Managing Director of Design and Innovation
Reports to: Executive Vice President of Market Research and Solution Development
We believe in being a force for the greater good, devoted to accelerating and growing the financial inclusion of women. With rapidly changing markets, influenced by technology and social behavioral expectations, we are embarking on a new chapter to transform the way we design and implement solutions.
For more than 35 years, Women’s World Banking has partnered with financial institutions, showing them the benefit of investing in women as customers. We equipped these institutions with in-depth research and data driven insights to develop financial products and educational programs. While our clients are financial service providers, our mission is to engage consumers – women who are marginalized by financial systems.
Position Summary and Responsibilities
We are seeking a Managing Director of Design and Innovation to help transform our organization’s strategic ideation and solution design process. By leveraging the rolling market needs and trends assessments produced by our Market Research team, the Managing Director will lead a global team to identify and design solutions for our clients. This will increase our clients’ market share and profitability while resulting in more empowered women being served with enhanced financial services.
This position will be an active, engaging leader on a highly effective senior management team.
You are inherently curious and driven to turn human-centric principles into customer-centric values. Our clients need help in becoming customer-centric organizations, immersed in user-centered design to launch and support new offerings. You should be:
Able to uncover user needs and perceive emerging user behaviors, connecting them from localized instances to global trends;
Knowledgeable and curious about new technologies and services, drive ideation, design and execution of user-oriented solutions; and
Able to define and design experiential journey mapping and strategy development to innovate go-to market solutions and brand experiences.
You believe in building alliances, bridging the gap to minimize silos and maximize collaboration. These activities include being able to:
Effectively recruit and oversee a team of staff, leveraging empathy and communication to drive cohesion and improved relationship dynamics with multiple stakeholders;
Build a global network of consultants and partners to collaborate on designing effective and sustainable solutions; and
Successfully partner and bring service design thinking to all areas of Women’s World Banking and its clients.
You believe in thinking differently, outside of the conventional norm, to drive sustainable and powerful solutions. The ideal candidate will come from a senior position within a creative design agency, customer research organization, innovation consulting firm, or have similar experiences. This candidate should have:
Significant know-how in designing digital solutions, driving iterations through agile design frameworks;
Ability to help our clients find new opportunities for market growth based on industry and market trends;
Ability to direct and develop rapid design of solutions and oversee testing delivered by the implementation team; and
Ability to design experiential strategy frameworks to identify gaps within the customer journey.
Within the first 75 days:
Embrace Women’s World Banking’s unique characteristics and offerings in order to inform our research agenda and market them to potential partners;
Learn and comprehend Women’s World Banking’s business model;
Establish yourself as a qualified and trustworthy leader and executive;
Validate the current strategy as it pertains to the responsibilities of your division;
Become trained and fully integrate the use of Salesforce into your day-to-day activities; and
Demonstrate your command of the position.
Develop data driven customer insights, market perspectives, and organizational knowledge that informs and provokes the development, evaluation and implementation of new services, products, systems, and in some cases, entirely new business models;
Consistently strive to create tangible business value for our clients and meaningful products and services for the women they serve;
Be an active member of the executive team, consistently challenging the norm to transform our organization’s business model;
Effectively manage and mentor divisional team leaders;
Partner with VP of Market and Gender Research and the VP of Business Development and Strategic Advisory to prioritize solutions for specific market opportunities;
Build deeper relationships with internal and external stakeholders to build consensus and enthusiasm for innovation;
Ensure that team proposals speak to clients’ needs and objectives while aligned to Women’s World Banking strategy;
Attend and speak at industry events to evangelize the brand and services of Women’s World Banking.
Skills & Attributes:
Not afraid to fail and learn – champion the entrepreneurial spirit;
Ability to quickly isolate problems, articulate them, and quickly implement solutions;
Excellent analytical skills, and the ability to synthesize data and information to provide a high-level view which is accessible to a range of audiences;
Collaborative, team player who is an astute listener and advisor to staff;
Supports a culture of excellence, openness, and encouragement of new ideas;
Proven mentor and developer of talent;
Excellent stakeholder management skills and ability to engage colleagues at all levels of seniority in partner institutions;
Impeccable communication capabilities and instincts, understanding and applying formality or familiarity in appearance, speech and approach where appropriate;
Self-starter and independent thinker with significant personal ambition and sense of urgency to make business and social impact within the financial inclusion community;
Intellectual curiosity demonstrated in creative solution-seeking.
12+ years of progressive experience and established persona in the fields of creative design, digital solutions, or ideation;
5+ years of proven senior management experience;
Track record of superior creativity and problem solving abilities;
Extensive experience with rapid design and testing models;
Strong project management skills and respect for meeting tight deadlines;
Widespread network of creative design talent;
Understand how to interpret, model, and modify the experiential journey of customers;
Proven collaborative, negotiation and persuasion skills;
Impeccable presentation, verbal and written communication skills;
Depth of knowledge in commercial and retail business models;
Ability to manage remote teams;
Willingness to take on significant travel to emerging markets.
Experience in digital commerce, banking, and/or user interface applications;
Fluency in Spanish and/or French.
About Women’s World Banking
Women’s World Banking is the global non-profit devoted to giving more low-income women access to the financial tools and resources essential to their security and prosperity. For more than 35 years we have worked with financial institutions to show them the benefit of investing in women as clients, and as leaders. We equip these institutions to meet women’s needs through authoritative market research, leadership training, sustainable financial products and consumer education. Headquartered in New York, Women’s World Banking works with 40 institutions in 29 countries with a reach of 16 million women to create access to finance on a greater scale than ever before.
Women’s World Banking is an equal employment opportunity for all regardless of race, color, citizenship, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, disability, veteran or reservist status or any other category protected by federal, state or local law.
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