Head of Cool Food Membership Development

Organization icon

World Resources Institute

Location icon


Clock icon

4 days ago

In the U.S. office, this position is remote due to Covid-19. This position can also be based in either our offices in Washington, DC, London, and The Hague.

Job Summary:

We are looking for a driven, hands-on, and passionate commercial leader to join our Sustainable Diets team. A skilled networker and relationship builder, with a proven track-record in business development, you will help us drive climate action by ensuring existing Cool Food members deliver impact and by recruiting new organizations to join our fast-growing movement.

Launched in 2019, Cool Food is unique initiative which brings together a growing number of food service providers, restaurants, retailers, governments, schools, and hospitals, and help them cut their food-related greenhouse gas emissions while serving delicious food. Over the past three years, WRI has been building Cool Food’s foundation. The next phase is to dramatically scale its impact. We have set ourselves the highly ambitious goal of increasing our reach six-fold over three years.

Reporting to the Director of Sustainable Diets, you will be the driving force behind this growth. You will be responsible for recruiting new organizations to join Cool Food and ensure our wide range of existing partners gain excellent value from their membership. As we embark on an exciting journey to scale Cool Food, you will manage and execute the end-to-end acquisition process and work with colleagues to develop and implement effective acquisition strategies to bring new members on board. You will build a strong network of advocates and continually scan the market to identify new opportunities to grow our scale and impact.

You will lead and develop the membership development team, so it delivers its full potential through clarity of direction and effective ways of working.

This is a unique opportunity to join one of the world’s leading environmental NGOs and work with a creative and highly motivated team of scientists, marketing, communication, project management, and engagement experts passionate about accelerating a shift towards more sustainable diets. This is a full-time, benefits-eligible, limited-term two-year position subject to renewal based on performance and funding.

Job Responsibilities:

1. Recruitment of new organizations to join the Cool Food initiative (acquisition) – 50%

  • Identifying and qualifying the priority organizations and individuals to target through market research and networking
  • Managing and executing the end-to-end acquisition process including leads management, pitches, proposal development, closing deals and onboarding
  • Working with marketing and communication colleagues to develop and implement effective acquisition tactics
  • Working with the Head of Cool Food and researchers to develop tailored proposals for new members
2. Membership retention and advocacy – 20%
  • Managing and executing the end-to-end membership process including onboarding, invoicing and renewals
  • Providing a quality membership experience through building personal relationships with key members, one-to-one liaison, and prompt handling of queries
  • Working with the Head of Cool Food to further develop our membership offer, including organizing members webinars and surveys
  • Working with marketing and communication colleagues to communicate our impact and drive advocacy for the Cool Food initiative through case studies, testimonials and referrals
  • Encouraging a culture of continuous improvement by bringing back members’ insights to the team and responding to opportunities and challenges in a timely manner
3. Line management – 15%
  • Leading and developing the membership development team so it delivers its full potential through clarity of direction and effective ways of working (2 direct reports)
  • Ensuring the team is aligned with and benefits from WRI’s people management processes (eg performance reviews, learning and development opportunities)
4. Managing and developing third-party routes to market – 10%
  • Identifying possible partner third-party organizations through market research and networking
  • Working with the Head of Cool Food and researchers to develop partnership agreements
  • Managing partnerships and monitoring progress to ensure they deliver impact and alignment to our goals
  • Working with marketing and communication colleagues to develop the required collateral to support the partnerships
5. Budget and reporting – 5%
  • Setting and managing engagement budget including membership fees and operating expenses, in line with WRI’s best practice
  • Maintaining an up-to-date view of progress against KPIs for review with senior management
  • Being proactive in monitoring progress and identifying opportunities to accelerate or course correct
  • Developing and maintaining a good knowledge of market and competitor insights, and being proactive in turning these insights into actions for the benefit of the initiative

Job Qualifications:

  • Minimum of 10 years of full-time work relevant experience spanning business development and account management in a FMCG business or consultancy environment
  • Proven track record of winning new business and developing existing client relationships which deliver win-win benefits
  • Experience in managing the acquisition process from lead generation to closing deals
  • Skilled in consultative selling techniques with a proven ability to build relationships and turn client needs into a solution
  • Experience in leading and motivating others to deliver at pace and identify new business opportunities
  • Line management experience preferable but not essential
  • An excellent team player. As a part of a growing international team, you will collaborate with colleagues across WRI’s global offices, working across time zones as required
  • An impactful communicator with excellent written and verbal communication; able to seamlessly transition between c-suite conversations, calls with corporate partners and working with colleagues to deliver outcomes
  • Experience of working with a wide range of stakeholders, preferably across the private and not for profit sectors
  • A proactive, can-do mentality, commercially focused and results-driven
  • Please only apply if you are legally able to work in one of these locations and are currently located there.

How to Apply:

Please submit a resume with cover letter. Applicants must apply through the WRI Careers portal to be considered.

Program Overview:

Cool Food was launched in 2019. The Cool Food Pledge is a growing movement of progressive organizations that have set science-based targets to reduce the climate impact of the food they serve. Cool Food Meals launched in October 2020 is a consumer-facing initiative that identifies and badges meals that fall under an environmental threshold and meet nutritional safeguards. Our ambition is for the Cool Food program to reach 12 billion meals over the next few years (from 2 billion today), across North America and Europe. Some 60 organizations are already part of the Cool Food movement, with more joining every month.

WRI Overview:

World Resources Institute (WRI) is an independent, nonprofit global research organization that turns big ideas into action at the nexus of environment, economic opportunity, and human well-being. We are working to address seven critical challenges that the world must overcome this decade to secure a sustainable future for people and the planet: climate change, energy, food, forests, water, sustainable cities, and the ocean.

We are passionate. We value our diversity of interests, skills, and backgrounds. We have a flexible work environment. And we share a common goal to catalyze change that will improve the lives of people. Our shared ideals are at the core of our approach. They include integrity, innovation, urgency, independence, and respect.

The foundation of our work is delivering high-quality research, data, maps, and analysis to solve the world’s greatest environment and international development challenges and improve people’s lives. We work with leaders in government, business, and civil society to drive ambitious action and create change on the ground. Equally important, we bring together partners to develop breakthrough ideas and scale-up solutions for far-reaching, enduring impact.

We have been growing rapidly: our staff has doubled in size over the past 5 years, and our operating budget is nearing $200 million. Founded in 1982, WRI has a global staff of over 1,600 people with work spanning 60 countries. We have offices in Africa, Brazil, China, Europe, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Colombia and the United States, as well as a growing presence in other countries and regions.

WRI is committed to advancing gender and social equity for human well-being in our mission and applies this principle to our organizational and programmatic practices.