Vitamix is unquestionably the premium brand of high-performance “blenders,” but if you talk to people that own one, they rarely refer to it that way. It’s a “Vitamix” and is often considered as a piece of culinary ‘fitness equipment’ that is a critical part of a daily health routine and more broadly, a healthy way of life. And, it comes in a multitude of colors that allows anyone to match it to their other kitchen appliances - you don’t put it away, you show it off. Who knew fitness could taste this good?!
For consumers, Vitamix can be found domestically in places like William Sonoma, Sur la Table, Crate & Barrel, Target, Amazon, and at Vitamix.com. But with offices in the US and UK, Vitamix is found in over 130 countries around the world.
Ultimately, Vitamix is the Global-leader in high-performance blending solutions for home and commercial use, is preferred by more chefs than any other brand and is found in the top 50 restaurants in the world. It is relied upon by over 150 culinary schools in the US and has been used to train more than 52,000 students and master chefs worldwide. If it is not a Vitamix, it’s just a blender.
Vitamix is seeking a Sr. Manager, External PR and Communications who will ensure that all internal and external communications support and promote both the Vitamix and Vitamix commercial brands in accordance with brand positioning and guidelines. The Sr. Manager has responsibility for management communications, corporate and business-unit media relations, crisis communications, employee communications, and community relations. This role will interact with all levels of the organization as well as interact with the community, media and industry organizations. This position will lead all functions of both internal and external communications in partnership with the team’s Director, with the assistance of direct reports, agencies and cross-functional teams.
Duties & Responsibilities:
- Manages agency partnerships while providing guidance to ensure that brand guidelines, standards and processes are aligned to brand, culture and corporate objectives.
- Leads the initiative to brand from the inside out through activities including employee storytelling.
- Designs, develops and implements an employee communications strategy in close partnership with Human Resources.
- Leads the creation of a compelling editorial calendar for various employee groups and executes to ensure a regular and manageable cadence of communications.
- Develops a strategy for and produces and manages content on the company intranet.
- Re-imagines company intranet in partnership with external agencies as needed.
- Responsible for regular cadence of communications with employees to enhance our culture and CORE, engage our people, inspire enthusiasm for our company and brand and inform and strengthen the employee community across geographies, business units and functions.
- Builds understanding of our corporate strategies, initiatives, progress and successes.
- Leads the implementation of significant company-wide employee and partner meetings and events.
- Leads community activation, communications, and owns local media relations.
- Provides corporate communications PR support.
- In partnership with external agencies and direct reports, creates compelling digital assets (video and photography for internal use as required.
External Public Relations
- In partnership with agency and direct reports, creates and executes on a comprehensive, strategic external communications plan that is aligned to the Vitamix and Vitamix Commercial brand strategies and in service to the organization’s objectives.
- Guides agency partners to create and execute proactive public relations plans and keeps them up to date on relevant messaging and information.
- Oversees message/media training of internal stakeholders
- Reviews and oversees approval of press releases and outreach to targeted members of the media.
- Evaluates work against a defined set of KPIs and makes necessary adjustments to meet goals
- Manages public/media relations support of tradeshows and events.
- Manages public/media relations activities in support of the Vitamix Foundation.
- Manages external communications events and crisis management activities for key functions, including Legal and Human Resources, and responds to media/press inquiries.
- Ensures an innovative and impactful brand approach to engagement with the media in partnership with agencies and cross-functional teams.
- Responsible for the day-to-day management of agency relationships.
- Close collaboration with Sr. Manager, Social Media and Community on public relations activity, particularly as it relates to influencers.
- Develops strategic plan for product placement approach and makes decisions about product placements accordingly.
- Owns relationship with outside vendor to obtain product placements in movies, television shows, and commercials.
- Councils senior management on communications opportunities and issues and provides direct communications support to the President & CEO, with support from external agencies.
- Consults with leaders across the organization about their employee communication needs and assists in the execution of their employee communication plans.
- Creates, manages and/or contributes to an array of communications vehicles, including executive presentations, newsletters and announcements.
- Drives the development and implementation of an integrated crisis communications process and plan, with support of external agencies.
- Executes internal crisis communications as needed.
- Develops and adheres to guidelines pertaining to charitable donations and sponsorships and makes decisions on what and how to support accordingly for Vitamix, Vitamix Commercial and the Vitamix Foundation.
- Responsible for managing the budget associated with charitable sponsorships.
Corporate Social Responsibility
- Partner with Social Media and Community team to develop and communicate the brand’s position on matters pertaining to diversity and inclusion, sustainability and climate control.
- Leads and mentors communication and marketing team members to build and maintain the Vitamix culture, employee engagement and ongoing talent development.
- Stewards the Corporate CORE and culture.
Manages budgets associated with the role’s areas of responsibility
The ideal candidate will also possess:
- Alignment with Vitamix’s culture and CORE which defines its Purpose, Mission, and Values.
- Proficiency in Microsoft Office
- Expertise around Vitamix competencies: Strategic Vision, Accountability, Change Champion, Communication, Creativity, Critical Thinking, Leads for High Performance, Organizational Savvy
- A high level of credibility, expertise and executive presence is expected.
- Experience in crisis/issues communications, public policy communications and brand reputation management.
- Possesses a finely-honed ability to communicate complex issues and topics in a clear, persuasive and easily understood manner both verbally and in writing.
- Possesses dynamic presentation skills for communication to internal and external organizations and groups as needed.
- Proven ability to collaborate with and achieve actionable results through others, plus the ability to build strong and sustained relationships.
- Capability to interact with all levels of the organization.
- 10+ years leadership experience managing direct reports.
- Requires travel to shows and events in the US and International locations; up to 20% travel
- A Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing, Communications, Business or related field