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Director - Communications (Austin, Texas hybrid in-person/remote)

Company: University Federal Credit Union
Location: Austin
Posted on: January 26, 2023

Job Description:

Job Summary

The Director of Communications directs and oversees UFCU's external communications and internal Executive communications strategies and activities that support and promote our overall strategic priorities across business, products and media, as well as help UFCU manage its brand reputation with Members and employees. The Director is passionate about UFCU's mission and vision, has a firm grasp of communication, community and Public Relations strategy, and knows how to mine and engage in an evolving media landscape. This position is a creative, strategic problem-solver with an affinity for details.

The Director of Communications reports to the Vice President - Communications and Marketing and leads the Communications team.

About UFCU

As Austin's largest locally-owned financial institution, University Federal Credit Union is a financial institution owned by, dedicated to, and always working for our Members. Our mission at UFCU is simple: To advance opportunities for quality education, employment, and housing. We're proud to focus on people - not profits. We deliver fair and honest products and outstanding service, and we work collaboratively within our organization as well as our community to help Members achieve their personal and financial goals.

Consistently receiving awards as the Top Credit Union, Top Mortgage Company, Best Places for Working Parents, Healthiest Employer in Austin, and Gallup's Exceptional Workplaces, UFCU is proud of its people-first culture. We value our employees as much as our Members. We offer an environment where people care about each other - like family. If you want to love what you do, make an impact in your community, and have the power to help people change their lives - then we're glad you're here.

Essential Functions

Team Leadership and Development

  • Lead the team responsible for both internal executive communication and external corporate communication for UFCU.
  • Lead, inspire, motivate, and develop team members by providing guidance and development to attain departmental and individual development goals and support organizational needs.
  • Nurture environment of operational excellence and continuous improvement that rewards teamwork and collaboration.
  • Focus on leading and developing people relationships through UFCU core values.
  • Build a successful team to operate according to UFCU guiding principles, providing guidance and resources, and removing obstacles as needed.
  • Lead, motivate, and care for the team by creating a culture of openness, positivity, and transparency.
  • Serve as a role model in transparent communication, two-way dialogue, and proactive communication to the team.
  • Provide team leadership based on servant leadership principles, caring for the whole person.
  • Plan, monitor, and appraise job results with an emphasis on coaching and developing employees to achieve desired performance results.
  • Help teams achieve their career goals. Ensure team members understand how to have an impact and are aware of that impact when they've made it.

    Communications Strategy Development and Planning

    • Contribute to and execute the strategy for effective internal executive and external corporate communication strategy, including crisis communication.
    • Work within the Community Impact business unit and across the organization to devise and implement impactful communications plans, earned media strategies and materials to secure positive press coverage across business and financial media, both for tent pole moments and ongoing.
    • Create systems to proactively identify and communicate Member and Community Impact stories, proactively identify, vet, secure, and respond to press opportunities and inquiries.
    • Ensure positive employee perception and brand awareness through aligned internal executive communication and external corporate communication messaging, processes, and systems.
    • Foster relationships and appropriately manage external vendor partners including Public Relations and other communication-related agencies, contractors, and freelancers.
    • Build strategic relationships with business and financial outlets and influencers that will engender open dialogue with journalists to shape and inform media coverage.
    • Implement executive placement strategies, including speaking engagements, profiles, and Op-Eds to successfully position UFCU leadership as visionaries and thought leaders in the Credit Union movement and in their respective fields.
    • Oversee and contribute to interview and speaking prep for executives, including the development of presentations, talking points, briefing documents, and other written and visual materials.
    • Draft written material for a variety of media including but not limited to pitches, announcements, press releases and talking points for wide range of business announcements.
    • Work closely with organizational leadership on key messaging and business announcements.
    • Coordinate with internal and external partners to align community relations and communication strategy with product launches, impact initiatives and corporate landmarks.
    • Partner with leadership to strategically prepare for and respond to crisis situations and issues management.

      Strategic Business Partner

      • Serve as an advisor to and work in partnership with various business functions, including HR/OD, Community Impact, Member Experience, and Board Relations.
      • Cultivate and maintain a positive, strong, and meaningful relationship and connection with others, working collaboratively with peers across the organization.
      • Collaborate with multiple business partners across the organization to determine current and future needs for performance measurements and achieving strategies.
      • Facilitate joint brainstorming and team collaboration, working closely with peers to achieve organizational goals and strategies.

        Budgetary Oversight and Expense Management

        • Establish Communications annual budget with identification of planned expenses for new or enhanced programs and services.
        • Ensure effective control of results. Take action to guarantee achievement of departmental objectives that fall within designated budgets.
        • Monitor expenses on a monthly basis to evaluate versus budget. Take action to make adjustments as needed based on organizational and department priorities.
        • Collaborate with senior leaders on development of organizational annual budget in alignment with strategic objectives.


          • Perform other duties as assigned.
          • Adhere to all company policies, procedures, and business ethics codes
          • Complete required regulatory training as assigned.
          • Maintain strict adherence and compliance to all laws, rules, regulations, policies, procedures, and internal controls specific to the role, including but not limited to Bank Secrecy Act, Anti-Money Laundering, USA Patriot Act, OFAC, and Fair Lending regulations.
          • Must be bondable.


            Team Building and Leadership

            • Proven people leader with thoughtful management philosophy and approach.
            • Strong and demonstrable leadership skills with the ability to inspire, develop, coach, and motivate others.
            • Demonstrated enthusiasm and eagerness for innovatively building energetic and highly engaged teams.
            • Inspired to perform well by the ability to make an impact and contribute to the success of a project or the organization.
            • Proven ability to create a high-performance climate through talent identification, recruitment, and retention.
            • Proven ability to build a team of diverse talents that complement one another.
            • Proven ability to hold themselves to the highest standard of integrity and personal behavior.
            • Solid self-awareness with demonstrated emotional intelligence and professional maturity.

              Building Relationships and Using Influence

              • Ability to work both independently and proactively, while also collaborating within a small enterprising team of communications professionals.
              • Confidence working with senior leadership.
              • Calm under pressure.
              • Great at organizational navigation and cross-functional collaboration at all levels.
              • Exceptional interpersonal skills with the proven ability to influence senior level management and key stakeholders.
              • Ability to develop and effectively maintain strong relationships with senior leadership, executive team, and key stakeholders.
              • Strong ability to recognize nuances in others and leverage this understanding for a more influential impact on the team.
              • Effective communicator, listener, and presenter, with the ability to work effectively with various levels of the organization.
              • Adept at maintaining effective relationships with internal departments, external business and community partners, and other key stakeholders.
              • Ability to develop and present data-driven recommendations successfully, promote items persuasively, and diplomatically shape the opinions of others.

                Executing for Results

                • Highly organized, great attention to detail and ability to dedicatedly prioritize.
                • Possess a proven delivery track record and exceptional service orientation.
                • Adept at translating the mission of the organization into actionable, quantitative plans.
                • Possess high levels of energy and persistence.
                • Rigorously hold oneself and others accountable for achieving high levels of individual and organizational performance.

                  Business Acumen

                  • Experience doing scenario planning and crisis communications.
                  • Proven record of pitching and securing business-focused stories.
                  • Ability to flex with the needs/direction of the business.
                  • Ability to bring new thinking and ideas to the Senior Leadership team.
                  • Expert knowledge of own discipline, including strategies, concepts, and practices.
                  • Demonstrated strategic, innovative, and creative problem-solving ability.
                  • Strong project management and service skills.
                  • Strong and frequent leadership of process improvements.
                  • Consistently evaluates decisions in terms of impact to the business.
                  • Combination of strong technical knowledge, business acumen, and organizational leadership.


                    • Adaptability
                    • Building Member Loyalty
                    • Building Partnerships
                    • Communication
                    • Emotional Intelligence
                    • Focus on Results
                    • Influence
                    • Leading the Organization (Decision Making and Systems Thinking)
                    • Leading Others (Building a Successful Team, Coaching & Developing Others, Leading Change, Servant Leadership)


                      Minimum Requirements

                      • Bachelor's degree in Communications or related field. Four (4) years of relevant experience may be substituted for degree.
                      • Minimum of ten (10) years of working experience in corporate communications and media relations.
                      • Minimum of seven (7) years of demonstrated strategic management and supervisory leadership experience developing and leading teams with direct reporting relationships in a medium to large sized organization.
                      • Exceptional interpersonal, listening, collaborative, verbal and written communication skills.
                      • Strong presentation skills, including development of business cases, with the ability to work with employees at various levels and different departments of the organization.
                      • Experience owning and managing multiple projects.

                        Preferred Requirements

                        • Master's degree in relevant field.
                        • Minimum of ten (10) years of experience working in a Credit Union or financial services industry.
                        • Management and supervisory experience leading teams in an Agile model.

                          Organizational Fit

                          • Core Values
                          • UFCU Mission
                          • UFCU Vision
                          • 7 Credit Union Principles

                            Physical Demands

                            The physical demands described are representative of those that must be met by an employee, with or without accommodation, in order to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.


                            • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to sit; use hands to finger, handle or feel; reach with hands and arms; and talk or hear.
                            • Extensive use of the computer, requiring specific vision abilities including close vision, distance vision, peripheral vision, and ability to adjust focus.
                            • Employee will make extensive use of the telephone and virtual communications platforms requiring the ability to effectively and accurately explain complex information.

                              Work Environment

                              The work environment characteristics described are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job.

                              • This position is required to frequently work at UFCU Plaza in Austin, Texas.
                              • This position may involve periodic stressful conditions.
                              • May occasionally require an adjusted work schedule, overtime, and evening/weekend hours.
                              • May occasionally move from one work location/branch to another.
                              • Public contact position, requiring appropriate professional appearance.
                              • Frequent computer use at a workstation of up to two hours at a time.
                              • The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.



                                Equal Opportunity Employer/Protected Veterans/Individuals with Disabilities

                                The contractor will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor's legal duty to furnish information. 41 CFR 60-1.35(c)

Keywords: University Federal Credit Union, Austin , Director - Communications (Austin, Texas hybrid in-person/remote), Executive , Austin, Texas

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