KIND Vice President of New Product Development in New York, New York

Job Descriptions:

Who are we?

Since its founding in 2004, KIND® has been on a mission to make the world a little kinder one snack and one act at a time. KIND was born out of its founder’s desire to create a snack that was healthy and tasty, wholesome and convenient. What began as a line of premium Fruit & Nut bars sparked the creation of an entirely new healthier snacking category. Today, KIND has a family of snacks that offer solutions for a variety of different occasions. From the healthy snacks we make to the way we work, live and give back, we are committed to making the world a little kinder, because we believe that there’s more to business than just profit.

We're looking for passionate, conscious collaborators to help us meet our goals: to inspire kindness, with one tasty snack (and good act) at a time. If you’re looking to be a part of an inspiring, energetic and entrepreneurial environment, you found the right place.

What you’ll do

KIND has been on a strong growth trajectory and is poised for its next stage of growth. To drive this growth, the company is seeking a strong VP New Product Development, reporting directly to the President.

Innovation has always been the lifeblood of the company at KIND, and this role will be responsible for leading the company’s overall NPD/R&D efforts as it expands to further categories and platforms – anywhere that the trust of KIND, positive nutrition, and better taste can revolutionize a given category.

This role with have some of the highest levels of interaction with the founder/CEO, who has been instrumental in the company’s innovation vision back to the company’s founding. Additionally, this person will work closely with marketing to vet ideas and to take them through to commercialization.

The scope for this role will include the development of new products and the maintenance of current products, which entails continuous improvement, productivity initiatives, and renovation projects, all in support of the company’s overall growth goals and initiatives. .And this is how you will do it….

Innovation:

  • Guide the product development team as they execute projects in the pipeline for 2018 & beyond

  • Coach NPD Directors as they build 3-year innovation pipelines for their business units

  • Develop 3-5 year innovation strategy, in collaboration and consultation with CEO, Head of Marketing, Sr. VP of Marketing and Sr. Dir of Marketing

  • Responsible of developing & providing the tools to maintain an innovation culture within the NPD team, to ensure we preserve an entrepreneurial & disruptive approach to innovation

  • Ensure the team contributes to the continuous improvement of the new product development process. Build and manage the NPD team (retention, growth, training, staffing)

  • Responsible for developing roles & responsibilities for future positions

  • Responsible for training and for building career plans that will enable NPD Directors and their respective development teams to continue growing professionally

  • Evaluate resource capacity & anticipate future staffing needs to drive product innovation, and execute product improvement & productivity initiatives, in close collaboration with NPD Directors

  • Coach direct reports through conflict & strive to continuously improve communication with cross functional team

  • Provide business guidance to NPD Directors and Sr. NPD Managers as they take more responsibilities in managing their respective business units

  • Establish consulting agreements that expand our technical capabilities to escalate resources as needed to minimize resource shortages

Strategy & Portfolio management:

  • Ensure critical corporate initiatives are prioritized and resourced appropriately within the NPD team, by overseeing the innovation and product management portfolio

  • Ensure adherence to portfolio management tools & provide prioritization guidance at the business unit level

  • In partnership with Brand Marketing, oversee the 3-year innovation portfolio to ensure strategic goals are met, working closely with KIND’s CEO, the cross functional team, and providing innovation guidance to the team

  • Ensure we are working on the right projects for each business unit

  • Manage department budget

Project Management:

  • Provide project management guidance to NPD Directors & Developers throughout the process. Provide input to project timelines, and challenge contingency plans to project risks & roadblocks.

  • Accountable for ensuring the product development process is followed with discipline and deliverables are met on time, within budget, and of the highest quality

  • Evaluate all product project plans & deliverables at the feasibility stage, and make business recommendation to go, hold, recycle, or kill

  • Responsible for continuous improvement of the NPD process

Product Management:

  • Support Operations in the selection process of new manufacturing partners, and throughout the onboarding process of selected partners, and in continuous improvement initiatives, by prioritizing workload and providing guidance to NPD team members

  • Support Quality and Procurement in quality-led & cost reduction initiatives, by prioritizing workload and providing guidance to NPD members

  • Accountable for appropriate execution of the NPD team in the product change process

What you’ll bring to KIND

  • Ownership mindset and consistent delivery on commitments

  • Maturity in leadership and coaching on strategy, planning and deriving/acting on insights from data

  • A partnership and relationship-based approach to working across our organization

A willingness to challenge our “way of work” to maximize and enhance our resources

Required Experience:

You are…

  • Accountable for your results and how those are achieved

  • Insatiable with your drive to achieve

  • Curious with a constant desire to learn and seek improvement

  • A collaborator who doesn’t shy away from change

  • A self-aware and inspirational leader

  • Genuine in your desire to help make the world a kinder place, committing to always spreading and celebrating kindness

You have…

  • 20+ years of R&D / new product development experience within the CPG food industry, including at least 10 years in a corporate leadership role

  • A strong grasp of the stage gate process and how it can be used for maximum efficiency (without slipping into “process for process’ sake”)

  • Both blue-chip experience paired with working in a smaller, more entrepreneurial environment (even if within a larger company)

  • Solid experience working with co-manufacturing partners and the complexity that can exist in this context

  • Proven track record of successful product launches developed under his/her area of responsibility

  • Stylistically, a player/coach mindset and a roll-up-your-sleeves style to thrive in an entrepreneurial, high-growth environment

  • Ability to “think like an owner,” as everyone at KIND is an owner of the business

  • Drive, energy, and a strong bias for action

  • Lead by example and will have a reputation for driving positive change. Further, they will be a team player and team builder and excel at collaborating, partnering, and influencing decision making at all levels of the organization.

  • Strong communication and influencing skills with the ability to effectively convey messages to different leaders and ensure collaboration with team members across the business

  • Ownership mindset and consistent delivery on commitments

  • Maturity in leadership and coaching on strategy and planning

  • A partnership and relationship-based approach to working across our organization

  • A willingness to challenge our “way of work” to maximize and enhance our resources

Pluses

  • Demonstrated success in large organizations with ‘best-in-class’ processes AND entrepreneurial environments where you’ve had to ‘roll up your sleeves’ and get things done

What KIND offers

  • Competitive compensation, including equity in KIND!

  • Flexible Paid Time Off. Choose what works best for you, including summer hours

  • Excellent health, dental & vision insurance, with options to fit you & your family’s needs

  • Your health is important! Our wellness strategy focuses on mental and physical wellbeing through in office programs like Drs, Nutritionists, Yoga, Mindfulness, Chair Massages & others

  • Casual office dress code – feel free to rep your KIND gear

  • Monthly shipment of your favorite KIND bars to share with your friends and loved ones. After all, we’re all brand ambassadors!

  • Training & tuition reimbursement, because continuing to learn matters and we support your development

  • A dynamic, ambitious, fun and KIND work environment

  • The opportunity and responsibility to be KIND everyday

EEO

At KIND, we are committed to an inclusive workplace where diversity in all its forms is championed. KIND is proud to be an equal opportunity workplace and we are an affirmative action employer. We are committed to equal employment opportunity regardless of race, color, ancestry, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, age, citizenship, marital status, disability, gender identity or Veteran status. We also consider qualified applicants regardless of criminal histories, consistent with legal requirements. If you require special accommodation, please let us know.

Keyword: new product development, r&d, research & development, research and development, products, innovation

From: KIND