Senior Manager, External Relations – Malawi

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Role Overview:  The Senior Manager External Relations role is a key managerial role in GiveDirectly Malawi’s leadership team. Alongside the Country Director, the External Relations Manager will be  responsible for developing and implementing GiveDirectly’s government and external outreach strategy to create awareness of GiveDirectly’s work in Malawi and donor reporting. The External Relations Manager is also responsible for understanding and tracking in-country external risks and developing mitigations for these. Some of the role will also involve working with our communications team to provide high quality recipient stories. The role rewards exceptional  understanding of local and national government in Malawi, a highly autonomous working style, and the ability to develop strategically advantageous relationships.

Job Description:  Responsibilities of the Senior Manager, External Relations include


Stakeholder Management  

  • Develop relationships with national and local government officials to improve GiveDirectly’s cooperation with the government and build allies and champions for GiveDirectly.
  • Track priority and health of our relationships and proactively design new strategies to improve our  engagement with stakeholders.
  • Represent GiveDirectly at national events and meetings at the national and local level.
  • Support GiveDirectly’s expansion into new areas through securing national and local government approvals.
  • Manage internal and external communication on sensitive issues relating to our program.

Manage complex discussions with national and local government officials. 

  • Develop concise reports for national and local government officials.
  • Ensure reporting to government partners, and communicate important issues and recommendations  from the government to GiveDirectly and vice versa.
  • Provide support to field teams that guarantees adherence to national and local government  guidance and protocols.
  • Identify possible future risks and areas of non-alignment and work with different teams to  implement preventative actions.

External and Media Relations  

    • Craft external media or government-facing talking points and messaging for various GiveDirectly  projects.
    • Develop strong relationships with key members of the local and national Malawian media,  including bloggers and other influencers.
    • Source story ideas from across GiveDirectly projects and translate them into compelling and  effective content for media pitches.
    • Serve as a liaison between the communications team in NYC and local  program team, both  proactively and reactively (i.e. regular calls and document sharing with the Comms team, as well as being the primary point of contact if an incident should occur which requires media outreach).
    • Work closely with the Senior Manager Operations to monitor Community relations risks and provide mitigation  alternatives that cushion GiveDirectly from reputational and existential risks.
  • Monitor social media and online media data to ensure that the right messaging around the  organization is being delivered. Liaise with the internal audit team on any risks flagged from field  investigations that have program or Government relations risk.


Fundraising and Partnerships management

  • Partnering with funders and operations teams to design core program parameters for proposals and communicate them effectively.
  • Developing high quality, brand-accurate core content for the organization, including one pagers, proposal FAQs, standard pitch decks, templates etc.
  • Managing ongoing grant agreements (reporting and compliance requirements) in collaboration with the compliance team.
  • Providing pitch materials for management team outreach to potential funders.
  • Contributing to GiveDirectly’s growing fundraising pipeline and tracking performance against ambitious fundraising goals.

Qualities we’re hiring for: 

  • Deep ownership mindset ( i.e.  the default assumption that when you identify a problem, you’re likely going to be the one to solve it!)
  • Willingness to travel and work from differing working locations, some of which will be remote
  • Passion for the role cash transfers can play in giving recipients choice & driving impact at scale
  • A team player with strong leadership, interpersonal skills and professional experience;
  • Excellent representational and communication skills, written and oral proficiency in English, and preferably Chichewa; and,
  • Excellent past performance/job references.

In addition to the specific skills required for each role, we’re looking for candidates who are aligned with our  Values , and who actively demonstrate our core competencies: emotional intelligence, problem solving, project management, follow-through, and fostering inclusivity.


Desired Qualifications:

  • Bachelors or Masters Degree in a relevant field
  • 5-7 years experience in the development sector
  • Demonstrated success in a high-performance work environment
  • Strong interest in advancing the values and mission of GiveDirectly
  • Exceptional communication (written and verbal), organizational, and analytical skills
  • Demonstrated experience in resource mobilization. Experience with key donors such as USAID and FCDO is preferred
  • Detailed understanding and demonstrated experience working with national level government officials in Malawi
  • Experience working with and representing organisations to national media
  • Ability to approach tasks with resourcefulness and to work in a highly self-directed manner

**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.**

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