General Manager, Government & Public Policy Engagement at Xero
At Xero, our purpose is to make life better for people in small business, their advisors, and communities around the world. This purpose sits at the centre of everything we do. We support our people to do the best work of their lives so that they can help small businesses succeed through better tools, information and connections. Because when they succeed they make a difference, and when millions of small businesses are making a difference, the world is a more beautiful place.
How you'll make an impact
The fundamental purpose of this role is to bring best practice thinking, systems, tools and processes to the task of orchestrating Xero's relationships and engagements with governments and the policy environment around them, ensuring world class execution by our regional teams to be the policy voice of small business.
If you're on board with our purpose, you've got a track record of affecting change or achieving outcomes through public policy advocacy engagements,, understand modern stakeholder relationship formation and coalition building, empathy-driven approaches to stakeholder engagement and you're looking to join a true digital economy pathbreaker, you'll make a major impact in this role.
Your impact will be felt in the practical and impactful advice and resources you provide to support engagements all around the world.
You will also make an impact by positively influencing Xeros relationships with a range of external membership-based organizations such as industry and small business associations, as well as accounting and bookkeeping and fintech associations. In some cases you may directly step up to manage these relationships, in others you'll support other Xeros towards success and consistency.
Ultimately, all of these efforts seek to shape the public policy landscape to ensure it supports small businesses to achieve their goals, and Xero to achieve its objectives.
What you'll do
- Always first, second and third, you'll be a kind, empathetic human being who cares about others. Then....It's critical you'll bring 10-15+ years experience as a leader with a clearly established and direct track record of leading policy and/or law reform advocacy engagements for specifically defined outcomes in complex and contested policy environments. Such experience is most beneficial to have occurred in your capacity as a leader of an advocacy effort, or alternatively in your capacity as a leader of a process or organization subject to such an advocacy engagement.
- This experience will have involved significant elements dedicated to managing complex and/or competing stakeholder relationships in a manner that illustrates deep empathy with the motivations of such individuals and/or organisations. As such, you'll deploy these skills as an advisor to meet the engagement needs of in-market teams, both as planned in annual strategies and on-demand when issues arise that call for quick engagement. Success here will come when working closely with the GM, Government & Policy Content, you're developing tailored engagement strategies that directly meet (or exceed) the needs of the local business leadership, and are fully aligned with our GTM strategy, and supported by key internal partners, such as Communications.
- More specifically within this core responsibility, you will: • Identify, categorise and empathise with a full spectrum of government and policy stakeholders, ensuring Xero maintains strong industry and cross-industry relationships, including advising on whether to advance Xero's positions (where appropriate) through industry associations and pragmatic coalitions to enable regulatory environments supportive of small business and technology companies.
- Oversee the rollout of a secure and scalable Government Relationship Management (GRM) platform to support engagements all around the world and be the lead evangelist for its adoption by Xeros.
- You lead in an aligned and collaborative way - you will need to lead multiple projects that entail working collaboratively and transparently with multiple Xero business units, in particular the regulatory and legal, product compliance, communications, data and partnership teams, to ensure business alignment.
- Using data in our work and measuring the effectiveness of our engagements - you will lead our efforts to integrate data analysis deeply into our work and also how to most rigorously measure our impact, with an eye to constant improvement and customer impact.
- You will be a diversity-centric trailblazer - Xero elevates the building of diverse and inclusive teams and culture to the centre of our thinking. You will make a major contribution to both of these concerns by being an innovator and mindset leader in both areas.
• Advise on the case for, or against, the deployment of external advocacy engagements, ensuring any such advice is developed in close collaboration with our Communications team, and is fully cognizant of other external-facing company plans, such as programmed announcements.
• Create a global stock of information created by Xero, governments and policy makers and key stakeholders in the policy environment around government, to develop and deploy consistent, best practice strategies and tactics.
• Ensure Xero is in a ready position to deploy best-in-class modern advocacy campaigning techniques and approaches and ensure this is done in full alignment with relevant internal stakeholders with an approach that meets or exceeds community expectations of openness, transparency and ethics.
What you'll bring with you - Critical competencies
- An intuitive understanding of public policy formation, from multiple perspectives
- Strategic delivery and commercial acumen Very strong interpersonal diplomatic skills A high ability to operate in highly uncertain environments A problem-solving mentality
- Ability to take a practical, proactive and creative approach to managing/solving government engagement issues
- A mindset for change and new ways of working
- Excellent written and verbal communication skills
- The ability to develop relationships with key stakeholders The ability to influence others
- The ability to manage projects and people in a global company
- The ability to operate seamlessly between the hybrid virtual and non-virtual world of 2021 and beyond and the ability to play a role in leading and supporting globally dispersed teams.
What you'll bring with you - Experience
- 10-15+ years in issue/policy/reform/legal advocacy campaign management whether from the perspective of a campaign or as the subject of a campaign, or ideally both.
- Similar duration of experience in stakeholder management or roles associated with needing to navigate complex public policy stakeholder environments.
- Exposure to, or experience in, the learning and/or application of stakeholder theory is a positive, but not essential.
- Highly tuned appreciation of the modern policy and political advocacy environment in key Xero jurisdictions including experience in modern campaigning methods and tools.
- A familiarity with the key Xero stakeholders, their areas of likely policy concern and deep empathy for their perspectives.
- Ideally a degree in a relevant field, such as Politics, Law, Economics, Public Policy, Government/Public Administration, Social Sciences, or similar. Degrees in Business and Commerce, up and including an MBA are also of value.
Diversity of people brings diversity of thought, and we like that. A collaborative and inclusive environment is important to us. Working at Xero will provide you with a diverse and inclusive environment alongside people who will respect, challenge and support you to have fun while you do the best work of your life. We are a place where personal development, innovation, and well-being are not just inspired but celebrated.
We value our people and offer a wide range of compelling benefits and perks, including Xero shares and great parental leave policies. Xero's collaborative culture is underscored by our values - #Ownership, #Challenge, #Beautiful, #Human and #Team - which empower us to understand and serve customers, attract top talent and continuously innovate. From the moment you step through our doors, you'll feel welcome and supported to do the best work of your life.