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Creative Service Project Manager

The Aspen Institute

The Aspen Institute

Washington, DC, USA
Posted on Thursday, November 9, 2023

The Aspen Institute

The Aspen Institute is a global nonprofit organization committed to realizing a free, just, and equitable society. Since its founding in 1949, the Institute has been driving change through dialogue, leadership, and action to help solve the most critical challenges facing communities in the United States and around the world. Headquartered in Washington, DC, the Institute has a campus in Aspen, Colorado, and an international network of partners.

Commitment to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

To achieve our mission of a more free, just, and equitable society, we commit to working proactively to advance the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion across our myriad endeavors such as the recruitment, compensation, training, and advancement of staff. The best people-serving institutions make this commitment, and we seek to be a leader in the ways that we do so and learn from others. Visit our website to learn more about our commitment and recent actions taken toward building and nurturing a diverse and inclusive environment.

Program Description:

The Communications and Marketing Department creates compelling content to elevate and position the Aspen Institute as a values-based organization that ignites human potential through dialogue, leadership, and action to build understanding and create new possibilities for a better world. The department also serves as an in-house agency that provides communications and marketing support to the Institute’s 40+ programs, initiatives, public events, fundraising efforts, and the president’s office. Learn more at

We function on the foundation of 5 values: Collaboration, Learning, Excellence, Accountability and Respect or CLEAR. These attributes and behaviors are how we work. Upholding our department values is of paramount importance as they guide us to thoughtfully engage with our colleagues whilst performing at the highest level.

Basic Function:

The Project Manager is highly organized and detail-oriented, working across the Creative Services team and in direct partnership with the entire Communications & Marketing Department. They are responsible for ensuring the smooth execution of all projects by managing timelines and resources and coordinating with various stakeholders to achieve project objectives. Their role is crucial in maintaining team productivity, delivering high-quality results, and fostering effective collaboration.

This position reports to the Creative Services Director, Communications & Marketing. The salary range for this position is $88,200 - $98,000. The expectation is for this role to be in our Washington D.C. office a minimum of 2x a week to collaborate with colleagues.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

Project Planning & Coordination

  • Collaborate to define project objectives, success criteria, and measurable outcomes.
  • Develop project plans, including defining project scope, deliverables, and required resources.
  • Create and manage project schedules, ensuring timely completion of tasks and adherence to deadlines.
  • Collaborate with the Enterprise Communications team, especially the Enterprise Communications Project Manager and Director of Content Strategy, to identify and surface program-level opportunities for enterprise-level storytelling and brand marketing.

Project Execution and Quality Assurance

  • Prioritize and manage the team's workload using our project management systems to track deliverables and effectively triage tasks.
  • Manage projects from ideation to delivery, setting goals and ensuring adherence to timelines, scope, budget, and quality standards.
  • Monitor project progress, identify potential bottlenecks or issues, and take proactive measures to meet project objectives.
  • Conduct quality assurance checks on content and deliverables, ensuring adherence to editorial standards, guidelines, and brand voice.
  • Track and report on project milestones, risks, and issues, providing regular updates to stakeholders and department leadership.
  • Report challenges and opportunities related to team projects to the team directors.

Team Coordination and Vendor Management

  • Regularly report updates, progress, and potential challenges to team and department leadership to ensure transparency and effective decision-making.
  • Coordinate with cross-functional roles and external vendors, such as writers, editors, designers, and other stakeholders, to ensure seamless project completion.
  • Assist directors with internal meetings related to deliverables by creating agendas, taking comprehensive notes, and producing actionable follow-up items.
  • Collaborate with directors and the department's operations team to oversee vendor contracts and ensure their successful execution.
  • Develop and maintain a system to efficiently allocate team members and external vendors to projects, ensuring that workloads are balanced, and expertise is maximized.
  • Delegate tasks to approved vendors while maintaining quality standards.
  • Ensure timely and efficient invoicing of internal clients and payment of external vendors, tracking deliverables.

Continuous Improvement

  • Identify process improvement opportunities and implement best practices to enhance project management and content creation.
  • Conduct post-project evaluations, gathering feedback from team members and stakeholders to identify lessons learned and areas for improvement.
  • Stay updated on industry trends, tools, and technologies related to project management and marketing and communications.

Knowledge, Education, and Requirements:

  • 7+ years of experience working in the private and/or public sector is strongly preferred.
  • Bachelor's degree required, a focus on journalism, communications, marketing, or a related field is a plus.
  • Proven experience as a Project Manager, preferably in an editorial, marketing, or public relations environment.
  • Strong organizational and time management skills, with the ability to prioritize tasks effectively and meet deadlines.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills, with the ability to convey complex information clearly and concisely.
  • Proficient in project management software and tools to track progress, manage resources, and collaborate with team members; experience with Wrike or Airtable a plus.
  • Ability to work well under pressure, adapt to changing priorities and handle multiple projects simultaneously.
  • Demonstrated leadership skills with the ability to motivate and inspire a team toward achieving project goals.
  • Attention to detail and commitment to delivering high-quality work.
  • Problem-solving and critical-thinking abilities to address challenges and resolve issues effectively.
  • Proven ability to move easily between strategy and execution.
  • Passion for the Institute’s mission and an opinionated vision for how to elevate its work.
  • Curiosity, empathy, hustle, grit, sense of humor.
  • Comfort with ambiguity, uncertainty, and change.

The Aspen Institute offers a generous benefits package including health, dental, vision, and prescription benefits, retirement benefits, and paid leave.

The Aspen Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer and complies with all District and federal laws. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or protected veteran or disabled status and will not be discriminated against.