East Africa Fellows Program Manager
Acumen is looking for an exceptional individual to run our East Africa Fellows Program. This program, which is in its third year, is finding and developing the next generation of East African social change leaders.
About Our Fellows Programs:
Acumen believes that the most intractable social problems call for a new type of leadership. Our Fellows Programs aim to identify, train, and connect individuals with the highest potential – across geographies, across sectors, and across lines of difference – to create systems level change to poverty.
The Acumen East Africa Fellows Program is a one- year, fully-funded leadership development program that gives up to 20 individuals from across East Africa the training they need to accelerate their social impact and leadership potential. Our Fellows Programs provide emerging leaders the opportunity to connect and collaborate with like-minded individuals, participate in world-class training seminars, and develop new skills to accelerate their own growth and the trajectory of their work and the work of their organizations. The program brings together the best of global and local trainers, who, together with our Fellows Managers, guide and support Fellows through the fellowship year. The East Africa Fellows Program is one of three Regional Fellows Programs offered by Acumen. These programs, together with our Global Fellows Program and +acumen online courses, represent Acumen’s global suite of leadership development offerings.
The East Africa Fellows Manager’s primary responsibility will be to run the East Africa Fellows Program, managing a cohort of 20 Fellows per year, specifically serving in four critical roles for the Fellows…
+ Select – Supervise a rigorous recruitment process and ultimately select 20 Fellows
+ Train – Lead and facilitate training sessions
+ Coach – Guide and mentor Fellows along their leadership journeys
+ Build – A robust community of alumni of the Fellows Programs
The East Africa Fellows Manager position is a full-time role, based out of the Nairobi Office. S/he must be eligible to work in East Africa, and must have a long-term commitment to the development of East Africa. S/he will have ownership over all aspects of the East Africa Fellows Program, and will be supported by the East Africa Fellows Program Senior Associate to execute against the program goals. The East Africa Fellows Program Manager will work in close collaboration with the India and Pakistan Fellows Program Managers. Specific responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:
+ Oversee the development of a recruitment strategy – In conjunction with the East Africa Fellows Associate, support in the design and execution of a recruitment strategy, including outreach to Alumni, peer organizations, social media, and the press and revision of all recruitment materials
+ Build pipeline – Support the cultivating and managing of external recruitment relationships and build candidate pipeline for the program
+ Evaluate candidates – Conduct application reviews, phone interviews, and manage the ‘Selection Conference,’ an annual day-long, in-person group interview event
+ Facilitate training sessions – Own the overall program curriculum for the fellowship year, including the development – and in some cases delivery – of training sessions, identifying and negotiating with external trainers/speakers
+ Improve curriculum – Improve curriculum on an ongoing basis, consulting external resources as necessary
+ Reinforce content – Guide Fellows to develop mastery of curriculum content, spending additional time outside of training sessions to help all Fellows understand difficult concepts
+ Monitor completion of assignments – Ensure that all Fellows are completing their assigned work correctly and on time in between seminars
+ Manage training seminars – Oversee all logistics associated with execution of training seminars
+ Give feedback – Continuously provide verbal feedback, periodically conduct 1-on-1’s with Fellows, and provide written evaluations over the course of the year
+ Be a connector – Develop a robust and active Fellows community, and connect Fellows to new individuals, networks, or opportunities that contribute to their leadership development and/or their social impact work
+ Manage program operations – Working closely with the East Africa Fellows Associate, supervise the day-to-day operations and logistics of running the program, including monitoring the program budget and executing all seminar/event logistics
+ Enforce program policies – Monitor Fellows closely to ensure they are complying with policies around attendance and participation, enforcing these policies accordingly
+ Sustain current partnerships – Serve as the primary point of contact for a small number of local existing funding partners for the East Africa Fellows Program, including adhering to reporting requirements
+ Support the Global Fellows Program locally – Provide in-country support to Global Fellows who are placed in East Africa, and support with annual recruitment and selection activities
+ Support +acumen locally – Provide in-country support to promote/develop +acumen online courses
Candidates interested in the East Africa Fellows Program Manager position should have a deep commitment to Acumen’s mission of solving the toughest problems of poverty, and a passion for leadership development.
Your background looks something like this:
+ At least 7 years’ work experience in a related field (preferably in education, training, fellowships and/or leadership development)
+ A bachelor’s degree is required: preferred fields include education, psychology, leadership, etc.
+ Significant experience in group facilitation/training or classroom teaching
+ Prior work experience in a fast-paced environment, ability to work efficiently against tight deadlines
+ Familiarity and exposure to the field of social enterprise and poverty alleviation preferred
+ Strong verbal & written communications skills, and comfort representing the East Africa Program externally
Additional qualifications include:
+ Excellent interpersonal skills, strong emotional intelligence, and ability to communicate effectively
+ Ability to give constructive feedback effectively, and willingness to have difficult, courageous conversations in the service of helping others grow and reach the next level
+ Self-awareness, strong listening skills, and empathy
+ Grit, resilience, and the ability to persevere amidst challenges and ambiguity
+ Ability to contribute to high-level, strategic discussions around curriculum and program operations
+ Exceptional organizational skills and ability to achieve targets independently and under pressure
+ Alignment with Acumen’s core values: leadership/listening, generosity/accountability, audacity/humility, grounded in a foundation of integrity and respect.
Compensation is competitive and commensurate with experience.
Acumen East Africa Office – Nairobi, Kenya
You will be asked to submit the following via our online applicant tracking system:
1. An updated resume/CV
2. Your responses to 3 short-answer questions (200 words each)
a. Where does your passion for social change work come from?
b. How do you hope East Africa will change in your lifetime and what role does leadership play in that vision?
c. Read Acumen’s Manifesto and tell us how you have seen one of its lines play out in your life.
Candidates are encouraged to apply early, as applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis; deadline to apply is Friday, February 5th.
Acumen is changing the way the world tackles poverty by investing in companies, leaders and ideas. We invest patient capital in businesses whose products and services are enabling the poor to transform their lives. Founded by Jacqueline Novogratz in 2001, Acumen has invested in 82 companies across Africa, Latin America and South Asia. We are also developing a global community of emerging leaders with the knowledge, skills and determination to create a more inclusive world.
Passion, entrepreneurial spirit, and rejecting the status quo are just a few of the things that Acumen team members have in common. What we aim to accomplish with our work is not easy, and we need dedicated, high-caliber people to reach our goals.