Rewards and Career Development 


Enjoy a career that allows you to have a positive and lasting impact on people's lives every day, including your own.

And as your career progresses, choose to pursue:

  • Leadership path
  • Specialization in market niches
  • Advisory career path with Northwestern Mutual Investment Services, LLC or Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Company®


Continuing Education 





Your Development

Your local network office will provide support so you don't have to do it alone—including training and development to help you become a successful financial representative.

You'll have assistance in:

  • Developing your business and marketing plans
  • Extensive training and coaching from certified trainers
  • Access to knowledgeable groups of financial advisors and specialists to assist you.

Your local network office provides tools, resources and training to help you discover and build your markets to develop a successful practice as a financial representative.

You'll receive initial industry and sales training as well as mentoring and joint work programs for hands-on experience. You'll have access to on-line education resources for polishing skills and keeping up to date on industry information as well as exposure to opportunities for ongoing career education and advanced professional designations to increase your knowledge and reputation.

Financial Pyramid Life Cycle

The foundation of our success has been our ability to form enduring relationships with our clients through a needs-based analysis process. This process reflects our belief that over a lifetime, most people will experience many different financial needs and circumstances which can be summarized into three stages: Risk Management, Wealth Accumulation and Wealth Preservation and Distribution.

Your training will have a strong emphasis on the risk stage of your clients' lives—success in your career rests on your ability to help your clients meet these needs.

Wealth accumulation and wealth preservation and distribution build on this foundation to help you grow your career and offer opportunities to work with advisors and specialists.

Discovering Your Markets

As you learn about the career during the selection process, our "Discovering Your Markets" tool will help you explore and develop your own personal market opportunities; understand the commitment to building enduring relationships; and determine if this is the right career for you.

Your efforts in building your own personal marketing strategy can result in a fast start as you begin your career as a financial representative.

Fastrack Training

The Fastrack development system gives you the confidence and skills you need to become a successful financial representative.

  • Basics builds a foundation of knowledge in financial services.
  • Sales School teaches you how to develop enduring relationships.

Fastrack Basics

Fastrack Basics prepares you to enter Fastrack Sales School by finalizing your own personalized marketing plan.

You learn field-tested sales language for use with prospects and clients. You also learn finance, insurance and sales cycle concepts, Northwestern Mutual's traditions and products, as well as how to manage your activity.

Checkpoints help ensure you are on track, and your local team will be there to answer your questions as you progress.

Fastrack Sales School

Sales School will help you build a foundation of knowledge in Northwestern Mutual's sales techniques, with an emphasis on the art of obtaining favorable introductions and comprehensive fact finding.

Sales School will teach you how to:

  • Prepare to prospect, handle objections and effectively build relationships.
  • Ask probing and challenging questions to uncover a prospective client's needs.
  • Identify and understand a prospect's needs to help create unique solutions.
  • Convey your conviction for our business and our financial planning process.

Northwestern Mutual's resources and instructional options provide you with the training and development you need to help build your success now and in the future.

The Northwestern Mutual Learning Network

The Learning Network provides quality, job-relevant training in a timely, consistent and convenient manner. It has two main components.

The virtual university offers on-line access to enrollment, tracking, testing and learning events, as well as a centralized library of courses and resources.

The traditional university provides individual and group classroom training at your local network office or Home Office sponsored schools. Self-study, paper-based training is also available.

The Learning Network gives you more control over your career by increasing training opportunities and offering you the advantages of:

  • Training based on your individual needs, built upon your knowledge and experience and performance based evaluation. Progress tracked individually.
  • 24-hour, 7-day access to training.
  • Centralized catalog of all available training.

You can follow an established learning path with a proven record of success, or you can customize a development plan based on your own needs and interests. Either way, the Learning Network is a great learning resource for helping you get and keep your career on the path to success.


TEAMwork (Techniques to Encourage Accountability and Measurement) compliments the Fastrack development system. It's designed to maintain a high level of accountability and performance through ongoing training—helping to maximize a new representative's growth.

The following coaching and mentoring programs are offered:

  • Record Activity Compared to Expectation (RACE) Program - Daily meetings with a coach during the first two months.
  • Weekly Business Coaching - Weekly programs to help you develop sound sales and business practices (after RACE).
  • ClientBuilder - Monthly study group to help you grow and develop your business.

Continuing Education

The learning never stops. We provide an ongoing curriculum for your educational growth and personal development.

Professional Studies

Our financial representatives are encouraged to earn professional designations to increase their knowledge and reputations. Northwestern Mutual provides financial support to representatives as they pursue any of the following advanced professional designations and certifications:

Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU)
Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC)
Certified Financial Planner (CFP®)
Chartered Advisor for Senior Living (CASL)
Registered Health Underwriter (RHU)
Registered Employee Benefits Consultant (REBC)
Accredited Estate Planner (AEP)
Chartered Advisor in Philanthropy (CAP)
Masters of Science in Financial Services (MSFS)
Masters of Science in Management (MSM)
Life Underwriter Training Council Fellow (LUTCF)

Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and CFP (with flame logo)®, which it awards to individuals who successfully complete initial and ongoing certification requirements.


CORE (Comprehensive Ongoing Representative Education) continues throughout your career to ensure that you have access to up-to-date information and skills in the marketplace.

Samples of training options include:

Facilitator-Led Training - Topics range from product training and sales concepts to business management.

Refresher School - One and one-half days, hands-on learning forum to review and practice fundamental skills.

Variable and Investment Product Training - Learn about investment products and services offered through Northwestern Mutual.

Enduring Relationships - Focus on psychological aspects and practical application of relationship-building methodology.

Annual Meeting and Regional Meetings - World-class learning opportunities offered twice annually. Listen to well-known motivational speakers as well as highly successful financial representatives. Have the ability to select from a wide variety of small group sessions tailored to your stage in the career.

Leadership Opportunities

After establishing your own practice, you may choose to pursue a leadership role. Leadership roles offer growth opportunities through recruitment, development and retention of fellow representatives, by opening new offices, strengthening existing ones and supplying the overall structure and support to maintain and grow the network offices.

There is no one way to explore leadership opportunities. Everyone's career path is unique. If entering a leadership role interests you, you can also maintain your own practice while helping other representatives build their own.

Through our distribution system, leadership opportunities include, but are not limited to:

Through the L.E.A.D. (Leadership through Education, Achievement & Development) program you have access to an exclusive training curriculum that will help you develop the skills needed to take on a leadership role in your network office.

College Unit Director (CUD)
Lead a group of energized college interns, taking part in "One of America's Top Ten Internships, 1997-2014."*

*Vault Guide to Top Internships, 2014 edition.

Field Director (FD)
Assist in the recruitment and selection process in order to build a cohesive unit of productive full-time financial representatives.

Managing Director
Take on the unique challenge of balancing personal production and managing a district network office.

Managing Partner
Create a vision and be responsible for the overall success of a network office.


We provide continuous opportunities for advancement through specialization.  Everyone’s career path is unique, so our financial representatives control the choices they make to help direct and further their careers.

Choose to specialize in market niches such as disability income, long-term care, annuities and investments.

You may also choose to become a financial advisor of Northwestern Mutual Investment Services, LLC or a wealth management advisor of Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Company®.


The Rewards

A career as a financial representative rewards not only you, but others as well.

  • Enjoy the freedom to be your own boss
  • Achieve financial independence
  • Provide guidance and solutions for your clients’ needs
  • Have a positive impact on families and businesses for years to come

Your career as a financial representative is what you make of it. You have the freedom to balance your hard work and determination with your personal goals to bring a balance back to your life.


When you invest the time and hard work necessary to build a successful practice as a financial representative, you can enjoy the rare and envied reward of balancing work with your personal goals.

In the beginning of your career, it takes a tremendous amount of time, energy and commitment to earn the flexibility you will enjoy later on. The flexibility of a career as a financial representative allows you to focus on the things that are important to you.

You can arrange your schedule so you may have three or four appointments a day, and still have time to participate in your children’s school programs, community involvement or leisure-time activities.

Build a practice that allows you to schedule meetings to accommodate your clients' schedules and your own.


Your income potential is virtually unlimited. What you earn is directly related to your sales results and the relationships you develop with your clients.


We help our financial representatives set standards for their careers by establishing minimum earning levels that all representatives are required to achieve. Your local network office will discuss these standards with you, help you project your financial needs and your potential income at start-up and over the long term. Together, you will set strategic business goals.

Financial representatives are compensated through commissions, renewals and bonuses. To help you get started, we offer eligible financial representatives a Training Allowance Program during the first four years as a financial representative, which provides enhanced commissions on certain policies and contracts you sell.

It's your incentive to build a strong business foundation. Meet your goals and you will build a solid income base that you can rely on year after year.

Lasting Impact

As a financial representative, every solution you implement helps secure the financial future of your clients, and their families or business.


  • Help ensure families maintain their standard of living and keep their homes if something unexpected happens.
  • Provide needs-based analysis and solutions to help families build estates for their children and grandchildren.
  • Work with small business owners to help them pursue and protect their dreams.

Helping Families
You are actively involved in helping to protect what's important to a family's future and to help them make their lives better. You build enduring, trusting relationships with families so that you can be there throughout the different stages of their lives, help reassess their needs as they change and help them keep their original vision in sight.

Helping Businesses
You help business owners prepare for their future so they can concentrate on the day-to-day activities of running a business. You'll help them ensure their businesses continue, learn what employee benefits are available and how to protect against unforeseen risks.

Helping Communities
By building trusting relationships with your clients, you develop a solid reputation in your community. As you help more and more people within your community achieve their goals, you demonstrate in countless ways a broader commitment to empowering the lives of everyone in your community where they live and work.

Experience the rewards of a career in which you can have a daily, positive impact on people's lives, including your own.


  Are You Ready?
  Take The First Step.

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Local Offices