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Assistant Director - Leadership Development

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. The Career Distribution (CD) function 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.

Reporting to the Sr. Director of Talent & Leadership Development, as the Assistant Director, Leadership Development you will play a key role on the Leadership Development and Talent Management Team in the design, development, and implementation of leadership strategy, programming, and experiences for audiences ranging from new leader to executive leadership. You will help to ensure that Northwestern Mutual Field Leaders possess the skills and exhibit the behaviors to enable the growth of talent and sales revenue.

This role focuses on the creation of the talent development strategy for those field leaders in the early stages of their career. You have the unique opportunity to co-create those successful leadership development programs as leaders aspire and transition to more responsibilities and influence in their career progression.

Accountabilities include:

In alignment with the leadership and talent strategies, design, develop, manage and/or facilitate learning experiences that achieve desired outcomes. Identify and develop approaches to leader development that best leverages self-directed development, coupled with involvement from local leaders, Home Office, and external partners. Help reinforce the leadership brand to attract aspiring leaders and retain existing leaders.

Develop alternative paths for talent to enter and progress through leadership roles, whether that be as part of a practice, office, or team leadership. Support the attraction and development of diverse talent into, and advancement through leadership roles.

  • Serves as the liaison with other members of the Career Distribution Team regarding leadership programs and related talent solutions.
  • Understand the financial and recognition levers that influence leadership behaviors and talent development with our field leaders.
  • A focus on the new leader development with the creation of a more systematic strategy on early career development – recruiting, development, and retention of new leaders.
  • Keep abreast of innovations and thought leaders inside and outside the industry, with an eye towards sharing insights with stakeholders or incorporating them into the broader leadership and talent strategy.

Bring your best! What this role needs:

  • Demonstrate NM behaviors: deliver exceptional experience, solve for the client, be a talent multiplier, lead with enterprise vision, challenge the status quo, play to win.
  • Demonstrated understanding of the core areas of leadership development and talent management (e.g., talent development, leadership competencies & behaviors, talent assessments and review, org design, succession, career paths, etc.)
  • Bachelor’s Degree w/ minimum of 8 years professional experience working within complex and large organizations. At least 5+ years of experience in talent management/leadership development and/or 3+ years in a distribution leadership function. Advance Degree in I/O Psychology, Organizational Development, or adult learning principles preferred.

Demonstrated ability in the following areas:

  • A strategic thought partner in talent management and leadership development with the proven ability to be an integral member of a high performing team.
  • Provide unwavering support for other team members in the execution of key programs and projects.
  • Demonstrated ability to design, develop, and/or facilitate systemic learning experiences.
  • Utilize data analytics and insights to inform decisions and measure the impact of efforts.
  • Possess holistic systems view while demonstrating a high level of consulting, influencing, and decision-making skills
  • Collaborate with multiple key stakeholders representing a cross-section of Home Office and the field organization.
  • Understanding of the implications that talent has on financial indicators, growth strategies, and overall organizational health.
  • Ability to articulate an independent point-of-view, and challenge conventional practices.
  • Proven ability to influence without authority with key stakeholders – both in home office and with field leaders to implement strategic and large-scale programs.

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W e 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.

If you work or would be working in Colorado or outside of a Corporate location, please click here for information pertaining to compensation and benefits.


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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.