GiveDirectly is hiring a

Field Manager, Urban Women Program

Nairobi, Kenya
Contractor

Start date: September 2020

Reports to: Program Manager / Country Director

Contract: Temporary, 6 months (with the possibility of extension subject to funding and performance)

Organization Background: 

GiveDirectly (GD) aims to reshape international giving - and millions of lives - by providing cash grants directly to the world’s poorest. The Brookings Institution estimates that $70B of cash transfers would be required to eliminate the poverty gap; the aid sector currently spends $135B each year, much of it on evidence-free interventions. GiveDirectly wants to change that, establishing cash transfers as a benchmark for foreign aid - as the index fund is a benchmark for the financial industry - and in the process accelerating the end of extreme poverty.

GD has raised over $200m since launching in 2011, delivered cash to more than 125,000 families, and launched offices in 7 countries. We’ve also supported large-scale, experimental research that indicates strong recipient impact of our programs. As a result, GD has been celebrated as one of the most innovative non-profit companies by Fast Company, while the growing cash transfer movement and GD’s leading role within it have been featured in the New York Times Magazine, This American Life, Foreign Affairs, and The Economist.

We’re looking for exceptional talent to grow our field team. Our culture is blunt, analytical, non-hierarchical, and fast-paced. We recruit candidates from top organizations across all industries - our team has hailed from consultancies, investment banks, start-ups, non-profits, and government to name a few. We value ability and willingness to learn over years of experience. We offer a competitive salary and benefits and performance-based bonuses.

 

Role Overview:

The Field Manager (“FM”) will be expected to lead the field based aspects of our new urban women project. The Field Manager will own the overall enrollment process, including tracking performance of field teams; achieving targets; building a culture of mentorship and professional development; and identifying opportunities for risk mitigation and process improvement. The Field Manager will serve as the key “eyes and ears” resource on the ground for the Country Director and will be responsible for regularly synthesizing updates on operational health. The role will reward exceptional personnel management, organizational skills, high-quality judgment on operational challenges, and a strong commitment towards building a scalable and better-leveraged field org. This role will require regular travel to the field locations we are working in (Mathare and Kibera). In the event that COVID-19 prevents such traveling, the field manager will be expected to lead an adapted remote program.

 

Responsibilities

Campaign Management: [20%]

The FM will be responsible for managing all aspects of ground operations:

  • Set and own quantifiable targets like households enrolled and operational efficiency.
  • Serve as the organization’s engine for continuous improvement of the enrolment process and recipient experience.
  • Over time, reduce dependence on senior management and create more leverage for the Country Director through capacity-building and delegation.

 

Vision & Critical Thinking: [20%]

The FM will be expected to be a strong contributor to the overall vision of the country office, engaging with the Country Director in country problem-solving.

  • Conceive, develop and test new protocols and methods prior to overseeing scale up.
  • Anticipate areas of risk and create mitigation plans (e.g. coordination on complex research partnership, slow-downs from pilots, etc.).

 

People Management: [20%]

The FM will be expected to oversee a performance-oriented culture within your team (your reports and their reports), with all staff receiving feedback and development opportunities to achieve their potential.

  •  Hire, train and manage field staff.
  •  Run performance reviews for direct reports and build their capacity to do the same.
  •  Identify and coach high-potential field staff to grow on a quick promotion trajectory.
  •  Identify gaps in the org chart and propose solutions to the Country Director.

 

Data and Analysis: [20%]

The FM will be expected to be comfortable using data to track performance, and inform decision-making, and to quickly build expertise within GD’s standard beneficiary data management and survey tools.

  • Support survey creation and updates for new and existing projects
  • Guide and support reports on data inquiries, skill development, and data analysis
  • Work effectively with GD’s global data team (framing needs and expectations, and holding self
  • and others accountable to agreed timelines)

 

Communication: [10%]

  •  Meet the GD “bar” for online communication responsiveness (slack, email, phone)
  •  Present effectively to the management team (focusing on key insights, etc.)
  •  Communicate concisely and clearly across a variety of forms (written, presenting, verbal)

 

Support for auxiliary projects: [5%]

  • Assist Country Director with hosting journalists, donors, and other external parties
  • Assist Country Director with communicating and executing new projects/pilots / technologies (e.g. messaging Salesforce to field team, brainstorming options for community-based targeting,
  • rolling out mobile app questions, etc.)

 

Team-building / morale: [5%]

  • Monitor team dynamics and own follow-up on barometer activities
  • Identify opportunities for morale-building (e.g. retreats, team events, incentive schemes, etc.)

 

Desired abilities/experience:

  • Degree in a relevant field
  • Exceptional leadership ability with demonstrated success in motivating and developing subordinates
  • Exceptional ability to problem-solve complex operational challenges in the field
  • Excitement about owning challenging management tasks, including mentoring and motivating direct reports and the broader field team
  • Demonstrated ability to work in a highly independent and self-directed manner, while effectively communicating upwardly about gaps and risks
  • Strong communication and relationship-building skills and the ability to represent the organization effectively to external parties
  • Strong analytical and technical skills, including a high level of proficiency with Microsoft Excel
  • Demonstrated success in a high-performance work environment
  • At least 3-5 years of management experience, preferably managing managers
  • Ability to manage day-to-day operations while simultaneously building more robust, efficient systems.
  • Experience working in urban informal settlements in Kenya highly desirable
  • As this is a program focusing on urban women, we strongly encourage qualified women to apply

 

GD Values

Recipients first.
We prioritize recipient preferences over those of donors or ourselves. 

We do not impose our preferences, or judgments, on the beneficiaries; instead we respect and empower them to make their own choices, elevating their voices in the global aid debate. This value is core to GiveDirectly’s identity as the first organization exclusively devoted to putting the poor in control of how aid money is spent. It comes at a potential cost, as it means that neither we nor donors get to set priorities (and we may even lose some “efficiency” in providing this option).

Team next.
We do what’s best for organizational - not individual - success. 

This is a team sport, where we will succeed (or fail) together. The best players are not those with the best individual statistics, but those with the biggest impact on our overall performance. We avoid territoriality, self-promotion, and I’m above this attitude.

Be proactively candid.
We say what we believe, and are honest in sharing information. 

Having confidence that other people are telling us what they truly believe, without gloss or omission, is critical to effective communication and to our ability to learn and grow from feedback. We owe it to each other - and our donors - to instill this confidence even though giving and receiving information candidly are unusual in both professional and social life, and can be very uncomfortable.

Create positive energy.
We strive to be a source - not drain - of energy for our colleagues.

Our work is hard, practically and emotionally, and we cannot overemphasize the importance of maintaining a positive attitude, enjoying the company of our colleagues, and not taking ourselves too seriously.  In doing so, we aspire to generate energy and excitement amongst our colleagues in pursuing our mission. This should not preclude candor, and we aspire to achieve both.

Think rigorously; act quickly.
We are intellectually rigorous with a drive towards action - not debate. 

We reason from first principles, grounding our decisions in objective claims about the world, rather than hard-to-disprove assertions or hierarchy. We aim to brainstorm inclusively and respectfully, but critically self-vet ideas we put forward, so as to ensure productive and prudent decision making.

Demanding this level of rigor forces us to think harder about decisions and our assumptions than we otherwise might. This is a real cost. It can be taken too far: it is possible to overthink decisions, and we avoid debate for the sake of debate.  We are not here to philosophize or ensure consensus. We decide and act quickly, avoiding getting bogged down in debates.

Accept reality. Propose solutions.
We do not dwell on problems. We work actively to create solutions. 

There will always be an endless list of things to improve. We focus on the things that can be changed; find the most important of those things, and propose actionable answers. We do not allow “problems” to weigh us down and be a source of negativity.  We are forward looking, which we believe not only leads to better team outcomes, but also creates a more enjoyable, energizing environment for all.

Be productively ambitious.
We take the risks to pursue industry-changing success, not incremental progress.

We seek step-change improvements at all levels, and are willing to make big-bets; we do not accept complacency nor do we simply optimize existing processes. In doing so, we allow ourselves to dream big with a belief that perceived constraints are merely opportunities for creativity.

Such ambition not only requires hard work (i.e., this is not a 9-5 job), but also a willingness to accept and learn from temporary setbacks and failures.  In accepting these failures, we’re conscious to not point fingers, nor obsess over “mistakes” made.

Know yourself and grow.
We recognize and accept our imperfections with a focus on growth. 

We are an organization of exceptional people and trust in each other’s abilities, yet we recognize that none of us is perfect. We strive to maintain an accurate understanding of our individual and institutional strengths and weaknesses, in order to position ourselves to maximize our chances of success.

At the same time, we seek personal growth for ourselves and our teammates. Feedback is given with a spirit of helpfulness; and sought out with a desire to learn.

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