Northwestern Mutual, which offers investment products, advisory services and insurance, hopes to recruit more than 2,300 financial representatives and an additional 2,500 financial representative interns this year.
In Colorado, the company plans to select 40 financial representatives and 70 college interns, including 10 in each category in Colorado Springs.
“People still need to plan for financial security — in fact now more than ever,” said Scott Theodore, managing partner of Northwestern Mutual-Denver. “So our top priority is to grow new reps.”
The company’s need to recruit coincides with a time when many job seekers are dissatisfied with their careers — and financial services are in high demand.
“The landscape for the financial services profession is really strong. It’s a business that’s both inflation and recession proof,” Theodore said.
Financial representatives at Northwestern have a variety of backgrounds — engineering, psychology, marketing and certified public accountants.
“This is a business driven by relationships and connecting with people,” Theodore said.
“Most of the people we attract are career changers, with different backgrounds than business or financial. They want to take control of their lives; they want to make a difference, and they want to do it with a company with a strong reputation.”
The five-step selection process includes phone screening, in-person interviews, third-party assessments, financial projections and forecasting, and the invitation to bring in their spouse, significant other, or, for young interns, their parents.
“We truly take the selection process seriously,” he said. “We really want to make sure that this is the right career for them.”
Initial training involves three weeks of becoming familiar with company products and processes, and then each representative is assigned a mentor. They meet with their mentors twice a week for the first six months, once a week for the next six months, and once a month for the second year.
Representatives need their Series 6 or Series 7 securities license within the first year, but at Northwestern, they typically achieve this within the first three months. And, ultimately, they need a Colorado Life, Accident and Health insurance license.