Executive Director of Communications
Executive Director of Communications
SC Johnson College of Business
Leading at the intersection of people, business, and technology, the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business is one of the most comprehensive business schools in the nation and includes many areas of expertise not found in any other leading institution. The college is comprised of the university’s three accredited business schools, each of which is recognized as among the best in higher education: the Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management, the Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management, and the School of Hotel Administration. Our academic research; industry and community engagement; and undergraduate, graduate, and professional degree programs all reflect the future of business: flexible, collaborative, and cross-disciplinary. The college community includes 244 research faculty, 44,000 alumni, and nearly 3,300 undergraduate, professional, and graduate students. The SC Johnson College of Business has an unparalleled resource base from which to draw—within the college, Cornell Tech in New York City, and Cornell University broadly.
The Office of Marketing and Communications plays a strategic role in supporting the success of the college’s short-term and long-term goals for enrollment, alumni relations, philanthropy, brand visibility, and external reputation. Within our office, the communications team is a group of creative and strategy-oriented storytellers who enjoy working across all types of media and channels to showcase the very best of the college of business. We develop and execute the messaging and content strategies that connect meaningfully with our prospective and current students, alumni, and media.
The Executive Director of Communications oversees the integrated communications function at the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business. Reporting directly to the Associate Dean for Marketing and Communications, the Executive Director will work closely with their direct reports: Director of Communications, the Director of Creative Services, and the Assistant Director of Web Development and their staff, as well as the Director of Public Relations and college and University Relations (UR) leadership to develop strategic direction for all areas of communications. The role oversees content development and execution in areas including the website, social media, and media relations, promoting faculty thought leadership, storytelling, and internal communications. This person and his/her team will create and disseminate content that is meaningful, relevant, and compelling to engage in a sophisticated and global audience of internal and external constituents including prospective and current students, alumni, donors, corporate partners and media.
Key responsibilities for this position will include:
- Working in partnership with the Associate Dean and other members of Marketing and Communications leadership, develop an integrated communications strategy including public relations, editorial, web, digital, print, and social media to ensure an integrated approach that aligns with objectives and is consistent across all platforms.
- Provide strong strategic vision and general guidance to the Director of Communications who primarily is responsible for content strategy, creation and execution; the Director of Creative Services who is responsible for the development and execution of digital and 3D marketing campaigns and materials supporting our creative strategy; and the Assistant Director of Web Development who leads the development and execution of our website, encompassing our SEO plan.
- Partner with the Executive Director of IT and IT staff on the infrastructure and function of the websites.
- Partner with college and university alumni affairs and development on alumni communications and the upcoming capital campaign.
- Working in conjunction with the Marketing team, utilize paid and owned media, and earned media in coordination with UR’s Media Relations team, to achieve program and brand objectives. Utilize data analytics to monitor and evaluate effectiveness; develop metrics to measure success.
- Working with the Director of Public Relations and the Associate Dean, and in coordination with UR’s Media Relations team, position college faculty as experts and thought leaders in external media.
- Direct the development of innovative new communications programs that are consistent with the brand promise, vision, and position; evaluate and assess their effectiveness; monitor brand promise and preserve and protect the integrity of the college and top-level university brand.
- Enable change within the department by sharing vision and expectations; ensure team has the necessary skills, tools and information to succeed. Maintain a high-performance culture where team members feel empowered to innovate to achieve results.
- Maintain a strong relationship with central university communications as well as college leadership. Advise college and school deans on internal and external communications issues. Act as an internal expert and consultant to leadership in matters related to communications and public relations.
- Keep abreast of important trends and leading edge techniques in the marketing and communications industry and incorporate best practices, particularly as it applies to higher education.
- Ten or more years of experience in Strategic Communications, including significant experience in the digital space. Bachelor’s degree in communications, marketing, journalism or related field.
- Demonstrated knowledge of website strategy and content development, social media, media relations, and branding. Working familiarity with relevant data analytics and other tools for decision-making (Google Analytics, SEO).
- Demonstrated success in development and execution of content strategy plans and programs.
- Experience in leading a team of professionals including content creators and project managers.
- Prior experience in a fast-paced, complex organization with multiple constituents.
- An accomplished juggler, who has the ability to keep multiple projects moving forward simultaneously, while anticipating the future.
- Expert communications skills (oral and written), strong writer and editor; proven experience in working with and advising people in high-level positions.
- Proven expertise as both a strategic thinker and a project manager with a keen ability to synchronize the two.
- Team player; ability to work collaboratively with others; good listener. Someone who has high energy/drive, a relentlessly positive attitude, and is results oriented.
- Able to make decisions confidently and quickly with appropriate amount of information; can bring accountability to the team.
- Able to deliver in this role as it exists today, as well as make significant contributions in the future.
Master’s degree in communications, marketing, journalism or related field.
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If interested in applying we highly encourage you to include a cover letter in your application so we can better understand your interest in the position.
This position is full-time and is eligible for benefits. Cornell has also been nationally recognized as an award-winning workplace for our health, wellbeing, sustainability and diversity initiatives. For more benefit information, follow the link: Cornell Benefits. No visa sponsorship is available for this position.
Diversity and Inclusion are a part of Cornell University’s heritage. We are a recognized employer and educator valuing AA/EEO, Protected Veterans and Individuals with Disabilities. We also recognize a lawful preference in employment practices for Native Americans living on or near Indian reservations. Cornell University is an innovative Ivy League university and a great place to work. Our inclusive community of scholars, students, and staff impart an uncommon sense of larger purpose, and contribute creative ideas to further the university's mission of teaching, discovery, and engagement.