Design Museum

Director of Finance and Operations

Founded by Sir Terence Conran in 1989 and described as the “World’s coolest design museum” by The Telegraph, the museum has welcomed over 6 million visitors, staged more than 100 exhibitions and grown its global reach, working with 96 venues in over 25 countries. On the 24th November 2016, they opened the doors to their home, refurbishing a Grade II* listed building to international acclaim. The move tripled the museum space, created world class exhibition galleries, library, event spaces, auditorium, and learning spaces.

Brief/Problem:

As a registered charity, the Design Museum generates more than 98% of their operating budget from admissions, retail, charitable donations and sponsorship. Having set a spectacular stage for the future of the museum, they are now tasked with building a long term sustainable operating model, one which has entrepreneurship and forward thinking at its heart.

The Director of Finance and Operations role was central to the delivery of the Design Museum’s vision. The role was to play a critical role in the leadership team; to deliver a sound operation, ensure they maximised commercial income, shaping and delivering the strategic plan. The Director of Finance and Operations was a broad role with a wide remit, responsible for providing strategic leadership for Finance, HR, IT, Legal, Risk Management, Governance and Facilities Management.

Approach/research:

Our client was looking to attract the very best candidates for this critical post. They needed to be a fully qualified accountant with a proactive approach, a flexible communication style and a strong sense of commercial acumen. Given the breadth of the role, we needed to target impressive finance professionals with experience of operational and commercial delivery, with an Arts/Venue, Charity and Commercial backgrounds.

Results/achievement:

Coming from a commercial background in Publishing, this is the incumbent’s first role in the Not For Profit sector and they are off to an impressive start.

Register Interest

33 King Street, St. James’s,
London, SW1Y 6RJ