||**This is an immediate opening, and applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. Please do not wait until the application deadline to apply**
The LIFE Special Project at HBS seeks to hire someone who will play the roles of both community and product manager, partnering with faculty leadership and External Relations (ER) to continue building community amongst our alumni. We have 86,000 alumni globally, many of whom are deeply committed to the school and hungry for ways to further engage with the School and each other over their lifetime. In partnership with ER, Professors Leslie Perlow and Karim Lakhani have built a growing community of alumni around their Crafting Your Life class.
An important outgrowth of the class has been innovating and experimenting with technology and AI to enhance community and better understand the levers through which capturing alumni data can serve to improve alumni-alumni and alumni-student connections, within and across generations. Most recently, this work dovetails with the School’s Digital Transformation Task Force and its recommendations for how to better support HBS alumni as they navigate their own lifelong learning journey.
Imagine if alumni had ways to share their life experiences with each other in a multitude of different ways. Imagine if alumni could be connected with other alumni based on areas of shared interest, struggle, career stage, or life event.
Technology is an untapped resource to help facilitate such connections. A lack of knowledge about our alumni prevents us from being able to use technology alone to make connections.
Leveraging leading-edge best practices in design thinking and AI, the LIFE Project is co-developed in collaboration with the Laboratory for Innovative Science at Harvard. The LIFE Special Project seeks to learn about our alumni while protecting their confidentiality. We are creating a suite of tools that provide alumni powerful learning experiences but also help us better understand their interests and needs. In turn, through the use of algorithms we are developing, this information will enable us to connect them with other alumni in pairs, small groups, and larger workshops. It will also enable us to provide them resources from across the school – access to faculty, executive education programs, and products of Harvard Business School Publishing.
At the core of the LIFE Special Project are two guiding principles:
1) A little about a few will lead to a lot about many: We need to start with small powerful ways to learn a little about a few of our alumni, which in turn will interest them to share more and interest other alumni to participate – a little about a few will grow exponentially;
2) Test and learn: We know we want to build a lifelong learning community; together we seek to discover the best path to do so, learning as we go, frequently changing course as part of that discovery process. We are deeply committed to testing and learning
Duties and Responsibilities
In partnership with ER, the Project Manager will be responsible for leading community building for the LIFE Special Project. S/he will create energy and enthusiasm among alumni to participate (gamification, section competitions, etc.). S/he will design and oversee alumni design partner programs, create new ways to engage alumni, organize in-person and virtual events with alumni and will seek feedback from alumni all along the way – about the events, about the tool itself, about further tools/processes/activities we should be building/offering. Working closely with the ER Engagement team, Project Manager will align efforts to the priorities and work of ER to ensure seamless integration with the project as well as other alumni programs. The Project Manager will serve as a critical member of the overall LIFE Special Project team as well as partner with the ER team supporting LIFE and all the alumni engagement activities. S/he will work with the LIFE team to create LIFE assets/“products” in a more scalable way that expand the value of the offerings and are beneficial to alumni.
The ideal candidate is creative, innovative, imaginative while also and very importantly has a very high bar for quality and attention to detail. We seek someone who is flexible, and wants to test and learn with a very innovative, constantly evolving project team.
Establish and maintain relationships across the School with colleagues on behalf of the faculty and the project.
Work closely with Research Staff Services (RSS) on the recruitment of researchers and administrative support.
Coordinate and manage the workflow of project teams consisting of researchers who report directly to the faculty and RSS.
Under the guidance of RSS, help ensure team adherence to HR and School administrative practices and policies.
May also coordinate work involving researchers and staff across project teams at HBS, Harvard University, and outside partners.
Alumni Interview Platform
Develop project goals and deliverables – and align with key stakeholders.
Define and recruit team needed to meet goals and deliverables.
Manage team to expand alumni platform through Reunion Classes.
Alumni Engagement / Lifelong Learning
Develop a comprehensive alumni engagement strategy in collaboration with External Relations.
Plan, prepare for, and execute portfolio of alumni interactions
Build the required infrastructure and systems (e.g., alumni tracking).
Identify, design, create, and pilot ways to bring LIFE to alumni.
LIFE Community Building
Develop a community building strategy (with a focus on current LIFE students and LIFERs, but also consider the role of broader alumni community).
Design, prepare for, and execute portfolio of community building interactions.
Build the required infrastructure and systems.
Manage teams to iterate on existing products (simulation, reflection app, geography tool, relationship tool)
Initiate new projects (e.g., Trip Advisor-like LIFE Resource website).
This is a full-time term appointment starting in the fall, with likely reappointment for the next year and further. All Research Associate roles at Harvard Business School are benefits-eligible and structured as one-year term appointments with potential for renewal.
Applications will be considered on a rolling basis, a cover letter and resume are required for full consideration. Upon the review of application materials, applicants may be asked to submit a writing sample, and transcript(s).
Harvard Business School will not offer visa sponsorship for this opportunity.
During the current period of COVID-19 related restrictions, this position may start as a remote position with the transition to onsite at HBS campus in Boston, MA when the office reopens.
While we continue to monitor the evolving COVID-19 guidelines and restrictions, we appreciate your understanding and flexibility with our interview process. Please note that we will be conducting interviews virtually (phone and or Zoom) for selected candidates until further notice.
Harvard will require COVID vaccination for all Harvard community members who will have any on-campus presence. Individuals may claim exemption from the vaccine requirement for medical or religious reasons. More information regarding the University’s COVID vaccination requirement and exceptions may be found at the University’s “COVID-19 Vaccine Information” webpage: http://www.harvard.edu/coronavirus/covid-19-vaccine-information/.
Culture of Inclusion: The work and well-being of HBS is profoundly strengthened by the diversity of our network and our differences in background, culture, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, and life experiences.
MBA or other advanced degree required, plus 7+ years of relevant experience.
Experience in customer engagement, product management, volunteer management, communications, marketing and complex project management with multiple stakeholders, shifting priorities and deadlines.
Strong verbal and written communication skills and ability to effectively present information in a range of ways and to varied audiences.
Team player with keen eye for detail and skills to collaborate with multiple teams in a fast-paced, high-energy, often ambiguous environment.
Proven ability to prioritize and successfully manage several programs, projects and stakeholders at a time while adhering to deadlines, showing initiative and communicating regularly and succinctly with senior staff, managers, and partners.
Proven critical and strategic-thinking qualities, sound judgment, flexibility, and creative problem-solving essential.
Strong interpersonal skills and be comfortable engaging high-powered alumni constituents with poise, self-confidence, and a friendly demeanor.
Understanding of and comfort with technology. Experience in roles that leverage technology to advance customer/client agendas.