Chief Operating Officer

Req Number: ESBOPA
Location: San Francisco, California
Posted: 11/22/2022
Category: Government/Not-For-Profit : Not-For-Profit
Job Type: Permanent

Business for Social Responsibility (BSR)
BSR is a global nonprofit organization that works with its network of more than 300 member companies and other partners to build a just and sustainable world. From its offices in Asia, Europe, and North America, BSR develops sustainable business strategies and solutions through consulting, research, and cross-sector collaboration. Our mission is to work with business to create a just and sustainable world. We envision a world in which everyone can lead a prosperous and dignified life within the boundaries of the Earth’s natural resources.

Our team of sustainable business experts work with our 300 member companies and other partners from civil society and government to enable business to develop ambitious strategies and translate them into action that builds resilience, drives innovation, and delivers value for business and society. We are proud to have a team of some of the most talented and motivated people in the industry working in our global offices in Copenhagen, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, London, New York, Paris, San Francisco, Shanghai, Singapore, Washington, and Tokyo.

Our Theory of Change
In this decisive decade, the need to shift to an inclusive, net zero economy could not be more urgent or important. This requires collective effort by business, government, civil society, and citizens. To turn this vision into reality, BSR works to mainstream sustainable business practices in the global economy by promoting business transformation and powerful collaborations that take progress to scale. The role of business is to create and deliver products and services in a way that treats people fairly, meets peoples’ needs and aspirations within the boundaries of our planet, and encourages market and policy frameworks that enable a sustainable future. BSR’s role is to provide insights which help business leaders see a changing world more clearly, advice to create long-term strategic value, and collaborations that scale impact.

Position Overview
BSR is experiencing a time of tremendous growth, and we are seeking a Chief Operating Officer to help the organization scale effectively to best achieve our mission in this next phase of our journey. The ideal candidate has extensive experience in a mission-aligned and/or professional services organization, including in an executive or business oversight role. Reporting to the President and Chief Executive Officer and working as a critical member of the leadership team, the Chief Operating Officer will take a leadership role in overseeing, enhancing, and implementing all the organization’s systems, processes, workflows, and procedures, at this critical moment of organizational growth. Their duties include reviewing the efficiency of current business functions, planning changes and updates to day-to-day operations, and collaborating with other leaders to set and meet business objectives. Such oversight includes a focus on sales, staffing, hiring, people development, knowledge management and project execution processes and systems. The successful candidate will have experience with oversight of a human resources team in the United States and will design and oversee the implementation of policies to promote organizational culture and vision and oversee operations to keep business and mission impacts on track. The goal of the Chief Operating Officer position is to secure BSR’s ability to drive impact through extensive and sustainable growth in a manner consistent with BSR’s mission-driven, entrepreneurial culture.

Key Responsibilities

  • Work with leadership teams to translate strategy into actionable steps for growth, , performance management, and annual operations planning.
  • Ongoing executive input into and oversight of BSR’s activities to enable achievement of financial goals, impact, and people plan.
  • Oversee organizational operations and employee productivity, building a highly inclusive culture that ensures team members can thrive and organizational outcomes are met
  • Enable the rapid growth objectives of our organization.
  • Evaluate performance by analyzing and interpreting data and metrics.
  • Analyze internal operations and identify areas for process enhancement
  • Oversee the Operations team, strategy, and priorities.
  • Final signoff on operational strategy and organizational policies, with consultation as needed with other leaders.
  • Strategic direction for embedding operational processes and improvements across business lines including consulting, membership, collaboration, and grants.
  • Oversee project delivery across the organization, driving clarity and decision-making for project directors.
  • Oversight of processes related to Salesforce and other technology platforms, staffing, project management and knowledge management, and identification of opportunities for continuous improvement.
  • Oversee People & Culture team (BSR’s Human Resources) and participate in the global People Council, a cross-functional body providing input to People & Culture leadership.
  • Oversee the establishment and execution of policies and practices that promote BSR’s organizational culture, employee recruitment and retention, and achievement of diversity, equity and inclusion objectives.
  • Ensure effective recruiting, including serving as a key member of the hiring committee, onboarding, professional development, performance management, and retention.
  • Oversee streamlining and improvement of human resources information systems and support.
  • Responsible for hiring decisions/recommendations, refining review and promotion process, annual goals process, and workforce planning.
Required Qualifications and Experience
The successful candidate will bring a demonstrated passion for BSR’s mission to work with business to create a just and sustainable world. The Chief Operating Officer must be a strategic and collaborative leader with a desire to innovate and establish/further effective operations across the organization. The successful candidate will encourage a culture of respect, collaboration, and creativity while ensuring effective communication across BSR’s global offices.

Specific qualities include:
  • Proven experience and passion for staff leadership, including a demonstrated ability to use emotional intelligence in people management, staff mentorship to improve skills and effectiveness, and create belonging.
  • Knowledge and experience related to business processes such as, organizational development, performance management, knowledge management, and change management.
  • Capacity to work and thrive in a growing, fast-paced, mission-driven entrepreneurial organization with a collaborative environment.
  • High ethical standards and commitment to BSR core values of Leadership, Respect, and Integrity.
  • Experience in and passion for operating in a global organization with global perspectives.
  • Experience in oversight of a human resources function in the U.S. and globally.
  • Experience with a professional services or project based organization is a plus.
  • Understanding of sustainable business is a plus.
  • Demonstrated professional verbal and written communication skills, specifically the ability to communicate organizational value-add in a clear and inspiring manner and inter-/cross-cultural communication.
  • Proven experience as Chief Operating Officer or relevant role.
  • Understanding of business functions such as human resources, operations, knowledge management, legal/contracting and sales/business development.
  • Outstanding organizational and executive leadership abilities.
  • Track record of data analysis and performance metric use.
  • Ability to diagnose problems quickly and foresee potential issues.
  • Willingness to undertake business travel, domestically and internationally, approximately 10% time, though possibly more in the first year.
Staff Direct Reports
Cecile Oger, Managing Director, People and Culture
Johanna Poschwatta, Associate Director, Operations
Additional direct reports possible given candidate background

At BSR we have implemented a transparent total compensation framework with an emphasis on internal equity. In order to maintain our equity our hiring range is 260-280K for base compensation, plus 25% target bonus.

Korn Ferry shall provide equal employment opportunity to all qualified candidates, and will refer candidates without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, disability, veteran status or any other legally protected basis.