Our searches

Our clients have exclusively retained Mission Talent to undertake these searches on their behalf.
WWF China

chief operating officer

About WWF
For 50 years, WWF has been protecting the future of nature. The world’s leading conservation organization, WWF works in 100 countries and is supported by 1.2 million members in the United States and close to 5 million globally. WWF’s unique way of working combines global reach with a foundation in science, involves action at every level from local to global, and ensures the delivery of innovative solutions that meet the needs of both people and nature.

About WWF China
China is one of the biologically richest places on the planet; its varied natural resources support the livelihoods and well-being of 1.3 billion people. WWF has a long established presence in China, starting in 1980, with a representative office in Beijing and 9 field offices across the country. 
As of today, WWF has over 100 staff working in China on a broad range of conservation programmes including species, freshwater, forest, marine, climate change and energy, the green economy and footprint. During the past 32 years of conservation work in China, WWF’s major achievements include supporting the establishment of 62 giant panda nature reserves, the protection of over 1.64 million hectares of wetlands through the Yangtze Basin wetland conservation network, and the certification of close to 1.25 million hectares of forest as part of the Forest Stewardship Council’s responsible management system. Meanwhile, working with partners, WWF has promoted sustainable business practices and launched China’s pioneering low carbon demonstration cities. WWF has also raised awareness about conservation and sustainability issues and encouraged the public and the private sector to take action through activities such as the 20 Ways to 20% energy saving initiative and Earth Hour, the world’s largest climate change action campaign.

Mission Talent has been tasked by WWF China with providing an exclusive search for the position of a Chief Operating Officer (COO).

Major Functions
The COO supports the WWF China Programme Representative by leading the WWF China’s operations team so as to ensure the effective and efficient operations of WWF China to fulfill the Network Standards of WWF International and WWF China’s Strategic Plan (2010-1015).The COO will ensure strategic leadership together with the heads of Operations team for engagement with rest of WWF CPO’s Senior Management Team. With the Representative, the COO will facilitate strong collaboration, learning and communications within WWF as well as with the rest of the WWF network to ensure a strong and credible WWF China Programme Office.

Major Duties and Responsibilities

  • Directs, coordinates and manages the work of Operations Units through the respective Director and Unit Heads, including the following functions: Finance, HR, Administration (including IT), and M&E or performance monitoring.
  • Implements WWF China’s Roadmap activities (strategic business plan) for WWF China  so as to meet agreed targets while ensuring adaptive management and performance standards
  • Directs and improves WWF China’s performance to meet WWF International’s operations and management systems network standards and partners contractual requirements of WWF China
  • With the Operations team and support of SMT, ensures delivery of reporting and monitoring requirements for WWF Network including KPIs, Annual Reports; GPF Monitoring and Reporting; INSIGHT; etc.
  • Coordinates with the Operations teams their work plans, budgets and deliverables ensuring compliance with policies and timelines for WWF China
  • Works with the SMT to establish a strong performance culture across WWF China;
  • Liaise with rest of SMT so as to understand all necessary aspects and needs of operational development and Strategic Plan targets, and to ensure they are fully supported by as well as informed of operational objectives, purposes and achievements; ensures participation and engagement of Operations teams in all relevant meetings and planning of other departments of WWF China and with partners
  • Maintain awareness and knowledge of contemporary operational development systems, policies of WWF network and partners, ensuring mentoring and coaching to Directors, Managers and staff within WWF China
  • Ensures the overall operating standards and legal requirements of WWF and its presences and staff in China as well as contractual partnerships and agreements are credible and up to date.
  • Undertakes other major management and administrative issues related to the operations of WWF China as decided by the Country Representative.


  • An advanced degree in management, business administration or international development or a relevant field;
  • At least 10 years professional experience in a leadership role, with demonstrated success in managing teams and office operations as well as boards, corporate engagement and relationship management, and managing complex budgets;
  • Proven knowledge and experience of the not-for-profit sector, preferably of environmental non-government organizations, governance and regulatory compliance.
  • Proven leadership skills with excellent capacity to manage human and financial resources; ability to inspire and motivate staff and external partners;
  • Demonstrated experience in developing, implementing and evaluating strategic plans;
  • High level negotiation as well as interpersonal and influencing skills and the capacity to develop and maintain strong relationships within WWF and across the WWF Network and in the business and not-for-profit communities;
  • Superior oral and written communication skills in English; knowledge of Mandarin desirable but not essential;
  • Adheres to WWF’s values, which are: Passionate & Optimistic, Challenging & Inspiring, Credible & Accountable, Persevering & Delivering Results.