The President/CEO for VISIT Milwaukee is responsible for the leadership and management of daily operations of the organization in its mission to brand, market, and sell Milwaukee as a must-experience destination. This position reports directly to the Board of Directors and is accountable to the Board on all aspects of the performance of his/her duties, responsible for carrying out the long-range strategic plan and direction set forth by the Board, and ensuring the organization meets or exceeds established goals. Establishes organizational structure and delegates authority to executive team members while leading the entity towards objectives consistent with the mission of the organization. Serves as the key spokesperson for the organization, ensuring ongoing and active communication with all tourism industry, public and private constituents, and develops advocacy programs to communicate the mission and raise awareness of the organization.
ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
Manage the business functions of the organization to include group sales, marketing and communications, partnership and administrative functions. Work with the executive team and key stakeholders to develop and implement a comprehensive work program and annual strategic plan aimed at maximizing effectiveness through alignment and agreement on goals. Ensure the organization meets or exceeds all goals.
Provide motivational leadership for VISIT Milwaukee’s executive, professional and support staff, providing vision, direction, coaching, and development opportunities. Ensure the executive team is provided with appropriate resources to effectively carryout the strategic functions of their department.
Assure a workplace culture that is innovative, supportive and rewarding, and where performance is regularly evaluated, feedback and development opportunities provided, improvement measures identified, and achievement is recognized.
Ensure strategic investment in research and analytical tools to assist the organization with identifying trends, new and developing markets, measuring success and developing strategies that evaluate return on investment.
Develop strategies and implement programming to support targeted product development. Work with local officials and private industry to enhance and support tourism product development that will benefit the tourism industry and community.
FINANCIAL OVERSIGHT AND DEVELOPMENT
Collaborate with and nurture existing and potential funding sources. Initiate strategies to increase and further stabilize funding base.
Ensure that expenditures of hotel occupancy taxes are in compliance with state laws and the organization’s obligations as a custodian of public funds.
Develop strategies to identify and pursue new sources of revenue or services which would assist VISIT Milwaukee in carrying out its mission and grow its funding.
Work with executive team to develop the annual operating budget and staffing requirements.
Oversee the finance team in ensuring sound internal controls to ensure prudent and transparent management of organization resources. Ensure all organization activities are implemented and in compliance within established policies and procedures, bylaws, guidelines, laws and ethical standards.
ADVOCACY AND COMMUNICATION
Maintain active involvement in the community to enhance the visibility and reputation of VISIT Milwaukee as the official convention and tourism development agency for the region and its crucial economic development role. Ensure an understanding in the community of the mission of VISIT Milwaukee and the programs services available.
Implement advocacy programs and educate and enlist the support of community leadership, stakeholders, government officials, and VISIT Milwaukee Board members and partners in the promotion of convention and tourism initiatives in the region.
Serve as primary spokesperson for the organization. Develop and nurture media relationships; provide interviews and media appearances as required.
Be an active partner in supporting economic development in the region; regularly participate in and attend events, work groups, and task force meetings of regional partners.
Working with the Board Chair, ensure recruitment and development of a diverse Board of Directors.
Work with the Board to develop the long-range strategic plan for the organization. Identify key priorities for the organization and the tourism industry. Ensure the long-range strategic plan is implemented under the direction of the Board of Directors and committees of the Board.
Ensure sound governance, business ethics and fiduciary oversight of the Board of Directors and organization by working with the Board to develop bylaws, policies, and procedures in accordance with all relevant regulatory requirements and non-profit best practices. Ensure transparency to the Board of Directors, partners, and community.
Serve in an advisory capacity as an ex-officio non-voting member of the Board of Directors and all Board committees.
Required education and experience:
Bachelor’s Degree in business administration, public administration, marketing and communications or other relevant field required; advanced degree is preferred. Or,
An equivalent combination of education, experience and training that would provide the knowledge, skills and abilities required for the successful performance of the essential job duties.
Minimum of ten years of leadership experience in fields utilizing the knowledge, skills and abilities listed below.
Prior hospitality/tourism, association, or economic development experience preferred.
Working knowledge of destination marketing, business theories, practices and procedures.
Direct experience with Boards of not-for-profit organizations that utilize public funds.
Relevant industry certifications a plus (CAE, CDME, CMP, etc.)
Required skills, knowledge and abilities:
Exceptional communication skills, including presentation skills
Strong relationship building skills and ability to clearly communicate mission and progress to all constituents
Extensive media and public speaking experience; proven experience in media relations
Proven track record of negotiating and interpersonal skills
Knowledge of marketing, advertising and branding theories
Thorough understanding of media buying and campaign management
Exposure to launching digital marketing efforts and website management
Experience with generating revenue through paid advertising and programs
Strong understanding of benefits of leveraging social media, photography, and video in marketing
Skilled in the areas of market analysis, deployment and research
Proven success with sales team recruitment, retention, and overall development
Experience with setting goals that drive performance and measuring success
Significant large convention sales experience
Innovative, strategic and visionary leader
Results oriented and analytical. Exceptional and proven business and financial acumen. Demonstrated knowledge and experience in fund development
Passionate, personable and inspirational leader with an entrepreneurial spirit
Open, honest, direct and accessible; possess a proven track record of leading functionally diverse staff and managing a large board that includes a broad section of various constituents
Exceptional consensus builder
Ethical stewardship: demonstrates high integrity and business ethics at all times, serving the public and employees in full accord with policies and bylaws
Impeccable work ethic and passion for the task at hand
Cultural Competence; ability to understand, communicate with and effectively interact with diverse cultures, operating with an inclusive perspective and developing culturally competent team members. Possess a high degree of social consciousness and cultural sensitivity
Ability to travel by air and personal vehicle
NOTE: This job description is not intended to be all-inclusive. Employee may perform other related duties as negotiated to meet the ongoing needs of the organization.
VISIT Milwaukee is an award-winning convention & visitors bureau and an accredited Destination Marketing Organization as designated by the Destinations International. Our mission is to market Milwaukee as a premier destination for conventions, trade shows, and leisure travel. By developing internal organizational excellence and external strategic partners, we strive to create a positive economic impact in the Greater Milwaukee area, and to help each Milwaukee guest experience our warm brand of hospitality.