Country Director (Actionaid Arab Region)


Job Description

Directorate: Federation Developmennt Job family: Executive Director Reports to: Head of Country Support, Asia Direct reports: Country Senior Management Team Grade: Fm Location: Amman, Jordan with frequent travels to Lebanon

1. Role Overview

The Country Director (CD) provides vision, leadership, management and effective high-level national representation for ActionAid International (AAI) in Arab Region (Jordan and Lebanon), in line with the established policies, principles and operating practices of AAI, as well as good management practice and the political, social, cultural and economic environment of the country. The CD is responsible for overseeing the implementation of the ActionAid Arab Region Strategy Paper for the period of 2018-2022, ensuring resources are in place to achieve budgeted performance targets and monitoring overall performance against these targets. The CD requires strong and proven experiences in fundraising as well as effective and timely donor contract managements. The CD role requires leadership, organisational Change Management experience, competencies to manage large teams as well as deep knowledge on the context and development sector to enable the role holder to make significant improvements to policies and processes that lead to mid to long-term success of ActionAid in Arab Region. The CD will embrace the dual citizenship of an organisation that is strongly rooted in the country but also part of an international federation.

2. Key accountabilities/ Responsibilities

Organisational Representation
  • Implement and further develop AAI’s vision, mission, values and principles in Arab Region in line with agreed AAI’s strategies and organisational priorities;

  • Represent ActionAid International in a variety of forums and maintain external relationships within a diverse range of stakeholders in the sector including national government, key national and international NGOs, donors, academic, social movements, CBO’s, media and other relevant institutions in Arab Region;

  • Actively contribute to ActionAid International's development as an international federation;

  • Maintain regular communication with the line manager, AAI Global Secretariat and other Members of AAI federation;

  • Ensure that ActionAid (AA) Arab Region lives up to its dual citizenship role as part of an international federation;

  • Provide inputs to AAI’s activities as and when required, including participation on task forces, Training Courses and conferences.

Strategy Development and Implementation
  • Ensure the delivery of AA Arab Region’s CSP 2018-2022 and oversee the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the CSP;

  • Lead and direct the work of AA Arab Region in accordance with sound management practices and AA's development policies and accountability systems;

  • Ensure all programme activities are sensitive to and responsive to changes in the political, social, and economic environments;

  • Develop and maintain appropriate contingency plans for all kinds of humanitarian responses and manage the same.

  • Develop a funding strategy and plan to mobilise and diversify AA Arab Region ’s resource base to support the change we seek to achieve as specified in the CSP and advance AA’s mission objectives;

  • Establish and develop working relationships with key donors in Arab Region and actively develop funding sources appropriate to AA Arab Region’s resource needs;

  • Ensure a regular flow of information available to AA funding departments, donor owners and to donors and official funders as required by the various funding mechanisms;

  • Ensure timely and efficient donor Contract Management and fulfilling donor obligations.

Communications and Campaign
  • Develop a communication strategy that will deepen the impact of communication work, identify key priorities, channels, audiences and messages to establish an appropriate public image for AA Arab Region in line with AAI values and culture;

  • Develop and manage a sound relationship with all sections of the media and ensure that any published material accurately reflects the views of AA Arab Region;

  • Encourage the development of appropriate research with a view to improving the quality of field work and influencing change in policy to improve the conditions and positions of the people living in poverty in Arab Region;

  • Conduct campaigns to create connections between poor, excluded and vulnerable people to increase the public awareness of, and support for their cause and grow our supporter based in Arab Region.

People Management
  • Maintain effective and appropriate staff recruitment, induction, appraisal, and remuneration and development policies and practices at all levels to ensure the optimum utilisation and development of AA Arab Region's human resources;

  • Appoint, develop and manage all senior staff. Ensure a high calibre of staff is recruited while promoting a gender balance in the organisation, and that optimum investments are made in their development;

  • Develop a qualified and valued AA team in Arab Region, based on equality and diversity, and provide this team with an empowering and enabling environment conducive to quality programming by fostering innovation, ongoing learning and teamwork;

  • Actively promote staff exchange, secondment and development schemes, where these contribute to the meeting of AA's programme objectives and priorities.

Operations and Finance
  • Ensure mutual accountability between AA and related stakeholders with the establishment of all organisational processes, systems and policy to ensure the effectiveness of AA Arab Region;

  • Ensure the financial integrity and accountability of AA Arab Region in accordance with AA Financial Management framework;

  • Manage the financial resources allocated to or raised by the country in compliance with approved policies/ frameworks as well as national law and donors’ regulations;

  • Prepare budget and financial plan to ensure that the control of expenditure and the disbursement of resources in accordance with the established procedures;

  • Provide progress and financial reports as required by the government, and as per AA's accountability procedures and as required by the donors/sponsors;

  • Maintain an efficient internal control framework to ensure that AA Arab Region has a well-balanced, well documented and cost-effective programme;

  • Ensure financial sustainability for Arab Region and implement cost recovery practices.

Partnership management and development
  • Manage and encourage the co-operative relationships established with various specialist institutions and partners in the country and ensure that these joint initiatives conform to programme objectives and strengthen the profile of AA Arab Region;

  • Lead the development and implementation of country-specific guidelines for the management of partnerships in line with the CSP and other relevant organizational policies.

  • Develop AA Arab Region 's capacity to document, disseminate and learn from development work and ensure all reporting meet the highest standard;

  • Act as focal person to identify and timely manage all risks/ crisis related to AAI operations in Arab Region.

3. Typical People Management Responsibility

  • Approximate number of people managed in total: 30

  • Matrix Manager (project/ dotted line): No

  • Team Leader: Yes

  • Grandfather - manager of Team leaders/ Manager: Yes

4. Global remit

  • Own country: Yes

5. Role dimensions

  • Organisation-wide expenditure: Approx 2 million GBP

6. Key relationships to reach solution

  • Internal: Country Senior Management Team; Head of Country Support, Asia; ActionAid countries including Affiliates and Associates; GS functional Leads/Coordinators and Peer Country Directors;

  • External: Partner community, CBO, NGO, networks, alliances, social movements and activists; Government offices; Peer international NGO leaders; International donors and media.

7. Person Specification

Education & Certifications
  • University degree level qualification, preferably post-graduate qualifications in development study, political science and/or organisational management.

  • A minimum of five-year experience in the top leadership position in development work and poverty alleviation programmes with proven initiative, flexibility and enthusiasm in managing complex activities in a changing environment. Experience working as Country/Executive Director for similar organisation will be given preference;

  • Demonstrated senior management expertise, including proven ability to develop the capacities of multi-disciplinary professional teams of similar staff size (30 and above);

  • Proven experience in managing complex financial control and Management Systems with the budget size of approximately 2 million GBP;

  • Demonstrated expertise in strategic and long-term planning and the ability to ensure that operational plans and activities meet targets and appropriately reflect longer term perspectives;

  • Proven track records in fundraising from diversified resources and contract management from bilateral, multilateral and other types of donors;

  • Proven experience of working and negotiating with Government officials and donors at all levels.

Essential knowledges and skills
  • Sound and up to date knowledge of development concepts, methodologies and techniques including demonstrated expertise in development fields;

  • Experiences working with social constituencies like youth and women and their rights;

  • Excellent negotiation and communication skills, including demonstrated ability to handle sensitive diplomatic and Government level negotiations on matters affecting AA's Arab Region programmes;

  • Sound awareness of the political, social, economic and historic environment in which AA's poverty alleviation programmes are operating at both national and community levels;

  • Proficiency in English and a familiarity with the context of the region as it affects Development Strategies;

  • Strong leadership and management skills;

  • Strong analytical/ Problem Solving, and management of crisis, conflict and risk.

Desirable knowledge, experience and skills
  • In addition to the essential requirements, candidates with proven project management record, management background in humanitarian response and resilience work, experience of working with youth and women’s rights, organisational change management processes have additional advantages.

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