President & CEO, Big Sky Chamber and Visit Big Sky

Big Sky Chamber of Commerce
Job Description
POSITION SUMMARY

The Chief Executive Officer for Big Sky Chamber of Commerce and Visit Big Sky is responsible for the leadership and management of all daily operations of the organizations and the missions to brand, market and sell Big Sky as a destination resort. The Chief Executive Officer reports to two entities, the Big Sky Chamber of Commerce, and the Visit Big Sky organization. The Big Sky Chamber of Commerce (BSCC) is a 501(c) (6) nonprofit membership organization with over 400 members. Visit Big Sky (VBS) is an additional 501(c) (6) nonprofit designated as the official destination marketing and management organization for the Big Sky Resort Area District (BSRAD). It is also a fiscal sponsor of the state designated Big Sky Convention and Visitor Bureau (CVB), one of eight in Montana. The CVB is the designated collector for the lodging facility use tax, the second largest “bed tax” collector in the state of Montana.

The Chief Executive Officer is accountable to both Boards, the business community and the staff of Big Sky Chamber and Visit Big Sky. The CEO will fulfill the responsibilities of the role through unwavering superior organizational leadership, stellar financial oversight and development, collaborative advocacy and communication, and an integral member of the Boards of Directors. The CEO supports key community development activities as identified by the Chamber Board of Directors, i.e., workforce housing and transportation planning and plays a role in the growth and development of new tourism product and capabilities at the direction of the VBS Board of Directors. The Chief Executive Officer is integral in moving forward the “Elevate Big Sky 2023” strategic priorities plan comprised of four sections: Advocating for the Members, Encouraging Community Infrastructure Investment, Creating a Positive Business Climate and Facilitating Local Governance.

This position is the “face” of Big Sky Chamber and Visit Big Sky, as well as the spokesperson. The CEO will build partnerships and alliances with constituents, including both Boards of Directors, government officials and business leaders from Big Sky and the state of Montana. The Chief Executive Officer will provide visionary leadership for the Chamber and Visit Big Sky and be the driver of continuous improvement initiatives and the long-range strategic plans to enhance Big Sky’s position as a premier location to live, work, visit and do business. The CEO will continue to advance Big Sky as home to the Biggest Skiing in America in winter and a gateway community to America’s First National Park – Yellowstone in summer.

The Chief Executive Officer will work with local officials, business leaders, private industry, and other Chambers of Commerce to enhance and support tourism initiatives and development.

RESPONSIBILITIES TASKS AND DUTIES

To perform this job successfully, an individual must perform these essential duties satisfactorily: 
  • Acts as the primary spokesperson for both the Big Sky Chamber of Commerce and Visit Big Sky; establishes and maintains ongoing effective communication with member businesses, tourism stakeholders, government leaders, nonprofit and cultural institution leaders, and local and national professional industry associations.
  • Serves as a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors; attends all meetings of the two Boards of Director, the Executive Committee, and all other committees of the Boards as needed.
  • Provides motivation leadership for the executive, professional and support staff, creating a results-oriented team, both internally and externally.
  • Ensures all activities and communications are implemented within established policies, guidelines, state, and federal laws, as well as the highest of ethical standards.
  • Develops two annual operating budgets, one for each entity and authors the two Big Sky Resort Area District Tax funding allocation requests on an annual basis.
  • Within Visit Big Sky is the Big Sky CVB which has its own budget and a lot of rules made by the state TAC. The CEO has to attend those meetings which occur every quarter.
  • Supervises the development of an annual Visit Big Sky marketing plan for approval by the VBS Board and Governor appointed Tourism Advisory Council (TAC). Monitors state bed tax collections and funding projections.
  • Maintains close working relationships with key vendors such as a full-service advertising agency, research partners, web, and app development suppliers, and negotiates competitive contract fees.
  • Regularly analyzes performance and results of all functional areas within the organization relative to the established objectives, ensures appropriate steps are taken to correct any unsatisfactory conditions, and reports to the Boards.
  • Consistently monitors funding opportunities and develops an effective model to help increase private funding for both the Big Sky Chamber and Visit Big Sky by collaborating with funding sources and initiating strategies to increase and stabilize the funding base.
  • Reviews financial reporting monthly to ensure the adequacy and soundness of the two organizations’ financial position. Makes sure that the Boards receive comprehensive financial reporting on a monthly basis and financial reports are provided to Resort Tax on a quarterly basis.
  • Identify trends, new and developing markets and measure success and developing strategies that will assist in evaluating return on investment.
  • Applies for and manages public grant funded programs, develops effective public outreach, and provides reporting to granting entities as required.
  • Supports membership sales function and ensures accountability to member businesses. Continually contributing to the wellbeing of the community and the Chamber.
  • Drives tourism aspects to Big Sky by promoting an unparalleled visitor experience.
  • Represents the Big Sky Chamber of Commerce and Visit Big Sky at local, state, and regional meetings.
  • Participate in national/international destination marketing and strategy meetings and associations to keep abreast of industry changes.
  • All other duties and responsibilities as assigned.
SUPERVISORY RESPONSIBILITIES
  • Attracts, recruits, mentors, and supervises a team of professionals to ensure efficient and effective operations of the Big Sky Chamber, Visit Big Sky, and the Big Sky & Greater Yellowstone Visitor Information Center operations.
  • Fosters a success-oriented, accountable environment within the organization by establishing, communicating, implementing, and enforcing appropriate standards of performance.
  • Ensures that the workplace culture is supportive, rewarding, and innovative.
  • Trains and coaches’ direct reports and sets scheduling and workloads based on reasonable timelines.
  • Provides recommendations for career development and individual achievement of team members through training and education at professional conferences and the Governor’s Tourism Conference.
EXPERIENCE AND EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS 
  • Bachelor’s degree in business administrations, economics, hospitality and tourism or related field; MBA preferred.
  • Minimum of 10 years managing an internal team.
  • Leadership experience with changing dynamics and professional development of relationships with community leadership, businesses, residents, visitors, and teams.
  • Minimum of 3 years’ experience with public relations and public speaking
  • Combination of education and experience may be considered.
COMPETENCIES
  • Organizational Leadership
    • Ensure ability to manage the organization as it is set up – through two Boards of Directors.
    • Ensure that all goals are met or exceeded by continuous monitoring of strategic plans.
  • Financial Oversight and Development
    • Funding source overview- strategize to increase and stabilize funding base.
    • Review of lodging facility use tax.
    • Implement internal controls regarding finances.
    • Adherence to established policies and procedures, bylaws, guidelines, laws, and ethical standards.
  • Advocacy and Communication
    • Maintain active involvement in the community to enhance visibility and reputation of Visit Big Sky and Big Sky Chamber.
    • Establish effective communication networks.
    • Encourage, lead, and develop team.
  • Boards of Directors Effectiveness
    • Ensure that both boards are working collaboratively to support the strategic plan for Big Sky.
    • Assist in driving the boards to govern effectively by participating, promoting, and encouraging involvement.
    • Ensure sound governance, business ethics and fiduciary oversight. Ensure that bylaws, policies, and procedures are in place.
    • Follow all regulatory requirements for nonprofit best practices.
    • Update the boards on regular progress toward goals and objectives.
KEY CHARACTERISTICS
  • Open-minded
  • Mature
  • Politically savvy
  • Strategic 
  • Engaging & Charismatic
  • Passionate
  • Strong leadership skills
  • Excellent communicator
  • Diplomatic
  • Creative
  • Good listener
  • Excellent Relationship builder
  • Accountable
  • Approachable
TOP PRIORITIES

1. Build relationships with stakeholders, members, staff, and community members.
2. Evaluate both organizations from the top down. Review strategic plans, budgets, organizational structure, expectations, initiatives, goals, etc.
3. Review core competencies of Visit Big Sky. Establish an education and advocacy plan as needed.
4. Evaluate Big Sky Chamber's value proposition to its members and recommend any changes to foster member retention, as well as growth, focusing on small businesses.
5. Motivate and inspire the staff and the Big Sky community to work together and surpass the organization’s and community’s goals.

If interested in learning more about this great opportunity, please send your resume to the SearchWide Global Executive listed below.

Nicole Newman, Vice President | SearchWide Global
www.searchwideglobal.com | info@searchwideglobal.com
480-264-7675 (direct) | 951-640-3745 (mobile)

About SearchWide Global
SearchWide Global is a full service executive search firm primarily for companies in the travel, tourism and convention, and hotel and lodging industries. We specialize in C-Level, Director and Management level executive searches for companies ranging in size from Fortune 500 corporations to mid-sized public and private companies. 
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