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Talent Leader

Nova Pioneer is looking for a superstar Talent Leader who will serve as the team’s talent development expert and manage the talent support function. This is an ideal opportunity for a results-oriented, people loving, talent professional who has a broad-based understanding of the various elements of human resources and a particular passion and track-record in the talent development space.

Imagine a world in which every young person in Africa attends a school that truly sets them up for success in the 21st century. A school that demands excellence, helps students learn by doing and exploring rather than by memorizing, equips students with globally competitive science and technology skills, and builds the character and growth mindset that shape the rest of their lives.

Now imagine that this school is not in one town, in one country, but in every town, in every country. This is what we imagine, and we want you to help make it happen.

In 2014 we launched a new venture to build the first pan-African network of high-quality, affordable primary and secondary schools. This year we will be operating six schools—two in Nairobi and four in Johannesburg—and gearing up for rapid growth, initially across East and Southern Africa and eventually across West Africa as well. Our venture is structured as a social enterprise to enable us to attract the investment that will be needed to launch 100 schools and reach tens of thousands of students in the next decade.

Our team culture is designed to reinforce our vision:

  • We model the growth mindset we want our students to embody: you are challenged every day and, as a result, you grow more than at any other point in your life
  • We hold the highest expectations for our staff and students alike
  • We believe in servant leadership and consistently put our students before our team, and our team before ourselves
  • We bring infectious energy, enthusiasm and fun to everything we do because joy fuels the hardest work and learning

Nova Pioneer believes an organisation is only as good as the people who work for it. We know that in order to accomplish our mission and achieve our growth goals, we must attract, select, retain, support and grow the right people. The Talent Leader will be responsible for ensuring we provide world-class talent support and development for our people.

Specific responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:

Talent Development

  • Design, lead and implement a differentiated professional development program for staff across the organisation
  • Lead the development of the next iteration of our competency framework and establish the most efficacious ways to evaluate our staff’s growth and development
  • Manage and implement all elements of the annual performance management process including: education and support to all levels of management regarding goal setting, feedback, coaching, appropriate documentation, and appropriate actions for performance issues
  • Work with departmental and school leaders regarding training and employee development and performance management
  • Plan and facilitate world class professional development programs to large and small audiences

Talent Support

  • Manage our Talent Support (Human Resources) team and create systems and processes that will enhance and strengthen our team’s work
  • Manage employee relations, as well as, compensation and benefits administration
  • Establish and maintain administrative excellence across all HR systems and processes

Team Management

  • Lead and grow the talent development and talent support teams
  • Set specific and high expectations for all people and hold them accountable for reaching them


  • Bachelor’s degree required, Master’s degree a plus
  • At least 7 years of professional progressive human resources/talent experience, preferably in the education sector and teaching experience is a plus
  • Experience driving talent planning efforts within an organisation with a focus on systematic people development
  • You have excellent project management and people management skills and experiences
  • You are a creative, out of the box thinker, strategist and problem solver
  • You have excellent communication skills both in one-on-one settings and to large audiences
  • You build strong relationships with an ability to inspire and motivate others
  • You hold high expectations for all people and believe in their ability to reach them
  • You strive for excellence in every detail of your work and inspire and challenge everyone around you to do the same
  • You take pleasure in excellence more than credit or status
  • Our culture resonates deeply with your values—and in particular, you are excited to challenge yourself by taking risks and getting more feedback than you’ve ever gotten before

Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis until the right candidate is identified. Only qualified candidates will be invited for interviews.

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