Chief Operating Officer

Operations · Flexible, Remote
Department Operations
Employment Type Regular Full-Time
Minimum Experience Senior Executive

Women for Women International (WfWI) is seeking a Chief Operating Officer.

Since 1993,Women for Women International, a globalNGO,has invested in the power of over 500,000 women who are forgotten  the women survivors of war and conflict.We support them in learning the social and economicskills they need to rebuild theirlives, theirfamilies, and their communities. 


Our core belief is that stronger women build stronger nations. Women who enrol in our programs in Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq, Kosovo, Nigeria, Rwanda, and South Sudan, break the isolation of war and conflict. They gain access to knowledge, resources and tools needed to earn and save money, improve health and well-being, influence decisions in their home and community, and connect to networks for support.  


Over the next ten years, our goal is to scale our impact to improve the lives of millions of the most marginalized women affected by war and conflict. Our vision is to create a world in which all women determine the course of their lives and reach their full potential.  


We know that women pass on their knowledge to their neighbours and children, creating a ripple effect for generations. By investing in women, we create a better world for all of us – a world that’s more equal, peaceful, and prosperous.  


That is the power of women, for women.  

The Chief Operating Officer (COO) has the overall responsibility and accountability for efficient and effective internal organizational/operations systems, policies, processes, practices, and infrastructure that enable individuals (staff, volunteers, consultant, contractors), teams and organizations (country offices) in WfWI at all levels from local to national to conduct, perform, develop and deliver their best in line with WfWI values, vision, mission, goals and strategy.

The COO has the functional responsibility for ensuring ethical, environmental and legal standards, compliance and integrity necessary for WfWI to be a bold, safe, empowering and sustainable organization that manages risks effectively to strengthen the organization’s resilience and ability to risks.
The COO is responsible and accountable for leading internal operational changes to ensure that WfWI is able to respond and adapt in a timely and effective manner to changes in external contexts and ambitions.

The COO is a member the WfWI Global Support Centre (GSC) Leadership Team and of the WfWI Global Leadership Team. In this role, the COO has the shared responsibility and accountability for developing, driving, and implementing WfWI’s global vision, values, mission and strategies into reality with impact.

The COO is the staff lead for the Finance & Compensation Committee and Audit Committee of the WfWI Board of Directors. 


Lead, inspire, support and manage internal organizational functions (HR, Finance, Technology, Compliance and Safeguarding and security) Directors/Heads/Leads and teams whether line managed, matrix-managed across the global WfWI.

Foster a leaderful organization with an ethical, inclusive, collaborative, empowering, safe, and high-performing culture and practices embedded in WfWI values.
Working with the CEO, counterpart VPs, the Leadership Team and Global Leadership to ensure excellent engagement, and transparency in the GSC and the global WfWI on all aspects of the organization and its work.
Serve as strategic business advisor to the Leadership Team and as strategic thought partner for the CEO in the areas of organization and management.
Coach, mentor, support and manage line and matrix-managed leaders for their growth, development and high-performance.
Exemplify WfWI values - empowerment, integrity, respect, resilience; the WfWi Code of Conduct and WfWI commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Ensure organization-wide teamwork, with clarity of structures, roles, responsibilities, decision-making authority, performance standards and associated accountabilities of individual staff,
volunteers, and teams.


Ensure that internal organizational systems, strategies, structures, policies, processes, culture, practices, finance, technology, and infrastructure, are robust, resilient, innovative, and well-functioning.
Establish data/information systems to ensure reliable and real-time information and data are readily and transparently available to managers/leaders/teams at local to national to global
levels for data-driven decision-making.
Oversee and support the development of a long-term technology strategy and roadmap for the global organization and create interim solutions in line with the long-term strategy.
Lead the improvement, clarity and simplification of existing operational systems, structures, policies, and procedures for high performance, as well as timely and coordinated support,
guidance and communication between HQ and country offices in these areas.
Oversee and support unified WfWI annual financial planning/plans, budgeting/budgets, and reporting/reports to ensure operational efficiency, effectiveness, and accountability at
all levels.


Lead, oversee and continually improve/adapt risk-management strategy, policies and practice (e.g., risk register, mitigation, monitoring, reporting and capacity strengthening) across teams
and offices in order to minimize risk to the organization, strengthen resilience and enable necessary risk-taking.
Oversee global strategic change management process by clearly articulating the agreed/approved transformational change agenda, facilitating-supporting change plans and capacity
building of teams and offices, monitoring and reporting as well as leveraging necessary resources and decisions.


Serve as management liaison with Finance & Compensation Committee and Audit Committee of the WfWI Board of Directors. Provide required information, reports, proposals, and advice for them to effectively perform their governance roles responsibilities and accountabilities.
Ensure timeliness, accuracy, and usefulness of financial and other management/statutory reporting for federal and state funders, foundations, donors, WfWI Board of Directors.


Any other duties and responsibilities assigned at any time by the CEO in line with the overall roles and responsibilities consistent with the role of Chief Operating Officer.
Keep abreast with advances in organizational systems knowledge, innovations, tools and techniques.

Demonstrated experience of managing and supervising multiple organizational functions
including, human resources, information-communication technology, safeguarding and security,
internal communications, risk management- preferably in a geographically diverse/dispersed,
international non-profit organization.
Education and Training in Management or a related field:- Finance, HR, Technology,
International relations/development.
Depth of leadership and management experience at senior level (e.g., as CEO, COO, Regional
Director or Country Director of large-complex office).
Experience in complex organizational change management and systems thinking.
Lived regional or global experience and an understanding of international, regional and country level roles and contexts.
Ability to conduct complex analysis of financial data; forecast and assess financial impact of proposed plans and projects; proactive leadership to identify gaps and recommend solutions.
Familiarity and experience with the operations, business needs, organizational structure, functional roles and responsibilities, terminology, regulatory requirements, projects, problems,
trends, and planning requirements of the non-profit sector and/or revenue generation, and philanthropy.
Experience of collaborating with and managing diverse and multicultural teams.
Excellent interpersonal communication and negotiation skills.
Technology savvy with proficiency in digital productivity, social media and systems use.
Understanding of global/international NGOs, civil society, philanthropy, institutional grant,
development aid ecosystem and their work in the global south and global north.

Confident and nurturing leader that inspires, motivates and engages WfWI staff, and is willing to invest in the development of colleagues and WfWI as an organization.
Listener, collaborative, engaging, nurturing, empowering and thinker-doer leadership style.
Interest in and commitment to women’s issues, conflict, and international development.
Commitment to WfWI values, mission, strategies and approaches.
Calm and focused; ability to multitask at multiple levels of engagement and remain gracious under pressure.
Flexible, creative and a self-starter; able to work in a fast-paced, evolving environment.
Ability and willingness to operate across different time-zones to travel internationally to WfWI countries.

At Women for Women International, we know that our people and organizational culture provide the foundation to achieve our mission. Diversity, equity, and inclusion
(DEI) are central to everything we do.

Read our commitment to DEI
We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national
origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.
All our staff are required to adhere to WfWI’s Code of Conduct and Safeguarding
policies and to our organizational values:

Empowerment, Integrity, Respect, Resilience.


Women for Women International is partnering with Red Sea Executive Search for this role.
To find out more about the role please email Susan Bandow and Irene Gikemi at
To apply for the position please go to and follow the instructions to upload your application through the Red Sea website.

Closing date for applications: 30th January 2022
Red Sea Interviews for long-listed candidates: 7th-11th February 2022
WfWI selection stages: from 21st February 2022

Thank You

Your application was submitted successfully.

  • Location
    Flexible, Remote
  • Department
  • Employment Type
    Regular Full-Time
  • Minimum Experience
    Senior Executive