Dec 212017

Organization: Mercy Corps
Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo
Closing date: 19 Jan 2018

Position Description

Mercy Corps seeks a dynamic CEO to lead a new UK charity, E4I, being established to support the Water Service Delivery component of a large water infrastructure programme (IMAGINE) in Eastern DRC.

Programme Summary

The IMAGINE programme seeks to simultaneously improve availability of, access to, management of, and proper utilization of WaSH resources in two urban centres in Eastern DRC to ensure sustained health impacts. To ensure the sustainable management of water infrastructure, IMAGINE is developing a public-private-partnership management model between DRC’s national water utility (REGIDESO), provinces and a DRC-based private company. E4I will oversee the work of the DRC-based private company managing water service delivery.

General Position Summary

The CEO will lead E4I and oversee the work of the DRC-based private company managing water service delivery, providing leadership, governance and strategic guidance to ensure an efficient and effective water distribution utility. The CEO will demonstrate the passion and executive disposition to build strong and effective relationships with REGIDESO, the Provincial Authorities and the IMAGINE programme, negotiating improvements and contractual agreements that take into account other reform initiatives from the World Bank, KfW, GIZ, AfD etc. with the aim to ensure viable business models are established for the long term sustainability of the water systems. They will nurture relationships with other community stakeholders and local authorities to build trust and enthusiasm in selling the vision, strategy and implementation of the IMAGINE programme. The CEO will work closely with the Delivery Managers of the other IMAGINE programme components – Governance, Behaviour Change, Gender and Infrastructure – to ensure responsive government structures and participatory governance mechanisms for effective WaSH service provision.

Combined with strong leadership, the CEO will have exceptional operational decision-making capability with demonstrated decisiveness and a strong action-orientated approach.

Essential Job Responsibilities

Business Strategy and Operations

  • Provide exceptional strategic leadership and vision, setting the strategy and goals of E4I with the Board of Directors for the purpose of significantly increasing the sustainability of water service delivery in the programme cities.
  • Assess commercial viability and opportunities for business change, adjusting the implementation approach to ensure the pursuit of an economically sustainable business venture within a dynamic and complex environment;
  • Diagnose business strengths and weaknesses by understanding and utilizing economic, financial and socio economic data;
  • Identify key issues and develop solutions to apply financial strategies and systems;
  • Develop programme implementation plans, create and maintain systems ensuring effective and transparent use of financial resources for timely and informative reporting in line with donor and Charity policies and procedures;
  • Oversee all aspects of design, monitoring, evaluation and learning, and ensure that all programme aspects are documented.

Team Management

  • Create and sustain a work environment of mutual respect and accountability, where team members strive to achieve excellence;
  • Supervise, hire and orient new team members and provide constructive feedback via regular performance reviews;
  • Communicate effectively to ensure team members understand project targets and donor requirements, ensuring work plans are followed, activities are on schedule, and that project deliverables are completed as planned;
  • Provide team members with information, tools and other resources to improve performance and reach objectives;
  • Contribute to country team-building efforts, help team members identify problem solving options and ensure the integration of all team members into relevant decision-making processes.

Partnerships, Representation and Coordination

  • Identify, build and manage collaborative partnerships with donors, local governments, the private sector and other stakeholders, and maintain a view to identify and obtain future financial investments;
  • Development a collaborative interface with community-based organisations to understand current and emerging customer/beneficiary WaSH needs and expectations to ensure dynamic response.
  • Develop MoUs/contracts with REGIDESO, Government and implementing partners, and oversee a training programme for partners to integrate community approaches, gender empowerment, and capacity building into all activities as appropriate;
  • Coordinate with IMAGINE programme team to ensure operational systems are in place to support Governance activities including logistics, administration and human resource.
  • Collaborate with evaluators and advise on evaluation and research questions relevant to Water Service Delivery, Governance and Behaviour Change.

Capacity Building

  • Ensure increased service provider capacity, accountability, and adherence to service metrics and standard operation procedures and support improvements to internal operations in critical operational areas;
  • Formulate supply side activities to develop a coordinated approach to service provision strongly aligned to the Governance approach;
  • Complete distribution management service contracts including implementation and ensuring service level agreements are maintained, customer care standards are upheld, and financial standards are followed;
  • Develop an organization with high standards of governance and integrity;
  • Liaise with the Governance Delivery Manager to ensure that community mobilization / engagement and institutional capacity building activities are developed and implemented as per the WSD and Governance strategies.

Business Outcomes

  • Complete a business model that delivers economically sustainable outcomes;
  • Establish Robust business and governance structures;
  • Accountability framework between service provider and REGIDESO established;
  • Set up effective implementation and operational management;
  • Strong customer feedback model agreed with demand based community organisations;
  • Complete ISO 9001 accreditation together with robust processes and systems covering risk management, HR, Finance, Stakeholder management and environment;
  • Develop of effective asset management based systems appropriate to the business context;


  • Ensure compliance with security procedures and policies as determined by the Charity Board.
  • Proactively ensure that team members operate in a secure environment and are aware of policies.

Accountability to Beneficiaries

  • The CEO is expected to support all efforts toward accountability to programme beneficiaries and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging beneficiary communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of all field projects.
  • Ensure any necessary reporting through Mercy Corps to satisfy donor requirements.

Supervisory Responsibility

The CEO will directly supervise the DRC private company (sarl). He will specifically supervise the SARL Managing Director, and will also supervise a Programme Officer.


Reports Directly To: The Charity Board

Works Directly With: Mercy Corps IMAGINE Team, REGIDESO, Government, Donors, other NGOs and stakeholders, Mercy Corps DRC Country Director

Knowledge and Experience

  • BA required and Master’s degree aligned to provision of business and utility services preferred;
  • 10 years of experience of management experience and at least 5 years’ experience in a senior role;
  • Experience designing and implementing programmes related to service provision and accountability particularly in Africa;
  • Demonstrated understanding of systems approach and/or systems thinking;
  • Proven track record at mobilizing resources and building successful programmes;
  • Demonstrated ability to think out of the box and provide innovation to complex problem solving;
  • Experience recruiting, training, and managing teams;
  • Experience collaborating with local authorities and leaders and community mobilization;
  • Ability to manage and operate in a context that is corrupt, insecure and unpredictable, yet instil and maintain high levels of integrity throughout an organization;
  • Previous experience working with international organizations required and history with DFID-funded initiatives desirable;
  • Proven ability to work effectively in multi-cultural teams and with technical and administrative staff and consultants;
  • Strong communication skills in English and French, conversational Swahili a plus.

Success Factors

The CEO will provide effective leadership and entrepreneurial flair tempered to the local context. S/he will have the necessary emotional intelligence, constructive mentoring skills, and proven experience with capacity building. S/he will be committed to long-term programme sustainability & the delivery of high-impact activities. S/he will demonstrate strong business acumen with the ability to implement and assess the risks of the chosen business model. S/he will demonstrate a strong commitment to teamwork and accountability, thrive in evolving and challenging environments, and make effective written and verbal communication a priority. S/he will demonstrate adaptability, flexibility in approach and a strong sense of equity. In DRC, patience, diplomacy, tenacity, compassion, determination and a sense of humor are all success factors.

Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions

This position is an accompanied post based in Goma, with travel required to Bukavu, Kinshasa and internationaly. Goma is a provincial capital of over 700,000 inhabitants. Living in Goma is comfortable, although water and electricity can be unstable. Outside Goma, travel can be dangerous and unpredictable due to armed forces and rebel activity.

The CEO represents the Charity both during and outside of work hours and is expected to conduct him/herself in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and the Charity’s policies, procedures, and values at all times.


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How to apply:

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Questions Typiques
“What are your strengths and weaknesses?” It’s easy to talk about your strengths; you’re detail oriented, hard working, a team player, etc.–but it’s also easy to get tripped up when discussing your weaknesses, Teach says. Never talk about a real weakness unless it’s something you’ve defeated. “Many hiring managers are hip to the overused responses, such as, ‘Well, my biggest weakness is that I work too hard so I need try to take it easy once in a while.’ The best answer is to discuss a weakness that you’ve turned around, such as, you used to come in late to work a lot but after your supervisor explained why it was necessary for you to come in on time, you were never late again.”
Questions à poser
What is the single largest problem facing your staff and would I be in a position to help you solve this problem? This question not only shows that you are immediately thinking about how you can help the team, it also encourages the interviewer to envision you working at the position.