Associate Strategy Officer, Foundation Strategy Office

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Posted: 1/5/2021

Position Type: Full-Time (Paid)

Function: Business Development

Primary domain: Foundation/Grantmaking

City: Seattle

Postal code: 98109

State: Washington

Country: United States

Organization Information:


Not Available


Mission statement:


In developing countries, we focus on improving people’s health and wellbeing, helping individuals lift themselves out of hunger and extreme poverty. In the United States, we seek to ensure that all people—especially those with the fewest resources—can access the opportunities they need to succeed in school and life.

Position Details:

Job Description:

Group Summary

The Strategy, Innovation, and Impact group is the primary function supporting the creation and evolution of our program level strategies, as well as exploring new paths to impact that align with our mission. This includes supporting the CEO, CFO and Chief Strategy Officer in key accountabilities including strategy development, strategy revision, strategy performance measurement, portfolio management, and special initiatives to accelerate the impact of the foundation.

Leadership and Culture

We are a close-knit team that places a significant emphasis on maintaining and growing our positive, humble, and intellectually curious culture. We believe that small teams groups of deeply committed team members can do phenomenal things. We encourage debate and discussion of tough issues, and are committed to the success of our clients. We invest proactively in each other’s personal and professional growth and look for candidates who are similarly intentional about developing themselves and those around them.

Core Responsibilities

We are seeking an Associate Strategy Officer (ASO) for a role which will last 12-24 months in duration (candidate choice), with option to extend term for up to 36 months total. Relocation assistance can be provided for candidates who are able to commit to a term of at least 18 months. The ASO supports critical strategy projects within the foundation. Working within a team structure, ASOs design and implement high-quality qualitative and quantitative analyses, synthesize key insights, communicate those insights with senior foundation stakeholders, and engage in client management.

Located in Seattle, WA, the ASO will report to the Deputy Director, Strategy. On a project by project basis, the ASO will support other Strategy Team members (Strategy Officers and Senior Strategy Officers).

More detailed responsibilities include:

  • Execute strategy development process:

  • Participate in scoping and designing the overall strategy development process

  • Employ strategic resources to develop and assess options, ensure sound reasoning, and challenge assumptions

  • Liaise closely with internal clients to co-develop and test strategy concepts, and facilitate change management

  • Bring a customer-focused skillset of effective communication and relationship management to partner engagement

  • Support the implementation of creative solutions to guide group processes (e.g. managing conflict and encouraging alignment).

  • Contribute to the identification and implementation of research and analytical work to support resolution-making, including statistical analysis and working with third party resources to develop analytical methodologies

  • Support Senior Strategy Officers (SSO) or Strategy Officers (SO) with the day-to-day ownership of the strategic process and be responsible for catalyzing discrete bodies of work

  • Provide project management, problem-solving support, and initiative leadership on cross-foundational strategy projects

  • Regularly contribute to team developing “extra 10s” such as team vision and goal refinement, professional development, training, recruiting, onboarding, team social events and retreats, etc.

  • Participate in foundation-wide activities (e.g., learning sessions, all staff meetings, performance reviews).

Representative Project Examples

  • End-to-end support in scoping, developing, and launching new foundation strategies. Past examples include Global Education and Gender Equality.

  • End-to-end support to programmatic Directors and their leadership teams as they revise foundation strategies (“strategy refreshes”). Past examples include Malaria, Family Planning, MNCH, Nutrition, Philanthropic Partnerships, K-12 Education, and others.

  • Spearheading cross-cutting foundation strategy initiatives sponsored by the foundation’s Executive Leadership Team. Examples include:

  • Developing a strategy taxonomy to enable consistent development and articulation of strategy across program teams

  • Facilitating cross-team exploration of new technological tools (Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning) on development topics

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is dedicated to the belief that all lives have equal value. We’re committed to creating a workplace where employees thrive both personally and professionally. We also believe our employees should reflect the rich diversity of the global populations we aim to serve—in race, gender, age, cultures and beliefs—and we support this diversity through all of our employment practices.

All applicants and employees who are drawn to serve the mission of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will enjoy equality of opportunity and fair treatment without regard to:

* Race

* Color

* Age

* Religion

* Pregnancy

* Sex

* Sexual Orientation

* Disability

* Gender Identity

* Gender Expression

* National Origin

* Genetic Information

* Veteran Status

* Marital Status

* Prior Protected Activity


Core Knowledge and Skills

We are looking for team members who enjoy working on complex problems and collaboratively crafting strategies that have the potential to transform the lives of people around the world. Candidates must be excellent team players who are excited to work across a diverse set of disciplines and issue areas.

We seek experienced professionals with ~three years’ experience, preferably within strategic planning functions at a top tier strategy consulting firm. Additional knowledge and skills desired include:

  • Ability to learn new content quickly, identify connections and second-order implications and demonstrate proficiency with internal/external teams.

  • Demonstrated strength in structured problem solving and strategic business planning, with the ability to easily identify and communicate frameworks to facilitate strategy creation and analyze core issues

  • Deep knowledge of strategy development and end-to-end complex project management (including process design, team structure, critical thinking requirements, development of novel communication resources and external/senior stakeholder engagement).

  • Ability to work in a self-guided manner, care for multiple priorities and to demanding timelines.

  • Ability to question and challenge colleagues including managers and partners in constructive manner.

  • Comfortable with highly unstructured and ambiguous situations; ability to proactively resolve.

  • Excellent organizational, facilitation, oral, and written communication skills. Ability to work effectively and with sensitivity across barriers such as language, culture and distance. Excellent listening skills and empathy.

  • Excellent software skills with Microsoft Office applications, including a demonstrated ability to convey complex information using supporting tables, graphs and other visual representations. Knowledge and fluency in Stata or another statistical program is useful.

  • Ability to travel up to 20% domestically and internationally.

  • A sense of humor.

  • Commitment to our core values, mission, and programs with an approach that is consistent with the foundation’s guiding principles and holding self to the highest ethical standards.


  • Bachelor’s degree desired.

* Applicants will only be reviewed if they are able to legally work in the country where this position is located without visa sponsorship.

** Resumes will be reviewed in late January 2021 and candidates contacted in February and March for a hire that is expected to be completed in the 2nd quarter of 2021.


As part of our standard hiring process for new employees, employment with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will be contingent upon successful completion of a background check.


Not Specified


Commensurate with Experience

Posting Expiration Date:


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