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7 Aug 2020

Full-Time Director

Third Plateau – Posted by Third Plateau Anywhere

Job Description


Third Plateau is committed to providing equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to their race, color, age, religious creed, sexual orientation, or other personal characteristics. You can read our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Statement here. Furthermore, we have designed our application process (detailed at the bottom) to eliminate implicit and explicit biases as much as possible. Applicants of all backgrounds are highly encouraged to apply!


Position Overview: Third Plateau, a social impact strategy firm, is growing! We are looking for a self-directed professional to serve as a Director on our Strategy Team. Under the guidance of Third Plateau’s Senior Director, the position will primarily focus on overseeing and managing project workflow for nonprofit, foundation, government, and private sector clients. This includes playing point on client communication and ensuring on-time and high-quality deliverables that are poised to help our clients drive true social change. Top candidates will have a client-service orientation and excellent project management, facilitation, and written and verbal communication skills. They will be able to represent the Third Plateau brand to a wide range of clients, possess a deep understanding of and commitment to the social sector, be able to think expansively about what our clients need and how Third Plateau can continue to grow, and be hungry to learn and continuously improve.


Start Date: ASAP

Location: Sacramento, Bay Area, or Remote

Starting Annual Salary: $85,000

Benefits: In addition to collaborating with an incredible team of social impact professionals, benefits include:

  • Health insurance
  • Dental insurance
  • Vision insurance
  • Retirement plan with employer matching
  • Unlimited routine time off
  • Wellness program ($500/year)



Third Plateau is a multi-disciplinary social impact strategy firm with an aim to create a world with abundant and equitable opportunity for all. We partner with people and organizations with game-changing ideas to improve the world, and we help them maximize their impact. Our work is driven by six key principles:


  • We care about impact. True innovation and meaningful change are difficult to achieve; we work with the organizations that we believe are inspired by and capable of meeting those challenges.


  • Big ideas and creative problem solving excite us. We are at our best when we are formulating, thinking through, and executing new ideas and approaches.


  • We value diversity, equity, and inclusion. Having diverse teammates and an inclusive work environment makes us a smarter, more creative, and effective team. We are passionate about empowering communities to drive profound social impact. We know that in order to succeed we must more closely reflect the backgrounds of the communities we aim to serve.


  • Knowledge is absolutely essential to effective innovation. We are intensely curious and are voracious consumers of information and ideas from a variety of disciplines.


  • We build next gen organizational and leadership capacity. Building and managing organizations is difficult work and often presents challenges that leadership and staff do not have the resources to address. Through our engagements, we provide an infusion of capacity, smart strategy, creativity, and coaching to help organizations thrive.


  • Relationships and networks are how change happens. Relationship development is at the core of our work and we are very intentional about how we curate networks for maximum social impact.


We work in four main ways:


Social Venture Strategists We partner with social entrepreneurs, nonprofits, public entities, leaders, and other mission-driven organizations around the world on program design, business planning, community engagement, metrics development, strategic planning, coaching and leadership development, development strategy, impact evaluation, and board development. We also partner with funders to provide capacity-building support to their grantees.


Philanthropic Advisors We advise individual donors, foundations, and companies on making their philanthropic giving more meaningful, strategic, and impactful; and we help funders think more expansively about their potential social impact.


Foundation Managers We help private, family, and independent foundations become more effective by providing back office support, managing grants, and overseeing the financial administration and accounting of their operations.


Thought Leaders We write, speak, and convene programs, aimed at dramatically advancing the work of the social sector.



Potential projects include, but are not limited to:

  • Facilitating strategic plans and business plans for nonprofits;
  • Designing and facilitating convenings and retreats for nonprofit and philanthropic partners;
  • Preparing organizational crisis response plans and culture plans;
  • Developing and managing reporting needs and relationships with foundations, grantees, strategic partners, peer funders, and funder networks; and
  • Overseeing, training, and supporting board governance, including committees.


The Director will manage client relationships. The Director will serve as an integral part of the Third Plateau team to lead our client engagements. You will play point on all client communication, relations, and management, holding primary responsibility for developing and growing authentic relationships with our clients. You will work with clients to oversee and manage project workflow; design and facilitate retreats; and ensure all deliverables (memos, strategic plans, etc.)  are on-time, high-quality, and poised to help our clients drive true social impact. You will bring experience facilitating meetings and decision-making processes and be adept at anticipating and responding to client needs and challenging situations.


The Director will manage projects. As the lead project manager on a client engagement, you will oversee and manage project scopes and work plans. The Director will need to see the big picture, create a robust plan, and coordinate a number of moving pieces and personalities. You will also need to support others to stay focused, manage expectations throughout, and adapt when necessary. Strong organizational skills and attention to detail, paired with the ability to be calm and focused when juggling multiple projects and deadlines, will enable the person in this position to thrive.


The Director will be a strong facilitator. This role will be tasked with guiding our partners through a process. To do that well, the Director will not only need to create productive meeting environments (e.g., creation of relevant agendas, facilitation guides, session materials), but will also need to be able to energetically command a room, be an active listener, ask relevant follow-up questions that further group learning, navigate tension and the unpredictable, and create a space for diverse perspectives to be heard.


The Director will solve problems. Our clients turn to us when they have complex problems that they want help solving. We are frequently asked to devise innovative strategies with our clients to scale programs, develop earned revenue streams, raise money, and engage their communities. Among other things, our work often requires analyzing markets, researching best practices, designing and preparing for scenarios, and creating new programs. To do this, the Director will need to be able to approach problems and solutions creatively.


The Director will think critically and learn quickly. We don’t know everything and we know you don’t know everything. In fact, we often find that it is helpful when we don’t have a lot of background about an organization, policy issue, or market, as it gives us a fresh perspective on our clients’ concerns, needs, and opportunities. This position requires an eagerness to learn, an open mind, good listening skills, intense curiosity, and an ability to acknowledge what you don’t know and ask the right questions.


The Director will be a top-notch communicator. The Director will be charged with synthesizing large amounts of qualitative and quantitative data and communicating the key findings and recommendations through written reports and engaging presentations to our clients. We expect you to be a crisp writer and a clear presenter, able to produce client-ready work with minimal editorial oversight.


The Director will collaborate and build. We staff our projects as teams so you will work cross-functionally with peers on every engagement. The Director will also be expected to contribute to the growth of Third Plateau by identifying and capitalizing on new opportunities and partnerships. We are a growing firm and the Director will play a significant role in helping to shape our future.


The Director will go beyond what is expected. Third Plateau is in the business of building and leveraging relationships to better support our clients and strengthen the social sector as a whole. Externally, the Director will be expected to build a strong professional network; actively engage in the field; identify opportunities for collaboration between Third Plateau, clients, and other individuals and organizations in the social sector; and support our clients beyond the limited parameters of an individual client engagement. Internally, the Director will be a valued team member; support Third Plateau’s short-term and long-term growth efforts; support limited administrative needs (we all do, too!); and help out on additional tasks as necessary.


Other important things to note:

  • You will need to bring an unwavering commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and a willingness to speak up when you see us fall short. This is a major focus of ours and expect it to be of yours, too. Top candidates will firmly believe that diversity of experiences and voices leads to better outcomes, and they will have demonstrated a consistent commitment to this belief both personally and professionally.


  • Directors take varying amounts of autonomy in their projects. You will need to be equally comfortable leading project components and plugging into an existing structure.


  • We are committed to delivering the highest quality of work, and we want you to be You should be able to work in a fast-paced environment, while also having fun and integrating self-care in whatever ways are meaningful to you.


  • We are a decentralized team, with offices in the Bay Area and Sacramento. You should be comfortable working with a remote team.


  • This position requires a willingness and ability to attend the very occasional weekend board meetings.


  • Fluency in Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, and PowerPoint) is a must.


  • Professional experience is required. Prior experience in philanthropy is a plus.



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How to Apply

HOW TO APPLY To apply, please do the following:   Send an email to jobs@thirdplateau.com with the subject line “Director – [YOUR NAME]”. In the body of your email, include the following:  
  • Your full name
  • Your phone number (including area code)
  • Your email address
  Please attach to your email two SEPARATE documents:  
  1. A one-page PDF that answers two questions (and one optional question):
  • Why do this position and firm make sense for the next step in your career?
  • How are you uniquely qualified to enhance the Third Plateau team and our work?
  • OPTIONAL: How will the different pieces of your identity contribute to this team and work? Please share as much detail as you feel comfortable sharing to help us create a team that represents a diverse set of identities.
  Sounds pretty straightforward, right? Well, here’s the big catch: you cannot use proper nouns in your response. Yep, you read that right. You are not allowed to mention by name what schools you’ve gone to, the names of organizations you’ve worked at, or who your paternal great grandmother was. Instead, focus on the substance of what you’ve learned, how you’ve developed, and how you can contribute to Third Plateau. (“Third Plateau,” by the way, is the only proper noun you are allowed to use in your 1-pager.)   Please save this proper noun-free PDF with the following title structure: Director –Cover Letter [seven-digit phone number with no dashes]. Your seven-digit phone number (i.e., your phone number WITHOUT the area code) will be used as an internal identification number, to help keep your application anonymous during the review process.  
  1. Your resume with the following modifications:
  • Your seven-digit phone number (i.e., your phone number WITHOUT the area code), with no dashes, in the place of your name.
  • Remove any reference to your home address and email.
  Please save this name-free PDF with the following title structure: Director – Resume [seven-digit phone number with no dashes] Your seven-digit phone number (i.e., your phone number WITHOUT the area code) will be used as an internal identification number, to help keep your application anonymous during the review process.   We are working hard to build a blind review process that minimizes implicit and explicit biases from the hiring process, so welcome to our latest experiment to do just that! Please note that only applications following these strict guidelines will be considered. Get creative and have fun with it! One of our team members will receive this email, save your identifying information in a secure file, and maintain a tracking system. For the first round of reviews, this will be the only person who knows what identification numbers belong to which individuals. See, we told you we take this blind review process seriously!   Third Plateau is committed to providing equal employment opportunity to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to their race, color, age, religious creed, sexual orientation, or other personal characteristics as may be protected by applicable law.    

Job Categories: Equal Opportunities. Job Types: Full-Time. Job Tags: facilitation, non-profit, philanthropy, project management, and social impact. Salaries: 80,000 - 100,000.

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