20 Apr 2023

We are hiring: Business Development Manager (full-time)


Location: Ideally Belgium based, hybrid between home and our Brussels office but fully remote can be considered (within 10h overland travel from Brussels)

Duration: Permanent

Start date: as soon as possible

The Mission Zero Academy (MiZA) is a fast moving social enterprise on a mission to be a trusted, widely-recognised, user-friendly one-stop-shop for zero waste upstream and downstream solutions, resources, and information in Europe at the local level. We are a capacity – building hub for local decision-makers, SMEs, and other organisations wanting to take a step forward in their zero waste strategies and circular economy implementation.  With this, we seek to bridge the knowledge gap in the transition towards zero waste practices.

With our focus on evidence-based and expert-approved methods, MiZA supports public and private sector professionals. We provide tried-and-tested solutions, qualified-expert training and case studies, useful tools, downloadable resources, online and offline training materials on resource management and circular economy topics, such as our Zero Waste Cities and Business Certification Systems. Through our certifications, we enable European municipalities and businesses to measure their zero waste journey, committing to more ambitious circular goals, implementing greener and more sustainable policies and solutions in waste reduction and management and promoting circular economy practices at the local level. 

First devised in 2018 but officially established in 2021, MiZA is a start-up of Zero Waste Europe (ZWE, a European NGO / non profit). ZWE focuses on reducing and preventing waste in our society by supporting and nurturing communities across Europe in their journey towards zero waste through sustainable strategies and implementation of circular economy practices. We work in close collaboration with ZWE and its members across the continent.

About you

You are excited at the idea of bringing this socially driven startup to the next level, and bringing forth a Zero Waste Europe. You are passionate about the zero waste vision and well aware of the multiple challenges the world is facing today.

You have an entrepreneurial mindset and are used to developing systems and processes from scratch. You are impact and values driven, able to see the big picture whilst taking care of the details. Ambiguity and work-in-progress don’t scare you and you can independently lead on improving things which you see need it. You thrive when facing complex situations and you can use your own initiative. You are able to drive your workload based on our mission and priorities, keeping the customers in the centre of our focus. You enjoy coordinating and motivating different stakeholder groups. 

About the role

The Business Development Manager will be filling in a newly created position to take care of our current and future customers. They will get to develop whole processes and systems around our customer service and sales as well as liaise with them and our partners in different parts of Europe. They will work in close collaboration with the manager of MiZA as well as the lead of cities and communities programme at Zero Waste Europe. 

The core responsibilities of the Business Development Manager will be to:

Design the strategies, tools and systems of our customer experience and engagement offer:

  • Create sales forecasts/pipelines and contribute to the development of objectives, overall strategy and budgets; Lead on growing the customer base in different parts of Europe; 
  • Identify and engage with new potential customers and represent MiZA in tradeshows and other sales/marketing events. Identify new target groups and customer personas and services
  • Develop, launch and lead on the implementation of customer care programmes 
  • Conduct meetings with potential customers, answer customer inquiries, connect customers with local service providers
  • Create systems & structures to effectively acquire and onboard new customers
  • Create a customer experience management system, and use the insights gathered from there to improve practices

Co-Design the strategies, tools and systems for successful strengthening of our service offer, with a focus on the subcontractor base and service level

  • Lead on growing the subcontractor base in different parts of Europe; 
  • Map and engage with key partners and stakeholders with a proactive approach
  • Collaborate with ZWE members and other subcontractors to accommodate our processes to local contexts and working styles, and support them in the sales and customer service activities on the local level
  • Participate in the onboarding of new subcontractors and in the further training of the existing ones by bringing in learnings from the customers
  • Lead the further development of existing services according to the insights collected from customers and other stakeholders
  • Develop sales strategies for new services and optimise them to the existing ones and ensure their successful delivery
  • Monitor the delivery of the services and the performance of subcontractors, including contracts and invoice follow up
  • Systemize and automate the way we work through our CRM (Zoho) to and look after our customers
  • Participate in the development of marketing and communications materials
  • Collaborate with the ZWE head of cities and communities programme to identify and take advantage of further opportunities to advance zero waste in the customer organisations or identify risks for either brand

Required skills and competencies

  • Ability and drive to develop sales and customer service strategies and processes, as well as the overall customer experience in the B2B sector
  • Stakeholder relationship management skills, especially subcontractors and customers
  • Ability to facilitate change 
  • Business and service development skills
  • Aptitude for numbers, and high comfort in managing budgets and developing sales forecasts
  • Proficient in English language
  • Excellent communication and writing skills.

Preferred skills and competencies

  • Service design skills and design thinking
  • A university degree in business development/administration or similar field, environmental studies are an asset
  • Knowledge of environmental issues, in the field of resource & waste management and climate 
  • Other European languages, apart from English, are a plus.
  • Solid IT competences with collaborative tools (GSuit, Slack, Zoho CRM).
  • Experience in project management,
  • Experience in working with people from different cultures and nationalities 

Personal qualities

  • A strong commitment to the Mission Zero Academy values and mission
  • Problem-solving and results-oriented entrepreneurial attitude.
  • Self-motivated with a natural appetite to take initiative, drive change and take decisions under pressure and uncertainty. 
  • Outstanding communication and interpersonal abilities.
  • Commitment to efficiency and a high impact of work.
  • Confident in leading change and selling values

Equal Employment opportunity 

We are committed to the principle of Equal Employment Opportunity for all employees, regardless of sex, marital status, nationality, religion, age, sexual orientation and any other characteristics unrelated to the performance of the job. 

We also realise that not all individuals have the same opportunities to engage in paid work or studies and are open to receiving applications from those who may not fulfil all the required skills but have the interest, passion, (cap)abilities and drive to fulfil the role. In this respect, we encourage people from a diverse intersection of backgrounds to apply. 

Location, Compensation and Work Environment

This is a full-time position based out of our Brussels office, under a hybrid working setup with a split 50/50 working from home vs from the office. A valid working permit for Belgium is required. The contract will be permanent, however, it is good to note that as a new start up, there is some uncertainty still on the financial stability. The good news is that this role is very much at the core of solving that and providing a better financial position ensuring continuity. For the right candidate, we are also willing to consider positions based outside of Belgium, but still within a 10 hour travel there overland.

We offer a competitive NGO salary (3200-4100€ gross) plus benefits, including lunch vouchers (8€/day); 13th month (year end bonus); double holiday pay (Belgian standard); 20 vacation days plus 6 extra-legal holidays + 4 days between Christmas and New Year; Hospitalisation; Ambulatory and Dental Insurance (DKV); Travel insurance; home working and other allowances (€150.00-220.00 net/month); full coverage of public transport costs for commuting (minimum €49.00 net/month); and flexible working hours/times.

We take pride in our ability to support one another’s work in an atmosphere of mutual trust and respect, and look forward to introducing the successful candidate to our welcoming and highly motivated team and network members.

Deadline to apply: 28th of May 2023, at 23:59 CEST.

The position remains open until filled. Interviews will be conducted on a rolling basis. We encourage potential candidates to submit their applications when ready, and not to wait until the final deadline. Our 2-round interview process will include a 1-2 hr assignment for selected candidates after round 1.

Our Values

  • We are purpose-driven, always putting forward a solution-oriented approach.
  • We are game-changing – we challenge the status quo, explore emerging topics and create a safe space to succeed (and to recover from setbacks).
  • We are adaptable, constantly striving towards learning and improving; open to change and taking agency.
  • We believe that acting with integrity is crucial to achieve impact and change, both inside and outside our network.
  • And we care deeply about our communities, the environment, and systemic changes that benefit society as a whole – while also looking after ourselves and our own well-being as a team and as individuals.
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