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General Manager - Plaza del Lago

WS Development
Wilmette, Illinois 60091, United States
Closing date
30 Sep 2023

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Senior Manager
Contract Type
Full Time

The General Manager (GM) has overall responsibility for the success of the property and is relentlessly focused on customer, tenant and client experience. The GM is a leader at WS Development and has direct reports including a Marketing lead, an Operations lead, and a Property Coordinator. The ideal candidate will be both a strategic leader and one that motivates his/her cross-functional and direct report team with a passion for and understanding of a modern consumer-centric experience. Familiarity and experience with luxury retail brands is strongly preferred. 

This person looks to analogous but disparate industries (think Disney, cultural centers, civic public space, etc.) for inspiration and understands our innate challenge is a battle for people’s time – in the pursuit of creating places where people want to be. Further, this person will possess exceptional interpersonal skills, the ability to sell what we do and inspire partners around the mission. This includes selling in the context of Leasing tours and brand partnership development. We work in an entrepreneurial environment, so the candidate must have the ability to pivot and evolve, and to make decisions in a rapidly-changing environment. Candidates will come from a wide variety of backgrounds including retail, hospitality, entertainment and marketing. The day-to-day work of a GM is highly cross-functional in nature.

Key position accountabilities

  • Lead day-to-day activities of the center including brand management, marketing, operations, customer service, sales and administrative management
  • Build + manage external partnerships, including those with tenants, customers, the community, the government and financial partners
  • Actively consider your consumer and help identify leads for Leasing; partner with Leasing to attract, retain, and grow the best tenants in the market
  • Partner with Construction and Development to improve the property and continually focus on the details that make the customer experience the best it can be (consider parking, added services, amenities, public spaces, art, etc.)
  • Build and drive strategic brand partnerships, resulting in incremental revenue and added value experiences for your guests
  • Partner with your cross-functional team, including Finance, to build a consumer-centric strategy at the property level – including marketing, operations, brand partnerships, competitive landscape, etc.
  • Manage the property finances within the context of its performance and critically evaluate financial trade-offs
  • Juggle a large workload with a focus on impact vs effort (and where your ROI will be the most effective)
  • Develop and participate in a proactive MOD plan for your center

Qualifications and competencies

  • Experience-centric mindset
  • Enthusiasm, curiosity, entrepreneurial initiative, and a strong work ethic
  • A people-person who enjoys developing people, growing relationships and collaboration
  • Strong organizational skills
  • Salesmanship and passion
  • Clear, concise communication skills
  • Desire to work hard & with a strong sense of urgency
  • Can-do, optimistic attitude
  • Orientation toward innovation and trying new things
  • Consistent focus on optimization and improvement (both self-improvement and the work)
  • High ethical standards and integrity
  • Proficiency in computer skills, including Microsoft Office, Word, Excel and Outlook
  • Experience leading a cross-functional team towards productive, shared outcomes
  • Ability to handle multiple projects simultaneously
  • Comfort with ambiguity and adaptability to change

Education and experience

  • College degree required
  • Experience in retail property management, retail, consumer goods, hospitality, marketing or a service industry preferred
  • Experience working in a fast-paced, rapidly evolving workplace
  • A proven leader, passionate about hiring great people, leading great people, and developing great people

About WS Development

Massachusetts-based WS Development is a mixed-use developer with a singular mission: creating places people want to be. With an approach that values art, science, innovation and, above all else, people, WS strives to engage each community it serves with best-in-class installations and activations. Established in 1990, WS is a vertically-integrated company that conceptualizes, owns, operates and leases more than 100 properties that range from cutting-edge urban spaces to lifestyle and community centers. With over 22 million square feet of existing space and an additional nine million square feet under development, it is one of the largest privately-owned development firms in the country.

WS is where great ideas and great people come together to design, build, and operate some of the best loved real estate projects in the country. We live at the intersection of entrepreneurship and establishment. We have the infrastructure of decades supporting a culture of free-thinking excellence.

We expect every WS employee to feel welcomed and valued irrespective of race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age, veteran status, marital status, parental status, cultural background and life experiences. Or for any other reason.

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