in shambles. Selling tickets was getting me by but I needed more. Of course I started to look for more jobs in the Finance industry. I pretty much had no choice.
Enter the Staffing Agencies…
People buy and sell everything. This is America. If you can find a market for some shit that someone else needs, then you my friend have a legitimate business. And business always goes to the highest bidder. The ‘art’ of selling anything in mass quantities means leaving morality at the door and finding a group of ignorant, or better yet uninformed, people to swindle into thinking they need you. Read any Sales book. The object is to find a ‘need, want or desire’, ‘empathize’ with your customer, and prove their life is in shambles without you. Whether you’re selling paint jobs, $300 T-shirts, or B2B software programs the same tactics are used across the board. I’m not saying every salesman is out to get you. What I am saying is most are driven by the ‘numbers’ game.
The numbers game is simply this, the more people you talk to (prospecting) the more commissions you will collect. There’s no friends in this game. Everybody you know becomes a potential sales target and the people who ain’t on your client list already you keep in the rolodex in the hopes they’ll one day come around. It’s like single men having women as ‘friends’. Men ain’t tryna be your friends. C’mon SON! He’s talking to you because he figures one day you may slip and let his ass in the front door! (Steve Harvey’s words not mine. Ladies I’m a real nice guy if you get to know me LOL)
I digress. So I met with this staffing agency called PSG staffing based in Boston. I think they’re a national chain but I don’t really know. I walked inside and it was setup in open spacing with everyone’s desk in plain view of the next. The floor people all had head sets on and I immediately could tell that cold calling was the plan for the day. White boards were up everywhere with check marks and numbers next to each salesperson. A bell went off every 5 or 10 minutes. Apparently these people were brainwashed into thinking they had to yell and clap after they heard the sound. I found out after my interview that every time that bell went off that meant someone had sourced a potential lead and set him/her up with an interview. I met with my interviewer who basically gassed me up for 30 minutes and told me I had all the right qualifications to land a great job. I got a call soon after from him telling me he lined me up some meetings with a potential employer. I forget the name of the company but I remember walking into the place and seeing cubes filled with the tops of heads, hair colors and styles ranging from bland to blandER. The HR lady sat me down and told me the job was for DATA ENTRY. I looked at her and said “are you shitting me???” After being gassed up by this staffing agent filling me up with dreams he sets me up with a DATA ENTRY JOB???
Get the fuck outta here with that bullshit!!
Most chop shop staffing agencies all just want the placements. They get a bonus from the company and they keep it moving. They don’t give a fuck about YOU. NObody gives a fuck about YOOUU! I had to find something else. I remember digging through craigslist for hours and finally came up on a Proprietary Trading office with the chance to trade equities. It was all commission based of course and they said I had to learn the business before making money. I went in for an interview and the place looked like a computer lab basically. Desks were set up in vertical rows and each desk housed a PC, 3 monitors, a swivel chair and an under 30-year old in shorts and flip flops. It had one office in the back and one bathroom which looked like death. It looked like the Pop Copy bathroom in that episode of the ‘Chappelle’s Show’. (Rule #3 at Pop Copy was to throw ‘doo-doo’ butter on the walls so nobody would come back to the store.)
Strangely, I felt at home…
My first day one of the top traders made $15K and bought us all pizza. I didn’t even believe it to tell you the truth but I remember talking to him that day he said I’ll pick it up quick. I started with a group of other newbies and one of the head traders would hold educational sessions after the market closed everyday.
It was just numbers flying down a screen to me.
I’m supposed to understand this???
They put us all on a demo account. We would basically simulate trading on whatever stocks the room would be in. Every minute someone on all sides of the room would yell out a random stock ticker. Everyone would pull it up assess it in about 3 seconds flat and decide if they wanted in or not. Most of the guys in the room all traded the same stocks and they all had the same strategy. At the end of every trading day, printouts of all the head traders’ trades would go out and we would go back in the tape and analyze where they got in and where they got out of every stock they traded for the day.
Some of these guys would bank $5G everyday like clockwork. I soon came to realize this would be my hustle. This is where I was gonna make myself and my father a milly and this was where I needed to be.
Stay tuned for Part 4 of ‘The Life And Times Of Sang Lucci – The Prop Firm’.