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Organization TypePublic Interest
Years of Experience
Date Last Verified
Chief of Staff Duties: Preparation for, and facilitation of, critical path CEO meetings (e.g., with Cardinal Innovations executive leadership, and key internal and external stakeholders). While members of any one of these groups may initiate these meetings through the CEO’s Executive Assistant and be responsible for inviting and preparing participants, the COS is accountable to ensure that the meeting objectives are realistic, that preparation is appropriate, and that the CEO is well-prepared. The COS’s role is to make sure the CEO’s time is leveraged most effectively in a meeting context. Coordination/orchestration of projects or commitments directly involving the CEO and his/her direct reports. This responsibility primarily focuses on ensuring alignment among the often disparate stakeholders and, when such alignment is absent, sharing this fact with the CEO and recommending mitigating approaches. While this responsibility envisions the COS “going deep” on a relatively limited number of projects, s/he would also need to understand the breadth of the projects within the CEO’s purview. The CEO and the COS would agree in advance on the schedule of projects requiring COS involvement. Tact, diplomacy, and persistence are essential qualities in executing this dimension of the role. Collaboration is essential given the various leaders that the COS will partner with. Clear lines of responsibility should be established in order for leaders to be held accountable for their own areas. Independent leadership of special CEO-initiated projects. While the vast majority of CEO-initiated projects will find homes among the executive team and their staff, some confidential or time sensitive issues will need to reside within the office of the CEO and be led by the COS and the CEO. Development of draft communications on behalf of the CEO and/or research in support of these. Communications range from the CEO update at Board meetings, to follow up correspondence related to the CEO’s various meetings with internal and external stakeholders and staff. In addition to the drafting of key communications, the COS should also be able to accurately reflect the CEO’s position in internal meetings to help drive understanding of his/her views, though the role does not entail devolved responsibility to act for the CEO unless so specified. Proactive identification of issues that could impact the successful execution of the CEO’s commitments: Elevating those issues about which the CEO should be aware and framing/positioning ideas to resolve the problem/mitigate the risk. This is among the most challenging aspect of the job and will require the COS to focus on the underlying interests of the parties working with the CEO, understand their intentions, and creatively identify alternative means of handling pressing issues while collaborating with impacted leaders. Support the executive team’s communications with the CEO: The COS will help facilitate decisions the executive staff need receiving feedback on from the CEO. S/he will support the needs of the executive staff in their ability to raise critical issues with the CEO and receive needed responses, guidance and decisions. Work closely with CEO’s Executive Assistant to remain apprised of/schedule upcoming CEO commitments Confirm objectives for the meeting and recommend participants and best approach Develop backgrounders for CEO on the meeting Help ensure participants are aware of and prepared for the meeting Attend meetings, capture major take-a ways, and work with executive team to ensure follow up Work with CEO’s Executive Assistant to ensure appropriate and timely communication to participants Monitor progress/achievement of next steps Project Coordination/Orchestration Develop and maintain an inventory of critical path projects in which the CEO is especially interested and/or for which her awareness and involvement is essential Work with Executive staff to align their actions and communications in support of agreed upon goals. COS’s role will be to work with all staff to ensure that the CEO’s needs are conveyed, that progress is being made in a timely way, and that any demands on CEO’s schedule are understood and agreed upon. The COS will also work to ensure the Executive team’s needs are conveyed to the CEO for consideration. Be prepared to apprise the CEO of project status and variations from schedule or scope Leadership of Special Projects Scope, plan and execute multiple, often quick-turnaround projects with minimal outside assistance Work with appropriate stakeholders, including outside parties, to undertake analysis Present findings to CEO, Executive staff, or Board, as appropriate If necessary, oversee transfer of the project to other stakeholders within the organization Communication Create inventory of upcoming communication “events”—including articles, columns, speeches, panel discussions, etc. Work with CEO to determine the role the COS will play in outlining, drafting, and/or researching in support of each event. Perform agreed upon work—including coordinating with others who might be involved; communication must be clear, concise, and compelling Prepare follow up correspondence for internal and external meetings, as directed by the CEO. Conduct fact checking in support of all communications. Present timely work-in-progress updates to the CEO on the status of the communication materials mentioned above. Represent the CEO in outside forums that the CEO cannot attend. Often, this will mean accompanying another Cardinal Innovations executive to a meeting. Follow up with copies of communication materials (such as pamphlets, DVDs, etc…) as appropriate.
Qualification and Experience
QUALIFICATIONS: MBA, JD or other advanced degree required. 5+ years work experience required. Applicable/transferable experience. Willingness to work hard and take direction—but also creatively solve problems for which the answers aren’t always obvious. Knowledge of Cardinal Innovations and key stakeholders. Organizational and political agility; developed negotiation skills. Unquestionable personal code of ethics, integrity, diversity and trust. Able to successfully navigate within varying degrees of ambiguity in a fast-paced environment. Results/action-orientation; project management skills. Highly-developed communications skills (written/verbal) and interpersonal savvy. Strong strategic/financial analysis skills.
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