Schmidt Futures is a philanthropic initiative that finds exceptional people and helps them do more for others together. A priority for Schmidt Futures is the development and placement of technical talent on projects that can drive significant social good. This is for a few reasons:
- For those working on a range of problems – from famine to healthcare to climate – recruiting top technical talent can be difficult;
- Students and recent graduates are showing growing interest in career paths that allow them to tackle society’s toughest challenges;
- Nevertheless, the market for connecting this surging talent to the world’s hardest problems remains broken.
The Associate Product Manager (APM) program is directly filling that gap and allowing us to better understand how to solve this market failure. The program recruits talented young leaders with technical training in computer science, product management, and machine learning to work on high value social impact projects. Over the course of two years, Schmidt Futures cultivates APMs to tackle technical, product, and strategy problems on rotations that can last up to twelve months.
In their first year alone, APMs led more than 20 projects across fields (e.g., energy, education, agriculture) and sectors (e.g. non-profits, startups, academia), working with organizations to launch new products and adopt new product strategies for public good. For the 2021 class, we made nine offers and all accepted including students with cross-offers in engineering and product roles at major tech companies.
The APM program is moving into its third year of existence with 15 APMs this Spring. Schmidt Futures is looking for a leader who will oversee the 2021 class that will start in the summer. This is an ideal role for an entrepreneurial leader who wants to grow a new model to transform the social sector through talent.
Reporting to the Director, APM Program, the Cohort Manager, APM program will be responsible for overseeing the 2021 class of the program. The Cohort Manager’s role will include:
- Managing a cohort of APMs who are early career (<3 years industry experience)
- Building a collective strategy and vision for the cohort’s 2-year rotation
- Recruiting the next class of APMs, conducting project vetting, and setting placements for the program.
- Overall responsibility and direct management over the APM Class of 2021
- Onboarding, project management, and regular coaching and problem solving
- Initiate, design, and execute on key programmatic work streams
Strategy and Vision
- Take part in designing the vision for the APM Program
- Develop and operationalize plan to scale up impact of APM program for more young talent and social impact organizations over time
- Define APM program objectives and key results (OKRs) and report up progress to leadership
- Conduct outreach to leading organizations and thinkers to inform APM program strategy
- Build partnerships with leaders from other philanthropies interested in applying the APM model to their work
Project Vetting, Selection, and Scoping
- Develop a sustainable model for placement of APMs on projects that maximize APM learning and growth as well as impact on social impact organizations
- Work with other members of the Schmidt Futures team to identify grantees and strategic partners that would be strong placements for an APM and scope projects
- Maintain relationships with APM placement organizations and monitor overall project pipeline
Recruitment, Training, and Coaching for APMs
- Work with the Schmidt Futures recruitment team to recruit diverse, entrepreneurial cohorts of APMs annually
- Provide coaching to APMs to help them advance their projects and overall development
- Drive APM performance evaluation process through collecting and communicating feedback from APM placement organizations and Schmidt Futures staff
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
- Entrepreneurial leader who is oriented towards action, learning by doing, and iterative approaches
- Creative, outside of the box thinker who comes up with new, better ways to achieve goals
- Strong communicator with the ability to articulate vision and tactics to motivate others
- Excellent judgement and ability to involve others in the decision-making process
- Proven ability to build a culture where groups work as a team to achieve shared objectives
- Ability to blend strong people and project management abilities to effectively set team goals, and coach individuals for continued growth and development
- 5 – 10 years of experience managing teams of direct reports
- Have at 5 – 10 years of experience in an operational, leadership or product management function
- Have the highest levels of personal ethics and professional integrity
- Have a bachelor’s degree or equivalent from an accredited institution
- Be based at the Schmidt Futures offices in New York and be able to travel within the U.S. and internationally on a regular basis as needed following company policy and permitting circumstances.
About Schmidt Futures
Schmidt Futures is a philanthropic initiative, founded by Eric and Wendy Schmidt, that finds exceptional people and helps them do more for others together. We knit talent into networks, bet on the most promising ideas through diverse forms of competition and support, and equip people to scale through partners and modern tools. To realize this vision, Schmidt Futures uses a broad set of tools — including gifts, grants, investments, and startup activity — for charitable, educational, and commercial efforts with a public purpose. Our initiative brings together the efforts of various charitable and non-charitable entities to improve our potential impact by making diverse types of capital available to the efforts we support.
Futures Action Network, LLC, which operates Schmidt Futures, is an Equal Employment Opportunity employer that proudly pursues and hires a diverse workforce. We do not make hiring or employment decisions on the basis of race, color, religion or religious belief, ethnic or national origin, nationality, sex, gender, gender-identity, sexual orientation, disability, age, military or veteran status, or any other basis protected by applicable local, state, or federal laws or prohibited by Company policy. We strive for a healthy and safe workplace and strictly prohibit harassment of any kind.