Northwestern Mutual Reviews

Updated September 4, 2015
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3.6
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Northwestern Mutual Chairman and CEO John E. Schlifske
John E. Schlifske
343 Ratings

Pros
  • Unlimited income potential and overall good company (in 56 reviews)

  • Unlimited earning potential, full autonomy with work (in 39 reviews)

Cons
  • You first must meet with people in your initial network whether it be friends and family in order to gain new business or referrals (in 119 reviews)

  • They offer you no base salary and give you minimums to hit (in 46 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

1,472 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (2)

    Great place to work

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager In Information Systems in Milwaukee, WI
    Current Employee - Manager In Information Systems in Milwaukee, WI
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The company provides great benefits like lost-cost medical, dental, and vision insurance. 401k matching in addition to a retirement pension plan. The company provides free lunch to employees and contractors. There are a lot of smart people and the company is very particular about who they hire.

    Cons

    The company is very conservative and fairness is a big deal, so high performers don't get significantly higher salaries and benefits than average performers. It takes a long time to change processes and adopt new technology, although in some areas the company is ahead of the curve.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to the subject matter experts more to help drive the direction of the company. Take some more risks and make changes quicker.


  2. Helpful (1)

    Great company; Great employees

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager in Milwaukee, WI
    Current Employee - Manager in Milwaukee, WI
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Career opportunities; great benefits; great free lunch; great campuses.

    Cons

    No many. With the growth of the company, getting things accomplished takes more time because there's more process/red tape to go through than in the past.

    Advice to Management

    More empowerment of lower level management staff. Watch work/life balance issues. With technology, people are always working.


  3. A great company with tons of opportunity

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Representative in Dallas, TX
    Current Employee - Financial Representative in Dallas, TX
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Northwestern is recognized as the leader in the industry. The training and support are second to none. This is truely a career that you can do for the rest of your life without having to play office politics or worry about getting the next promotion.

    Cons

    It's a hard industry, especially for recent college graduates. Building a financial practice is difficult, but there is a very defined method for success. Compensation is straight commission right out of the gate, but that's not a big deal if you do what you're told to do.

    Advice to Management

    The management is in place to give the financial representatives, especially the young ones, every opportunity to succeed.


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  5. Great place to work, great opportunities.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate Financial Representative in Pittsburgh, PA
    Current Employee - Associate Financial Representative in Pittsburgh, PA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great training, best I know of in the industry for Financial Representatives.

    Cons

    A little more recognition to Associate Financial Representatives and Sales Assistants would be helpful. The Associate Financial Representatives, Sales Assistants and Marketing Assistants play a very large roll in helping the Financial Representative meet his goals. The recognition for a job well done is very public at the top, and it gets a little weaker as you go down the chain of command. Also, although the training is second to none for the Financial Representatives, I think the training for the sales staff could be a little more organized and concise.

    Advice to Management

    A little more recognition to Associate Financial Representatives and Sales Assistants would be helpful. The Associate Financial Representatives, Sales Assistants and Marketing Assistants play a very large roll in helping the Financial Representative meet his goals.


  6. Northwestern Mutual....Best Opportunity In America

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Representative in Troy, MI
    Current Employee - Financial Representative in Troy, MI
    Recommends

    Pros

    Opportunity for growth both personally & professionally, Income opportunity, flexibility of hours, company reputation.

    Cons

    You are compensated based on your production. If you do not do what they tell you to do in training, you will not be successful.

    Advice to Management

    Keep doing what you are doing.


  7. Northwestern Mutual- Protecting Financial Security Through Enduring Relationships

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Representative
    Current Employee - Financial Representative
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The opportunity to learn about the financial field is a great asset that NMFN brings. Not only that, the internship program has been in the Top 10 Internships, rated by Vault.com, for the past 13 straight years. You get the chance to do real work, as you have your own client base, you arrange your own schedule, and you have weekly meetings with management to keep you on track with your work and goals. It gives you a great chance to see if you can hack in the commissions world, and if you can't then you did not waste that much time since it won't take you long to realize if you are cut out for the business.

    Cons

    You are definitely always busy, which can be good and bad. If you are not busy, you won't survive long since you won't be making much of an income. Also, you have to learn how to accept rejection. A lot of it. People will say no to you on the phone, in person, through email, and by not responding to you at all, which is the worst. You can strain friendships and go into debt in the beginning so you are not handed a list of people to meet with. You call who you know and that is how you start out in the business.

    Advice to Management

    Senior management usually have all succeeded in the business. They are always helpful and always willing to set up a time to discuss strategies or scenarios.


  8. Best job oportunity ever!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Representative in Crystal Lake, IL
    Current Employee - Financial Representative in Crystal Lake, IL
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The most amazing place to work if you are trying to help people. It has the best dividends and can not be beat by other companies. Working for other companies and recommending their products over that of Northwestern Mutual's would be short changing your clients serious money in the long run. I believe in Northwestern Mutual and would strongly encourage hard workers to try this job.

    Cons

    Some of the management was a little pushy at times and would not accept your way of doing things. Some of the critisism was not just constructive - some of it was destructive. Not very compatable with lazy workers or people who have a fear of talking to people about products or sales.

    Advice to Management

    Require set goals by the end of the week that are necessary to obtain the stipend check at the end of the week.


  9. Northwestern Mutual is the place to be in financial services.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Managing Partner in Cedar Rapids, IA
    Current Employee - Managing Partner in Cedar Rapids, IA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great income, independence, and the ability to impact others. Northwestern Mutual's reputation is second to none.

    Cons

    It's not easy! This career requires a lot of determination, and discipline.

    Advice to Management

    Keep it up!


  10. A realistic approach to an excellent commisioned opportunity~Pro's & Con's

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Representative - College Intern in Fort Worth, TX
    Current Employee - Financial Representative - College Intern in Fort Worth, TX
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    As a college student, the best reason to begin a practice as a financial representative with NMFM would be the unlimited possibilities and amount of knowledge and hands-on personal training that you have made available to you. You are given the keys needed to suceed in this company and are provided with a full support staff dedicated to your growth so you are not left alone. There are financial stipends available to you as student to help you survive as you build your commision, too!

    Cons

    Commission is the up and downside. While the amount of money that you can make is endless, it is also difficult to build. Typically, within your first few years, you may have to have a part time job alongside this career just to have a steady flow of income coming in. Thre are different financial incintives made available to you depending on the type of contract you are in but comission is still COMMISSION and not reliable.

    Advice to Management

    Encourage the experienced agents who work with rookies to be more lenient in thier commision splits. They are already in a position that is stable and i feel that they should be willing to share more of the commision that they split with the new rep's that they are going on appointments with. This is fair, not only for ethical reasons, but also for the sheer fact that they would not have seen the new clients if it werent for the new agens who'd set the appointments up.


  11. Northwestern Mutual - great place to work! Amazing company, great culture.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director of Recruiting in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Director of Recruiting in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great culture - it's like family! Financial representatives (there are about 8,000 of them) have the best opportunity b/c they are able to be their own boss, make an incredible income, and still have a good work/life balance. As staff, the benefits vary depending on who you work for. The financial representatives are independent contractors who hire their own staff, so unless you work for corporate, you're working for an individual, which means benefits can be great or they can be terrible. At corporate, they have great benefits of course and free lunches, gym, etc. Northwestern Mutual is a highly ethical company and they highly value people of integrity. If you want to help people, this is a great company for you. Also, this company provides amazing training and support for its representatives. My husband and I both work here and it's been one of the best things to ever happen to us. We absolutely love this company, and I can honestly say that nearly every person I work with really loves coming to work every day. We have a very positive working environment! As a financial representative, your job is extremely demanding and difficult, but the rewards are amazing. Also, in tough economic times, it is great to know that this company is more than 150 years old and it has stood the test of time. It's financial strength is unwavering, and the leadership is always focused on maintaining the company's long-term financial strength and security. No matter how hard times get, no one here is ever worried about losing their jobs.

    Cons

    The biggest downside is that unless you work for corporate up in Milwaukee, you are working as a staff person for another financial representative. That means you are basically working for 1 person, not Northwestern Mutual as a whole. Because of that, the benefits packages can be pretty minimal. I don't have a retirement package, little vacation time, and really no room for advancement. I can always grow in my position and my job duties are constantly evolving, but I can't ever really get a promotion, unless I were to work at the corporate offices.

    Advice to Management

    Train the financial representatives to be better managers. Many of them are great at their job, but they have no clue how to manage...and ultimately they have to have those skills to build a great practice.



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