Executive Assistant

Common Seas

To apply for this job please visit commonseas.com.

About Common Seas

Common Seas is a social enterprise on a mission to quickly and significantly reduce the amount of plastic waste produced and stop it polluting rivers and seas. We have established ourselves as both a global thought leader and a highly practical actor in the plastic pollution space, and have offices in the UK, Greece, Indonesia and Maldives. Please visit our website (www.commonseas.com) to find out more about our work and progress to date.

We are looking for an enthusiastic and forward-thinking Executive Assistant with a proven track record in a wide variety of skills and competencies – including project, event and diary management, and financial and operations administration. We need someone who works with efficiency, dedication and cool headedness to balance their time between day-to-day deadlines and larger deliverables. As someone who organises the flow of information to our CEO, holds relationships with external parties, and supports internal HR and culture, you’ll be a central figure in our team – a ‘people person’ adept at managing colleagues without direct authority. For all these reasons, you’ll be a critical part of how the Common Seas team rises to the challenge of stopping marine plastic pollution.

Ideally, you’ll have:

  • At least three years as an executive assistant, project manager or senior administrator.
  • Examples of how you process, prioritise and manage multiple tasks. We’d love to hear how you use your favourite project management systems to handle competing priorities. Ideally, you’ll

    have a related qualification, or training.

  • Excellent written communication skills and a meticulous eye for detail, spelling and grammar.
  • The disposition to act as ‘front door’ for Common Seas; representing our work, our people and

    our values – as well as to uphold a motivational and supportive culture within the team.

  • Enthusiasm for optimising processes through discovering and unleashing the full functionality of

    the latest technological solutions.

  • The confidence to handle high-level relationships, try new tasks, and to ask for advice when you

    need it.

  • Genuine excitement about working with a small, innovative and ambitious start-up doing all they

    can to stem the flow of plastics into rivers and seas.

Executive Assistant to CEO

Your primary objective will be to support our CEO, to ensure she has maximum bandwidth to focus on strategic priorities. Specifically, you’ll:

  • Manage incoming communications across multiple channels, from both internal and external parties; filtering, responding, organising, and escalating priorities.
  • Handle our CEO’s calendar across multiple time zones – scheduling meetings and managing logistics – and making any travel arrangements as necessary.
  • Manage regular and ad hoc meetings; including by queueing meeting requests for approval, booking meeting times to align with time scheduled for focus on the related project where possible, and ensuring the right people are invited. You’ll ensure the CEO is prepared for all meetings; including by securing a clear agenda and any materials from the event lead well in advance, scheduling time for the CEO to review the same, and occasionally developing those materials as needed. You’ll also join meetings, produce and circulate summary and actions, and support the CEO with agreed ‘next steps’.
  • Ensure the timely submission of weekly reports and ensure the relevant project manager has reviewed them – working with them to communicate to the CEO when colleagues are over or under capacity.
  • Support the CEO in executing brilliantly run events, by leading on planning, logistics, insurance, risk management etc. – making sure the event excels in delivering its objectives.
  • Help our CEO stay up to date on the best available software and functionalities to drive efficiencies, and is support her to use them – including Microsoft Office 365, Trello, Slack, Zoom and Airtable.
  • Own, support and deliver on special projects, that may require researching and producing reports and guidelines; identifying, designing, and implementing new tools; and/or organising events.
  • Maintain a calendar of events we should consider attending and work with the CEO to identify

    where Common Seas should be represented.

  • Be willing to travel occasionally for work, both within the UK and internationally.
  • Support the CEO by diarising key dates ensuring notes and gifts are sent out to key contacts e.g.

    on birthdays, holidays, or as ‘thank you’s.

  • Support the CEO with the management of relationships – everyone from community members to

    businesses, scientists, members of Government and major donors – including by growing and organising our contacts database, supporting the team to contribute to it; and mapping all relationships that support our projects eg. by noting live contracts and MOUs, and diarising performance, review and/or expiry dates.

    You’ll also support the COO and the wider Executive Committee: generally by running and advancing our organisational systems to support the smooth running of our international team’s day-to-day, and specifically through:

• Fundraising and donor relations – support the Executive Committee’s fundraising efforts by;
o Helping map current and prospective funders, including tracking and logging outreach
o Ensuring application and report deadlines are mapped with sufficient time to prepare
o Running bi-weekly check-ins while ensuring the prospect tracker is updated and a clear

agenda is set in advance
o Supportingtherelevantteamstodeliverqualitynarrativeandaccuratefinancialreportsas

needed, in a timely manner
o Overseetheproductionofdocumentationrequiredtofollowuponmeetings,includingthe

production of proposals.

o Support the delivery of our bi-monthly ‘key donor’ report. • Financial administration

o WorkwithprojectleadsandtheCOOto;queueincomingandoutgoinginvoices;process company credit card statements, check invoices align with agreed deliverables, timelines and rates; code invoices to align to agreed budgets; and secure sign-off from the relevant lead.

o Support the CEO with her expenses submissions.
o Support the bookkeeper and accountant with day-to-day requests.
o SupportCOOandprojectmanagerstobudgetforprojectsandevents.

• Country Offices Management
o Support the COO in administrative tasks concerning our teams, offices and company

governance in UK, Indonesia, Maldives, Greece.
o Support UK Team’s regular ‘work together’ days, including planning, logistics and risk


• Tech Support and Software Management
o Supporttheteamtoeffectivelyusecoresoftware:MicrosoftOffice365(plusOneDrive),

Trello, Slack, Timetastic, Airtable and Zoom – while staying alert to new tools that could

advance the way we work together.
o Liaise with our outsourced tech support to support prioritisation and timely delivery of


• HR – Recruitment and Onboarding
o Processincomingapplicationsfortheprojectteamtoreview(unlessweretainspecialist

recruitment support).
o Welcomenewrecruitsintothefoldandmakesuretheyhavethesystem/softwareaccess,

knowledge and hardware needed to hit the ground running.
o Support the COO to ensure company policies and procedures are up to date and

consistently implemented.

• Culture
o Actasculturalsecretary-bothforremoteeventsand,whenrestrictionsallow,eventsin

person; arranging, for example, the monthly ‘yarn’ (an ‘all team’ informal gathering, every other month to feature an external speaker who will be a leading figure in our line of work) team gatherings, wellbeing activities, milestone celebrations, and our annual ‘away day’.

o Track,reportonandensurepaymentrelatedtocarbonoffsettingCommonSeas’travel.

  • Annual Business Planning

    o Support COO in the development and execution of a process to support annual project planning and budgeting – ensuring they are well informed of progress against the agreed timeline and when they are needed to provide direct support or sign-off.

  • Christmas
    o Project manage the delivery of a ‘zero waste’ Common Seas Christmas hamper to key

    partners and donors around the world – supporting our comms lead to include a Common Seas booklet. Ensure CEO’s personal seasonal outreach to Common Seas stakeholders.


    1. Deadline for application: 7th May
    2. A shortlist will be invited to a 20min Zoom meeting with our recruitment lead.
    3. Final candidates will be asked to engage with a character profiling test, along with a written

      task to be submitted.

    4. The final preferred candidate will be invited to an ‘in person’ meeting with the CEO, if feasible

      and subject to COVID-19 restrictions.

5. The role is available immediately, and the ideal candidate will be able to start as soon as possible

How to apply

If you think this sounds like the perfect role for you, please send a copy of your CV and a one-page cover letter to Sarah at hello@tribuspeople.co.uk by 7th May.

In the letter, please outline your suitability for the job and when you’d be available to start.

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