Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives, Lit
Who we are
You’re reading this job description because somebody taught you how. You became “somebody” as a result. At Lit, we’re building a world in which everybody gets to be somebody. We are on a mission to ensure every kid, everywhere is a reader. We help school and system leaders build, implement and sustain reading ecosystems that live at the intersection of research and instructional equity. By bringing the science of reading to Black and Latino students, and to students who come from the experience of poverty, we can open up a world of possibility for children who are too often pushed to the margins of education. Find out more on our website: wearelit.org
Currently, we are incubated under a parent company called Array Education–a non-profit start-up studio. Array Education’s mission is to help start enduring, equity-driven, scalable solutions to our most pressing education challenges.
What You Will Do
We are looking for a Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives to join Lit and report to the Chief Executive Officer. This is the perfect role for someone who thinks of themself as a Swiss army knife - a master of many skills and able to assess a situation and apply the right tool for the job. As the Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives, you will:
Leadership of Strategic Business Initiatives
- Partner with the Executive Team to prioritize key business initiatives to improve Lit’s effectiveness, efficiency, and impact
- Lead strategic business initiatives, from development through successful execution, under the guidance of the executive team; serve as a subject-matter expert on strategic business initiatives, developing implementation plans, taking inquiries, and leading staff-wide communications
- Provide hands-on support with executive team members to ensure excellent execution across a portfolio of business initiatives and special projects
- Review, design, and execute improvements to the executive team’s operations and processes; e.g., outline a Lit-wide budgeting process that ensures the executive team can forecast budgets and spend funds strategically to maximize outcomes
- Develop and build on relationships with all Lit teammates for increased efficiency and responsiveness of existing operations
- Assist and communicate with executives in decision-making, program management, and initiative implementation
- Oversee executive operations in collaboration with the Chief People and Learning Officer, including executive team meetings and offsites, managing correspondence and communications, and calendaring
- Act as a trusted advisor on the executive team across a range of business initiatives
- Perform administrative tasks such as planning essential travel, orchestrating executive team members’ calendars, generating correspondence, and planning for critical meetings and events
- Serve as liaison with external stakeholders on core business initiatives
- Act as a representative of executive team members to external partners
- Support external communications and external materials
In short, you will ensure that Lit runs smoothly, efficiently, and effectively while maximizing executive team members' strengths and time.
You are someone who has the following qualifications
- You are a professional with 10+ years of experience in operations, strategic planning, or project management
- Master Problem Solver: You are an adept problem solver who likes to dig in on the strategic, bigger-picture questions and the tactical issues of running a business. You bring critical thinking to every situation, mining for root causes, focusing on short-term fixes and systemic resolutions, and can anticipate problems before they start. You can find and implement solutions that set the organization up for success. You are also renowned for your exceptional judgment and discretion as you act as a strategic thought partner across the entire executive team and ensure cohesion across the organization.
- Excellent Manager of Stakeholders: You will bump in and out of meetings with all the Executive Team members and Lit staff members to ensure that business initiatives are executed with excellence and clarity. You will have exceptional written and verbal communication skills to ensure that the who, the what, and the why of the strategic business initiatives are always clearly conveyed (again and again). You will have demonstrated expertise in leading people through change and being able to engage a variety of stakeholders effectively. As someone who will serve as an external face of the organization, you can represent the organization’s work, culture, and values in both writing and meetings.
- Skilled Project Manager: If you had to bring one item to a desert island, you’d probably bring your planner. You love finding order in strong project and time management, and you can build complex, multi-layered, organization-wide project plans. You create systems to manage all projects across the organization effectively and can anticipate and proactively mitigate risks to your projects.
It would be a plus if you had:
- Experience working in a fast-paced, K-12 education non-profit or school organization
- Experience in successfully leading and managing a team of people
You are someone who shares our values
- Be cosmically urgent: You move with cosmic urgency--the vital urge to change things in a way that will benefit all people so everyone feels a sense of “somebodyness.”
- Stay constantly curious: You ask “how might we?” when solving challenges.
- Pursue excellence over perfection: You prioritize individuals and the interactions that will move people to achieve outcomes over following a process that won’t get them there.
- Do hard things in a human way: You choose courage over comfort by facing difficult tasks and conversations rather than avoiding them.
- Invest in our collective success: You get your hands dirty; you will never say, “That’s not my job,” “That’s not my problem to solve,” or “I don’t care.”
Compensation: This is a full-time staff, exempt position with an annual salary range of $110,000-$150,000. A compensation offer is based on relevant years of experience in relation to the position as well as location. Because of our strong commitment to equity and growth, Lit does not negotiate or place compensation offers at the top of the range.
Benefits: We provide all full-time employees with a competitive benefits package that includes comprehensive medical, dental and vision plans, short- and long-term disability, life insurance, and parental leave. We offer a generous PTO policy and holiday calendar. We also provide an employer-sponsored 401K retirement plan with an annual 3% match.
Perks: Lit offers perks such as paid rest days after work-related travel; stipends for wellness, working-from-home, and professional learning; a community with as much support as your heart desires; and much, much, more!
Expectations to know
Travel: Travel is an essential part of how we support our partners, collaborate with our team, and fulfill our mission. Schedule and timing for travel may vary by team and role, and may change as the company’s business needs continue to evolve. The Managing Director of Partnerships should expect to travel up to 35% of the year.