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AL for the Arts - Sector Lead

African Leadership Academy

African Leadership Academy

Chicago, IL, USA
Posted on Tuesday, January 17, 2023

AL For Arts - Sector Lead

About the Academy

African Leadership Academy (ALA) seeks to transform Africa by identifying, developing and connecting a new generation of young leaders who will lead the continent towards lasting peace and shared prosperity for all. Since our inception in 2008, we have worked to lay the foundations of this audacious mission by identifying and developing a group of exceptional young leaders who will work together to shape Africa’s future. To deliver on this mission and further their careers, we have created six sector network communities made up of our young leaders, partners and friends of ALA. These networks are focused on addressing Africa’s greatest challenges around agribusiness, governance, infrastructure, health, education and the arts.

About Al for the Arts

African Leaders (AL) for the Arts seeks to create a career network focused on the Arts, and comprised of creative leaders, enablers, artists and youth who are passionate about this industry. We are committed to developing young talent on the continent and leading a conversation through the creation of a network of inter-generational leaders who are eagerly pursuing progress and excellence in this domain. Challenges facing Africa’s Creative industries include negative societal perception, the lack of advocacy and reform (being a predominantly traditional and informal community) and a limited understanding of the creative economic potential. The mission and vision of AL for the Arts is 1). to accelerate the development of the African cultural and creative economy by creating channels for our young leaders to share their work and create opportunities for our network to engage with industry leaders and key stakeholders (2). ignite collaborative connections, mentorship, and access to capital for ventures and initiatives with our young artists across the continent and globally and (3) weave together communities that build our collective capacity to tackle Africa’s grand challenges, as we accelerate the growth of our young artists and ignite creative collaboration.

Position Overview

We are looking for a dynamic creative to fill the AL for Arts sector lead role within our Network Programs team. This role has the exciting task of building a pan African network of employers and partners in the Arts sector across the continent and designing programs and initiatives to grow and develop the network. The AL for the Arts Sector lead will be responsible for accelerating the career paths of our young leaders, though professional development and by connecting them to a variety of internship and job opportunities within creative arts. He/she will engage with top employers in this space, to build relationships and place young talent in their organisations. The Arts Sector Lead must engage network members by designing or initiating programs and events in which key industry players, professionals, thought leaders and our young leaders can participate. In addition, they will champion artistic entrepreneurial activities that bridge gaps to achieve positive impact. Lastly, the sector lead will find ways of igniting and fostering collaboration where facilitated knowledge transfer and the exchange of ideas can inspire impactful creative solutions for Africa in the in the ALA community, including ALA’s Creative Arts Department and ALU’s Arts Society. The overall goal is to create a community engaged on the most important strategic challenges facing this sector, and to help develop young talent in Africa.

Position Responsibilities

  • Build Partnerships: Sustain existing and develop new partnerships with possible employers, program partners and potential funders.
  • Execute on Strategy: Execute upon a long-term strategy to maximize our impact on the Arts in Africa whilst thinking about your own vision for the network and what it could become (entrepreneurial thinking).
  • Develop Programs: Design and implement a portfolio of programs for emerging talent and high-potential creatives.
  • Grow the Network: Develop and implement an effective network engagement strategy that will enable diverse stakeholders to connect and collaborate consistently to innovate and improve the Arts in Africa.
  • External Communications: Articulate the philosophies and approaches of AL for the Arts programs and the resulting impact of network members on the wider Artistic ecosystem in Africa. Provide thought leadership and represent AL for the Arts in global conferences, talks and creative networks to share learnings, build relationships and grow the network.
  • Stakeholder Partnerships: Manage relationships with key partners and an Advisory Board.
  • Get stuck in: Participate in program design and delivery, providing coaching, program facilitation and other engagement as necessary for program success and as a means of engaging network members.

Profile of the ideal candidate

  • Partnership builder: you build win-win partnerships and have the experience of fundraising for non-profit and/or for-profit organizations.
  • Demonstrate leadership: you identify, evaluate, and execute on high-impact opportunities using entrepreneurial thinking.
  • Program Development Skills: Ability to design or create initiatives, events and programs that will contribute to, and build the creative network.
  • Highly organized project manager: Ability to plan and deliver on projects timeously. Good planning, priority and organisational skills, especially when under tight deadlines
  • You have a strong existing network in the creative space and are passionate about building and sustaining relationships and networks, especially in the Arts.
  • Experience managing complex projects with multiple workstreams.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills. Experience with public speaking and publishing written work, and/or developing communication strategies and plans.
  • Communication and Marketing skills: Must have effective communication skills, both verbally and in writing. In practicality, this translates into report writing skills, grant applications, marketing blurbs, social media posts and newsletter writing.
  • Stakeholder Management skills: Ability to confidently work with multiple stakeholders at different levels in organisations, to advance progress and execute on program ideas, both internally and externally.
  • Professional development skills: Ability to manage and recognise young, highly skilled, ambitious talent (potentially in their first job) with a strong growth trajectory and provide career guidance/coaching as needed.
  • Data Management and Analysis skills: CRM Data management, generating analytics that can be used for reporting. (Salesforce knowledge an advantage.)

Desired Experience

  • Post Grad degree in an arts related discipline
  • 5+ years of experience working in or advising creative organizations. A passion for the arts with a creative background is a requirement for the role. Supervisory experience is a plus.
  • Must have industry knowledge and a broad understanding and knowledge of the Arts development challenges and opportunities facing the African continent, across all artistic genres.
  • An awareness about career opportunities in the Arts through the lens of leadership development and be passionate and eager to engage in continuous learning and networking in the field.
  • Dedicated to shaping the future of the Arts sector in Africa.

Reporting: This role reports to the Senior Director of Career Programs

Start Date: ASAP

Location: Strong preference for candidates based in Johannesburg or willing to relocate. Exceptional remote candidates (based on the African continent) will be considered. Remote candidates will be expected to spend extended periods working from our campus in Johannesburg.