Company Overview:

Pharo Ventures is the commercial, for-profit arm of The Pharo Foundation and has been set up to harness the power of a vibrant private sector by investing in enterprises across a variety of sectors within the Eastern Africa region. The objective is to build and grow, commercially and environmentally sustainable businesses, with a focus on maximising the creation of economic value and jobs, for local communities.

Pharo Construction Somaliland is a social enterprise that has been set up to address the needs for quality construction and design services in Somaliland across large infrastructure, commercial, residential, and community projects.

We have a vision of an economically vibrant and inclusive Africa. Matching that Vision is our ambition to create a portfolio of sustainable business ventures that by the end of 2025, will deliver more than five thousand direct jobs across the Eastern Africa region. Headquartered in London, the organisation has an operational HQ in Nairobi and offices in Ethiopia (Addis Ababa and Assosa) and Somaliland (Hargeisa).

Position Summary:

The General Manager (GM) role is a senior leadership position based in Hargeisa, Somaliland. The role will report to the CEO of Social Enterprises based in Nairobi, Kenya.

The GM will lead the development, setting, and execution of the business strategy. In addition, they will be responsible for building the organisation, accountable for impact and financial results, in charge of shaping the work environment and culture. Furthermore, the GM will build and develop the team, deliver on objectives and results, oversee all operations including business development, and ensure efficient allocation of resources.

The role requires an entrepreneurial and seasoned commercial leader in the construction sector, with significant experience setting up and running a construction business. The GM will be comfortable with the financial, commercial, operational, and strategic aspects of a construction business. In addition, the incumbent will be a strong team leader and an excellent relationship manager, both internally and externally, with various stakeholders.

Functional Relationships:

  • Head of Social Enterprises – Somaliland.
  • Pharo Foundation Leadership team in Somaliland.
  • Investment Analyst, Nairobi.

 External Relationships:

  • Local authorities in Somaliland.
  • External legal and regulatory teams.
  • Customers, suppliers, and service providers.
  • Government stakeholders and Investment agency.

Key Duties and Responsibilities:

Strategy Development and Execution

  • Drive the planning, implementation, and monitoring of the construction business strategy for Somaliland, working closely with a variety of stakeholders.
  • Lead the innovation agenda and move the business into new strategic areas, including building a full design and construction service line.
  • Develop specific business plans as required for company growth and expansion.
  • Continuously scan the market and carry out competitiveness assessment as required, ensuring that the organization has all the necessary market information for decision-making.
  • Monitor the legal and regulatory environment and advise of critical changes as and when needed.
  • Lead the brand-building efforts for the business, including, briefings and public relations material.

Operations Management

  • Oversee and direct construction projects from conception to completion and review the project in-depth to schedule deliverables and estimate costs.
  • Oversee all onsite and offsite constructions to monitor compliance with building and safety regulations.
  • Meet contractual conditions of performance and prepare internal and external reports pertaining to construction project status.
  • Negotiate terms of agreements, draft contracts, and obtain permits and licences. Analyse, manage, and mitigate risks.
  • Ensure quality construction standards and the use of proper construction techniques.

Business Development and Relationship Management

  • Represent Pharo Construction in all dealings with third parties as well as with local and federal government in Somaliland.
  • Develop and nurture relationships with the key stakeholders internally and externally, including major partners.
  • Responsible for new business development in line with agreed targets and objectives. Achieve superior growth and market performance through entrepreneurial approaches and innovative business concepts.
  • Ensure customer retention and build relationships that guarantees repeat business.
  • Work with the team to ensure excellent customer service and monitor customer satisfaction on a regular basis.

Performance Management, Reporting, and Learning

  • Through quantitative and qualitative impact data and financial analysis, identify the strengths and opportunities to improve the overall performance of the organisation.
  • Develop annual key performance indicators and targets. Ensure the organisation meets the planned targets and performance standards.
  • Report on overall performance, at agreed periodic intervals or as and when required.
  • Ensure that the organisation and team operates on approved budgets, monitor their implementation, and update the CEO Social Enterprises regularly.


  • Provide overall leadership to the Pharo Construction team in Somaliland and ensure alignment of overall objectives.
  • Manage team performance and drive a culture of excellence in the organisation.
  • Provide input in the development of employee policies to ensure attraction and retention of skilled staff.
  • Mentor and coach staff, ensuring the organisation continuously builds the internal skills complement.

Risk Management

  • Continuously and proactively, assess high-level risks to the organisation. Communicate the risks and manage the risks by developing mitigation measures.
  • Ensure the protection of company assets, premises, and employees; manage and approve insurance and other appropriate risk mitigation measures.
  • Develop a risk profile and regularly report on risk to the organisation.

Knowledge and Experience Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Construction Management, Architecture, Engineering, or related field.
  • An MBA or post-graduate business studies is strongly preferred.
  • At least 8 years’ relevant working experience in construction management, of which at least 5 years at senior managerial level leading teams.
  • Experience setting up a construction venture, policies, procedures, processes, and operational guidelines.
  • Advanced knowledge of construction management processes, means, and methods. Familiarity with software packages for construction management.
  • Expert knowledge of building products, construction details, and relevant rules, regulations and quality standards.
  • Ability to plan and see the “big picture”
  • Commercially astute, with a solid understanding of the Somaliland business and construction environment.
  • Demonstrable skills in project management – implementation, including performance monitoring, budget preparation, and tracking.
  • Ability to prioritise and handle multiple tasks, familiar with, and able to operate in a fast-paced international and multi-cultural environment.
  • Excellent communication (writing, listening, and presentation) skills coupled with the ability to analyse and explain relevant data. Excellent spoken and written English.
  • Strong leadership skills with the ability to manage a multiplicity of stakeholders.
  • Solid negotiation, coaching, and interpersonal skills.
  • Very good computer skills with the ability to work using MS Office suite and MS Project.
  • Attention to detail and a flexible approach to work. A self-starter, capable of working independently.
  • Ability and willingness to travel as required within Somaliland and in the region.
  • Competent in conflict and crisis management.

Behavioural Competencies:

  • Ability to combine strategic thinking and the capacity to operationalise the strategy.
  • Very structured, process-oriented, and logical thinker.
  • Excellent time-manager who can balance multiple priorities.
  • Willing to challenge the status quo and add value by introducing positive change.
  • Good communicator and comfortable to work in a team environment.
  • High professional and ethical standards.

Application Procedure

The application deadline is 23 September 2020.

Review of complete applications will be on a rolling basis. In the event that we identify an outstanding applicant early in the search process, we reserve the right to appoint before the deadline. For this reason, we encourage interested candidates to apply at the earliest possible time. Due to the high volume of applications, we regret that we will only be able to contact short-listed candidates. Please send the information listed below, as a single PDF file, to the following email address:

Please, if you are a diaspora member from Somaliland, kindly type Somaliland Diaspora in the subject line of the email.

  • A detailed CV and Covering Letter.
  • A one-page list of five referees, complete with their current addresses, phone numbers, and email contacts.

We will only contact referees at a later stage in the recruitment process and with the candidate’s concurrence.