Country Director, US
GiveDirectly (GD) aims to reshape international giving – and millions of lives – by allowing donors to provide capital 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 which is allocated to evidence-free interventions. GiveDirectly wants to change that, establishing a benchmark, and in the process accelerate the end of extreme poverty. GiveDirectly has raised over $400M in revenue (>$150M in 2020 alone), while being recognized as one of the most innovative non-profit companies by Fast Company. The growing movement toward cash transfers and GD’s role in that movement have also been featured in This American Life, Foreign Affairs, The Economist, and Business Insider.
Cash transfers are at a potential inflection point: COVID-19 has amplified the challenges of bulkier in-kind aid models, and governments are deploying cash as their most common tool of assistance to vulnerable populations. GiveDirectly has an opportunity to leverage its strong track record (i.e. operations across 9 countries, >$250M transferred to over a million individuals, 13 randomized control trials), to both deliver immense impact and position itself as the premiere cash implementation vehicle globally.
We’re looking for exceptional talent to grow our collaborative, diverse team. Joining GiveDirectly provides the opportunity to work alongside individuals who come from 21 different countries and speak 69 different languages. We’re actively working toward an equitable and inclusive environment for all team members, and seek candidates who will bring diverse perspectives and experiences to our organization. We recruit from organizations across all industries: our team has hailed from sectors including start-ups, government, consultancies, investment banks, and nonprofits.
Across our global offices, our culture is candid, analytical, non-hierarchical, and fast-paced. We value ability, adaptability, and willingness to learn. We offer competitive salary and benefits, as well as performance-based bonuses.
In April 2020, GiveDirectly launched a US COVID response, Project 100, and disbursed over $100M in cash to 100K Americans in less than 100 days — 100% remotely. This year, GiveDirectly is increasing its investment in the US and officially launching its US Country Team.
The US Country Director will shape a team that has the potential to uniquely impact the US cash sector at a time when cash is receiving unprecedented attention and interest in the public eye.
The US Country Director will take charge of establishing GD as a leader in the cash, and more broadly, nonprofit space in the US. As the US Country Director you will lead the vision, goal setting and strategic planning for the new US Country team, own new business development and partnerships, oversee program management, and manage a team to drive exceptional execution.
We’re looking for candidates who will be based in the United States and willing to travel domestically as needed.
Please note you must be authorized to work in the United States, as we are unable to sponsor international candidates for this position.
Lead vision-setting and strategic planning for US Country Team
Set US Country operational and revenue goals and create roadmap for success
New Business and Partnership Development
Own US revenue targets: drive fundraising opportunities, build and manage high quality relationships with donors
Identify strategic partnership opportunities and build a robust pipeline of projects to enable growth in the Us
Serve as the US Country Team’s external spokesperson (with press, peer orgs, partners, funders). Identify and pursue external opportunities to amplify GD’s brand.
Directly manage US Senior Manager(s), and lead the larger US team that includes US Associate(s)/Manager(s). Serve as a representative of the US team internally with executive management.
Create a strong team culture rooted in GD’s values. Cultivate and grow exceptional talent.
Own a rich project management plan to ensure operational excellence across delivery of all US programs
Identify and evaluate strategic and operational risks across programs, ideate and execute strategies to mitigate risk
Serve as analytical support and thought partner, assisting team in clearing hurdles and bottlenecks to execution
5-10 years of experience in a similar role or function (eg program management, strategic planning, new business development, partnerships)
People management experience (experience hiring and building a team preferred)
Experience in partnerships and business development with major US companies, foundations, NGOs, or government bodies
Strong relationship management: you’re excited to build a network in the US cash+NGO space, both via establishing new relationships for GD and strengthening existing ones
Exceptional communications skills: speaking, writing, presenting, and negotiating, especially with senior audiences and funders
Outstanding project management skills
Analytical problem solver: you look at problems with an analytical and iterative mindset, with a strong framework for prioritization. You can run robust analyses to inform management and programming decisions.
Enthusiasm for fast-paced environments, which may lack pre-defined playbook for success and involve significant “learning by doing”
Strong alignment with GD values (see below)
Knowledge of US foundation / NGO landscape a strong plus
**GD is committed to observing all local, national and international laws that protect children, vulnerable adults, and basic human rights of all. GD is committed to a policy of “zero tolerance for sexual exploitation, abuse, and harassment (SEAH)” and expects anyone who works for GD to uphold the protection and safeguarding of our recipients as a priority.**
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).
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 biggest impact on our overall performance. We avoid territoriality, self-promotion, and I’m above this attitudes.
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