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Assistant Director, Advisor Practices Strategy Alignment

At Northwestern Mutual, we are strong, innovative and growing. We invest in our people. We care and make a positive difference.

At Northwestern Mutual, our vision is to deliver financial security to help our clients live their best lives by choice. A key pillar of our vision and success is our strong, vibrant sales force. This role sits within the Career Distribution (CD), which is at the forefront of working across the home office and sales force as one team to achieve the sales and growth objectives the company expects, while delivering the experience our distribution needs and deserves.

The Advisor Practices Department at Northwestern Mutual is focused on helping our most productive and successful advisors build, grow, and transition their practices at NM, while delivering a distinctive and excellent client experience. Within Advisor Practices, the Strategy Alignment, KPIs, & Insights Team provides support across the department to improve the quality, depth, and breadth of how well we know our top advisors, and drive better business decisions and strategic objectives.

Reporting to the Sr. Director, Advisor Practices, the Assistant Director, Advisor Practices Strategy Alignment is responsible for business leadership and day-to-day execution of the Strategy Alignment, KPIs, & Insights department function; developing and executing on a strategic direction for the function; and supporting related strategic work as required. This role would work with Advisor Practices department leadership, enterprise partners, and industry experts to deepen and mature how well we know our most sophisticated practices and how we use that knowledge in strategic decision-making.

The Assistant Director will be tightly connected to research and development of insights, analytics, and performance indicators within Northwestern Mutual and the financial services industry, and will serve as a thought leader to internal business partners and to the field around how intelligent metrics and insights can support informed strategy and execution. The Assistant Director will support and serve as a subject matter expert on insights and data-driven decision-making that are integral to Advisor Practices department functions and multi-year strategies, ensure alignment of department initiatives to the right strategic objectives, and support the creation of key performance indicators. Additionally, the role would work to develop cross-functional relationships to create advocates for Advisor Practices Insights within the Home Office and the field as well.


  • Business leadership and day-to-day execution of AP Strategy Alignment, KPIs, & Insights department offering/shared service, focused on delivering higher-quality, fact-based insights to Advisor Practices department initiatives, improved decision quality, and aligned objectives.
  • Set up a department-wide structure and operating model to elicit and fulfill requirements for data insights, field feedback, OKR and KPI support, and strategic fact bases. Must ensure scalable and repeatable processes in partnership with enterprise centers of excellence, and develop and execute the necessary communication and change mgmt. activities to implement.
  • Cultivate and leverage cross-enterprise partnerships that will provide data, analytics, and corporate strategy inputs for synthesis in context of the Advisor Practices business objectives, and ensure alignment and collaboration on overlapping or adjacent initiatives.
  • Bring thought leadership and a strategic mindset to key department challenges, specifically around how to drive better decision-making and tighter OKRs, but also other topics as required.
  • Facilitate and drive strategy development and execution as it relates to Strategy Alignment, KPIs, & Insights for Advisor Practices—including support, services and operations
  • Represent the Advisor Practices department as the enterprise Field Experience (FX) Multiplier, collaborating enterprise-wide to improve the field experience as measured by the FXI.

Bring your best! What this role needs:  

  • Bachelor's degree in business, insights & analytics, finance, strategy, or related field or an equivalent combination of education and/or progressively responsible work experience.
  • Minimum ten years of progressively responsible experience in financial services or other business, analytics, and distribution functions, with experience in business consulting, strategy, and/or the high-net-worth market a preferred skillset.
  • Strong leadership, critical thinking, problem solving, and communications skills are required. 
  • Intellectual curiosity and analytical mindset. Unconventional thinker that's unafraid to share an opinion, but is able to "disagree and commit" where required.
  • Ability to interrogate, unpack, and understand enough of an ambiguous problem to deconstruct and begin executing without heavy oversight, while continuously addressing whether to adjust based on learnings.
  • Ability to look beyond the status quo, identify or elicit unconventional solution options, and be tactfully bold in testing hypotheses.
  • Ability to build productive relationships and influencing without direct authority (home office, 3rd parties, and field).
  • Able to stay organized and on top of myriad competing priorities.
  • Ability to synthesize and distill complex ideas/topics into the key "so what?" or business-applicable takeaways.

This job is not covered by the existing Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Required Certifications:

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We are an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age or status as a protected veteran, or any other characteristic protected by law.


We’re excited about the potential people bring to Northwestern Mutual. You can grow your career here while enjoying first-class perks, benefits, and commitment to diversity and inclusion.