Reporting Unit/Supervisor: Regional Dirctor, East Africa
Location: Nairobi, Kenya
I. Technoserve Background:
TechnoServe is an international, non-profit economic development organisation founded in 1968 with the vision that a competitive private sector is an essential foundation for economic growth and poverty reduction and durable development assistance is rooted in market-based solutions. In keeping with this vision, TechnoServe’s mission is to work with enterprising people in the developing world to build competitive farms, businesses and industries. In order to execute this mission, TechnoServe undertakes technical assistance, demonstration and facilitative projects to increase key capacities of individuals and businesses, strengthen the transparency and function of labour, capital and product markets and develop a more conducive environment for scalability of emerging industries.
TechnoServe operates in 25 developing countries with over 1100 employees, most of whom are Field Officers. TechnoServe begins with vigorous market analysis to identify growth opportunities and proceeds to build skills and forge partnerships, working across industries with a range of partners, clients and beneficiaries, from smallholder famers to multinational corporations. A substantial portion of the organisation’s work is in agriculture, enhancing farm productivity and commodity quality and addressing gaps in processing and other agribusiness capacities. TechnoServe’s programs increase smallholder and business access to new technologies, aggregation and storage mechanisms, markets, critical information and finance. TechnoServe also undertakes structured programs to identify and support high potential entrepreneurs in various sectors, through leadership mentoring networks, formalisation support, access to capital and development of sustainable business services such as accounting, finance, marketing and human resource management.
II. TechnoServe South Africa Background:
TechnoServe has supported South Africa’s national agenda of black economic empowerment since 2003 by promoting entrepreneurial and business skills among previously disadvantaged populations. TechnoServe’s ambitious agenda to transform the prospects for thousands of South Africa’s youth is embodied in a growing portfolio of projects supported by a diverse set of donors. These include the Government of South Africa, multinational and national corporations and major foundations. Over 500 small and medium enterprises have increased their capacity and profitability through TechnoServe’s scaled mentoring and business services and TechnoServe is now a leading innovator of interventions to transform the economic opportunity of South Africa’s emerging farmer community by expanding their participation in the formal fresh produce supply chains of South Africa’s major food retailers.
In partnership with major, multinational and South African corporate partners, TechnoServe recently launched the “Direct Farm” program with the ambition to put emerging farmers’ produce on the shelves of a major national food retailer. TechnoServe’s role includes training, mentoring, technical assistance and supporting links between the farmers and critical finance and retail markets. The first harvest of 15 tons of beans was delivered in September 2012 and classed Grade 1. Following the launch, several hundred tons of produce have been delivered and sold, with substantial further growth predicted. A second major pilot to produce and sell Butternut has been similarly successful. The pilots have provided a proof of concept for crop production, input supply and the delivery of produce in compliance with exacting standards. Under this program, TechnoServe is currently working with more than 300 high growth, smallholder farmers in three South African provinces. Under the leadership of the new Country Director, it is expected that this will provide a foundation to increase reach quickly to 1,500 farmers, and eventually to a much larger scale, making a major impact on economic development and job creation in South Africa.
III. Position Description:
Technoserve has mandated Boyden Global Executive Search Sub Saharan Africa to identify and attract a suitably qualified and experienced individual to take up the role of Country Director: South Africa.
The primary purpose of the Country Director role is to lead and manage TechnoServe’s operations in South Africa, including fundraising, to achieve sustainable economic development in a cost effective manner, this includes:
- Strategically select areas of work, partnerships and methodologies that most effectively contribute to poverty reduction, and assure excellence of implementation through total quality management and evidence-based decision-making;
- Develop, inspire and enable a team of South African and international professionals to deliver high quality results;
- Effectively manage human resources, finance and back office functions to optimise cost-effectiveness;
- Secure funding to sustain and grow TechnoServe’s contribution to the economic development of South Africa.
The successful incumbent will be a mature individual with well-developed interpersonal and communication skills, able to engage effectively at all levels with stakeholders in Government, Commerce, Industry, Financial entities, Development agencies, small scale farmers, entrepreneurs and other stakeholders across the region. He/She will be an effective influencer, with a proven track record of delivery and high performance, able to develop and present thought leadership and insight.
An entrepreneurial individual with sound commercial, negotiation, business development and financial skills, backed with a strong commitment to sustainable development. Of critical importance is that this individual is analytical with well-developed planning, programme management and decision-making skills. Hands-on and proactive, comfortable operating in a complex, matrixed working environment that is geographically dispersed.
The duties and responsibilities of this position fall into a few broad categories:
- Regularly develop and adapt the country’s strategic vision and direction and execute it in keeping with TechnoServe’s overall strategic plan;
- Identify and pursue innovative solutions to poverty reduction;
- Identify opportunities where TechnoServe can play a role in catalysing more competitive, inclusive industries and entrepreneurship;
- Undertake industry assessments, market research and other analytical exercises that generate insight into opportunities for TechnoServe to achieve its mission.
- Recruit, orient and provide for the professional development of highly effective staff in all functions;
- Motivate, inspire and enable a team of South African and international professionals to deliver high quality results.
- Secure funding for the country program by developing concepts, leading sound project design and writing winning proposals;
- Cultivate and maintain TechnoServe in-country partner and donor relationships with USAID and other US government agencies; local government, bilateral and multilateral development/donor organisations; foundations and relevant local NGOs; private sector associations and corporations.
- Establish and foster relationships with a broad network of donors, practitioners, government representatives and business leaders in the South African economic development field, assimilating and contributing to new developments in the sector;
- Liaise with media, public, Government and Government agencies, as well as other NGOs to ensure that TechnoServe’s image is preserved and enhanced;
- Communicate with bilateral and multilateral agencies and develop relationships that seek to promote TechnoServe’s mission and objectives.
- Oversee the design, planning, high quality and timely execution of TechnoServe programs in the field;
- Plan for and execute robust monitoring and evaluation of program outputs and outcomes;
- Ensure cost-effective delivery of donor and client commitments;
- Contribute to the documentation and sharing of knowledge within the broader TechnoServe community.
- Ensure high quality and timely donor reporting;
- Oversee all TechnoServe South Africa financial affairs, including budgets, adherence to effective internal financial controls and review of monthly financial reporting;
- Act as legal representative of TechnoServe in South Africa, conducting all affairs with the government, the media and partners in keeping with TechnoServe policies and procedures;
- Maintain good governance practices for all TechnoServe related entities in South Africa in accordance with South African law;
- Participate in and comply with all TechnoServe corporate processes such as the annual planning process, attendance at the annual Country Directors meeting, preparation of program status and pipeline reports and oversee the correct and complete updating of the corporate measurement system.
V. Required Skills and Experience
- An advanced degree in Business Administration / Economics / Agriculture / Management or a related field;
- In excess of 10 years’ solid professional experience with progressively higher levels of responsibility;
- In excess of 5 years experience leading a business unit or large scale project with responsibility for aspects of operations;
- A minimum of 5 years experience working in the African environment, preferably in Southern, East or West Africa;
- Private sector experience gained in Management Consulting, Agri-business and / or Food Processing, Financial Services, industries would be highly beneficial;
- Good working knowledge of economic development, agricultural value chains and entrepreneurship promotions;
- Proven capacity to fundraise effectively and to represent the organisation among a diverse range of stakeholders;
- Strong diplomatic skills to support and develop effective working relationships with government, implementing partners and donors;
- Strong leadership skills and demonstrated experience in forming, leading, and motivating complex, multi-disciplinary and challenging field operations and teams to achieve results;
- Well-developed programme and project managements skills with a strong track record in general management, operations management and administration;
- Well-developed entrepreneurial skills backed by sound commercial knowedge;
- Strongly analytical with demonstrated skills in problem solving;
- Experienced negotiator and with a track record in consensus building and coordination of diverse stakeholders and partners;
- Strong interpersonal and communication skills, excellent oral and written communications are essential. Fluent in English – reading, writing and speaking.
VI. Application Instructions:
Please contact Fay Voysey-Smit at Boyden Global Executive Search, www.boyden.com/fay-voysey-smit.