Strategy Lead | Strategic Communications (LDN)

Last updated: May 2024

The Role:

Shape History is searching for candidates with at least 5 years of experience across strategic communications (PR, marketing and crisis communications) to become our new full-time Strategy Lead. The successful candidate will be working on one of our largest partnerships, an iNGO driving equitable action to advance the health and rights of women for a 2 year period before potentially delving into other partnerships. We’re looking for someone with a knack for storytelling, a passion for social impact, and a drive to take a lead and make a difference. If you’re ready for a new challenge in London, let’s talk. 

Hello! We’re Shape History, the social impact communications agency. We work with our partners –  charities, businesses, UN bodies, academic institutions, philanthropic organisations –  on some of the biggest issues facing humanity today, from Climate Change to Gender Equality, Health and Wellbeing to Human Rights. Our vision is a fairer world, and we use communications to get there faster. 

We’re a full-service agency, doing everything from strategically advising major institutions, to placing stories in the news or developing creative content for marketing plans. The successful candidate will join our strategy team, reporting to an Associate Strategy Director. You will run one multi-service, dynamic brand and communications partnership for an iNGO driving equitable action for women’s health and rights.

How you’ll be shaping history everyday:

Strategic and communications delivery including:

  • Communications strategy ideation and direction: Have the experience and confidence to take ownership and lead strategy development for a high value, complex partner leading gender equality advocacy. This includes developing global and local communications strategies and plans. 
  • Implementation:  You will lead on managing and implementing the plans you create, taking ownership over its success  – from securing media coverage, to  stakeholder & influencer engagement. This will involve delegating and working with other team members to achieve this. 
  • Storytelling and copywriting: You know what makes a good, engaging narrative and story.  Day to day, you’ll write clear, concise copy for a range of different mediums and voices – from brand strategy and positioning, to more tactical copy for press releases, opinion pieces, and creative content.
  • Crisis Management: Prepare crisis communications scenarios, plans, and responses. This includes ensuring all risks are clearly identified with mitigation actions put in place. At times, you will also be required to provide guidance to our partners’ leadership teams during crises. 
  • Media relations: Develop and manage strong relationships with media contacts across national, international and regional outlets – within the gender equality and social equalities space. You should have a good understanding of the media landscape, and will be regularly crafting and pitching stories. 
  • Press briefing and media event planning: You will plan and execute digital and physical media conference, working to secure attendance of relevant journalists and briefing spokespeople on key messages. 
  • Strategic thinking: Stay focused on the big picture when delivering work. This includes being outcomes driven, critically examining past, current, and planned work to determine if adaptations need to be made based on changing environments.
  • Creativity and creative briefing: Thinking differently, coming up with bold, innovative ideas that will deliver impact. This involves developing inspiring creative briefs that include clear ideas, outcomes, audiences, and messages for our creative team. 
  • Impact & Evaluation: Always focussed on real world impact, you will ensure that all work is working to meet specified impact goals. You will conduct evidence-based evaluations to measure impact. 

Account Management:

  • Partnership lead: You’ll be a leading point of contact for the partnerships, getting to know their team inside out, understanding their needs, vision, and challenges. You’ll be their go-to, regularly and confidently convincing partners of your ideas and leading all communications. 
  • Partnership oversight: You’ll support with oversight of the partnership, providing counsel and ensuring a high standard of delivery and partner satisfaction. This may include reviewing content, proofreading messaging  or making suggestions for improvement.

You’re good at… (role requirements)

  • Communications expertise: Have more than 5+ years of experience leading on strategic communications work – whether this be PR, advocacy, marketing or corporate comms. 
  • Strategic mindset: You understand how to move from outcomes to strategy, to tactics, all while ensuring that everything serves a meaningful purpose, ultimately driving impact. 
  • Storytelling: You know what makes a good, engaging story, and can turn complex information (sometimes data) into stories that are understandable, engaging, and relevant to audiences. 
  • PR Experience: Proven experience in securing press in national and international outlets. 
  • Stress Management and Adaptability: You can manage a complex and responsive workload, adapting when unexpected issues arise, being able to manage and surpass stressful situations. 
  • Clear Communication: Excellent written and verbal communication skills, with an ability to gain the trust of audiences by presenting clearly, confidently, and strategically. 
  • Account management:  You’re confident, organised, and enjoy  building and maintaining relationships with stakeholders. You also have a track record of managing accounts to ensure projects are completed on time and within budget. 
  • Collaboration: You enjoy working collaboratively in a team, as well as independently, and have a willingness to roll up your sleeves during short intensive sprints.
  • Proactivity: Taking ownership and autonomy over your work, solving problems that others may not have noticed, and going out of your way to continue learning and growing. 
  • Eye for detail: You are able to give clear and critical feedback that helps improve the overall quality of work . You are confident in signing off on pieces of work before they go live. 
  • Creativity: Creativity runs through your veins, and you recognise how essential it is for crafting compelling stories, unique angles, and attention-grabbing campaigns.
  • Open-minded: Willing to step outside your comfort zone, and work in new and different areas. 
  • Agency experience: Ideally, you have some agency experience which will allow you to understand how the sector works and how to prioritise your different tasks.

Extra bit of awesome:

  • Equitable approach to communications: You know how to craft communications that ensures everyone is included and respected, regardless of their background. This involves understanding how to communicate in a way that promotes anti-racism, fairness, representation, and equity.
  • Project and time management: You are responsive and comprehensive in your project management, feeling comfortable speaking with relevant stakeholders, and ensuring deadlines are met. 
  • Hola. Bonjour. Shalom. Speak another language? Great! Our partners and projects take place across all four corners of the globe.

Race Equity:

We are committed to having an inclusive culture in which everyone feels safe and supported to achieve their potential. We recognise that there is a long way to go in implementing race equity in the sector and we have a robust strategy in place for delivering this at Shape History. We actively encourage applications from underrepresented and minority groups, including those with lived experience of social issues we are working to address. As part of this strategy, we use blind recruitment in our first round of applications. When applying for this role, you will be taken to a Typeform link where you’ll be asked a series of questions.

Remuneration: 

Salary range: Base salary of £38,000 – £47,000 plus discretionary company and personal bonus (typically between 3-5% base salary)

Recruitment process:

  • Applications open on Friday 17th May
  • Applications close on Sunday 9th June 10pm (shifted from the 4th)
  • We will be reviewing applications on Monday 10th-Tuesday 11th June
  • Shortlisted candidates will be given a short, timed exercise to complete by Tuesday 18th June 
  • Interviews with two Associate Strategy Directors will be held in person on Wednesday 19th and Thursday 20th June
  • We may request a final interview with a Director on Friday 21st June
  • Our ideal start date for this role is some point in July but we also appreciate that this may be beyond your control