Kenya Country Director

Nairobi or Kisumu (TBD) Full-time

Background: GiveDirectly aims to reshape international giving. We provide an end-to-end platform that enables funders to provide direct cash transfers to the extreme poor. We are among the fastest-growing international development non-profits and are recipients of a Google Global Impact Award and a top rating from GiveWell.

Our unorthodox approach – allowing the poor, and not the donor, to choose how to invest – has driven debate both in press and policy circles (e.g., NPR’sThis American Life, Foreign Affairs, The Economist, New York Times, The Guardian). We are also known for our extensive integration of technology into field processes; our quantitative approach to performance measurement; and our commitment to rigorous, independent, experimental evaluation of our impact, with one Randomized Controlled Trial completed and multiple additional RCTs in progress.

We are looking for exceptional talent to help build a startup into a world-class organization. Our culture is professional, analytical, non-hierarchical, fast-paced, and blunt, and we’re looking for people that match that description. We are open to candidates from any industry; we typically recruit from top private-sector firms and offer competitive salary and benefits.

Overview: You will be responsible for all aspects of GiveDirectly’s program in Kenya. Kenya is GiveDirectly's largest country operation, with a current budget of ~$20M and more than 120 staff. Starting in 2016, in addition to retail operations, the team will also be implementing the largest randomized evaluation of a universal basic income concept to date.Your role will involve building the overall team, organizational culture, and processes that both enable the achievement of short-term goals (i.e. annual KPIs) and create the conditions for long-term growth. You will be able to draw on resources from the fundraising team, Finance & Operations verticals, and COO-I/President, but will ultimately be accountable to both recipients and donors for delivering a gold-standard product.


Formulate and deliver annual targets

  • Design ambitious work-plans and accompanying budgets
  • Ensure that country office achieves annual KPIs for household enrolment, operational efficiency, and key user experience metrics
  • Ensure that operational reports are being reliably generated and actioned

 Increase the organization’s capacity for scale without compromising quality of product

  • Build capacity of managers at all levels by ensuring that they have clearly-defined metrics for success and regular feedback on progress
  • Build systems to enable rapid scale-up of a high-quality team
  • Assess, on an on-going basis, resource/capacity gaps across the organization

 Identify and mitigate risk

  • Identify vulnerability to fraud and rule-breaking across the operating model and design appropriate controls
  • Identify key areas in need of redundancy and buffering to reduce the impact of un-anticipated operational roadblocks
  • Build networks with local actors/institutions that will help identify and protect against macro risk

 Build organizational culture

  • Define and communicate a set of practices and norms that animate GD’s core values
  • Support org-wide interventions that help to promote productivity, well-being, and morale
  • Build systems for monitoring and actioning feedback from the team

Represent GiveDirectly to external stakeholders

  • Work with national and local government officials to secure permissions for expansion and maintenance of programs
  • Communicate GD’s model to visiting donors, journalists, partners etc. in a way that demonstrates core values and effectively contextualizes field operations

We are looking for people with:

  • A meaningful track record building and managing teams in competitive professional environments
  • The ability to rapidly assess and understand a complex operating environment with a view to the long-term (i.e. success is building an organization that can double in a year)
  • A strong preference for fast-paced and nimble environments, where ownership means creating a new playbook for succes
  • A high degree of autonomy, grit, and resilience