Egmont Associates
Location: United States
Last Date: July 6, 2008

Position Announcement


Positive Deviance Initiative

Positive Deviance Initiative (PDI) is an organization working globally to amplify the use of Positive Deviance (PD), an innovative, low-cost, sustainable and successful development approach for solving community problems. The PDI is seeking a dynamic entrepreneur to take this 7- year old organization to the next level to become a world-class global organization.

Positive Deviance
Positive deviance is based on the observation that in every community (village, corporation, university, hospital, etc.) there are certain individuals or groups whose special practices and behaviors enable them to find a better solution to a problem than their neighbors with access to the same resources. These individuals/groups are called positive deviants, and the PD approach enables the community to discover and adapt their uncommon, but demonstrably successful practices. (For examples of PD application, see

The PD process results in a program or intervention that leads to measurable and sustainable change. PD is grounded in the wisdom of the people and the potential transformation from unleashing that wisdom. The practice has been documented in more than 41 countries in nutrition, health care, public health, business, and education, and has been used to address issues as diverse as malnutrition, neo-natal mortality, girl trafficking, female genital cutting, hospital acquired infections prevention and HIV/AIDS.

The Organization
Located at Tufts University’s Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, the PDI was created in 2001 with a grant from the Ford Foundation. The initial grant objectives were 1) documentation of the PD approach, 2) training of PD practitioners, and
3) identification and support of new applications. The Initiative has collaborated with vulnerable populations, health-care institutions including ministries of health, corporations, foundations and NGOs, UNICEF, the Peace Corps, USAID, and the World Bank.

In May 2008 the PDI received a $4 million grant, (including $1 million in matching grants) from the Rockefeller Foundation through their Diffusion of Innovation portfolio. The grant was awarded in recognition of “the importance of PD as a ‘big idea’ and the importance of diffusing the approach throughout the world.”

With the support of the Rockefeller grant, the PDI will facilitate collaborations between communities, development practitioners, donors, government agencies and researchers to maximize the impact of diverse stakeholder efforts. The 4-year grant will enable poor and vulnerable communities around the world to measurably and sustainably address problems requiring social and behavioral change.

The Position
To achieve global impact, the PDI must move from its initial venture funding to become financially viable through a reliable income stream. This income stream may include grants, fees for services, licensing, and other innovative mechanisms. The role of the Director will be to create a sustainable organization, and s/he will have responsibility for:

Vision, Strategy and Business Plan
- With the Advisory Board and staff, keep the vision current
- Continually analyze operations and evaluate programs to ensure alignment with mission/vision
- Facilitate changing priorities and strategies as organization evolves
- Engage the board and staff to implement the vision and strategy
- Review/consider 501c3 status and the potential creation of a board of directors
- Evaluate effectiveness of strategies

Program Oversight
- Oversee creation and implementation of thoughtful and comprehensive program
- Develop robust and flexible services such as training modules, consulting, and proprietary materials utilized for a fee. Respond to changing needs.
- Partner with other organizations to create networks of practitioners and collaborations
- Evaluate effectiveness of PDI programs and services
- Create partnerships with researchers to evaluate the critical success factors and effectiveness of PD approach
- Create virtual community of practice to share best processes
- Research and develop opportunities for PD consulting on projects in identified areas
- Interface with external audiences (Tufts University, partners, clients and media)

Fundraising/Resource Cultivation
- Attract financial supporters through active personal solicitation of foundations, corporations and individuals in order to raise over $1 million over the next three years
- Develop income through creation, packaging, licensing and fee for services

Marketing and Communications
- Develop and implement public relations and marketing strategy in order to increase awareness of PD, increasing the number directly using PD principles and PDI services
- Represent PDI at various high-level international and domestic forums, workshops, and conferences in speaking and presenting roles

Financial and Organizational Management
- Oversee finances/budget
- Oversee ongoing operations (office space, technology, etc.); liaison with the University
- Oversee HR function: hire and supervise 1-2 additional staff; evaluate staffing needs and roles as organization grows
- Oversee and develop systems (databases, information dissemination) to meet needs of evolving organization
- Establish policies as issues arise
- Establish partnerships and agreements as appropriate

Qualifications Desired
The successful candidate will demonstrate many of the following:
- Senior-level management experience including strategy development, planning, financial oversight, and administrative knowledge
- Process orientation and active listening skills
- Interest in training, facilitation, mentoring and/or coaching
- Comfort and skill as a public speaker
- Demonstrated fundraising success with foundations and corporations
- Experience with early-stage, growing organizations and a small office environment
- Experience living and working internationally (developing country experience a plus)
- Demonstrated commitment to positive change
- Entrepreneurial yet collaborative leadership style
- Strong writing skills
- Ability to travel approximately 20% including international destinations
- Masters or Ph.D. degree or equivalent in related field – may include public policy, public health, social sciences, education, organizational development, business, etc.

For more information, please see

To apply, please send cover letter, resume and salary history to Egmont Associates at Please send Word attachments only. No need for mail or fax submissions in addition to e-mail.


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