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Sr Dir. Advisor Practices - Strategy Enablement and Activation

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


Lead the Strategy enablement and Activation team with accountability to deliver AAP and PCG digital and operational experiences from concept to enablement and value realization in a cohesive and consistent manner across Advisor practices.  Lead in developing, identifying, analyzing, and improving existing, complex, and unique field and related HO business processes to provide the intended field experience. Influences and contributes to the development of strategic business decisions and leads implementation of operational process improvement opportunities at all organizational levels in addition to digital experiences for our field.

Primary Duties & Responsibilities:

Delivers end to end leadership for digital and operational experiences by relentlessly pursuing operational process design across field practices and HO service providers.  Enable experiences to from onboarding to enablement to drive Business Performance

  • Business leadership of enterprise process design and strategy enablement across AAP and PCGs
  • Lead the team that is the builder of business process mapping (Onboarding and ongoing enablement of sophisticated practices )
  • Accountable for creation of supporting process and ensuring the touchpoints and dependencies are accounted across the enterprise
  • Accountable and decision maker for the end-to-end experience
  • Accountability includes “contracting” with enterprise service/delivery teams to agree on sub-accountabilities for pieces of the experience that are critical to overall accountability
  • Business lead accountable for AAP digital field experiences
  • Leads the team that measures, analyzes, and evaluates existing processes, collects data to identify root causes, performs cost benefit analysis, and identifies improvement opportunities.
  • Drives improvements with notable risk and complexity that have a broad impact on the business, while maintaining business and enterprise perspective.
  • Anticipates business and regulatory issues; develops, recommends, and implements unique solutions for process improvement, system enhancement, and operations efficiency that are aligned with business strategies.
  • Proactively monitors the holistic health (control parameters) of processes within the respective journey, implements action if degradation occurs, and adjusts controls as necessary
  • Implements best practices on process improvement activities across the Advisor Practices dept.
  • Demonstrates highly empathetic, customer-centric service while leading others in their learning and execution of transformational activities.
  • Demonstrates independent, expert level command of business process principles and methods, and guides improvement initiatives and mindsets for business partners with expert level emotional intelligence and political acumen.
  • Collaborates with, and persuades peer business leaders, technology, and other stakeholders to connect process architecture roadmap with operational decisions.
  • Guides highly complex process reengineering and technology implementation to enable process redesign and innovation.

Subject Matter Expertise

  • Demonstrates digital experience understanding and leads the governance model along with business lead engineering experts to innovative future state processes with high first-pass yield, high field/client satisfaction, and a frictionless Field experience.
  • Provides expert-level subject matter expertise in process improvement to product, operations, and/or technology teams in collaboration with other disciplines.
  • Exhibits a mastery of end-to-end processes within respective journey (e.g., volume, AHT, costs, cycle time, defects within processes, processes that are defects)


  • Develops and manages relationships with key field and HO partners to advance engagement, alignment of digital and operational experiences
  • Builds commitment and understanding required to accomplish the improvement goals for the organization.
  • Serves as an improvement coach, expert and mentor by senior management throughout the organization.
  • Leads others through ambiguity with confidence and engagement.

Knowledge, Skills & Abilities

  • Advanced degree in Business, finance or related field or an equivalent combination of education, field experience and/or progressively responsible work experience.
  • Minimum 10 years of progressively responsible experience working closely with a financial services distribution system in a leadership capacity with ability to develop, lead, manage, and collaborate on multiple projects.
  • Strong leadership, vision and strategy, decision-making and team-building skills.
  • High level of credibility with the Network Offices and field management including excellent platform skills.
  • In depth knowledge of the distribution system, Network Office operations, Northwestern Mutual's products, marketing approaches and sales and career cycle
  • Proven ability to lead independent decision making process and driving to a point of view through idea sharing and consensus building.
  • Operational experience strategy expert, Business process design leader
  • Strong interpersonal skills with demonstrated ability to establish rapport at all levels of the home office and in the field.
  • Proven track record of analyzing current state issues, determining root causes, and designing transformational experiences aligned to a strategic direction, ensuring stabilization and sustainability.
  • Demonstrated ability to lead, direct and influence with authority at all levels of an organization.



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.

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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.