Job Purpose

Join a team of innovators aligned on a mission to improve global agricultural production, sustainability and profitability through novel pollen preservation and utilization techniques.

This Research Manager position will provide leadership and support to PowerPollen® Biology team and improve collaboration with commercial areas within the company. This position is aimed at further developing and applying PowerPollen’s patented pollen preservation and application technology to our maize pollen program. This role will have accountability to drive the collaboration efforts toward improving cross-pollination and accelerating the development of large-scale pollen applications.

Key objectives will include:

  • Contribute to the evolution of PowerPollen technology for large scale use.
  • Enhance technical collaborations with internal and external stakeholders for the improvement, efficiency and reliability of PowerPollen’s commercial activities.

Our ideal team member will be one who is eager to grow professionally and scientifically, with an inquisitive mind capable of discerning patterns and trends through observation and analysis.

Duties and Responsibilities

This Research Manger position will progress PowerPollen(R) research theory and validation to enable scale up to large field applications.  Executing against and enabling company goal achievement through lab and field operations.

The selected candidate will be based in or near the Des Moines, Iowa metro area (officed in Ames, IA) with frequent travel to other regions.

  • Serve as the scientific lead for the biology component, focused on the development of maize pollen and pollination technologies at large scale.
  • Execute against precise science plans and company goals while gathering and providing solid input for process enhancement and improvement.
  • Serve as liaison with internal and external contacts with regard to research objectives and activities.
  • Collaborate with researchers of external teams, to develop protocols to advance our knowledge on plant reproductive physiology.
  • Designing and conducting experiments independently.
  • Manage research personnel at our agricultural testing sites and laboratory crews during commercial execution.
  • Generate and analyze data to develop understanding of pollen interactions with receptive plant tissues.
  • Support data compilation, analysis, and generating technical reports and methods to support development of commercial applications in a timely manner.
  • Establish, nurture and maintain relationships with key internal and external stakeholders
  • Guide safe and effective testing processes with the proper control strategies.
  • Assist with the development and scaling of technologies for commercial deployment and facilitate process up-scaling through management of lab, growth chamber and field activities.
  • Contribute in the identification and implementation of new research avenues. But also open to new ideas and critical feedback from colleagues.
  • Presenting to PowerPollen leadership on key areas of accountability, providing insight, lessons learned, enhancements, issues and resolution proposals.
  • Guides and invests time with employees in order to contribute to the goals of the company and to encourage professional growth.
  • Participate in strategic planning, budgetary, safety, quality, and workforce issues

 

Qualifications

  • BSc in life sciences with minimum of 3-5 year industry experience required.  MSc with experience plus 2-3 years industry experience in a science related role are preferred.
  • Prefer formal training and research experience in breeding and/or pollination technologies in important agricultural crops.
  • Skill in common agricultural practices, including management of field crops, and controlled environment facilities.
  • Experience in generating data in controlled environments and generating statistical designs for field and laboratory testing.
  • Proficiency in Microsoft (Excel, Word, PowerPoint), and statistics/graphing software for data analysis and presentation.
  • Ability to work Independently or within a multi-disciplinary internal or external team
  • Able to maintain objective perspective and demonstrate a detail oriented, data-driven and problem-solving aptitude.
  • Capable of seeing a barrier as an opportunity to overcome a challenge in the delivery of excellent results.
  • Strong organizational skills, ability to multi-task, problem-solve, prioritize and adjust to meet goals.
  • Comfortable working on assigned areas of responsibility as well as stepping in to assist others in their areas of expertise as needed.
  • Demonstrated capability to maintain positive relationships with key stakeholders including ability to influence, negotiate and reach mutually beneficial outcomes.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills, including the ability to train others.
  • Previous experience overseeing teams and crews including both employees and contracted labor.
  • Willingness to travel periodically and for durations of up to 2 weeks at a time. Expected travel appointment up to 30%.

Working Conditions

This position will work in varying conditions including normal laboratory setting to typical in-season agricultural environment.  This includes working in crop fields when weather conditions are extremely hot/humid and insects are present and long periods of standing/walking may be required.  The incumbent should be capable and interested in working in an environment that includes indoor lab conditions and outdoor agricultural conditions throughout the year.

Physical Requirements

The position involves physical activity including lifting objects up to 50 pounds, walking on uneven terrain, ability to tolerate heat and humidity typical of local field conditions, with extended hours that will vary with crop development in different locales.

All applicants will receive consideration for employment regardless of their race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, or status with regard to public assistance. Must be legally authorized to work in the United States without sponsorship for employment visa status (e.g., H1B status)