This role will be responsible for enhancing Dean Foods’ image as a leading dairy company through strategic, effective external communications integrated with the corporation's presence in the public arena, media, and marketplace. Working closely with the SVP of HR and Executive leadership team, you will develop and manage the strategic external communications plans related to issues management, communications, public affairs, and crisis preparation for the local, regional, national and international interests of Dean Foods.
Essential Duties and Responsibilities:
- Develop and execute proactive strategies, programs and tactics to ensure the unique voice of Dean Foods in the marketplace
- Advise executive team members on messaging strategy for all internal and external communication
- Oversee all outgoing messaging across all internal and external channels to ensure brand integrity and messaging consistency
- Work closely with the Chief Executive Officer and Executive Leadership team to identify and prioritize communication initiatives
- Manage the development of the annual report, sustainability report, position/white papers and strategies that influence market thinking and support achievement of business goals and/or public policy positions
- Develop and execute strategies to increase company’s visibility and enhance its internal and external reputation; and support effective employee recruiting efforts
- Lead Communications in building/maintaining relationships with print, electronic and broadcast media in business and general news arenas
- Proactively identify, track and report on reputation risks; raise awareness and understanding of risks among leaders; measure results making strategic adjustments in messaging and positioning
- Assist with executive presentations for high-visibility speaking engagements, when needed
- Align messages and communication strategies to support external/customer facing businesses/processes
- Develop, implement and maintain appropriate metrics to evaluate impacts and effectiveness of external communications
- Implement crisis communication plans; lead crisis/issue management programs for specific events or longer term, coordinating communication with all key stakeholders in a crisis situation
- Manage the company’s Internet, which includes content for all external audiences as well as specialized pages/resources for the organization.
QUALIFICATIONS / REQUIREMENTS:
- Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
- Dual talents of strong strategic abilities and a keen understanding of the role communications plays in helping the company achieve its strategic business objectives.
- Ability to interact and own both the “big picture” and “the details”; ability to manage multiple programs/projects simultaneously.
- Developed and demonstrated sound strategic ability, good judgment and business acumen and has a high degree of passion and aptitude for creating the voice of Dean Foods externally.
- Ability to work in a fast-paced, ever-changing environment with all levels of employees in a team-oriented manner.
- Ability to present often complex information in a clear and compelling manner.
- Strategic communications planner and a significant hands-on contributor, with superior verbal and written communications skills.
- Must be creative, persuasive and diplomatic in presenting ideas and managing their implementation
- A proven team player, who thrives in a collaborative setting and possesses confident management style and leadership ability; evidence of discretion and tact in dealing with people and issues.
- Strong organizational and project management skills with a focus on planning, setting priorities relative to importance and urgency, managing process, and delivering results under tight time constraints
- Education and Experience
- Bachelor’s degree required; a minimum of 10 years of progressively responsible corporate communications experience in a senior level management role; experience in executive communication desirable
- Demonstrated experience in developing comprehensive communications plans and strategies; managing external relationships, including proactive and reactive media relationships with business, trade and consumer media; managing crisis communications