Regional Director-West Africa

Search For Common Ground


The Regional Director (RD) offers leadership and oversight in the execution of Search’s 10-year strategy at the level of the conflict geography and country. S/he is a member of the Global Leadership Team, contributing to key organizational initiatives and policy or strategy changes with particular attention to the suitability for field-level implementation.

The position oversees three key areas of leadership and management:

  1. Strategy execution

  2. Program Management

  3. Thought leadership, reputation & external relationships

The RD champions the iteration and execution of the conflict geography strategies in West Africa. This includes the Sahel (Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger) and the Lake Chad (Nigeria, Cameroon) conflict geographies. It includes the oversight of the current transition in the Mano River Union (Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia) of Search’s presence towards locally viable organizations.

S/he plays a leadership role in driving excellent performance through the management of the program portfolio in the geographies under his/her supervision (management of people and resources). The RD plays a critical role in coordination (through matrixed relationships) with all other functional departments to achieve performance targets, ensuring resources are strategically oriented and prioritized.

The RD ensures that Search’s program portfolio reflects best practices, codified methodologies and embraces reflective practice and adaptive management. S/he leads teams towards capturing results that demonstrate impact as per Search’s Global Impact Framework.

S/he supports the development of a team spirit in each country and throughout the region, respecting diversity, equity and inclusion and reflecting Search’s values in practice and through supporting teams.

The RD is responsible for ensuring excellent program implementation in compliance with Search and donor policies and regulations. The RD supports outreach, advocacy and networking for the region and Search at-large, pursuing partnerships and ensuring Search’s reputation remains strong and relevant.

Scope of Role

Reports to: Senior Vice President, Programs

Position(s) directly reporting to this position: Six Country Directors, the West Africa regional Program & Grants management staff, Regional Communications Officer

Working relations: Regional Finance Controller, Regional Design, Monitoring and Evaluation specialists, Regional Human Resources Business Partner, Africa Program Development Snr Manager

Budget Managed:

The following areas offer more details on the areas of responsibility and influence:

Regional Strategy Execution

  • Lead execution of conflict geography strategies, including facilitating regular review of the strategy execution at the conflict geography level;
  • Lead on shifts in the geographic coverage of the program portfolio, including opening and closing offices, identifying new sub-offices, in line with the conflict geography strategy
  • Oversee annual planning (OKRs) for each conflict geography and facilitate regular review of performance dashboard and OKR progress
  • Ensure that program design is aligned with strategy
  • Oversee the transition from Search’s country offices in Mano River towards viable local independent organizations

Business Development

  • Support the engagement of country and conflict geography leadership with current and new donors in line with annual targets and in line with Serach’s program development strategy
  • Actively participate in prioritized bids including: contributing meta-level strategic inputs at the design phase, cultivating strategic partnerships, ensuring that the resources proposed will enable compliant and timely implementation with attention to minimum capabilities in each conflict geography;

Program Management

  • Delivering a range of management, technical, and operational support to empower and enable program leaders to achieve time, scope and budget objectives as per their OKRs and the conflict geography strategy
  • Ensure program implementation in compliance with Search and donor policies and regulations
  • Ensure that program implementation teams are equipped with access to Search’s library of tools and methodologies, and that they embrace a culture of reflective practice and adaptive management
  • Maintain ongoing communication and close collaboration with key donors and partners to ensure strong relationships during implementation.

Personnel Management

  • Recruit, supervise, mentor and support the professional development of conflict geography SMTs and country directors and the regional program management staff.
  • By empowering staff and leading by example, promote a culture of inclusion, learning, support, diversity and innovation.
  • Demonstrate and promote Search’s culture and values.

Finance & Operations

  • In coordination with the Finance department, ensure that the leadership in the portfolio assure efficient and compliant financial management of the program portfolio. This includes regular participation in organization-wide financial performance reviews, annual budgeting and quarterly reforecasting
  • Ensure efficient and compliant opening and closing of country offices in line with Search’s strategy;
  • In coordination with the Human Resources and Administration department, support on mitigating risk and efficiently managing security, legal or other operational challenges.

Thought Leadership, Reputation and External Relations

  • In coordination with the Global Affairs and Partnership team, develop and strengthen new and existing relationships with public and private sector donors and work to position Search as a partner of choice.
  • Represent Search’s regional portfolio and thought leadership with current and prospective donors, professional networks and other key stakeholders.
  • Promote interregional and global learning through the support of thought leadership through regional exchanges and peer learning.
  • Assess and keep abreast of the emerging trends in international peacebuilding, including business intel on opportunities.


  • Master’s degree in conflict resolution, international relations, international development or a related field; or appropriate degree complemented with experience


  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively with a diverse team, with attention to coaching and managing performance, and professional development of staff;
  • Successful track record of fundraising and excellent skills in the cycle of design and proposal development;
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills (written and verbal);
  • Excellent financial literacy and management skills, including a familiarity with the basic compliance requirements of major donors;
  • Ability to respond collaboratively in situations of uncertainty, ambiguity /or conflict
  • Willingness to travel up to 30 percent of time;
  • Fluency in English and French (written and verbal)


  • Minimum of 8 years of program management experience at a senior level, preferably in peace building or a related field;
  • Experience in overseeing a complex portfolio, involving matrix relationships with other teams and departments, as well as remote supervision of diverse teams
  • Significant field experience in managing multiple projects, multi-tasking, clear delegation and follow-through;
  • At least 4 years of working in Africa and in a cross-cultural environment;
  • Experience working collaboratively with a broad range of stakeholders, local government officials, and international donors;

How To Apply



Type: Full Time

Application Deadline: 01/13/2021

, ,United States