MILWAUKEE, March 15, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Northwestern Mutual Chairman and Chief Executive Officer John E. Schlifske has been named one of the five highest rated CEOs worldwide by Glassdoor – an online career and workplace community. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130206/CG55426LOGO) Schlifske received a 96% approval rating from Northwestern Mutual employees and independently contracted financial representatives who participated in Glassdoor's annual "50 Highest Rated CEOs" report released on March 15, 2013. Glassdoor calculates CEO approval ratings similar to Presidential approval ratings by asking employees: 'Do you approve or disapprove of the way your CEO is leading the company?" Schlifske joins other prominent CEOs in the top five: Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook; Bill McDermott and Jim Hagemann Snabe, SAP; Dominic Barton, McKinsey & Company; and Jim Turley, Ernst & Young. "I don't view this as recognition for me, but for the entire Northwestern Mutual organization. It's an acknowledgment of the excellent work that made 2012 one of the most successful years in our 156-year history," said Schlifske. "It's an honor to represent those who know Northwestern Mutual best – our employees and financial representatives. They are the driving force behind our success." The Glassdoor recognition comes on the heels of a record-breaking 2012 for Northwestern Mutual. Achievements include a record dividend payout expected to exceed $5 billion in 2013, sales records for the company's insurance and annuity lines with annual insurance premium sales greater than $1 billion for the first time in the company's history, and an increase in the company's total surplus by more than $1.2 billion, totaling $19.4 billion at year end. This is the second recognition Northwestern Mutual has received from Glassdoor in recent months. In December 2012, Northwestern Mutual was the only company in the insurance industry to rank on Glassdoor's Top 50 "Best Places to Work in 2013" list.