Cooperative Experience Manager

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General Job Description

The Cooperative Experience Manager is responsible for strategic approaches to helping engender the best possible cooperative living environment in all 20 BSC units, enabling our members to learn, grow, and thrive as members of a member-owned cooperative, as people, and as students. Specifically, the Cooperative Experience Manager is responsible for supervising and supporting other Cooperative Experience staff with member health and safety, empowerment and anti-oppression, education and cultural transformation, emergency preparedness that centers disabled people, conflict mediation, unit-level managers support and collaboration, cooperative education and movement-building, accountability at all levels, member engagement in the democratically run cooperative, community building within and beyond the BSC, and relationships between the central-level and members, as well as with campus and community resources. They are also responsible for supporting member leadership in reforming member conduct policies and procedure, and ensuring that these systems complement robust informal conflict resolution resources. They work closely with member leadership, the Executive Director, and senior management in order to achieve overall organizational objectives. They must have the ability and desire to work with members in a member-controlled cooperative environment.


Specific Duties

1. Provides active support and leadership to the BSC's member-run Board of Directors, working collaboratively with the Board, its committees and executive leaders, and the Executive Director to develop and implement member policies and short and long-range plans.
a. Regularly attends and provides institutional knowledge, continuity and recommendations at Board and Cabinet meetings (as required by the Executive Director).
b. Provides primary staffing to the Education and Training Committee and attends those meetings regularly, providing institutional history and professional context and advice.
c. Serves on other time-limited or special purpose committees or task forces at the request of the Executive Director or Board of Directors.
2. Serve as the primary coordinator for central-level liaisons of all unit-level managers & acts as the primary liaison to unit-level managers fulfilling the duties and responsibilities outlined in the Central-Level Support and Supervision of Unit-Level Managers Policy.
a. Ensures that unit-level managers are provided with necessary support and guidance by working closely with all unit-level manager liaisons.
b. Serve as the primary liaison (or delegate that to others) for any non-standard unit-level manager positions, and work with other central-level liaisons to ensure they get the needed support and home within the Central Office liaison structure.
c. Prepare agendas and facilitate meetings, and ensure effective notes are taken
d. Allow for cycling these duties with other liaisons, in order to uplift and center various perspectives and forms of expertise/knowledge
e. Work with other liaisons to ensure that liaisons serve as mentors and sources of support for unit-level managers as much as possible, rather than as supervisors who simply delegate work and enforce deadlines
f. Elicit the primary issues and goals of each liaison (as informed by unit-level managers) in order to inform one another and enable stronger collaboration
g. Support staff, managers, and ultimately members with goals, issues, and proposals including but not limited to empowerment, anti-oppression, habitability, cooperative self-governance, sustainability, safety and well-being, and more.
h. Otherwise work to support and strengthen unit operations and procedures coordinated by unit-level managers.
i. Provide support in implementing Board-approved policies, guiding documents, organizational procedures, and member priorities in the units.
3. Ensure that Member Resources services and programs are effectively coordinated, regularly promoted, made available to all members, and responsive to members’ needs and desires within the context of limited resources consistent with a low-income-serving student housing cooperative.
a. These resources include but are not limited to: the BSC Emergency Grant, other financial and basic needs resources, health and wellness events and materials, conflict mediation, member advocacy, disabled access support, emergency services planning, party safety programs, member event planning, etc.
b. Ensures that the resources provided by the department are based on the needs and desires of the membership.
c. Regularly evaluates and reports to the Board regarding the effectiveness of Member Resources services and provides suggestions for improvement.
d. Directly supervises the Member Resources Coordinator.
4. Ensures that unit-level managers are adequately trained and supported in order to work towards effective unit-level management and cooperative self-governance:
a. Maintains compliance with housing regulations by ensuring that unit-level management is trained on BSC, City of Berkeley, and other housing regulations.
b. Supports all unit-level manager trainings at the start of each contract period and participates in trainings, as needed.
c. Suggests and develops improvements to these and other trainings.
d. Provides support and guidance to unit-level managers, as needed.
e. Ensures that unit-level management is supported in creating a safe space at the unit-level, including conflict resolution, and that member concerns relating to discrimination and harassment are promptly addressed and resolved.
f. Directly supervises the professional Facilities Managers.
5. Oversees and evaluates the effectiveness of BSC Education for members.
a. Be guided by the | Member Education Framework and the | BSC’s Anti-Oppression Policy, and work with the Experience & Training Committee, Board, and other member leaders and staff to truly implement as well as build on these.
b. Ensures that all members (prospective, new, and returning) unit-level managers, and professional as well as member staff are effectively trained and provided with on-going education in cooperative and anti-oppressive values and practices, including but not limited to workshops organized by unit-level members.
c. Solicits feedback from unit-level managers and members and then works with Board, Cooperative Experience Department staff, and other liaisons to evaluate and improve New Member Orientations, Manager Training, and ongoing member education, in accordance with unit-level manager and general member feedback.
d. Actively participates in New Member Orientation and General Membership Meetings.
6. Promotes and ensures empowerment, safety, wellness, and comfort in the BSC Community.
a. Works with members, unit-level managers, and other staff to critically gather experiences and suggestions in order to evaluate and improve education, support, resources, community, policy, and programs in the BSC.
b. Collaborates with members, unit-level managers, and staff on changes and initiatives meant to empower members from marginalized communities, promote anti-oppression broadly, and otherwise improve the cooperative experience for everyone.
c. Strives to be accessible to all BSC members/managers and works to increase communication and visibility, (e.g. by potentially holding office hours, attending unit dinners/councils, attending monthly manager meetings, etc.).
7. Ensures the conduct process is carried out and identifies areas of improvement for the conduct policies and procedures and supports member leadership in reforming BSC member Conduct policies and procedures, regularly evaluates their effectiveness, and recommends improvements to the Experience & Training Committee.
a. Along with the Member Resources Coordinator, Conduct Hearing Coordinator, and/or other staff, mediates/resolves member concerns and grievances outside of the formal processes whenever possible.
b. Trains and directly supervises the the Conduct Hearing Coordinator
c. Schedules and attends Appeals Committee meetings, providing institutional history and professional context and advice.
d. Ensures that appeal records are forwarded to the Conduct Hearing Coordinator for archiving and that appellants are notified of the outcome of their appeal.
8. Supports low-income, Black, Indigenous, POC members, LGBTQ+, and other marginalized members. Commits to and develops anti-oppression education and programs.
9. Ensures organizational readiness in emergency planning and preparedness.
a. Develops staff and organization-wide emergency response plans that are well integrated with unit-level plans.
b. Prioritize the needs and issues confronting people with various disabilities (e.g., needs for back-up power, nutrition, refrigeration, assistance, and mental health support)
c. Coordinates with the City of Berkeley, UC, and outside experts as needed to ensure that the BSC has the necessary resources to enact our organizational plan and effectively coordinate with community resources.
10. Any other duties consistent with the mission of the BSC as they may be assigned from time to time by the Executive Director.


Skills/Knowledge Expected for Job Performance

1. Excellent leadership skills, and supervisory experience.
2. Excellent interpersonal, verbal/ written communication skills.
3. Ability to cope with conflict.
4. Ability to work in a fast-paced office environment and in stress or crisis.
5. Intermediate skill in managing the effective use by others of computer applications to achieve goals (Microsoft Office, business database programs, online business applications, email, etc.)
6. Desire and ability to work with members in a member-controlled cooperative environment.
7. Basic knowledge of human resources and personnel policy and best practices for facilitating conversations around expectations in a team environment.
8. The ability to work independently on sensitive, confidential and often complicated issues with diligence and respect.
9. Ability to develop familiarity with, have respect for and apply consistently, a complex set of organizational policies dealing with the areas of responsibility for this position.
10. Ability to analyze problems/issues, gather data and information, evaluate and recommend alternative solutions, or effect solutions with a tolerance for ambiguity and change, when necessary.
11. Dedication to creating a cooperative, collaborative, creative and highly productive work environment.
12. A mission driven approach to work, and a desire to contribute meaningfully to the BSC and its specific mission of providing affordable, quality, cooperative housing to a population that needs support in affording higher education.


Entrance Level Experience/Education Required

1. Bachelor’s degree or higher. Or 4 years of experience navigating college/university student resources particularly in a residential setting and 4 years of progressively responsible management experience.
2. Experience organizing and leading trainings and familiarity with best practices in adult learning pedagogy.
3. Familiarity, in a work setting, with the many and complex issues faced by populations of college students, (e.g. mental health, substance abuse, and other health and wellness issues).
4. Familiarity with the special issues faced by, and the resources available to, students with a wide range of disabilities.
5. At least four years of management and supervisory experience, including multiple professional staff and, preferably, also student employees.


Preferred Experience

1. Previous experience living or working in a democratic, member controlled, and/or cooperative environment.
2. Undergraduate degree, advanced degree or significant continuing education and/or related certifications.
3. Previous experience working with a labor union
4. Experience in conflict mediation.
5. Experience working with the BSC’s target demographic groups, including but not limited to:
  • Low income students
  • Students of color
  • Disabled students
  • Queer and trans students
  • Previously incarcerated individuals


Additional Requirements

1. Ability to sit for long hours and sustain long hours of computer and keyboard use.
2. The ability to work evenings on a somewhat regular basis is required.
3. Willingness and ability to carry an emergency telephone and respond to emergency calls.


Term of Job: Five years, with possibility of renewal

Expected Hours per Week: Full-Time, Exempt

Basic Wage Range: Level 19 to 25

Hired by: Executive Director with Manager Hiring Committee

Supervised by: Executive Director

Working Conditions by: Employee Handbook

Updated: Spring 2021


[Board approved 10/18/18.] [Board approved updated 5/6/21]