Practice Area Director, Migration, Economic Empowerment, & Recovery

  • Senior-level, Full-time staff position
  • Posted on 11 June 2020
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Job Description

Category: Programs
Req ID: PRACT02069
Posted Date: 2020-06-10
Schedule: Full Time
Location: Washington, DC 20015, United States USA

Creative seeks a Practice Area Director for the Economic Growth Division. ThePractice Area Director works under broad direction and is responsible for leading and directing business development and project implementation strategies in a practice area managing the work project teams, as well as the associated budgets. The Practice Area Director assumes responsibilities for the management of complex projects of all sizes in funding, management of large project teams, and ensuring project implementation success in a Practice Area. The Practice Area Director is responsible for a comprehensive range of activities that include actively anticipating, diagnosing, and resolving project implementation matters of a technical, programmatic, project finance, human resources, administrative, operational, business development, client relations, local relationships, subcontractor relationships, contracts, and compliance nature throughout the project life cycle. The Practice Area Director travels internationally in executing many responsibilities of the role and brings extensive in-country experience on technical aspects of program design and implementation, and in the development of new business initiatives within the Practice Area.

Reporting & Supervision:

The Practice Area Director reports to the Vice President, EG Division. This Director interacts with all Divisions and collaborates with other Practice Areas. The incumbent may supervise both Practice Area project staff, and Division technical staff.

NOTE: Different projects require different levels of project management leadership skills based on their strategic importance, project profile and complexity, specificity, scope, and geographic location. Creative formally sanctions, and reserves the right to modify, the skill and position level(s) needed for each project.

Expected Outcomes:


Projects under Practice Area oversight receive outstanding leadership guidance and management. Directors, Portfolio Management, Senior Project Directors and Project Directors under Practice Area oversight manage their projects purposely, cohesively and efficiently. Project aims are clear on the strategic (outcome level—technical), tactical (output level—managerial and financial) and operational (milestone-level transactions) fronts. Challenges and potential implementation issues are preemptively identified and proactively addressed. The client is being effectively served and is satisfied with Creative’s service and offerings. Senior Management is kept abreast of significant threats, implementation deficiencies and opportunities.

Project Management

Projects in the Practice Area perform well-they meet contractual obligations, and fiscal targets. Projects are well-planned so that inputs—such as human resource deployments, STTA, procurements—can be timely and effectively supported by HQ. Project staffing, project obligations, and reporting meet anticipated levels and high-quality standards.

Financial Management

Projects in the Practice Area forecast appropriately and meet performance targets. Projects meet revenue projections and proactively manages vacancies, non-billables, and foregone revenue. Projects requiring important course corrections or corporate support are expeditiously handled and receive the attention of upper management.

Staff Management

Directors, Portfolio Management, Senior Project Directors and Project Directors in the Practice Area are tangibly supported technically, managerially and professionally; their professional objectives and personal needs are well understood, as are those of COPs in the field. Performance reviews of Directors, Portfolio Management, Senior Project Directors and Project Directors are meaningful and constructive and are administered timely. Projects honor all aspects of programmatic and fiscal compliance.

New Business Development

Projects in the Practice Area demonstrate an entrepreneurial spirit; they are able to seize opportunities in the local marketplace, and to position the company and pave the way for the

realization of new business opportunities. Opportunities for new business generation are created and nurtured. The company is visibly represented before stakeholders. Specific new business pursuits are well planned and timely executed. Activity design is conducted with insight and intellectual curiosity.

Learning & Adaptation

Projects in the Practice Area have a heightened awareness of the value of learning and adaptation. Projects have explicitly defined learning agendas, M&E plans that track progress towards learning, and course corrections that are informed by data. Project interventions and innovations are well documented and catalogued. Pause-and-Reflect events capture salient programmatic aspects with potential for replication or scale up. Salient activities are celebrated and promoted through Creative’s Communications Department.

Primary Responsibilities:
  • Builds the practice through business development, thought leadership and marketing and outreach in the areas of migration, youth, economic empowerment, and innovative methods of mobile money, formalization of employment and other creative solutions.
  • Design innovative migration-related programming based on evidence-based solutions to leverage formal and informal economy opportunities, digital finance, cross-sectoral frameworks, and covid-19 issues, among others.
  • Oversees assigned Directors, Portfolio Management, Senior Project Directors and Project Directors;
  • Ensures that all Projects in the Practice Area achieve contractual deliverables with technical distinction and meet fiscal targets.
  • Ensures that all Projects in the Practice Area are well planned and resourced, and tracks all aspects of project performance;
  • Ensures that all facets of project implementation meet internal and governmental procedural and compliance requirements;
  • Represents Creative before projects;
  • Serves as chief project spokesperson for the Practice Area communicating regularly with client representatives (i.e., CORs and AORs);
  • Represents projects externally before clients, partners, donors and other stakeholders;
  • Frames and leads pertinent new business development endeavors;
  • Works at the senior most level leading proposal preparation in the Practice Area;
  • Serves as chief spokesperson with senior management on matters or importance, including risks and opportunities;
  • Oversees relationships with subcontractors, including performance and financial management;
  • Frames and oversees the production of project reports, and other material such as success stories, interventions and innovations;
  • Leads project learning and data driven adaptation; and
  • Serves as the most senior project management level liaison with Creative’s support units, including HR, Finance & Contracts, Procurement, Field Operations, Communications, etc.

Minimum Skills & Qualifications:

NOTE: Your job title is based on the role you perform, and you must meet the minimum qualifications for that job title. Greater (higher) education and experience than minimum qualifications do not automatically classify you into a higher-level job title/position.
  • Master’s degree in a relevant field and fifteen or more years of relevant experience;
  • At least twelve months of field experience as a Chief of Party, Regional Program Director, Country Representative, or equivalent field role;
  • Minimum of ten years of supervisory experience, including management of COPs and programs;
  • Experience in assuming responsibilities for complex projects in funding in a Practice Area, depending upon the complexity, projected timeline of the projects, and geographic location of the work;
  • Expert level knowledge and experience in directing specialized and complex work of others in project implementation;
  • Considerable experience in providing technical and financial oversight to large projects to include budget realignments; in approving project procurements, grants and purchase order agreements;
  • Extensive experience in the Practice Area, such as, economic development. Migration, informal sector, financial services, and enterprise and investment led growth and competitiveness, countering violent extremism;
  • Strategic thinker and decisive evidence-based decision-making skills;
  • Experience in quickly producing results on a range of assignments in diverse country and programmatic contexts; in developing/monitoring proposal and project budgets;
  • Expert leadership of project start-ups and close-downs;
  • Considerable skill in managing teams, handling tight deadlines; ability to travel internationally on short notice;
  • Extensive skill and experience in U.S. government donor relations and client management;
  • Expert knowledge of USAID Programs and Regulations;
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills to include extensive experience in making formal presentations to clients, peers and other groups; and
  • Extensive Business Development experience, including prior experience with Proposal Management, Championing or Writing USAID proposals.

Desired Skills and Qualifications:
  • Prior development experience in the field, especially in areas related to economic growth, informal economy, migration, remittances, youth, agriculture, crisis communities, and/or economies at risk;
  • Experience in presenting before USAID and technical audiences;
  • Experience in performance management planning, managing, reporting for results, and contracts management; and
  • Spanish language skills desired.

Equal Opportunity Employer/Protected Veterans/Individuals with Disabilities

The contractor will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor’s legal duty to furnish information. 41 CFR 60-1.35(c)


About the Organization

Creative Associates International (Creative) is a dynamic and fast-growing professional services firm that specializes in international development in the areas of education, democratic transitions and stabilization in post-conflict environments. Based in Washington, D.C., the firm has field presence in 20 countries worldwide with a strong and diverse portfolio that includes global contracts with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and other clients including the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Defense. The firm has earned a solid reputation among its clients and missions worldwide and is well-regarded by competitors and partners alike.

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