Senior Program Manager, Strategy, Planning, and Management - Communications

Seattle, WA, USA
Posted on  

Job Description


We are the largest nonprofit fighting poverty, disease, and inequity around the world. Founded on a simple premise: that people everywhere, regardless of identity or circumstances, should have the chance to live healthy, productive lives. By building a global and cultural workplace that supports greater diversity, equity, and inclusion — of voices, ideas, and approaches — together with our employees and partners, we can help all people improve their lives from poverty and health to education. As an organization we offer full healthcare premiums coverage, generous paid time off, contribution to your retirement fund, several employee communities, and a commitment to embedding diversity, equity, and inclusion into everything we do.

The Team

In June 2020, the foundation hired a Chief Communications Officer and established a new Communications Division to be responsible for the foundation’s global communications strategy. The division brings together internal and external communications to advance the foundation’s mission of a more equitable world!


Office of the CCO: The Office of the CCO ensures resources are aligned against insights and strategic priorities. We foster an inclusive, innovative, and high-integrity culture and efficient enabling environment in line with the values of One Global Foundation and Impact First. We advance the Communication Division’s vision through clear processes and operations, ensuring close coordination with internal and external partners. The Strategy Planning & Management (SPM) team is responsible for supporting the division and individual teams in strategy development, and operational planning and management to enhance impact.

Your Role

The Senior Program Manager is a strategic implementing to the Deputy Director, DDSPM (DDSPM), Chief of Staff (CoS), and the Chief Communications Officer (CCO) in their collective efforts to lead and implement the strategic and operational aspects of the OCCO and SPM team. Responsibilities include strategy development, planning, and reporting; portfolio management of Communications investments; partner and agency engagement; and process improvements. This position will serve as a highly qualified resource available to Communications leadership and program staff on strategy, planning, management, and foundation operations. The focus of this position will be on advancing operational strategies for program areas under the leadership of multiple Directors and Deputy Directors to advance Communications Excellence. The Senior Program Manager, Strategy, Planning, and Management will:

  • Provide critical support to program leadership in translating strategy goals into coherent portfolio level theory of action and plans that align staff time and investments to strategic goals.
  • Collaborate in leading strategy projects and implementation of selected, priority initiatives (e.g., Goalkeepers, Global Communications etc.) to enable core strategies in close partnership with the Deputy Director, Strategy Planning and Management (DDSPM), and other members of the Strategy Planning and Management team.
  • Provide the Comms leadership team and staff with appropriate business and operational support to deliver on divisional and team goals
  • Partner with DDSPM and CoS on operational model execution and process improvements
  • Partner with directors and deputy directors on special projects or initiatives of cross-cutting importance for the Comms teams.

This position is a limited-term position for 36 months and report to the Deputy Director, Strategy, Planning and Management (DDSPM), Comms, Office of the CCO.

What You’ll Do

Program Management and Planning

  • Facilitate with DDSPM, Communications leadership, and key partners to design and facilitate key management processes, including strategy reviews, annual planning and budgeting, business performance measurement, scorecard management and resource allocation.
  • Support successful implementation of cross-division efforts in partnership with other Senior Program Managers and Business Partners.
  • Lead large and/or complex projects in support of strategy development, resource allocation (both financial budgets and staffing), investment management, and business performance management.
  • Establish and implement work plans, drive and supervise progress against achievements and key decisions, and lead collaborator communications.
  • Ensure alignment and cohesion across all required materials and annual requirements, including strategy deliverables, investment and portfolio planning, and bodies of work (budget and headcount).

Strategy Development and Implementation

  • Demonstrates thought leadership in terms of approach, objectives, risk, and issues management with personal contributions to identifying and strategizing on mitigation and devising solutions across division-wide initiatives and foundation executive support.
  • Work closely with the DDSPM and the Communications Leadership Team members to co-design and implement communications strategies for the foundation’s focal areas.
  • Work with Deputy Directors (DDs), Senior/Communications Officers (S/COs) to refine and strengthen Communications’ strategies.
  • Provide critical support to program leadership in defining goals and translating goals into coherent, prioritized portfolio and investment plan.
  • Strengthen the consistency, difficulty, evaluation and learning of investment portfolios across strategies.
  • In partnership with the DDSPM, Leadership Team and Comms Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Working Group, work to ensure DEI recommendations are embedded into strategies, business processes and reporting.

Business Operations

  • Responsible for promoting efficiency and productivity on the team by providing leadership and support in process development and improvement, implementation, and constant improvement of tools, analysis, reporting, and organizational change.
  • Supply to SPM’s team core objectives in support of strategy development, planning, management and measurement
  • Partner and collaborate with Comms staff and leadership to identify process gaps and inefficiencies that impede effectiveness and propose informed solutions.
  • Interface and collaborate with business partners across multiple functions, including Recruiting, Finance, HR, Operations, and IT
  • Identify and support opportunities to strengthen the Communication team’s partnership with other divisions, Business Operations and the Private Offices.
  • Coordinate appropriately with regional office staff in Washington, DC, Europe, China, India, and Africa.
  • Engage daily with partners within and outside of Communications as needed to drive work forward, including Recruiting, Finance, HR, Operations, DEI CoE, and IT.
  • Contribute to cross-foundation initiatives in coordination with Program Managers throughout the organization.

People Management

  • This role may manage people and may be responsible for hiring the talent needed to achieve our goals, ensuring successful employee onboarding, communicating performance expectations, creating goal alignment, integrating project and organizational change, giving and seeking feedback, providing coaching, measuring progress and holding people accountable, supporting employee development, and recognizing achievement and lessons learned.

Your Experience

  • At least 7 years of dynamic broad operational experience, including in the areas of strategy, planning, project management, human resources management
  • Masters in business administration, public health, public policy, public affairs or equivalent experience in international affairs preferred
  • Ability to lead and support a wide array of projects to successful conclusion while operating in a dynamic, constantly evolving environment
  • Excellent project management skills, a background in agile and casual pathway design preferred
  • Ability to facilitate participatory design/human-centered design that focuses on people's everyday thinking, emotions, and behavior. Using a creative approach to problem-solving that involves the end-user from the very beginning and places them at the center of the strategic design process.
  • Strong presentation skills (both written and verbal), with proven ability to adapt tone and style for broad and diverse audiences
  • Exceptional design and presentation skills across a variety of platforms (e.g., Smartsheet, Tableau, Vizio, LucidChart, MS Office), and mechanisms (e.g., in-person, virtual, in writing)
  • Proven track record to work with diplomacy, flexibility, efficiency, and passion in a fast-paced and sophisticated internal and external environment.
  • A record of getting things done, of driving clarity midst ambiguity, and finding a mutually agreeable path forward out of complicated priorities.
  • Strong interpersonal and relationship-building skills; empower teammates and colleagues to understand seemingly sophisticated information to increase capacity and improve effective engagement across the division
  • Experience managing, mentoring and developing small teams preferred
  • Ability to be creative and successful, both collaboratively and as an independent problem solver.
  • Ability to identify, assess, and develop creative solutions to complex strategic and operational challenges.
  • Strong people / team management skills
  • Ability to navigate a wide range of operational issues including legal, IT, financial, and HR
  • Knowledge of strategy development and implementation and interest in helping to build the processes, systems, and reporting to improve program impact and efficiency
  • Experience with program design, results frameworks, measurement, learning & evaluation (MLE), scorecards and performance management
  • Knowledge of policy development and advocacy in donor and developing countries contexts for global health and development issues preferred
  • Given the complexity of Communications, being comfortable with highly unstructured and ambiguous challenges and opportunities; ability to proactively identify and resolve issues.

Other Attributes

  • Willing to travel up to 20%
  • Must be able to legally work in the country where this position is located without visa sponsorship.

Hiring Requirements

As part of our standard hiring process for new employees, employment will be contingent upon successful completion of a background check.

Depending upon your work location, we may require proof of full vaccination against COVID-19 and any recommended booster doses. All employees based in the United States are to provide proof of full vaccination upon hire and any recommended boosters, subject to applicable laws.

Candidate Accommodations

If you require assistance due to a disability in the application or recruitment process, please submit a request here.

Inclusion Statement

We are dedicated to the belief that all lives have equal value. We’re committed to creating a workplace where employees thrive both personally and professionally. We also believe our employees should reflect the rich diversity of the global populations we aim to serve—in race, gender, age, cultures and beliefs—and we support this diversity through all of our employment practices.

All applicants and employees who are drawn to serve our mission will enjoy equality of opportunity and fair treatment without regard to race, color, age, religion, pregnancy, sex, sexual orientation, disability, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, genetic information, veteran status, marital status, and prior protected activity.


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