When I was first challenged with taking on the role of VP of Corporate Development, my CEO told me he wanted me thinking about long term business strategy.  There were a few specific projects and analyses mentioned, but it was clear my job was to think “outside of the box” of our current means of conducting business.  I was also tasked with writing my job description, which is a real privilege when you think about it: to be able to define my own position, taking advantages of my skills and strengths so I can best contribute to our mission.

I turned to all the standard places to find a predefined job description for the VP of Corporate Development but couldn’t find anything.  Alternatively I Googled the title and found dozens of job postings on individual sites, of which I reviewed 20 or so and made notes on the responsibilities I came across.  I’ve distilled my notes into the position description below, which I think will be great fodder for blogs in the coming weeks as I settle into this role.  A few other things I came across of interest–like who VPs of Corporate Development (let’s call them VPCD’s) report to and what sort of companies are hiring VPCD’s–I’ll also blog about in due time.

A note on the job description below: the numbers in { } are the number of times I came across that responsibility, in one turn of phrase or another.  I’m presenting the description in decreasing order of this number, assuming my sampling is a good reflection of what the market expects of VPCD’s.

  1. Develop strategic business plan and roadmaps for inorganic growth. {11}  Thinking of how to grow a company inorganically is likely to fill my waking moments and dreams very soon…and will be the topic of many blogs I suspect.
  2. Mergers and acquisitions, including setting objectives {7}, sourcing {4}, funding {2}, negotiation {4}, and post-deal integration {4}
  3. Oranization and management of due diligence projects (not necessarily all related to M&A activity) {7}
  4. Partner management, including alliances, joint ventures, and distribution partnerships {7}
  5. Revenue modeling and financial risk analysis of business opportunities {4}
  6. Development and monitoring of business performance metrics {3}
  7. Analyzing trends, including competitive {3}, market {2}, and regulatory/compliance {1}
  8. Optimize the company’s use of resources to achieve profitability, particularly reorganizations {2}
  9. Coordinate new market development, including new verticals and geographic expansion (particularly international) {2}

While this job description works for me and my CEO, I imagine there are other responsibilities that could be added; if so, comment to let me know and we’ll add them to the list.