Senior Message and Issues Specialist #0180
Position Emphasis: This position supports the NEA’s strategic objective to focus the energy and resources of its 3 million members toward the promotion of public education by providing expertise in brand consistency, segmentation and localization, and cutting-edge, data driven insights to drive Association goals. The position provides strategic advice to NEA governance, staff and state affiliate staff on critical issues of the Association.
Position Summary: This position is responsible for analyzing quantitative and qualitative data, trends, strategies and competitive research to achieve Association goals. The incumbent will work collaboratively with cross-functional teams across the Association to support strategic initiatives and help lead the organization’s third-party research partners. The incumbent leads member and non-member research initiatives, drafting, fielding and analyzing research findings and making recommendations for programs and communications initiatives accordingly. The incumbent uses proven messaging and positioning methodology to develop research-based, tested forms of written, verbal, broadcast, and interactive/social media communication tools. The incumbent synthesizes information and develops advocacy tools including message frames, talking points, and other written documents for use by Association leaders and staff at the national, state, and local levels. The incumbent collaborates and builds confidence with NEA departments and affiliates to provide strategic recommendations to inform campaigns, communication integration and message discipline. Essential functions include quickly assimilating multiple and varied sources of information to use in preparing clear, concise and accurate statements and responses for NEA leaders, often under short deadlines as well as drafting/presenting complex information in engaging ways to a variety of audiences. The incumbent presents research findings, conducts message trainings and develops message frames. To carry out duties and responsibilities, the incumbent uses computer technology and associated software and travels extensively.
In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the following is provided: The position involves skill in using a personal computer; oral and written communication skills; creativity, proofreading and editing skills; use of clear and articulate speech; interpersonal skills; ability to work effectively in a fast-paced environment; use of reasoning, analysis, and problem solving skills; sitting for long periods; stooping, bending, and reaching; ability to carry light materials (up to 10 pounds); and ability to travel by various conveyances, e.g., air and automobile. Qualifications: Minimum Education Requirement: Bachelor’s degree in Marketing, Information Science, Statistics, Market Research, Communications, Public Relations, or related discipline, or an equivalent combination of education and experience from which comparable knowledge and skills may be obtained. Advanced studies in Political Science, Journalism, Public Policy or related field preferred. Minimum Qualifications: Five years of in-depth professional experience in strategic research, marketing, message development and organizational communications, communications with government, media, communications/polling firm, or corporate public relations agency or marketing department. Experience with Microsoft Office Suite (to include Word, Outlook, Excel, PowerPoint), database software, and statistical packages (SPSS, SAS, or similar software). Other requirements: Experience in strategic public relations and/or message research, development, delivery and/or marketing communications. Ability to work evenings and weekends. Work samples demonstrating the ability to analyze, research, write, edit, and deliver messaging tools will be required at the time of the interview. Extensive travel required (up to 4590 overnights per year).
Selection Criteria: Tier 1 (Essential): Proven mastery of corporate communications, communication plans and evaluation techniques. Excellent oral and written communication skills. Demonstrated knowledge of research methodologies; skill in designing and developing survey instruments, supervising and interpreting surveys and evaluation techniques. Proven experience with data visualization tools and familiarity with demographic data, voter file databases and research methods. Demonstrated experience with advocacy communication strategies that involve analyzing and synthesizing complex information with the intent of effectively providing accurate and concise deliverables in engaging ways to a variety of audiences. Proven experience writing, editing, and producing high-quality communication vehicles, including message platforms, messaging workshop materials, hands-on technical assistance tools, as well as representing the organization’s position on issues. Effective analytical, interpersonal, and customer service skills to interact with all levels of staff and governance. Demonstrated ability to work independently and collaboratively as part of a team (internal and external). Ability to handle multiple and complex tasks simultaneously under stringent timeframes and changing priorities/conditions. Successful references. TIER 2 (Significant): Working knowledge of data warehousing. Familiarity with modeling and data mining. Proven program management experience with programs designed to increase support for public education or with large-scale campaigns related to creating public understanding of educational issues or public policy. Demonstrated experience in the development and coordination of research-driven branding and/or crisis communications. Effective understanding of public opinion surveys, focus groups, interviews, content analysis and other research tools and/or consumer/constituent or market research expertise. Experience leading training workshops and presenting complex data in laymen’s terms. TIER 3 (Desirable): Copy-editing skills. Proven record of ongoing communications professional development and training. Knowledge of Center for Communication’s mission and strategic focus.