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Innovation Team Lead


Posted 1 month ago

Job Snapshot

Experience - 8 years
Banking - Financial Services, Insurance
Information Technology, Strategy - Planning

Job Description

We are seeking Innovation Team Leads to join our team our team in Columbus, OH!

Are you an innovator? Are you passionate about innovations? Are you excited to uncover the next big thing? Are you just as excited when an idea fails? If so, we want you to join the Innovation @ Nationwide group.

You will lead a multidisciplinary innovation “pod” or team designed to create, design, prototype, and launch products, services, experiences, and even businesses that disrupt the insurance and financial services industry. You will lead the pod and business partners throughout the innovation process from exploration to conceptual design; to detailed design, to develop and build, then launch.

The Innovation Team Leads engages directly with users, and works to uncover key unmet needs and develops solutions to meet these needs, solving for big customer problems. Brings these “member centric” solutions to market often in partnership with teams throughout the company.

Ensures that the innovation lies at the intersection of the Customer (“desirability”), Technology (“feasibility”), and the Business (“viability”). Collaborates with the designer and researcher to assess desirability. Partners with technologists to assess feasibility; and works with business lead to look at viability. Brings all pieces together into the right solution for the right needs.

As an innovation thought-leader. Challenges current thinking and practices and creates customer and business value in ways unlikely to emerge from the existing enterprise. 

Core Duties and Responsibilities: 


  • Core leader of the pod, where collaboration with product managers, designers, researchers, technologists, and business/finance leads to the best outcome
  • Provides project management and team leadership for the innovation pod, managing a multi-disciplinary team with skillsets across all aspects of the value chain and innovation process
  • Enthusiastically champions the work of the team even when pivoting is needed, understanding that failure is part of the innovation process. Institutionalizes learning from productive failures
  • Utilizes and encourages a startup or entrepreneurial mind set
  • Collaborates seamlessly and successfully throughout the organization with support areas such marketing, sales, public relations, legal and compliance, as well as other groups
  • Builds a high performance, highly engaged team
  • Effectively prioritizes across the spectrum of work and decisions

Design Thinking

  • Leads and facilitates the user-driven innovation process (aka “design thinking”) with cross functional team members
  • Translates consumer and end-user needs into products, services, experiences, and businesses that solves needs and creates value
  • Supports and participates in rapid prototyping of ideas and solutions directly with consumers and customers, and iterates aggressively to arrive at solutions that exceed customer expectations and creates new value and points of differentiation. 
  • Understands and represents the voice of the user (“the who”), clearly defines the right problems to solve (“the what”) and ensures the right end-to-end solutions to solve them (“the how”)

Thought leadership

  • Brings new ideas and thought leadership to Nationwide. Keeps a pulse on industry movement and activities, and remains on top of key trends within insurance, financial services, startups and technology companies.
  • Anticipates where relevant companies, trends, and technologies might be going and informs strategies.
  • Raises the collective innovation capability of the team through coaching, advising and supporting others.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Job Requirements

  • Undergraduate studies in business, marketing, product or engineering. MBA preferred.

  • Minimum of 10 years of diverse business experiences with an emphasis on strategy, innovation and product management, ideally with new digital products for consumers or businesses (big and/or small).

  • Demonstrated entrepreneurial passion with the ability to explore business opportunities in a structured, yet iterative way, with “lean startup” design thinking skills / user- centered design expertise, or similar development approaches.

  • Experience managing a high performing team and cultivating a collaborative environment. Innovation experience, preferably within a technology, insurance or financial services company, including new product development, product management, and new product launch.

  • Experience working within an innovation group for a larger company, innovation consulting company or innovative product company.

  • Experience with primary consumer research, time “in the field”, market research, and translation of insights uncovered into ideas, concepts, and products.

  • Experience with PowerPoint and presentation creation; proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite.

  • Strong analytical skills and a proven ability to think strategically about customer needs, market dynamics and business impact.

  • Ability to work across multiple methodologies, including agile, scrum, waterfall, and hybrids. Strong sense of urgency with a focus on testing fast, learning fast and fail fast.

  • Ability to act as a change agent and align teams on new ideas and ways of working.

  • Working Conditions:  Up to 25% travel will be required to be “in the field” engaging directly with our members.

Nationwide, a Fortune 100 company based in Columbus, Ohio, is one of the largest and strongest diversified insurance and financial services organizations in the U.S. and is rated A+ by both A.M. Best and Standard & Poor’s. The company provides a full range of insurance and financial services, including auto, commercial, homeowners, farm and life insurance; public and private sector retirement plans, annuities and mutual funds; banking and mortgages; excess & surplus, specialty and surety; pet, motorcycle and boat insurance.


Job ID: 22755
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