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Supposedly the dwarf with the highest social skills becomes expedition leader on embark. I want to prepare the most competent broker I can before embarking, but this requires learning a lot of social skills.

So, can the expedition leader be a broker, or do I need to have two dwarves with high social skills just so I can have a good broker? Or is there some other workaround?

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You can pick anyone you like as broker, including the expedition leader. In fact, many of the social skills important to the expedition leader are also important to the broker, so it makes sense to use one dwarf for both. See the wiki page for the expedition leader.

In my experience it is most prudent to invest only a single point in the necessary social skills (if you choose to allocate points at all). You will likely get a migrant with better social skills for expedition leader/mayor/broker in an early migrant wave, so it would be better to invest those points in food, drinks, or other supplies.

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    In fact, it's a common practice to have one dwarf be many of the "administrative" nobles from day 1 (Expedition leader, broker, bookkeeper, manager), mostly because some skills overlap and the need for an office also overlaps some cases (though being Broker and Leader can lead to meetings going on the whole time you would like them doing trading stuff). – Delioth May 18 '17 at 21:04
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Yes he can also be your broker. Just go into the nobles screen and appoint him. Tip: Also try to pick your broker on whether he/she has the Appraiser skill or not because then you can see your wealth.

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