NREL Communications Section Manager/Lead in Golden, Colorado

Posting Title

Communications Section Manager/Lead



CO - Golden


Position Type

Limited Term (Fixed Term)


Hours Per Week



Job Description

Are you a seasoned strategic communicator with management expertise who also thrives on rolling up your sleeves and executing projects? Can you coach team members in developing big picture communications strategies and pitching those concepts to colleagues and clients—and then help ensure progress is being tracked against those plans? If so, this position may be a great match.

We’re looking for two strategic and collaborative communications professionals to manage two sections in the Science & Technology Communications Group in NREL’s Communications & Public Affairs Office: the Buildings and Solar section and the Energy Systems Integration, Wind, and Water section.

You will each lead approximately 10 professional communicators, including talented writers, editors, project managers, and client relationship specialists with varied experience levels and a broad range of skills. You will provide guidance needed to further client and NREL goals and raise internal and external awareness of the lab’s work.

We’re looking for an inspiring and relatable leader who can spark enthusiasm in others and is comfortable managing at various levels and serving as an experienced adviser to section members, as well as colleagues and clients.

Section Lead management key responsibilities include:

  • Providing mentoring, coaching, and feedback to staff and peers

  • Coaching Team Leads on management of projects and client relationships

  • Monitoring workloads and allocating resources to address section needs

  • Overseeing project plans; developing budgets, schedules, and tracking section progress against billing goals

  • Hiring new section members as needed, conducting performance evaluations, and making compensation recommendations

  • Ingenuity and creativity to developing solutions to complex challenges that are consistent with organizational objectives

  • Working with the Science & Technology Group Manager, Office Director, and Office Leadership Team to set and further office and lab-wide priorities, goals, policies, and practices

  • Interacting with cross-disciplinary teams (within the office and across the lab)

  • Leading a strategic body of client work

  • Writing, editing, and providing quality assurance on the section’s body of work

  • Taking on project assignments as needed to support communication needs within the group.

The following skills will be essential to success in this position:

  • Ability to lead, mentor, and coach a multidisciplinary team of communicators

  • Proficiency in anticipating challenges and creative problem solving

  • Poise and sound judgement in dealing with performance, quality, and interpersonal issues

  • Nimbleness needed to multitask in a fast-paced communications agency setting

  • Oversight of budget planning and tracking

  • Strategic communications planning, messaging, and project management expertise

  • Confidence in client relationship building, including business development and negotiation

  • Skill in conveying the value of communications and demonstrating results

  • Knowledge of traditional and digital communication standards and best practices for multiple formats and channels

  • Dedication to organization, detail, and quality

  • Exposure to complex, technical subject matter and understanding what is required to translate it for general audiences

  • Firm understanding of writing and editing standards.


Basic Qualifications

Relevant Bachelor's Degree and 14 or more years of experience or equivalent relevant education/experience. Or, relevant Master's Degree and 12 or more years of experience or equivalent relevant education/experience. Or, relevant PhD and 9 or more years of experience or equivalent relevant education/experience. Or, relevant JD and 9 or more years of experience or equivalent relevant education/experience.


Additional Qualifications

  • Previous management and budget adherence experience may be required

  • Degree in appropriate field may also be required

  • Demonstrated knowledge of legal and ethical management issues and practices

  • In-depth knowledge of the issues and best practices in the applicable field of expertise

  • Generally viewed as subject matter expert for group or work units

  • Demonstrated ability to make appropriate decisions regarding work activities and projects

  • Demonstrated ability to effectively lead and direct personnel with diverse skills, work styles and values

Preferred Qualifications

  • Excellent organization, project management, budgeting, interpersonal and communication skills

  • Proven problem-solving and negotiation skills


Submission Guidelines

Please note that in order to be considered an applicant for any position at NREL you must submit an application form for each position for which you believe you are qualified. Applications are not kept on file for future positions. Please include a cover letter and resume with each position application.


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