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  • Career Opportunity at Search For Common Ground (SFCG)

  • Posted on: 11 December, 2015 Deadline: 2 January, 2016
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    The Organization

    Search for Common Ground (SFCG) is an international non-profit organization that promotes peaceful resolution of conflict. With headquarters in Washington, DC, SFCG’s mission is to transform how individuals, organizations, and governments deal with conflict - away from adversarial approaches and toward cooperative solutions. SFCG seeks to help conflicting parties understand their differences and act on their commonalities. With a total of approximately 750 staff worldwide, SFCG implements projects from 56 offices in 35 countries, including in Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and the United States.

    Search for Common Ground has been in Nigeria since 2004 and currently has approximately 50 staff located in four offices (Abuja, Port Harcourt, Jos and Maiduguri) as well as many large local partners. SFCG in Nigeria uses a range of tools to transform conflict and build peace, including radio, television, participatory theatre, mobile cinema, comic books, joint action projects, research, training, public forums, and arts and culture events, among others. The program tackles a wide range of conflict-related thematic areas, including democracy, governance, elections, natural resource conflicts, land conflict, inter-religious conflict, countering violent extremism, security sector reform, youth and women’s engagement, and others.

    The program portfolio currently has 9 active projects with 4 different donors operating across 10 states. SFCG is also part of a nationwide democracy and elections consortium with NDI. A Deputy Director, based in Jos, oversees the operations and programs for the Jos and Maiduguri offices while a Project Manager oversees a large multi-pronged program in the Niger Delta.

    Country Director



    Summary of Position

    The Country Director manages the overall program in Nigeria from a programmatic and operational perspective, as well as leading on fundraising and donor relations. He/she leads the Leadership and Management Team (comprised of key senior staff) and leads the team in ongoing improvements. This position reports to the Regional Director for West Africa and collaborates closely with various Washington and Brussels-based divisions of SFCG, including the Africa Team, the Institutional Learning Team, Communications, Finance and Operations. The position is located in Abuja, with substantial travel to the other field offices as well as other states around the country.

    Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

    Program Development and Implementation

    • Define programme priorities, plans and long-term strategy (in close collaboration with the SFCG Regional Director)
    • Oversee implementation of funded projects, collaborating with donors, partners, and other staff
    • Manage the country program with the highest quality standards and with well-documented results
    • Ensure sharing of results across different offices of SFCG Nigeria, across SFCG and with external stakeholders.
    • Responsible for ensuring lessons are learned and applied to future programming
    • Ensure that program planning and management effectively utilize available resources, and respond to gaps with fundraising and/or operational adjustments as needed
    • Report to donors according to contractual deadlines with quality narrative and financial data
    • Contribute analysis and programmatic capacities to the implementation of programming in Nigeria and other countries in the region as appropriate
    • Stay abreast of the international conflict transformation field to ensure that the program’s work remains innovative and professional
    • Be directly engaged in the continuing development of the organization, its mission and its staff, through the sharing of experience and knowledge, particularly contributing to its Institutional Learning efforts
    • Strengthen existing funding relationships and identify and pursue new potential donors in collaboration with headquarters in Washington, DC and Brussels, Belgium

    Financial Management

    • Directly oversee and manage the country Finance Directors, ensuring financial compliance both with Nigerian laws, donor requirements and SFCG procedures across the organization.
    • Maintain regular communication with regional and HQ finance focal points on finance issues and ensure that the organization is ongoingly audit-ready
    • Identify potential shortfalls and strategize with the organization’s senior management as necessary to ensure the program’s financial sustainability.

    Staff Management and Development

    • Develop and manage a team of diverse senior staff members (expatriate, national and third country nationals) modelling effective communication and collaboration
    • Participate in the recruitment and selection of highly qualified staff, onboarding and ensuring ongoing staff opportunities for capacity development
    • Ensure adequate mechanisms for staff appraisals, staff feedback, and review of HR/operational issues
    • Strengthen the capacity of national staff and partners, contributing to SFCG’s legacy strategy of conflict transformation in Nigeria
    • Ensure compliance with SFCG Operations Manual policies and procedures
    • Ensure that country policies, contracts, and disciplinary procedures and processes conform to local labor laws
    • Ensure an updated security and evacuation plan is in place for all offices

    Organizational Representation

    • Serve as SFCG’s country representative
    • Develop and maintain proactive, positive and professional relationships with partner organizations, other NGOS, donors, clients, key government officials, civil society groups, etc.
    • Maintain responsible media coverage of program events and issues related to SFCG mission
    • Maintain regular written and oral reporting to Washington and Brussels on key country, regional, program, security and staff issues
    • Establish a direct line of communication with other African Country Directors in the region for program guidance toward strategic initiatives and staff cross-fertilization opportunities

    As job descriptions cannot be exhaustive, the position holder may be required to undertake other duties that are broadly in line with the above key duties.

    Minimum skills and experience:

    • Degree in relevant field (e.g. conflict transformation, security studies, media and communications, sociology, political science, or related fields)
    • Experience in managing large projects of at least $5 million, with multiple grants and donors
    • At least five years’ experience working overseas, preferably in Sub-Saharan Africa
    • Understanding of the conflict dynamics of Nigeria
    • At least ten years’ experience in program management, both programmatically and operationally, preferably on media and/or conflict transformation-related issues
    • Experience in managing diverse inter-cultural teams
    • Track record in successful fundraising
    • Experience with compliance to US government and EU donor rules and regulations
    • Experience in capturing results and overseeing reporting, monitoring and evaluation systems
    • Experience in managing multi-cultural teams, preferably in Africa
    • Exceptional communication and interpersonal skills
    • A problem-solving approach to challenging situations
    • Ability to multi-task while leading a complex team
    • Fluent spoken and written English

    Salary: Commensurate with experience and education, with excellent benefits

    Method of Application

    Please send cover letter and resume through our application system at: Please be sure to include salary requirements (in currency figures) or current salary, and to mention where you found this posting. No phone calls please. Please see our web site for full details of our work. The closing date for this position is January 2, 2016.

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