Welcome to the fourth and final installment of our “Meet the Team” series, where we introduce members of OptionsHouse’s dedicated Customer Service team. (To read our first three profiles, click on Paul, Rachael and Maggie.)
Today, we’re profiling Ryan, a Customer Service Representative on the Active Trader Support team. Ryan has been a retail investor since a young age and, with the expertise and can-do attitude he brings to work each day, is a strong asset to the OptionsHouse team and our customers.
- Earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Northern Illinois University, and an MBA in finance from American Intercontinental University
- Began his career in 2009 as a Financial Advisor at Waddell and Reed, and held a similar role at Cetera Financial Specialists
- Started at OptionsHouse in the spring of 2015
- Has retail investing experience with a myriad of investment vehicles and products
- Holds Series 3, 7, and 66 designations, and is currently studying for the Series 24
Q: Tell us about the Active Trader Support team. What types of questions are you fielding on a day-to-day basis?
Active traders are sophisticated, proactive, and by definition, actively in and out of the markets—in fact, some of them make thousands of trades a year. And they are one of our largest customer segments at OptionsHouse. The Active Trader Support team has seven representatives dedicated specifically to meeting active traders’ needs and helping them work towards success. We support a wide range of client requests, which span from navigating margin calls to account funding.
Options trading has a variety of moving parts and our goal is to help clients navigate each step. I help clients understand the nuances of implied volatility and the Greeks, how options are priced, how you can create different spreads to capitalize on different moves in the market, and what needs to happen at expiration to make money.
Q: You work with a diverse range of clients. From your experience, what differentiates a great trader from a good trader?
To me, it comes down to the education of the trader and the amount of research and understanding they have of their strategies. A lot of clients will put in a strategy that they hear about on TV, read about online, or that they get from a friend, but they don’t fully understand the implications.
Many of our sophisticated and long-term successful clients will do substantial research prior to putting on a position, and they’ll know when to get out for a profit and how to minimize losses. One of the most common pitfalls I see is traders holding on to a position for too long because they don’t have a clear exit strategy. Great traders understand it’s not a winning trade until the position is closed out.
Q: It seems as though you’re in tune with the active trader. What else does OptionsHouse do to make life easier for the retail investor?
It’s never been a better time to be a self-directed investor. Technology has evolved. Spreads are tighter. And the investing playing field has never been more level. With that said, our platform can be scaled to meet the needs of many users, from first-time investors, all the way to the most experienced professional traders. The platform grows with you as you get more advanced.
Additionally, all of our reps that serve clients are licensed, which is not the case at some other online brokerages. Self-directed account holders have the ability to contact a team of professionals that can help them out and really know what they’re talking about. It’s awesome to see that kind of customer service at work on a daily basis.
We also regularly have webinars that teach clients how to use the platform to its fullest capability. There are a good deal of resources and tools that clients can use to positively impact their trading. To ensure our clients have a strong understanding of the platform, Maggie and I orchestrate Basic Platform Overview and Advanced Platform Feature webinars. Education is really an area of opportunity for our team to give clients ample resources to learn how to take advantage of all the features in our platform so that our clients make more sophisticated investments and trades.
Disclosure: The opinions expressed by the individual above do not necessarily represent or reflect the opinions of OptionsHouse.
The above information is provided by OptionsHouse for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended as trading or investment advice or a recommendation that any particular security, transaction, or investment strategy is suitable for any specific person. You are solely responsible for your investment decisions. Commentary and opinions expressed are those of the author/speaker and not necessarily of OptionsHouse. Neither OptionsHouse nor any of its employees, officers, shareholders or affiliated companies guarantee the accuracy of or endorse the views or opinions of guest speakers or commentators. Projections or other information regarding the likelihood of various investment outcomes are hypothetical in nature and are not guarantees of future results. Results may vary with each use and over time. Any examples used that discuss trading profits or losses may not take into account trading commissions or fees.