Vanguard Public Affairs is seeking a Vice President for our Lansing, Michigan-based headquarters. The Vice President is expected to be immersed in the company, community and industry and to represent our clients and the company’s beliefs and values at their very best. This position reports directly to the Chief Executive Officer.
The ideal candidate is a self-motivated individual with impeccable writing skills and the emotional maturity to work both on teams and independently. Prior experience working in the private sector or with multi-client firms preferred. Candidates should have majors in integrated public relations, advertising, journalism, or a similar field. The candidate should have a portfolio of work demonstrating capabilities in the latest PR trends (data-driven and multichannel marketing). The ideal candidate should have a success record in recruiting clients and be able to secure new clients upon employment. The ideal candidate would have experience with election campaigns.
With nearly two decades of experience providing communications counsel to leaders in the public, philanthropic, and private sectors, Vanguard Public Affairs specializes in issue management, political advocacy, and image consulting. Our expertise in multiple arenas - from financial communications to education, health care, environment, energy, and defense, technology and others - helps to ensure our clients receive premier service.
Vanguard Public Affairs currently has a team of 10 employees, as well as external partners and contractors, who represent 14 clients in three states in the education, energy, health care, defense, and social justice arenas. We also represent political candidates and specialize in the passage of local millages and bond initiatives.
Collaborate with Vanguard team members and clients to set the strategy and roadmap for all internal and external communication strategies.
Maintains media relations for clients and the company through personal contact, staff and external entities.
Provides strategic direction for a wide range of clients in the public, private, and non-profit arenas.
Promote Vanguard Public Affairs to the public in a manner that enhances credibility and brand awareness. Responsible for the development and dissemination of external communications, media relations, and public relations for the company.
Responsible for the design and implementation of policies and programs to promote a favorable public image for clients, effectively representing them externally to a host of targeted audiences.
Build effective relationships within the business and with key customers to improve the communication and identification of key priorities while managing expectations and delivering solutions that drive business growth. Help the CEO problem solve on business strategies and issues that extend well beyond matters of communication and internal messaging. Be an advocate for the culture and environment that fosters our brand image.
KEY SELECTION CRITERIA
A minimum 10 years of broad-based, progressive leadership in the public affairs, public relations, and/or internal company communications functions. An understanding of governmental operations is preferred but not required. Competency in campaign and elections is preferred.
Proven experience thinking strategically to direct public relations and communications outreach on behalf of clients and the company that places them in a position of credibility and influence. Ideally, the successful candidate has experience in the private sector managing clients.
A seasoned public relations executive with the ability to navigate across organization boundaries and influence senior executives without direct authority. Successfully communicate complex information in clear and simple terms to diverse audiences and gain the confidence of and credibility with others at all levels.
A bachelor’s degree in a related field (communications, public relations, journalism marketing, political science, public administration) is required. Master’s degree is not required, but it would enhance a candidate’s qualifications.
ESSENTIAL COMPETENCIES & PERSONAL CHARACTERISTICS
Proactive and willing to take on challenges and frame solutions and opportunities in business terms, while mobilizing the organization to think and act differently.
Able to build strong credibility, influence and partnership with the business through compelling communication skills and a transformational leadership style.
Able to work with the business leadership as well as the public affairs and communications team and external partners.
Focused on action and outcomes. Takes initiative and approaches everything with energy and skill in driving for business outcomes with an eye to the bottom line. Visionary, persistent and unafraid of tackling difficult tasks, yet also systematic and analytical in his or her approach to work.
Knowledgeable of the business; understands how business operates in general and has strong political acumen. A quick learner.
Passionate about leadership. Wants to lead and direct others and is recognized as a motivational talent builder who inspires success in individuals and teams. This individual wants and accepts the decision-making responsibility.
Courageous in directing and leading change, as he or she assesses the organization – process, people and structure – and its ability to meet Vanguard’s near and long-term business objectives. Able to advance the organization and manage the impact of change to enable better business results.
The compensation package will be market-based, corresponding to the experience level and credentials of the candidate. It will also include both short-term and long-term incentive components as part of this comprehensive, competitive package.
A full range of employee benefits is offered such as a 401(k), profit-sharing, PTO (Paid-Time-Off), and significant flex time will be offered to the successful candidate.
Diversity Mission Statement:
At Vanguard Public Affairs, we support a genuinely open, transparent, fair and inclusive workplace. To reinforce our diversity mission, the company has adopted the following Diversity and Inclusion Statement:
To cultivate an organization, at every level, that is as diverse as the communities in which it works, and as diverse as the clients it serves. To encourage the inclusion of backgrounds, ideas, and beliefs that spans a broad range of the human experience by embracing our commonalities and respecting the differences among us. We value differences in age, ethnicity, race, religion, sexual orientation, disability, family or marital status, gender identity or expression, language, national origin, political affiliation, socio-economic status, veteran status and other characteristics that make our employees unique.
Vanguard resolves to accomplish its mission by:
Fostering a respectful and supportive work environment for all employees;
Continuously seeking to increase the number of diverse employees through targeted recruitment, retention and promotion programs;
Creating and expanding upon programs to support, mentor and sponsor diversity;
Arranging social, professional development and networking opportunities tailored to meet the needs of our diverse colleagues;
Managing and monitoring the allocation and quality of work assignments provided to employees to maximize access/exposure to a wide variety of the company’s clients and to the leadership of the company; and
Ensuring that employees of varying backgrounds and perspectives are represented in leadership positions within the company.
Fostering a diverse and inclusive workforce allows Vanguard to provide clients with wide-ranging yet insightful perspectives on communication strategy, issue management and public affairs while boosting employee satisfaction and wellbeing.
Vanguard Public Affairs’ diversity and inclusion initiatives are applicable—but not limited—to our practices and policies on recruitment and selection; compensation and benefits; work schedule and vacation time; professional development and training; promotions; layoffs; terminations; and the ongoing development of a work environment built on the premise of diversity and inclusion. Vanguard Public Affairs encourages and enforces the following policies:
Open positions are advertised on job boards in order to reach potential candidates outside of current employee networks.
Candidates for open positions are not required to share their salary history. Compensation is based on talent, experience and the scope of work.
Interns are compensated.
Vanguard works with employees to build flexible schedules and accommodate individual needs. This includes time off for religious and cultural holidays, family obligations, health management and personal development as well as flexible day-to-day scheduling.
Vanguard works to accommodate physical, mental, and emotional disabilities so that all employees can reach their fullest potential.
Employees should respect and encourage each other to share ideas and unique perspectives.
All employees of Vanguard Public Affairs have a responsibility to treat others with dignity and respect at all times. All employees are expected to exhibit conduct that reflects inclusion during work, at work functions on or off the work site, and at all other company-sponsored events.
Any employee found to have exhibited any inappropriate conduct or behavior against others may be subject to disciplinary action.
In addition to our internal policies, Vanguard Public Affairs strives to support clients who share the values of diversity and inclusion. We have taken on pro-bono clients who advocate for marginalized communities, advance social justice and promote freedom from oppression, prejudice and intolerance. We encourage staff members to volunteer for similar causes.
To apply, please send a résumé, brief cover letter, examples of digital media, design work and writing samples to:
Nicole Kreager, Communications Manager
Vanguard Public Affairs
215 S. Washington Square, Suite 230
Lansing, MI 48933