Programme Managing Director
KwaraLEARN (Leading Education Achievement and Reform Now) is a core new education programme by the Government of Kwara State to deliver dramatic improvements in learning outcomes in public schools for all children across Kwara State.
KwaraLEARN will transform all government primary schools across the state into powerful public schools using an innovative technology and data-driven platform, coupled with high-quality learning materials, effective training and ongoing coaching for teachers and school leaders, and technology-enabled support teams to create 360-degree support for learning outcomes.
Working for the technical implementing partner for the programme, you will work towards preparing Kwara and its youth for a bright future with a strong educational foundation. Being part of this transformative programme will be a challenging but fulfilling experience. You will have the opportunity to impact young lives and help build the future of Kwara and Nigeria.
The programme is one of the most exciting and ambitious education programmes not only in Nigeria, but also across Africa. A quality education has the power to transform the opportunities for Kwara's youth and the State. In joining us, you will join a group of dynamic and passionate Nigerians taking concrete action to help ensure a better future for the children of Kwara.
About the role
The Managing Director is responsible for providing overall leadership management and general technical direction of the entire program, ensuring an integrated vision among different components, functions and stakeholders, and a focus on achieving the results defined in the contract. You will be responsible for leading and overseeing the development, delivery and day-to-day management of a high quality, innovative, cost effective and sustainable education program resulting in immediate and lasting change for children and building the capacity of the duty bearers. This is a highly hands-on job, involving intense program management, broad technical knowledge covering financial management, supply chain, government relations and school operations management. For this role, we need someone who has the experience of managing highly complex and large programs with a lean team coupled with a deep passion for programme mission. Leadership, humility and self-awareness are a must to be successful. This is an incredibly fast-paced and absorbing role that will ask a lot of you but it will also be personally rewarding in that you will see the impact of your efforts first hand.
What will you do
- Act as the senior General Manager for the program, overseeing budgets, strategic and operational delivery and stakeholder management.
- Lead and manage the program team – providing the vision, day-to-day coordination, resource management, and supervision required to accomplish project objectives and to deliver superior quality products.
- Be the primary liaison with the designated Ministry of Education, State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) and elected political champions and his or her representatives, responding to client needs within the limits of the arrangement.
- Ensure quality control and the overall responsiveness of technical assistance provided, including necessary adjustments to operations to fit the requirements of the programme.
- Identify issues and risks related to program implementation in a timely manner, and suggest appropriate program adjustments.
- Ensure the technical and methodological soundness of activities and, in collaboration with the Collaborate with colleagues to solve problems and build a learning environment within the program team and other function heads of the organization.
- Responsible for on or under budget delivery of all aspects of the programme.
What you should have
- Bachelor’s degree essential, MBA (or Master’s) would be preferred.
- At least 10 years of progressively responsible experience working in project management and design in developing countries, preferably including experience in the state or country to which you will be assigned.
- At least 5 years of management experience, including direct supervision of professional and support staff and assembling teams working in multi-faceted roles including field based roles.
- A proven track record of excelling in the leadership of operational teams, as well as in design-thinking, process and system design and application, managing complex and inter-related functions, as this will be critical overseeing a large scale school system transformation.
- Prior experience within a fast-paced, high-growth, metric-driven operational organization will be an advantage.
- Strong management skills, leadership qualities, professional reputation, ability to build or access key contacts within the Ministry of Education or equivalent local and state regulatory bodies.
- Demonstrated ability to work effectively with government representatives, for-profit private sector entities, local community organizations, donors, consortium members and other stakeholders, at national and sub-national levels.
- Respect and sensitivity towards cultural, gender, ethnicity and religious diversity.
- Maturity and confidence in dealing with high ranking officials of government institutions, international institutions and non-government institutions.
- Demonstrated excellent communications and writing abilities and superior interpersonal and cross-cultural communication skills.
- Demonstrated hands-on experience in building the Ministry of Education (or other relevant Government entity) and devolved structures capacity in developing and realizing education strategic plans to provide quality Education services is a plus.
- Passion for our vision of democratizing the right for all children to succeed.
- A detailed doer – You have a track record of getting things done. You’re organized and responsive. You take ownership of every idea you touch and execute it to a fine level of detail, setting targets, engaging others, and doing whatever it takes to get the job done. You can multi-task dozens of such projects at once and never lose sight of the details. Likely, you have some experience in a start-up or other rapid-growth company.
- A networking mastermind – You excel at meeting new people and turning them into advocates. You communicate in a clear, conscientious, and effective way in both written and oral speech. You can influence strangers in the course of a single conversation. Allies and colleagues will go to bat for your ideas. You have an existing network from prior experience in the country, preferably in the regulatory, education, or business sectors.
- A creative problem-solver – Growing any business from scratch comes with massive and constant challenges. On top of that, KwaraLEARN works in often fragile, sometimes volatile low-resource communities and with complex government systems. You need to be flexible and ready to get everything done effectively, quickly, and affordably with the materials at hand.
- A relentless advocate –The children we serve and teachers we empower never leave your mind. You know them, get them, have shared a meal with them (or would be happy to in the future). You would never shrink back from shaking a parent’s hand or picking up a crying child, no matter what the person was wearing or looked like. Every decision you make considers their benefit, experience,
- A malleable learner –You believe you can always do better. You welcome constructive criticism and provide it freely to others. You know you only get better tomorrow when others point out where you’ve missed things or failed today.
- A data-driven decision-maker – When making decisions, you don’t rely on your intuition alone. You collect data, you analyze it and make decisions with clear justifications.
- A curious investigator – You ask why a lot. You don’t just take what you see and accept it. You wonder why it is that way, and are aware that the world we see is created by human choices and actions – and it could be different. You wonder, and see the world as wonderful even when you want to change a part of it that is unjust.