1 Insurance Carrier in '50 Best Companies to Sell For' List

Aug 26, 2016

  1. Brian Anderson
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    Brian Anderson Executive Editor

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    Not endorsing; just sharing news...

    Northwestern Mutual came in at #2 in Selling Power magazine's 2016 list of the 'Top 50 Companies to Sell For,' and no other insurance carriers appear on the list.

    From Selling Power bio of NWM in the piece:
    The award-winning training program for new recruits gets them off to a fast start and helps them maintain a strong performance over time. Careers are developed via professional designations and certifications, with full financial support. Numerous awards, honors, and/or bonuses recognize salespeople ("financial representatives") based on productivity and persistence throughout the year.

    From NWM press release:
    "The growing demand for financial planning is opening up career opportunities at companies like Northwestern Mutual. We take great pride in providing individuals interested in a financial services career with hands-on training and mentoring from some of the best financial planning professionals in the industry," said NWM SVP Tim Gerend.

    In compiling the 2016 rankings, Selling Power evaluated Northwestern Mutual's client growth, hiring and compensation figures, investment of time in training programs, and company recognition and reputation, which includes the company's commitment to community outreach and involvement.


    It's the 14th year in a row they've been in the Top 50. While I know plenty of carriers seem to put little emphasis on training these days, there are some others that do. Kinda curious about no other captive carriers making the list.

    Selling Power | 50 Best Companies to Sell For | 2016
     
  2. UW Guy
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    UW Guy Super Genius

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    I know there some former NM'ers here but, as a former underwriter for NM, most of the FR's seemed to learn through trial and error. In their first two years they have specific underwriters who handle cases for newer agents but unless you have a good assistant/mentor/managing partner it's about the same as any where else.

    It also helps that NM has reinsurance (auto and facultative) programs that help ensure that a lot of their business doesn't go table rated and instead goes Standard. It helps them get around their pricing issues (as I'm sure many of you here are used to beating their prices) but basically means you just slap Standard on a host of table rated maladies elsewhere and not really learn much.
     
    UW Guy, Aug 26, 2016
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  3. AboutThatLife
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    AboutThatLife Guru

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    So you are saying the training and compensation is not second to none? I wonder if they are doing better than the 55% you start with at Mass.
     
  4. walthamny
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    walthamny Guru

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    Most print subscribers are hurting for business so it would not surprise me if NWM signed a 2 year advertising contract and Selling Power magazine in a toally unrelated move listed them in the rankings and skipped, NYL, Guardian, MassMutual. This is my personal guess.

    When I was at NYL, they started advertising in the Barron magazine and few months later NYL was picked as the most admired investment company and each new agent was told to carry the print out. I am sure there are similar stories for Guardian and MassMutual as well.

    Money and Kiplinger magazines hated variable annuities for years until annuity companies started advertising in them. They even like whole life now.

    So the most important criteria in my opinion is the local office and the partner. There is so much you can teach about life insurance in a class room, most of it is learned on the job.
     
  5. AboutThatLife
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    AboutThatLife Guru

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    That makes sense, I was wondering what made their program so special. A lot of the companies on the list didn't seem very "sales focused" at all. I went on the site to read about comps and stuff, not many openings.
     
  6. UW Guy
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    UW Guy Super Genius

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    They pay up front on prepaid apps (and then commission adjust after if it's rated or not taken) which is a major tool they use for recruitment. Otherwise they're above average field underwriters as captives go.
     
    UW Guy, Aug 30, 2016
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  7. TomZack
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    TomZack Expert

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    haha.....

    That appears so cynical. But I have ventured into print advertising in the recent past and know what you are saying might be true. Advertorials and 'sponsored' articles are the latest rage everywhere. Read Yahoo news page?

    Why? They work...for the most part. Companies will pay big money for the right vs an ordinary ad. It was amusing reading about Money mag and Kiplinger's 'getting religion' about whole life and VUL after taking ad money.
     
    TomZack, Aug 30, 2016
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  8. Norwayguy
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    Norwayguy I have spent way too much time here.

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    I noticed agent retention is not a factor they looked at.
     
  9. scagnt83
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    scagnt83 Worldwide Expert of Everything

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    I have no clue if it was a "sponsor" deal or not. But NWM has some of the highest agent retention out of all the big mutuals. There is a reason for that. They are also much more selective about hiring and have a lower failure rate than the other big mutuals because of that.

    As a new agent starting out, NWM is a strong option to learn this business imo. (and im a former NYL captive. Not saying they are better than NYL in general, but they are a strong option and in my experience have better agent retention than NYL or others)
     
    scagnt83, Aug 31, 2016
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  10. DWPCL
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    DWPCL Super Genius

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    I really have a hard time understanding how NWM keeps their experienced agents. Its not all about the money, but they pay their agents the least out of the major mutuals.
     
    DWPCL, Aug 31, 2016
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