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External Relations Manager (Johannesburg, South Africa)

Nova Pioneer is looking for a superstar External Relations Manager. At its core, your role is about generating brand awareness and developing relationships with key stakeholders with the explicit goal of driving enrollment. You will also lead a vibrant and talented team to build our brand across South Africa. This is an opportunity to create a transformative brand with the future of Africa’s youth at stake.


Imagine a world in which every young person across Africa attends a school that truly sets them up for success in the 21st century. A school that cares about individual students and allows them to explore the world around them. A school that focuses more on developing skills than on memorizing content. At Nova Pioneer, we have done more than just imagine this future, we are bringing it to life. Nova Pioneer is a pan-African, independent network of schools offering high quality, accessible education from pre-primary through secondary school. Nova Pioneer uses a unique, enquiry-based learning approach that encourages students to ask “why” instead of telling them the “what”. It allows them to form their own thinking through exploration, investigation and collaboration. Nova Pioneer currently has 6 schools in South Africa and Kenya with a vision to launch 100 schools and reach tens of thousands of students across the African continent in the next decade. To learn more visit



You will lead a team of Marketing Associates to drive effective marketing strategies that will drive enrollments in the various communities where our schools are based. The role is based in Johannesburg, South Africa.

You will be responsible for the following:

Advertising & Lead Generation (top of funnel, awareness stage)

You will be responsible for developing a new advertising and lead generation strategy by understanding how and where to connect with partner organizations and creatively designing engagements that optimize our effectiveness. Critically, this means communicating the Nova Pioneer Difference and sparking that ‘wow’ experience, designing interactions to drive to the application phase, and working systematically to ensure that these efforts are driving results.

Relationship & Account Management

You will be responsible for understanding the customer  mix, segmenting (profiling) them, and understanding their needs, and designing and executing an effective engagement strategy based on this analysis. Within this framework, you will be responsible for bringing on new relationships using data in conjunction with your own research, and strengthening existing relationships, pulling in senior leadership where necessary. Through developing these partnerships, your express goal is to increase brand awareness, improve brand sentiment, and drive lead generation. However, this goal is fulfilled through developing a partnership that feels more collegial than transactional, and is driven through a feeling of mutual benefit, generosity of spirit, and cultivating mutual respect.

External Events Execution

You will be expected to organize and execute Nova Pioneer’s external events (liaising with external companies and individuals where necessary or applicable) that creatively encourages increased engagement with Head Teachers and the above listed customer segments.  These events should be optimized to support new lead generation, and designed to bring the Nova Pioneer’s brand to life. You will be responsible for identifying key dates and activities, and for working with the Admissions associate and cross-functionally to bring in the right team (leadership, students, etc.) for each event. After each event, you will also be responsible for the collection and analysis of data to determine its effectiveness, and for making recommendations on potential improvements.

Outreach & Brand Building:

You will be constantly seeking new outreach opportunities for Nova Pioneer to connect with different (but relevant) audiences to raise the profile of our brand in Gauteng. Successfully doing this includes (but is not limited to) working to identify other stakeholders and organizing to participate in education-related events in Gauteng and beyond.

Team Building & Coaching

You will lead Marketing Associates across our schools in South Africa, which you will have the responsibly of coaching and growing as we expand rapidly. You will closely support each team member in ensuring daily prioritization and execution of tasks


  • You’re a top performer with strong academic background
  • You have 4+ years of relevant work experience in marketing, sales, communications, relationship management, or related consumer-facing roles
  • In your past work experiences, you’ve demonstrated strong project management abilities and have experience with event planning
  • You are a great communicator: You are able to provide a clear and persuasive pitch to anyone and have excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • You are results-driven: You are goal oriented, move fast and take ownership of work.
  • You have a track record of improving other people’s performance through coaching and build uncommonly strong relationships
  • You’re a strategic thinker and can independently develop and execute a plan with clear timelines and deliverables
  • You have strong skills working with data: You know how to structure data in a compelling way, analyze data to pull out key insights and trends, and make data-driven decisions
  • Your past managers describe you as a self-starter with strong work ethic
  • You truly enjoy interacting with new people and the challenge of building relationships, and you have strong interpersonal skills
  • You are entrepreneurial and empathetic. You are able to understand the various Nova Pioneer stakeholders and think creatively about how to effectively communicate to them.



Nova Pioneer is a place where our people experience tremendous growth, fast! We invest heavily in the growth of our people because it leads to greater mastery in both us and our students. “Novaneers” work harder and work longer hours than most schools, but as a result, the growth they experience is extraordinary. We offer consistent and ongoing personal development and provide clear career pathways that ensure that our people are always achieving their personal and professional best. Nova Pioneer has a highly energetic, entrepreneurial environment where our people get to bring their creative and innovative ideas to life. We look for people who are flexible and who are able to adapt and respond quickly to adversity with a positive, can-do attitude (there are no problems, only solutions!). We welcome challenges and roll with the punches because it makes us, and our students, better. There is no problem too big for us! We work hard, but we also have a lot of fun together. We bring infectious energy and enthusiasm to everything we do because joy fuels the hardest work and learning. Read more about our culture principles here.

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