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Associate Manager, Community Engagement

Robin Hood Foundation

Robin Hood Foundation

Brooklyn, NY, USA
Posted on Saturday, May 25, 2024

Associate Manager, Community Engagement, Blue Ridge Labs

About Robin Hood

For more than 35 years Robin Hood has been funding, supporting, and connecting New York’s most impactful community organizations at the forefront in the battle against poverty. We’re NYC’s largest local poverty-fighting philanthropy and since 1988, we have invested more than $3 billion to elevate and fuel the permanent escape of New Yorkers from poverty. Last year, through grantmaking with 300+ community partners, we met critical needs and created pathways to opportunities out of poverty for more than 325,000 New Yorkers, and through our strategic partnerships on childcare, child poverty, jobs, and living wages, we are scaling impact at a population level for the more than 1.4 million New Yorkers living in poverty. At Robin Hood, we believe your starting point in life should not define where you end up.

About Blue Ridge Labs

Blue Ridge Labs (BRL) is a venture studio, accelerator, and funder that launches and invests new technology ventures focused on fighting poverty in NYC. Currently, BRL runs three programs aligned with each of these areas: the Fellowship, Catalyst, and the Follow-On-Fund. The Fellowship is our flagship venture studio program that takes designers, product managers, engineers, and experts through a four-month co-creation process with low-income New Yorkers to launch new start-ups tackling issues of poverty. Catalyst is a six-month accelerator providing funding, connections, and insight for early-stage tech innovators to move from initial product to scale. The Follow-On-Fund provides the initial capital (up to $250,000 per venture), the network, and the guidance critical for new tech ventures to scale. At the heart of our programs is the Design Insight Group (DIG), a community of over 2,000 low-income New Yorkers. They’ve personally faced poverty and now work alongside program participants to develop solutions to the systemic issues they’ve experienced firsthand.

Position Overview

We are looking for a dynamic community innovator to steward and grow for the Design Insight Group (DIG) to support the delivery of programs aimed at building, launching startups that accelerate economic mobility. You will be a technology-oriented community organizer, networker, and ecosystem builder.

  1. Growing the community and rewarding our most influential community members
  2. Using data-driven insights and strategies to boost community engagement on a large scale. This involves developing and managing digital campaigns, real-life events, content, and feedback channels that help increase visibility, attract new leads, and enhance conversions for our products.

We believe in designing with the community at the heart of it all, and we’re convinced that the insights of those who’ve lived through these experiences are key to driving real change.

The DIG Lead will devote the bulk of their time to maintaining and growing our existing community of members, coordinating, and informing the development of our in-house technology that facilitates our community engagement, facilitating efforts to elevate community voice in our work and the work of our partners, and coordinating staff supporting the work. This could be in the form of:

  1. One-on-one interviews
  2. Focus groups
  3. Product testing sessions and surveys

This position reports to the Managing Director of Blue Ridge Labs and works closely with the rest of the Blue Ridge Labs team. In addition to leading DIG, the Associate Manager will serve as the Labs’ resident expert on user research and community development, supporting participants in other Labs programs, and staff at Robin Hood more broadly, as they work to deepen their community engagement. Our team works out of our Brooklyn office, at 150 Court Street.

Responsibilities include:

Leading, coordinating, and executing our community engagement

  • Promote and recruit community members to join the Design Insight Group (DIG).
  • Oversee and direct project-specific coordinators responsible for administering community engagement activities such as research sessions, event management and logistics, scheduling/coordinating, and act as primary liaison to DIG members.
  • Ensure successful execution of user research and co-design sessions (i.e., one-on-one interviews, focus groups, product testing sessions and surveys) in support of existing program activities.
  • Train staff and community partners on user research and community engagement processes to support mutually beneficial and positive engagements with the DIG community.
  • Partner closely with the technical engineer in maintaining the DIG application and be the point of contact for the application.
  • Identify and build new relationships with organizations aligned with BRL.
  • Deepen relationships and engagement with our existing DIG community and partners.
  • Organize impactful community events to engage alumni and entrepreneurs focused on fighting poverty.
  • Orchestrate BRL events and collaborate with relevant partners to deepen our impact and community engagement.
  • Facilitate user research sessions as needed.

Develop innovative methods to improve our impact by enhancing our community engagement

  • Collaborate with team members to improve our impact by integrating community voice more deeply into our work.
  • Develop and update training materials, digital tools, and guides, to support effective user research and community engagement work.
  • Attend community events to recruit new members and build BRL’s network in the social impact community.
  • Analyze, monitor, and report on evolving DIG member demographics.
  • Work closely with the Managing Director to support fundraising activities to support and grow our community engagement work.

Leading the development of the “DIG App”, our in-house tool facilitating community engagement

  • Act as the primary point of contact and resident expert of the DIG App for users.
  • Develop and manage the product development roadmap of the DIG App, with the Managing Director.
  • Coordinate contractors and technical talent, including product managers and engineers, supporting the ongoing operations and continued development of the DIG App at the direction of the Managing Director.
  • Track and monitor payments to program participants through the DIG App to ensure DIG members are timely paid and all financial transactions through the DIG App are in full compliance with Robin Hood’s policies and procedures.
  • Monitor and facilitate new member enrollment and data entered in the system to maintain a high level of quality data within the DIG App.

Orchestrate digital communication and marketing

  • Act as the primary point of contact and resident expert of the DIG App for users.
  • Design, craft, and implement our monthly community newsletters and periodic email communications.
  • Maintain our database of database of community contacts.
  • Advise on desired functionality and tools to improve our community engagement.
  • Maintain and execute ongoing communication to support program recruiting efforts, outreach, and identification of new partners.

Qualifications

  • Minimum of a bachelor’s degree or equivalent and 3+ years of experience required.
  • Strong candidates will have a track record in community outreach, community organizing, or ecosystem development while utilizing technical tools to extend influence and impact.
  • Strong background in community outreach, community organizing, and ecosystem development.
  • Strong ability to effectively facilitate user research sessions.
  • Strong empathy and communication skills, particularly the ability to build trust with a diverse range of stakeholders.
  • Thrives in fast-paced, action-oriented environments.
  • Strong project management abilities with ability to define next steps, prioritize, implement, and follow up, a person who is comfortable juggling multiple workstreams simultaneously.
  • A creative and flexible approach to problem-solving with an emphasis on finding ways to quickly test new ideas and a willingness to change course and adapt in the face of feedback or new data.
  • A track record of success building and activating networks or coalitions.
  • Strong customer service orientation, great interpersonal communication skills, and the ability to comfortably connect and interact with new people from a wide range of backgrounds.
  • A history of commitment to impact and social justice.
  • Strong interpersonal and coaching skills, ideally with experience managing or mentoring both individuals through challenging user research and co-design sessions.
  • Familiarity with creative, social media and e-mail marketing tools (e.g. Adobe Creative Suite, Buffer).
  • Solid working knowledge of business software (Microsoft Word and Excel).
  • Prior experience working with very early-stage organizations, ideally startup experience in the capacity of program manager, founder, or co-founder preferred.
  • Quick learner and demonstrated interest in learning technical tools. A demonstrated interest in “low-code/no-code” tools highly preferred. Strong interest in mastering Airtable required.
  • Experience working with technical talent such as engineers and/or product managers or designers highly preferred.
  • Knowledge of the challenges faced by underserved populations in New York City, through direct personal experience, and/or prior formal or informal work, strongly preferred.
  • Fluency in Spanish or Mandarin preferred, but not required.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Robin Hood is committed to promoting diversity, equity, inclusion and representation in all aspects of its work. As New York City's largest poverty-fighting organization, Robin Hood believes that building a diverse team is a fundamental to its ability to effectively serve and strengthen organizations serving the most vulnerable communities in the city, and to influence the policies that affect them.

Robin Hood believes in the potential that diversity creates deep and responsive relationships with its community partners; the ability to solve complex problems efficiently and effectively; and, most importantly, the ability of its diverse staff to work to its full capacity.

Robin Hood builds diversity, inclusion and equity practice into all aspects of its work. Its practices, values, traditions, and beliefs are embedded in the inclusive culture that it creates. Operationally, its formal and informal structures support a work environment that advances the professional development of staff at all levels, allow for innovation, and grounds its work as poverty fighters.

In its workplace, diversity equals representation. Robin Hood seeks to attract and retain a staff that reflects the communities that it serves. Racial and ethnic diversity matter to it, as does diversity among other cultural identifiers (ability, educational background, generation, gender, gender expression religion, immigration status, military status, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status).

Diversity within Robin Hood's staff is enhanced by its efforts at meaningful inclusion. It ensures that team members are empowered to make decisions, offer actionable feedback, and share credit for team success. Further, Robin Hood seeks to develop its talent professionally and has created an intentional focus on mentorship and sponsorship, particularly of junior staff. its goal is to encourage long term talent retention and engagement, while fostering a culture of innovation.

Robin Hood Guiding Principles

As an organization committed to economic mobility, our work is grounded in the following Guiding Principles:

  • Diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Proximity and humanity
  • Risk-taking and innovation

Our professional community reflects myriad demographic characteristics, perspectives, and backgrounds, which includes various identities that reflect diversity in gender identity and expression, race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, ability, and socioeconomic status. Our colleagues have access to opportunity and advancement, as we promote fair and equitable treatment and have encouraged participation by underrepresented groups. As a team, we promote a sense of belonging, high levels of engagement, and shared respect.

  • Robin Hood puts people first. Always.
  • Robin Hood is unafraid to take action and create solutions.
  • Robin Hood is data driven and heart led.
  • Robin Hood works the coat check.

Salary and Benefits

Robin Hood offers a highly competitive and comprehensive salary and package of employee benefits and encourages strong work-life balance. This position is located in New York City.

The salary range for this role is $78,970 - $93,000.

To Apply

Please visit our website to complete our online application.

Robin Hood is an equal opportunity employer. Applicants from diverse backgrounds and identities are encouraged to apply.

Please note that Robin Hood Foundation has adopted a COVID-19 vaccination policy to safeguard the health and well-being of our employees. As a condition of employment, Robin Hood employees are required to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19, unless a reasonable accommodation is approved or as otherwise required by law.