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Agriculture Business Development Specialist

Posted: 02/07/2024

Position: Agriculture Business Development Specialist
Department: Business Consulting                                 
Supervisor: Chief Program & Client Experience Officer
FLSA Status: Permanent Full-time Exempt
Location: 80% Virtual Office 20% In-person/on-site (Meetings with clients will be required in the Twin Cities metro area based on business needs and will include weekly evening hours and occasional weekends)
Salary:  Starting at $55,000 – 65,000 / year
Organizational Summary:
WomenVenture is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a mission to empower women to achieve their economic goals by building profitable and sustainable businesses that transform communities. We execute this mission through a four-pillared programming approach that includes training, loans, coaching and a community of support. Our organizational values are inclusion, impact, and innovation, and we seek out candidates who exemplify these characteristics.
are profitable and sustainable. Our work is guided by our values of inclusion, impact, and innovation.
Position Summary
The Agriculture Business Development Specialist is responsible for developing, coordinating, and executing WomenVenture’s new agriculture business programs. This new role includes building community partnerships with agriculture and food stakeholders, creating a roster of resource partners, developing curriculum, recruiting agriculture and food business owners into our programs, managing, coordinating, and delivering business training and business consultation for prospective and existing agriculture and food business owners and participation in development of new programming and services related to support of agriculture and food businesses.  Position requires the ability to travel and work a flexible schedule including nights and occasional weekends.
Primary Duties:
Agriculture and Food Business Program Development

  • Be an active participant and thought leader within Minnesota’s agriculture and food business ecosystem.
  • Serve as an internal expert and thought leader helping to guide WomenVenture’s presence and future strategies in these markets.
  • Engage with agriculture and food business stakeholders, public and private agencies, and communities across Minnesota, promoting agriculture and food business programs while establishing and strengthening ties with new and existing communities to deliver WomenVenture's services.
  • Create a roster of resource partners to navigate our clients to based on resources they need for their business.
  • Build pipelines for all our agriculture and food business programs (training, consulting, lending, and other agriculture, and food business support services).
Business Consulting
  • Provide solutions to clients in response to identified needs including specific, functional areas of agriculture and food business ownership such as business formation, business planning, marketing, sales, financial forecasting and analysis, real estate, and financing.
  • Assist clients with preparation of loan applications.
  • Conduct effective, confidential one-on-one client advisement services for emerging and existing agriculture and food business owner clients.
  • Develop and manage cohorts for agriculture, food business, and general business training programs, including curriculum development and continuous improvement efforts.
  • Recruit, train, and supervise program clients, paid trainers, and partner organizations, while leading evaluation initiatives for training programs.
  • Oversee client application reviews, facilitate preparation for program sessions, manage learning environments, utilize Learning Management Software for curriculum and resource management, ensure excellent client experiences, and maintain accurate records using WomenVenture's established methodologies.
Grant Reports and Data Collection
  • Contribute to the development of grant reports, ensuring accurate and timely submission.
  • Follow data collection systems and processes to track key metrics related to program success and impact.
  • Generate regular reports, analyzing data and providing insights for program improvement.
Team Culture & Collaboration
  • Collaborate with internal teams to identify and establish strategic partnerships that enhance the support and resources available to clients.
  • Represent WomenVenture at industry events, networking with potential partners and stakeholders.
Monitoring and Evaluation
  • Track and evaluate the impact of services and programs on clients' businesses.
  • Regularly assess program effectiveness and make recommendations for continuous improvement.
Administrative Duties
  • Support the Chief Program & Client Experience Officer and Program Department.
  • Maintain all necessary databases for hours and client information.
  • Be available to clients as a resource in many aspects, either internally or as part of a referral network.
Skills and Experience
Minimum Qualifications:
  • Bachelor’s degree in agriculture business, marketing, finance, or another relevant field or 3-5 years’ experience working in agriculture or food-based businesses.
  • Strong business acumen; comfort and competency in working with numbers.
  • Works well independently/self-starter.
  • Experience in teaching/coaching adults.
  • Excellent cultural competencies and ability to collaborate across diverse perspectives, ideas, and people with diverse backgrounds.
  • High level of commitment to issues of gender equality and the social mission of the agency.
Preferred Skills:
  • Training and meeting facilitation skills, including the ability to effectively present information to a wide variety of audiences.
  • Strong interpersonal and communications skills.
  • Strong problem-solving skills.
  • Ability to work both independently and with a team.
  • Ability to write reports and business correspondence.
  • Competence with databases, spreadsheets, and standard professional software.
WomenVenture takes great pride in providing exceptional benefits to our staff. Employees are eligible for 18 paid holidays and 18 PTO days starting their first year. WomenVenture offers medical, dental, vision, short term disability, long term disability, and life insurance. WomenVenture offers a paid paternity leave, health savings account, flexible spending account, pre-tax transportation, and an employee assistance program. Employees can also participate in a retirement plan with an employer match.
Application Procedure
Interested candidates should submit their resume and cover letter using our applicant portal.
Work Environment/Physical Demands
While performing the duties of this position, the employee is frequently required to sit for extended periods and may be required to stand for an extended period. The employee may occasionally move items weighing up to 25 pounds. Reasonable accommodation will be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of the position.
This position description is intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this position. It is not intended to be an entire list of all activities, tasks, and skills required of people in the position.
WomenVenture is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.