February 8, 2021
Minneapolis - St. Paul (currently WFH), Minnesota
Job Type


GREATER MSP is a cross-sector partnership of over 300 of the region’s leading businesses, cities, universities, counties, foundations and community organizations, which is supported by a 501c3 nonprofit organization.  The GREATER MSP Partnership provides leadership to grow the economy of the 15-county Minneapolis-Saint Paul region and create inclusive economic opportunity for all residents of the region.  Together, we shape and execute a regional economic development strategy focused in areas such as job growth, racial inclusion, and talent.  To do this work GREATER MSP builds teams of partners and manages a portfolio of ambitious, regional-scale efforts such as Make It. MSP., Forge North, and the Regional Air Services Partnership.
Forge North is a strategic initiative of the GREATER MSP Partnership to make the Greater Minneapolis-Saint Paul region the best place for people from every background to start and scale ventures. This coalition-based initiative has global ambitions grounded in local leadership, including a network of more than 100 partners, including entrepreneurs, investors, corporate innovators, leaders of entrepreneurial support organizations, and other allies, all committed to achieving results for the MSP region that no single individual or organization can accomplish alone.
Forge North is currently organized around advancing 3 priority goals for the Greater Minneapolis-Saint Paul region’s startup & innovation economy in pursuit of a larger 10-year ambition:
  • Doubling the number of companies in the region raising rounds of early stage capital
  • Achieving 100% participation from the region’s largest enterprises ($1 billion and above) in the local startup ecosystem
  • Realizing racial equity in the leadership teams of venture-backed startups in the region
The Forge North Leadership Council has identified strategic priorities in pursuit of these goals.
The Forge North Managing Director will lead this critical regional startup & innovation initiative on a national & global stage.
  • This is a leadership role in the region with important visibility and responsibility for building and accelerating a regional effort that aims to create global impact
  • The Managing Director will work with high-ranking leaders across startup & corporate networks, including the Forge North Leadership Council, GREATER MSP Board of Directors, and dozens of coalition partners
  • The Managing Director will lead a growing team, overseeing the Forge North Managers and consultants. They will report to the GREATER MSP VP, Strategic Initiatives and work in partnership with other Managing Directors in the GREATER MSP Strategic Initiatives Hub
  • The Managing Director will collaborate with other organizations and regional hubs throughout the state, including through the statewide Launch Minnesota network
  • There will be significant opportunity for true personal impact with autonomy to activate strategy, turn it into tactics, and build something that scales up
  • Shape the overall strategic direction of the initiative. The Managing Director will work with the initiative’s Leadership Council, Forge North Manager, and coalition members to activate and evaluate the initiative’s strategic blueprint, which includes priority goals and strategies, including:
    • Activating the initiative’s early-stage capital strategies, from growing the number of active local investors to connecting MSP startups with funds around the globe
    • Expanding the initiative’s active network of corporate innovation partners through platforms that facilitate greater collaboration across organizations
    • Advancing racial equity across the region’s startup ecosystem, through BIPOC-led business development, diversifying leadership teams, and reporting progress on the Forge North racial equity pledge
  • Oversee achievement of and reporting on the initiative’s annual performance plan, including execution of projects that achieve annual objectives. The Managing Director will work with the initiative’s Leadership Council, Forge North Manager to set annual objectives and will work with the broader Forge North coalition to deliver results through the implementation of cross-organizational projects. Past project examples include:
    • Digital tools & products such as the MSP Startup Compass, developed with MSP accelerators and entrepreneurial support organizations
    • Marketing activations such as regional delegations to investor conferences such as Collision, created with MSP entrepreneurs and startup firms
    • Events such as the Future Finance Forum, designed by corporate innovators, and Demystifying Venture Capital series, led by MSP investors
  • Adapt the Forge North initiative’s business model and lead development efforts for the initiative. The Managing Director will work with the Vice President, Strategic Initiatives and Forge North Leadership Council to continually grow and diversify initiative revenues.  The Managing Director will implement a long-term plan that builds capacity for the initiative while advancing the growth of key coalition partners, including many of the region’s entrepreneurial support organizations
  • Direct the Forge North Leadership Council. The Managing Director will work with Leadership Council co-chairs to maximize the engagement of all council members, prepare for meetings, propose the council’s agenda and priorities, and create high quality communications to facilitate the council’s discussions and decisions
  • Accelerate connections through the Forge North platform. The Managing Director will work with the Forge North Manager to power peer groups and roundtables that connect key actors across the startup and innovation ecosystem, such as:
    • Supporting the region’s network of Entrepreneurial Support Organizations, which meet regularly through the Forge North platform to share information and advance shared goals
    • Advancing the Minnesota Investors network of active venture capital leaders working to advance local education on venture capital, accelerate new deals, and grow the investor community
    • Growing the Minnesota FinTech Collective, a team of innovation leaders across many of Minnesota’s largest financial services companies, leading projects like the Future Finance Forum
  • Tell the region’s story with key audiences around the world, including media and investors. The Managing Director will work with the GREATER MSP Marketing & Communications team to increase awareness and perception of the region’s startup & innovation economy with key audiences around the globe such as venture capital leaders and media, while clearly marketing & communicating the work of the Forge North coalition and its partners.
  • Leverage opportunities to align with additional assets and priorities across the GREATER MSP Partnership. The Managing Director will collaborate across all of GREATER MSP’s strategic initiatives to execute projects together, share learnings, and implement best practices. The Managing Director will work in the GREATER MSP Strategic Initiatives Hub with the GREATER MSP Vice President of Strategic Initiatives, Operations Director, Coordinator and Managing Directors of other GREATER MSP strategic initiatives. Examples include:
    • Working with the Make It. MSP. and ConnextMSP initiative staff and Leadership Councils on attracting, retaining and advancing talent in the MSP region
    • Working with the MBOLD initiative staff and coalition to accelerate entrepreneurship and innovation across the state’s food & agriculture sector
    • Working with the GREATER MSP Business Investment Team & Leadership Council on expanding job growth and capital investment in the MSP region
  • Bachelor’s degree required
  • Continuing education such as graduate degree, certification(s), and/or leadership program experience preferred
  • 10+ years of professional experience; ideally in an entrepreneurial environment
  • 3-5+ years of leadership experience working for and/or with a startup, investment firm, enterprise innovation team, or entrepreneurial support organization
  • A passion for solving challenges in an entrepreneurial ecosystem; content knowledge /existing relevant relationships a plus
  • Previous experience leading a highly motivated, experienced team
  • A track record of building coalitions and/or successfully leading complex multi-stakeholder projects and teams, including;
    • Development/results-based fundraising expertise
    • Marketing experience including highly creative solutions working with target audiences
    • Professional public speaking and presentation skills
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills with multiple audiences, including executives
  • Proven ability to form relationships and credibility with a diverse set of people
  • Demonstrable experience leading and managing teams
  • Strong planning, strategy and project management skills
  • The ability to work in a fast-paced, entrepreneurial, deadline-driven environment often managing multiple tasks and projects simultaneously
  • Strong data-driven, analytical and critical thinking skills with the flexibility to respond to shifting priorities and new opportunities
Cultural Competencies & Commitment
  • Entrepreneurial spirit
  • Exhibits high integrity
  • Demonstrated ability to anticipate, be proactive and take initiative
  • Success working in teams
  • Hardworking, humble approach to work providing quality results
  • Demonstrated cross-cultural competency
  • Highly motivated by challenges and added responsibilities
  • Value and vision driven
  • Positive, can-do attitude and approach to problem-solving
  • Well-organized habits
  • A ready to help disposition
GREATER MSP is an equal opportunity employer. We value diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive work environment. Together we are greater.

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