So far I use 3 brokers who have very contrasting approach to order execution; customer service; corporate governance; communication channels, internet and honesty.
Order execution: Many brokers dislike price-limit orders, but D&B even more. Orders take long especially if you only deal with one person. Send to their shares email account for faster execution. Then they can be executed within 24 hours. They'll also make wrong orders so you have to be vigilant.
Customer Service: Varies with the person you deal with but generally speaking, D&B barely put up with retail investors. They prefer the likes of John Kiarie, who deposit loads of money no questions asked. Dividends will take long or never be credited into your account unless you chase.
Corporate governance: Make it your point to know who is the CEO and the owners of a broker. I know Mohamed is the CEO, I know Jimnah is a shareholder, but does he own the whole of D&B?
Internet: D&B has the best online system I know of among the brokers that I deal with.
Communication channels: Email response can be erratic.
Honesty: They wiggle around when they've made a mistake.
AIB (formerly Ashbhu):
Order execution: Excellent mainly because of Nina, its operations manager. Will normally execute within 48 hrs at the latest. I believe its one of two brokers that offer "prompt" board trading.
Customer service: Will respond to most queries, but tend to be non-existent when it comes to some queries.
Corporate governance: CEO is Peterson Mwangi and he is very available. I know who the 4 principal owners are. AIB also publishes accounts for all to see at its office.
Internet: Online accounting is still non-operational months after I complained about it.
Communication channels: Email response to most issues is very quick; generally responsive to suggestions.
Honesty: When there was a mistake in my order, they owned, corrected the mistake immediately and took a hit on their own account. However, called and was told they were not doing Celtel Zambia IPO, only to find out that they were involved.
Order execution: Quick response
Customer service: Respond to issues but tend to be very silo'd so can take long
Corporate governance: CEO James Murigu is very well-known and affable by all accounts. Don't really know the principal owners.
Communication channels: No known email account, but telephone response is good.
Internet: Online accounting is patchy at best.
Honesty: no comment as no issues have arisen yet.