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Personal Interpretation Unit Head

  • Organisation:Zayed National Museum
  • Location:ZNM Offices, Abu Dhabi
  • Contract type:Full Time

Position Specification 

Job Purpose

  • To connect visitors to Zayed National Museum by developing compelling interpretation that attracts, welcomes, inspires, and informs visitors about the history of the UAE and its founding father. The intention is to guide our audiences through a life-long journey of discovery that connects them to Sheikh Zayed and the UAE.
  • The Personal Interpretation Unit Head leads the team who is responsible for designing, developing, delivering, and evaluating innovative museum interpretive programmes for a wide variety of increasingly diverse audiences.

Managerial Responsibilities

  • Leads the team of staff and volunteers responsible for planning, delivering, and evaluating all personal interpretive experiences onsite, offisite and online including but not limited to guided tours, workshops and courses, daily animation, and discovery carts.
  • Prepares and manages the budget for all unit initiatives and programmes including managing the procurement, purchasing and sourcing for the provision of materials and equipment.
  • Manages the staff of the unit including recruitment & selection, performance management, mentoring & coaching, career development guidance, and setting objectives and KPI’s of their direct reports.
  • Establishes Unit goals, methods, policies and procedures for implementing programmes in alignment with the Museum’s strategic vision, mission and goals.

Responsibilities

Pre-Opening

  • Support the Interpretation Section Head and Director of Learning and Public Engagement in developing the Interpretive Master Plan for the opening and first years of operation of the museum.
  • Work with the Director and other Section and Unit Heads to develop the Children and Families Learning Strategy, Digital Learning Strategy, and the Adult Learning Strategy and 5 Year plan flowing out from and working in parallel with the Interpretive Master Plan.
  • Lead the team to plan, develop, pilot, and evaluation interpretive experiences for the public including workshops, tours, and in-gallery interpretation, onsite, offsite, and digitally.
  • Pilot and evaluate interpretive programmes with target audiences.
  • Build relationships with potential partner organisations.
  • Recruit & select the Personal Interpretation team.
  • Oversee the design and development of dedicated multi-functional learning spaces in the museum with the Schools Programmes team and Public Events Team.
  • Oversee the requisition of materials to stock the workshop spaces to enable the delivery of workshops.
  • Train front line interpreters.

Ongoing

  • Lead the development, delivery, and evaluation of high quality innovative interpretive experiences that inspire visitors to connect with the legacy of Sheikh Zayed.
  • Work closely with educators, curators, and designers to create new opportunities for visitors to have meaningful experiences with objects, and lead initiatives to invite and inspire new and previously un-served or underserved audiences.
  • In collaboration with the Learning and Audience Engagement, Digital Learning, and Public Events teams, identify off-site interpretive activities and methods to enhance outreach to target communities.
  • Ensure that object-rich, story-led, and visitor-focused interpretation is delivered to an agreed programme within defined budgets at the highest quality, international standards of interpretation.
  • Create a welcoming environment for visitors, conducive to experiential informal learning.
  • Oversee front line Interpreters (and if relevant, volunteers) in the delivery of programmes, workshops, and interpretive experiences.
  • Monitor and measure the success of all interpretive programs through qualitative and quantitative evaluation.
  • Create and supervise the maintenance of an up-to-date online schedule of all public engagement programmes across all relevant projects.
  • Organise and maintain an archive of interpretive programme plans.
  • Create an efficient system to source, manage, inventory, store and use interpretive materials.
  • Plan, monitor, track, and report on budgets.
  • Ensure that ZNM’s interpretive experiences are accessible and inclusive and attract new audiences.
  • Collaborate with the other Unit Heads and their teams to co-create a database of potential partners in the fields of interpretation, museum programs, universities, K-12 schools, teachers, artists, tourism providers, and key members of the community.
  • Work with the Interpretation Section Head to ensure that accessibility needs are considered in the design, delivery, and evaluation of all interpretive programmes.
  • With the Non-Person Interpretation Unit Head, lead regular visitor focus groups to ensure programmes’ content, methods and devices are audience relevant.
  • In consultation with all Learning and Public Engagement staff, review and refresh the museum’s interpretive resources, themes & content on a regular basis to incorporate audience needs, motivations and expectations ensuring relevance, accessibility, and visitor learning experiences for target audiences, ensuring content is audience and age-appropriate.
  • Any other duties as applicable to the role.

Person Specification

Required Experience

  • Minimum of 5 years of experience with at least 4 years experience in a large museum, heritage site, or cultural tourist attraction developing, planning, delivering, and evaluating interpretation strategies and programmes for a wide variety of audiences.
  • Proven ability to design, deliver, and evaluate museum interpretive programs.
  • Experience with the use of new technologies to interpret the collections and to engage new audiences.
  • Demonstrated professional experience managing and motivating a team and individuals.
  • Demonstrated creativity, innovation, flexibility, and adaptability to change.
  • Demonstrated organization and communication skills.
  • Proven management ability, critical thinking, and planning skills.
  • Competent knowledge of a subject matter relevant to the narrative and collection of the museum.
  • Demonstrated ability to lead cultural educational and interpretive programmes and workshops.
  • Knowledge of exhibition development and publications.
  • Knowledge of and experience in interpretive and visitor experience evaluation methods.
  • Excellent project management skills.
  • Experience in audience research.

Preferred Experience

  • Working knowledge of health and safety, child and vulnerable adults protection procedures
  • Experience of contributing to the development of museum learning strategy.
  • Experience of working within a large museum, heritage site, or cultural tourist attraction.
  • Experience of developing and managing a budget

Required Education / Qualifications

  • Bachelor of Arts degree in Education, History, Museum Studies, Cultural Studies, Archaeology or equivalent discipline.

Preferred Education

  • Master of Arts degree in Education, History, Museum Studies, Cultural Studies, Archaeology or equivalent discipline.

Required Competencies 

Behavioural

Performs at the Professional Competency Level:

Thought Focus:

  • Broad Mindset
  • Uses Resources Efficiently
  • Makes Effective Decisions

People Focus:

  • Develops Self
  • Builds Sustainable Relationships
  • Inspires and Enables Others

Delivery Focus:

  • Shapes and Initiates
  • Drives Accountability
  • Customer Centricity

Technical

Competency Name / Proficiency Level

  • Industry Knowledge (Core) – Skill
  • Project Management (Core) – Skill
  • Customer Service (Core) – Skill
  • Strategic Planning (Core) – Knowledge
  • Research (Core) – Knowledge
  • Subject Matter Expertise – Skill
  • Programme Development and Maintenance – Skill
  • Collections Management – Awareness
  • Publishing – Awareness
  • Editorial – Knowledge
  • Interpretation and Mediation – Mastery
  • Ideation – Skills

To Apply

To apply please send a CV and cover letter to [email protected]


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