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Director of Internal Communications

Strada Education Network

Strada Education Network

Marketing & Communications
Indianapolis, IN, USA
Posted on Friday, November 10, 2023
Strada Education Foundation, a dynamic organization dedicated to strengthening the connections between education and employment, is seeking a talented and experienced professional to join our team as the Director of Internal Communications. This leadership role will play a pivotal part in shaping and executing internal communication strategies, working closely with President and CEO Stephen Moret, as well as Aristide Collins, Jr., Chief Administrative Officer (CAO)/Chief of Staff (COS) to whom the role will report.
Context
Strada Education Foundation supports programs, policies, and organizations that strengthen connections between education and employment in the U.S., with a special focus on helping those who have faced the greatest challenges securing economic opportunity through postsecondary education or training (PSET). Our new strategic plan focuses on five strategic pillars: clear outcomes, quality coaching, affordable PSET, work-based learning, and employer alignment. We work with partners in education and training, nonprofit organizations, industry, startups, and public policy. We leverage strategic philanthropy, investments, research, communications, policy solutions, and nonprofit subsidiaries as tools to help advance equitable pathways to opportunity. Strada offers a dynamic, collaborative, and inspiring professional environment that provides learning and professional development opportunities, both within the organization and with external partners.

Key Responsibilities: The Director of Internal Communications has three core responsibility areas, listed below with approximate time required.

  • Area 1: Develop, prioritize, and execute internal employee content for distribution to staff by the President and CEO or the CAO/COS (50%)
  • Research, prepare and draft monthly staff communications for the President and CEO.
  • Write talking points for the President and CEO and CAO/COS for internal purposes, and high-level meetings (including All-Staff meetings). Prepare and coordinate briefing materials as necessary.
  • Provide writing and editing support to the CAO/COS.
  • Maintain a high level of accuracy and ensure all facts and details are correct.
  • Collaborate proactively and effectively with teams across the organization to translate internal messaging into compelling content for various platforms.
  • Partner with Human Resources and other areas across the organization on internal leadership announcements.
  • Coordinate with the Chief Communications Officer (CCO)/Strategic Communications regarding foundation messaging, internally amplifying external content about Strada, etc.
  • Area 2: Manage content of Strada’s internal communications website: the Hub (30%)
  • Research, prepare and manage content on the organization’s intranet site (the Hub) including collaborating with offices on content and major updates.
  • Manage list of department connections who are responsible for the content of their respective groups.
  • Take ownership of the proper ‘look and feel’ of the Hub ensuring proper corporate guidelines for the best readability and connection to content.
  • Work closely with IT to ensure the technical capabilities can match the communications strategy.
  • Area 3: Support the Office of the CEO regarding strategic communications (20%)
  • Advise on strategic opportunities for the President and CEO to communicate key messages or priorities to internal audiences.
  • Work closely with the CAO/COS to advise and develop long range strategies for Strada internal communications to capture the voice of the CEO and the messaging of the most critical details.
  • Work with human resources to understand the employee engagement areas to communicate plans for improvement.

The Person: Qualifications, Skills and Experience

  • 7-10+ years of demonstrated writing or research skills, preferably in a senior communications role.
  • Undergraduate degree in communications, business, public policy, or another relevant field is required.
  • Proven experience in developing and executing internal communication strategies, including content creation for senior leadership.
  • Previous experience in higher education, workforce development, or large nonprofit a plus.
  • Track record of successful collaboration with cross-functional teams and executives.
  • Familiarity with the intricacies of internal communications within complex organizations.
  • Exceptional writing skills with the ability to adapt style for different audiences and channels.
  • Aptitude for understanding complex issues and translating them into clear and concise messaging.
  • Strong organizational skills, with the ability to manage multiple priorities and deadlines effectively.
  • Flexibility and adaptability in approach, with a willingness to take on diverse tasks with enthusiasm.
  • Strong quantitative and qualitative reasoning skills for effective decision-making.
  • High level of discretion and ability to handle sensitive or delicate assignments with sound editorial judgment.
  • Proven ability to work independently and take initiative in a fast-paced environment.
  • Emotional intelligence and strong judgment to navigate challenges and conflicts.
  • Adaptability to change and tolerance for ambiguity, coupled with excellent problem-solving abilities.
  • Commitment to and professional experience in advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion within an organization.
  • In-depth understanding of internal communication best practices, trends, and emerging technologies.
  • Familiarity with corporate communication guidelines and the ability to ensure consistent adherence.
  • Understanding of communications technology and its role in enhancing internal communication strategies.
Mission and Values Alignment:
Committed to providing equitable pathways to opportunity through PSET, particularly for individuals who have faced significant barriers. Demonstrated alignment with Strada's guiding values, commitment to building a strong and healthy workplace culture, and working in a collaborative environment.
Strategy and Innovation Leadership:
Adept at operationalizing strategy and effectively communicating strategic endeavors within the organization and in external contexts, both verbally and in writing. Particular skill in designing annual plans, monitoring progress, and refining plans as needed. Adaptable with tolerance for ambiguity. Able to problem-solve and navigate varied viewpoints. Capacity to refine efforts based on evidence that change is needed. Ability to lead efforts to visualize and monitor change. Capability to see and support innovative ideas and opportunities across the organization, and to embed innovation within operational plans. Capabilities in taking the perspective of others and adapting an agenda and approach – toward a shared aim - accordingly.
Strategic Problem Solving:
Ability to effectively utilize a hypothesis-driven approach to problem solving, with effective quantitative and communication skills. Ability to take on broad-reaching and sometimes ambiguous questions while working collaboratively and cross-functionally with Strada team members across the organization.
Execution and Operations Leadership:
Ability to translate innovative, strategic ideas into tangible, actionable steps, as well as to effectively monitor progress and partner with others on identifying improvements during implementation to increase the likelihood of successful execution.
DEI Commitment:
Commitment and professional experience advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion within and organization, including incorporating stakeholder perspectives in the design, implementation, and evaluation of strategic efforts.
Relationship Building and Collaborative Capabilities:
Demonstrated ability to cultivate, grow, and manage positive, mutually beneficial relationships at all levels of an organization and with partners outside the organization. Strong communication, interpersonal and relationship management skills—including identifying and working through challenges—underscored by strong judgment and emotional intelligence. Proven collaborator, able to work with colleagues at all levels in the organization.
Diversity, equity, and inclusion are central to Strada’s organizational vibrancy, employee experience, and mission. Strada is Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Workplace-certified by Diversity for Social Impact, a strategic professional and organization development company dedicated to promoting diversity and inclusion to drive social impact worldwide. We strongly encourage applicants from people of color/the global majority, immigrant, bilingual, and bicultural individuals; people with disabilities, members of the LGBTQIA2S+ and gender nonconforming communities; and people with other diverse backgrounds and lived experiences. We believe every member on the team enriches our workplace by exposing us to a broad range of ways to understand and engage with the world, identify challenges, and discover, design, and deliver critical insights and solutions.