Chief of Staff (f/m)

Location: International Office, Innsbruck

SOS Children’s Villages International is the umbrella organisation for the global federation of SOS Children’s Villages. As a non-governmental social development organisation we support children without parental care and families in difficult living conditions through services in care, education, health and emergency relief, and we advocate for the rights of children and young people, in alliance with a great diversity of partners. We work in 135 countries and territories, reaching over one million children, young people, families and caregivers each year.


The Chief of Staff (COS) reports directly to the CEO and provides the CEO with key support in driving forward the strategic goals of the SOS Children’s Villages federation. S/he will understand the CEO’s objectives at an intrinsic, professional level that allows him/her to represent the CEO’s viewpoint and anticipate operational and tactical needs in service of the General Secretariat’s (GSC) role in shaping and implementing the federation’s vision and in support of the Management Team’s (MT) direction thereof.

As a member of the GSC Leadership Team and trusted counsel to the CEO and MT, the COS will be seen as a “go-to” person, voice and problem solver for challenges and opportunities in business strategy, resource management, policy, organisational development, governance and both internal and external communications, in partnership with GSC Leadership Team members. S/he will serve as a critical conduit between the CEO Office and the rest of the organisation, as well as between the organisation and its diverse external stakeholders. The COS will oversee EUNA relations, federation communications, and the monitoring and assessment of strategy implementation.

Tasks and Responsibilities
  • Provide counsel and assist the CEO, MT and GSC Leadership Team in overseeing the strategic direction and operational momentum of the organisation
  • Act as a dynamic interface between the CEO Office and the rest of the organisation, securing the respect and cooperation of colleagues at all levels, and evolving into a role that may deputise the CEO when necessary and appropriate
  • Facilitate the information flow between the CEO and the other members of the MT, the Office of the President, and the overall SOS Children’s Villages federation bodies e.g. Management Council (MCO)
  • Facilitate, streamline and manage two-way communications between the CEO Office and the rest of the organisation and with external stakeholders by organising and prioritising critical issues and reviewing for content, accuracy and quality required information for the CEO and MT
  • Establish a trusted intermediary role with external global partner organisations and serve as a spokesperson for the organisation when necessary and appropriate
  • Serve as Secretary to the MT, setting agendas and facilitating and participating in these meetings, as well as in the GSC Leadership Team meetings
  • Lead EUNA Relations, federation communications, and the monitoring and assessment of strategy implementation
  • Provide strategic counsel to Communications & Brand and day-to-day management of the CEO Office


Core Skills and Experience
  • A proven successful track record of at least 10 years of relevant professional experience in an executive level context, in an international environment
  • Strong experience of advising and interacting with organisational leadership and senior external stakeholders
  • Familiarity with the culture of and issues facing the INGO or charity sector (preferably gained within a child focused and/or program based organisation)
  • Expertise in shared governance practice, including supervisory board management, fundraising and marketing activities, strategic internal and external communications and data-driven organisational monitoring & management
  • Managerial, networking and negotiating acumen to build effective and inclusive working partnerships with culturally and professionally diverse colleagues, partners, stakeholders and others who are not in the line of command
  • Keen critical and strategic thinking skills and judgment, combined with strong organisational capacities and attention to detail
  • Results-driven, positive and engaging attitude, complemented by the ability to give honest and candid feedback
  • Strong interpersonal and listening skills, and the ability to be both confident and diplomatic in a complex environment
  • Exceptionally high communications skills, both oral and written
  • Ability to work under considerable time pressure and, at times, highly pressured conditions
Qualifications/ Language skills
  • Advanced degree in International Development, International Humanitarian Affairs, Social Science, International Relations or related field (an undergraduate degree combined with comparable senior experience would equally be considered)  
  • Outstanding oral and written English language communication skills
  • Strong and nuanced command of oral (business) German language and understanding of complex written German language
  • Fluency in additional languages (French or Spanish) would be an asset
What we offer
  • The opportunity to work in one of the largest international child care organisations and be part of our meaningful mission: “We build families for children in need, we help them shape their own futures and we share in the development of their communities.”
  • A high level position with a varied scope of tasks and the responsibility to support the further development of the organisation to achieve its strategic goals

If you are interested in this position, please send your detailed e-mail application by 28 May 2018 at the latest to, SOS-Children’s Villages International,

SOS Children’s Villages International strives to ensure gender balance therefore, we strongly encourage women to apply for this position

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