Chief of Staff

Seattle, Washington 98104

Job ID: 190 Industry: C-Level

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Want to help save modern civilization? Got a job for ya.


 In a world where businesses, government agencies, and individuals face an ever-growing risk of malicious hacking, there stands a force for justice.…

(Now come on, folks, the first three words of that last paragraph are in bold indents for a reason. You’ ve got to say “ in a world” to yourself as if you’ re narrating a trailer for a new Mad Max movie. You know, in a world.” See the link if you need a refresher. Let’ s do it again, people, this time with feeling….)

In a world where businesses, government agencies, and individuals face an ever-growing risk of malicious hacking, there stands a force for justice, safety, and progress.

Perched high above the Emerald City in the Pacific Northwest’ s tallest skyscraper, an elite team of ethical hackers use their talents against the forces of evil.

(Yep, bold indents again. I mean, you can’ t really say “ forces of evil” any other way, right?)

The name of the team? IOActive. (Pronounced “ I, oh active.”) Since 1998, this firm has provided cybersecurity services to organizations in all sectors, on all continents – becoming the largest independent ethical-hacking firm on the planet.

But something is missing from this crack squad of world-class talents. Something vital to the success of their mission – and to the preservation of civilization as we know it.

The team’ s chief executive officer knows that against an enemy this stealthy, this ruthless, the Armies of Good cannot stand pat. This CEO understands that she needs a trusted lieutenant – a doppelgä nger, if you will – who can help her manage the company’ s extraordinary growth.

What she needs is … a Chief of Staff.

This is a huge role, and a truly amazing opportunity for the right person. The Chief of Staff will report to the CEO, and will assist in presiding over the company’ s global business operations and ensuring the achievement of its strategic goals.

That means everything from the preparation of operating budgets to the maintenance of the company’ s “ executive dashboard.”

But there’ s another layer to this job that makes it especially critical for IOActive: As the company grows, the CEO plans to spend more time in the field, away from HQ. She is looking for someone who can run the shop at a high level of excellence while she’ s away.

While this position has no direct reports of its own, it will often be the place from which essential decisions get made. Such a blend requires candidates who combine a genuine “ executive presence” with a certain lack of ego. In short, only bona-fide adults need apply.

IOActive is looking for applicants with at least a decade of experience in the senior leadership of a large or mid-cap security-services company, as well as a track record of building and stabilizing dynamic professional-service businesses. It also seeks people who are familiar with consulting tools NetSuite and OpenAir.

A bachelor’ s degree (or higher) in business, computer science, or a related discipline would be another definite plus – as is prior familiarity with the cybersecurity sector.

This is a well-compensated position in every sense – in terms of experience as well as pay. But it’ s not going to be one for the faint of heart.

The IOActive culture is – as you might expect – full of people with brilliant minds and distinctive personalities. Whoever occupies this role will have to demonstrate his or her credibility quickly, and be capable of gelling with a team that prizes data-proven, no-nonsense competency above all else.

So there you go. Are you worthy?

 If so, drop me a line! Tootles!

PS From PSP: Let’ s talk for a second about this whole Amazon-Whole Foods thing. I must admit, a big part of me is thoroughly excited. If Foodazon wants to drone-deliver me a sustainably sourced sirloin within five minutes of my order, who am I to object?

What’ s more, I recently bought Amazon shares for the grandkids, who range in age from six months to four years. So if this experiment takes off, they might actually be able to afford paying for more than a week of college.

So … you’ ve got efficiency and consumer convenience and potential shareholder gains. What could possibly be less than perfect about this scenario?

You’ ve been living in the 21st century long enough to know the answer to that one. The big concern here is jobs – namely the prospect that grocery jobs will disappear down the same hole as retail jobs. The department-store labor market declined by 100, 000 between last fall and this spring.

I’ m not coming down one way or another about these trade-offs. I’ m just saying that they exist, and as an HR professional who has devoted her career to helping wonderful people find jobs, I think we need to have a much more open and vigorous discussion about both the benefits and the costs of where we are going. ###

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