Director of Live Training
Location: Chicago, IL | Remote
Are you ready to lead the largest Democratic training program in the country? Do you want to take NDTC’s training program to the next level? Do you want to use your political experience to help develop the next generation of candidates and leaders?
This is your opportunity to help progressive and Democratic organizations build the long-term power needed for success, not just this year, but for years to come. NDTC has trained over 160,000 Democrats to run for office, work on campaigns, and build long- term local party infrastructure.
As part of the senior leadership team, the Director of Live Training is responsible for executing NDTC’s live training program, the largest training program in Democratic politics. In 2021, this role led NDTC in executing over 400 training events both in person and virtually. NDTC accomplishes this scale through a partnership with over 100 contract trainers managed by the Live Training Team’s Trainer Engagement Manager. We deliver live trainings both virtually and in person. All of the training we offer is free, and we deliver it directly to learners who are interested in politics as well as to partner organizations to support their training needs. The Director of Live Training will leverage a collaborative cross-functional team of curriculum, political, product, technology, marketing, and event management experts to develop the scalable approaches necessary to train thousands of people each year in live settings.
To succeed in this role, you will need event management, project management, and people management experience. You will manage existing live programs as well as contribute to the evaluation and updating of our overall live event strategy. In 2022, we are continuing to iterate on our work to meet the new realities of “post-vaccinated” training while ensuring we deploy the best approaches to meet our partner organizations’ and contract trainers’ needs.
This full-time position will lead the Live Training team and will report to the Chief of Staff and Operations.
Event Management Strategy and Execution:
- Direct the vision and operational strategy for executing a live training program at scale without losing the ability to tailor and pivot to meet specific event needs. NDTC currently executes events on our own and with partners both virtually and in person. Operational strategy in this context includes: goal setting, event logistics, budget projections and management, staff training, and managing human capacities across multiple live training programs.
- Ensure NDTC’s training events are inclusive of and reflective of the diversity of the Democratic party and provide the support needed for learners from various accessibility needs and identity groups including women, people of color, and LGBTQIA+ individuals. This includes ongoing management of COVID-19 best practices for in-person event management.
- Develop policies and procedures to ensure we maintain equitable practices while operating at scale and in a variety of contexts. This is especially important when navigating events done in partnership with other organizations. This role builds the systems to allow for equitable distribution of capacity and uses tools such as blackout dates, on-call calendars, and strategic scheduling of staff.
- Utilize research, data and analytics, and learner feedback to ensure that live programming is effective and useful for learners and to guide future programmatic decisions and updates.
Internal and External Leadership:
- Serve as the cross-team owner/project manager to execute with accountability the collaboration necessary between the live training operations, product and tech, curriculum, marketing, and political teams to develop and execute training events.
- Engage as a member of NDTC’s senior leadership team supporting organizational- wide priorities including strategic planning, diversity and inclusion efforts, policy- making, and budgeting.
- Demonstrate a commitment to equity and inclusion within NDTC using a personal approach that values all individuals and respects differences in regards to race, ethnicity, age, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, religion, ability, and socio-economic circumstance.
- Manage and coach at least 2-3 full time staff promoting NDTC’s culture of excellence and commitment to learning including the establishment of professional development pathways. As the organization grows, we anticipate this team will continue to scale.
- Develop and manage processes for the cross-team group of staff who partner to execute our live training events as well as the workflow prioritization for the members of the live training team.
Candidates must have:
- Experience designing and executing live events at scale. We are looking for people who have experience managing multiple event builds in virtual and in-person event ecosystems and event executions concurrently across content areas, audiences, modalities, and event environments while maintaining a commitment to inclusivity and accessibility. To effectively do this, you must be an expert project manager, have strong attention to detail, an ability to apply learnings across disparate pieces of work, and remain calm under pressure. You also should have experience delivering content as the direct trainer.
- Strong communication skills that facilitate deep collaboration and the ability to laterally manage work across teams in the organization. You must be a facilitator who can gain buy-in, a leader that balances empathy with accountability, and a person who embraces a direct communication style that reduces confusion and ensures clarity.
- Demonstrable track record as a people manager. We are looking for people who have managed a team of 3+ full-time staff members. Ideally, candidates for this role would have experience managing mid-level staff members (not just interns or entry-level staff), managing staff who are people managers, and have experience managing contractual staff/consultants.
- Political campaign experience in at least two election cycles at the state or federal level including experience in a leadership position is required. We define leadership positions as ones that are directing campaign strategy either as the candidate, campaign manager, or leader of a team. Experience as a campaign manager or training director on a campaign is a plus.
NDTC is a fully remote workplace. We have staff all across the country, with large groups centralized in Chicago and Washington, D.C.
Shared Responsibilities for All Staff at NDTC
To scale NDTC’s programming to reach over 100,000 Democrats, we need all staff to contribute to executing key moments of our training program. Staff are provided advance notice for evening and weekend work commitments. These duties are shared across all staff and may include the following as assigned
- Staffing virtual live training events for NDTC which may include some evening or weekend commitments with reasonable notice for scheduling.
- Staffing large training events most often virtually, but may include in-person events in 2023 and beyond. These commitments typically are multi-day trainings over weekends and happen 2-4 times per year.
- Participating in a cross organizational committee or working group such as our Equity and Inclusion Committee or Accessibility Committee.
Travel and Vaccine Requirements
Candidates must be willing to fly and live near (or be willing to relocate to) a major metropolitan area with reasonable access to a major airport. NDTC does not provide relocation funding in these circumstances. Examples of reasonable access to a major airport include being located in or near cities such as Chicago, D.C., St. Louis, Atlanta, Austin, Philadelphia, San Diego etc. that have airports that are easily traveled to for frequent air travel.
- Ability to travel, on average, approximately 40 – 50% of time to event sites across the U.S. This historically has included Alaska and Hawaii and could grow to include U.S. territories. International travel is not anticipated.
- Travel for this role will predominantly be focused on managing on the ground live events, but may also include travel for industry events, professional development, and fundraising.
- Weekend travel with overnight stays required. The usual pattern of travel will include flying to a location on a Friday, staffing an all-day event on Saturday or Sunday, and traveling home the evening after the training or the next day based on available travel logistics.
- Travel may be scheduled at any time for donor meetings, to attend/host fundraising events, or to attend industry events and conferences. This travel most often requires overnight stays and may occur during weekends. While meetings often occur during normal business hours, events and conferences are generally held in the evenings or on weekends.
- Ability to travel to event sites across the U.S. via plane as primary travel method. Occasionally driving, train, or bus travel may be available for travel to off-site locations as determined based on project location.
- During the COVID-19 pandemic, candidates must adhere to CDC public health guidelines, as well as follow NDTC COVID safety protocols during travel and in-person events. Some precautionary measures include receiving full vaccination as defined by the CDC (or have an approved exception), the use of face masks, and social distancing.
- NDTC works with staff to ensure they have predictable schedules as dictated by our program’s design. Standard work schedules will be adjusted and planned to accommodate any recurring evening and weekend commitments. For this role, this specifically looks like a mixture of evening and weekend execution as well as evening and weekend “on call” periods. This role builds the systems to allow for equitable distribution of capacity and uses tools such as blackout dates, on-call calendars, and strategic scheduling of staff. If evening and weekend events are assigned, salaried employees will be provided with comped time off within 2 weeks of the event.
COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement: NDTC requires all full-time, exempt employees to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination per CDC guidelines, unless a medical or religious accommodation is requested and approved. Reasonable time frames for compliance will be provided for candidates who need to complete a full vaccination cycle under this policy. Please reach out if you have further questions or concerns about this policy and how it may apply to your candidacy at NDTC.
About NDTC as an Employer
NDTC believes that our differences enhance our strength as a political party—and as a nation—and we as an organization benefit from staff of diverse races, ethnic origins, religions, sexual orientations, gender identities and expressions, economic backgrounds, abilities, and other facets of our identities.
Compensation + Benefits:
- Pay: Salary is commensurate with experience, with a range of $110,000 – $130,000 per year
- Healthcare: 100% employer-paid health, dental, vision, short and long-term disability, and life insurance available at the start of the first full month of employment
- Retirement Option: 10% employer match on contributions to 401(k)
- Flexible paid time off + all Federal holidays off + NDTC’s offices close for one week for Thanksgiving and a two-week winter break at the end of December (total of 30 pre-planned office closures per year).
- Equipment: Laptop, keyboard, mouse, monitor
- Professional Development: At NDTC, we value professional development and career growth. We provide $700 per calendar year for each staff member’s professional development.
Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until the position is filled. The interview process for this role will include a 5-step process which we expect to take up to 2 months.
To apply please email [email protected] with:
- Your resume.
- A cover letter that describes a live, in-person event that you’ve planned, executed, and managed in your career. Please tell us what you considered the most important elements of the event to be and how you measured its success. Please also describe what type of team you managed to execute the event including any lateral management of cross departmental/cross organizational partners. Your reply should not exceed 2-3 paragraphs. Our goal is to get a general understanding of your experience through an example!
- The date you are available to start.
Please list “Director of Live Training” in the subject line. No calls, please.