Associate Director, Corporate Communications

  • Sidewalk Labs
  • New York, NY, USA
  • Feb 06, 2021

Job Description

Who are we?

Sidewalk Labs is an urban innovation company working to make cities more sustainable and affordable for all. We create products, invest in new companies, and help plan innovative places around the world. Since our founding in 2015, we’ve grown into an organization of over 100 employees based primarily in New York City. Our cross-disciplinary team consists of experts from real estate, urban planning, government, finance, technology, and engineering, among other backgrounds.

We’ve launched innovative companies addressing urban mobility, next-generation infrastructure, and community-based healthcare, and invested in startups working on everything from robotic furniture to digital electricity. We continue to work internally on projects such as factory-made mass timber construction that can improve housing affordability and sustainability, a digital master-planning tool designed to help developers and communities achieve shared objectives, and a new approach to all-electric neighborhoods.

With the potential to catalyze and scale new models for sustainable and affordable growth, our work is both exciting and complex. We are working to achieve something unprecedented — help us build it!

What is the role?

We are looking for an Associate Director of Corporate Communications to join our Policy, Communications, and Marketing team. You will play a critical role explaining our ideas and urban innovations to the world in a clear and compelling way.

This role calls for an ambitious mid-career communications pro capable of describing our work to a global audience of real estate developers, urban planners and designers, municipal agencies, urban-tech companies, and other groups focused on improving urban life. You will have a direct hand in planning communications strategy for product and project launches, working with reporters to understand our work, identifying speaking opportunities, developing public documents and presentations, managing our public relations support, and producing content for our social media channels and company website.

A background in corporate communications is preferred, as is strong familiarity in areas of sustainability, real estate development, or urban planning. This position will collaborate very closely with project leaders in every business unit across the organization, as well as with the leadership team, creating a real opportunity to make an impact in a unique, growing, mission-driven organization.

Day-to-day, you will work closely with the Policy, Comms, and Marketing team on:

  • Drafting comprehensive communications plans in close collaboration with product and development project teams
  • Working with our public relations team to track press stories, place earned media, coordinate media briefings, and conduct internal media training
  • Managing speaking requests and coordinating presentations for external events, and developing content for internal events
  • Working with our marketing and editorial teams to raise awareness of our products and projects among potential customers and general city enthusiasts via our existing communications channels, including via the company website and social media accounts
  • Ghostwriting public talks or external media pieces for executive leadership, in-house subject experts, and product leads
  • Reviewing external materials across the company, including presentations, proposals, and reports

What You Will Achieve

In your first 3 months you will:

  • Master the brand guidelines and the editorial style guide
  • Develop proficiency in communicating the full breadth of Sidewalk innovations
  • Gain familiarity with existing communications plans and work to improve the company’s communications plan template 
  • Support corporate communications needs across the company, including for social media, public talks, and presentation reviews
  • Play a lead role coordinating speaking appearances by company leadership

In your first 6 months you will:

  • Assume day-to-day management of social media feeds and website updates
  • Assume primary responsibility for all corporate communications needs, including external presentations by company leadership
  • Provide reliable writing or storytelling support to communications and press teams, as well as in-house expert teams
  • Assume full management of internal and external events
  • Draft and place op-eds or other articles by in-house experts in national or global publications

After 12 months you will be able to:

  • Direct long-term communications planning
  • Support all company-wide communications needs for product and project leads
  • Measure and expand audience growth and engagement across all communications channels

What We Expect

To thrive on this journey with us, you will need to bring a strong interest in cities and technology, 5+ years of relevant experience, and demonstrate the following skills:

  • Exceptional writing ability: You are an exceptional writer, ideally with substantial experience in journalism, publishing, marketing, or digital media. You have the ability to make complex material accessible and enjoyable to a general audience without sacrificing the details.
  • Media familiarity: You are comfortable engaging with the press and global media, and have experience pitching stories to top news outlets. You have the ability to develop, manage, and execute a communications strategy on a deadline, working closely with a public relations firm.
  • Keen urbanist insight and technological interest: You are familiar with the challenges facing cities and want to help address them. You are skeptical of quick-fixes but recognize the potential of innovations to improve people’s lives when they are responsibly applied to an urban environment.
  • Versatility and adaptability: You are a quick study across a wide variety of subject areas and have the ability to work closely with many different types of colleagues from a wide variety of backgrounds. You also have the ability to apply your considerable research, communications, and storytelling skills in new and creative ways.
  • Management and self-discipline: You are capable of leading a project through all phases with minimal guidance. You can manage teams of internal colleagues and external freelancers / vendors. You’re an exceptionally organized worker who can balance short-term deadlines against and long-term ambitions.
  • Professionalism: You handle demanding assignments and tight deadlines with poise and reliability. Your work reflects a high level of polish and can stand up to a global spotlight. You are a dependable teammate who’s willing to do the little things to help a colleague in need. 

Sidewalk Labs is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. We actively seek applicants from underrepresented communities. Even if you are not 100% sure you are right for the role, please apply and we will be happy to consider your application. All employment is based on merit and business need, and we respond to each application we receive.


Buildings & Cities

Drawdown Solutions

Recycling, Walkable Cities

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