Friday, March 14, 2014

Communications Manager Brand Issues Management

General Mills is seeking a Knowledgebase & Brand Response manager to advance and protect the reputation of General Mills' brands across our portfolio. This position will lead the planning and implementation of issues-related statement development and Q&A response for General Mills' 100+ consumer brands. The manager will proactively identify topics for which responses or updates are or may be needed, and will coordinate with appropriate individuals to create, write and approve statements and Q&A for use. The manager will advise brand teams on management and implementation of issues-related response, including in social media. Finally, the manager will be responsible for overseeing and supporting the Global Communications Knowledgebase, aligning and empowering company spokespersons, community managers, consumer services representatives, and other General Mills employees with thoughtful, available, approved responses on a wide-range of issues, topics and questions—saving time, increasing response speed, strengthening alignment, increasing accuracy and reducing cost.


  1. Plan, support, prepare and manage crisis and issue-related social media escalations and response, supporting and strengthening engagement across General Mills' portfolio of 100+ consumer brands. 
  2. Counsel brand teams in anticipating, developing, managing, and updating appropriate standing social media response and Q&A for use on branded social media properties. 
  3. Advise and support brand teams and community managers on sensitive issues and topics escalated from incoming social media inquiries. Write and coordinate appropriate statements, Q&A and brand-related responsive messaging with brand teams. Monitor emerging issues on social media platforms, both from an industry and brand perspective. 
  4. Identify and monitor social influencers, NGOs, activists, and other external stakeholders key to impacting the corporate reputation of General Mills on priority issues globally. 
  5. Create new tools and capabilities to monitor, report, and manage social media issue and response escalation across the company's 100+ branded social media properties. Develop and deliver activity/results reports demonstrating ROI. 
  6. Provide counsel to leaders on social media issues. Support ongoing social media response training internally. 
  7. Coordinate with Consumer Services on the development of effective consumer response to inquiries or comments in social media. 
  8. Work with the Director, Issues Management, the Director, Global Consumer Services, the Director, External Communications, the Manager, Brand Communications, and the Manager, Social Media, to build and manage relationships with community managers, division and brand marketing and integrated communication teams, and consumer services representatives. 
  1. Anticipate and draft statements for possible use, including Corporate Statements, Consumer/Customer Q&As, and Social Media responses on various topics, as needed, with input and guidance from Global Communications, GCom, Quality and Regulatory Operations (QRO), International, the Bell Institute of Health and Nutrition (BIHN), Divisions, Brand Teams and more. 
  2. Maintain the database or current and past approved statements, Q&A and response, to allow access and support of reference documentation needs in a single source, based upon an individual's department or function. Regularly review documentation to ensure that responses are up to date and to remove dated or unnecessary documents from the data base. 
  3. Oversee the maintenance of responses used in reference databases, such as the Consumer Services Global Reference Library, the CIRP Data Library, the Knowledgebase, the Issues Management website, and the Social Media Reference Library, to ensure responses and any other information being provided are aligned and consistent, regardless of the source. 
  4. Interact with and support U.S. Retail Sales in developing talking points and Q&A on selected top topics to proactively support field sales communications with customers. 
  • Undergraduate degree in communications, public relations, journalism, mass communication, or related area. 
  • Minimum of 5–8 years communication experience in a corporate or agency setting with demonstrated crisis and/or issues-related communications skills; experience with consumer-facing brands preferred. 
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills (writing samples required). 
  • High degree of professionalism, with ability to quickly and consistently exercise good judgment. 
  • Demonstrated effectiveness successfully engaging with consumers and/or solving problems via social media, and via direct consumer and stakeholder outreach. 
  • Highly independent, organized and capable of managing multiple priorities on competing timelines; bias for action.
  • Ability to manage cross-functional internal teams to reach consensus and respond on deadline. 
  • Must demonstrate strong aptitude and skills related to social media engagement and management of social platforms. 
  • Must possess strong organizational skills, and the ability to distill large amounts of information into meaningful, accessible content. 
  • Must be self-motivated, with strong analytical, management, logical, and team leadership skills. Must be adept at working collaboratively with others. 
  • Must have strong PC skills with working knowledge of Microsoft Office Suite, including Access, Word, PowerPoint, SharePoint, and Excel. Knowledge of database software and management desirable. 
  • Experience interacting with and counseling executives on social media strategies and response preferred. 
Company description: Great brands start with the people that make them great. One of the world's leading food companies, General Mills operates in more than 100 countries and markets more than 100 consumer brands, including Cheerios, Häagen-Dazs, Nature Valley, Betty Crocker, Pillsbury, Green Giant, Old El Paso, Yoplait and more. Headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA, General Mills had fiscal 2012 global net sales of US $16 billion. We seek out the best of the best and give them development, support and the chance to lead something big. If you're ready to fulfill your potential, consider sharing your talents with the outstanding people of General Mills. You will work with legendary brands, nourish people around the world, and start building your own legacy.

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