Director of Trade - New England USA

Foreign & Commonwealth Office
  • Location
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Sector
  • Experience
  • Apply by
  • Posted
    May 21

Position description

Are you ready to play a pivotal role in improving the trading relationship between the UK and the USA? The UK’s Department for Business and Trade is seeking a dynamic New England Director of Trade based in the British Consulate in Boston. The role involves delivering the trade policy that significantly impacts both nations’ economies. If you’re passionate about international relations, policy, trade, and investment, and ready to take on a leadership position that matters on a global stage, we encourage you to apply.

This position offers the chance to create lasting partnerships that will define the future of trade relations between the UK and Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine, Vermont, Rhode Island and Connecticut (with the exception of Fairfield County, which is covered by the British Consulate in New York). The USA is one of the UK’s closest and most important allies and trade and investment partners. It is critical to the UK’s economic growth, security, and competitiveness, today and in the foreseeable future. This role really matters.

Main purpose of job:

The primary purpose of the role is to drive the UK’s trade and investment relationship with New England. You will develop a strategy to shape and deepen the UK’s trade policy priorities fin New England, including at State level. You also will lead a team of 11 (with direct line management for seven) to increase US investments into the UK in key economic sectors, including life sciences, financial and professional business services, capital investment, technology and clean energy.

You will work closely with senior management at post, acting as the senior point of contact and advisor to the Consul General on regional trade policy and investment opportunities.

The role has two broad areas of delivery:  

  • Leading regional trade policy.
  • Leading a team of 11 trade and investment officials at post (direct line management for seven).

You will also build and maintain a strong network of senior level contacts across the region to assist you and your team with their delivery work.

Trade Policy:

You will lead the Consulate’s work to deepen the UK’s trading relationship with States in your region, including building an influencing campaign for a future UK-US Free Trade Agreement. This includes understanding and influencing trade policy at a state level to align with UK policies; leading the delivery of trade policy strategies for your States; identifying and responding to state-level market access barriers and opportunities; and, building support for trade liberalisation with the UK across your region.  You will become the expert on the trade policy issues in New England and act as the lead point of contact for the Trade Policy Team at British Embassy Washington to deliver regionally focused trade policy campaigns.

The UK Government has committed to a programme of reaching agreements (Memoranda of Understanding or MOUs) that are negotiated with, and unique to, individual states. The MOUs set out our mutual goals and activities to strengthen economic ties; provide frameworks to help address trade barriers, increase trade and investment and enhance business networks; and increase jobs. In New England, there are two such arrangements: one with Maine on clean energy; and UK-Connecticut Insurtech Corridor. Working closely with the team in Boston, the Trade Policy Team in Washington, and State governments, you will play a key role in maintaining momentum on these existing partnerships as well as negotiating new MOUs.

Beyond our work on MOUs, you will be responsible for influencing policymakers in State Governments to adopt the UK’s policy priorities on mutual recognition of professional qualifications, including making a strong case where States require changes to their legislative statutes. You will also be responsible for building networks with key procurement leads within State Procurement Offices and State Purchasing Divisions to deliver UK policy on procurement access.

Finally, you will be responsible for exploring the opportunities for expanded work on agri-tech, including developing a strategy for New England. This will include identifying the key players across the States in your consular patch and establishing new networks to understand their priorities. You will identify commercial opportunities, working with State authorities where necessary as well as with the UK’s Science and Innovation Network and with trade policy leads in Washington.  


You will be an inspiring leader to your team of 11 to deliver against their individual objectives of:

  • Delivering economic growth to all the nations and regions of the UK through attracting and retaining inward investment.
  • Supporting UK businesses to take full advantage of trade opportunities, including those arising through the MOUs, facilitating UK exports.

You will ensure that your team has the skills and tools needed to understand the UK’s offer to US investors and spot opportunities to ‘sell’ what the UK has to offer. Your team will manage a range of high-profile key accounts of the largest US investors into the UK and you will support them to build strong pipelines of new investment and export projects to deliver in the future. You will also lead your team so that their work on trade and investment delivers against the opportunities unlocked by your trade policy work, with a particularly focus on sectors named in the State level MOUs.

You will take your people leadership and management seriously and recognise that good management is part of our corporate culture. You will manage the regional budget in line with DBT’s financial requirements. Through all your work you will promote a diverse and inclusive working environment, ensuring the team is motivated, professional, collaborative, and focused on delivering client excellence.

Stakeholder management:

You will bring and develop an extensive network of relationships across policy makers, think tanks, and influencers across New England.  You will be responsible for maintaining a strong relationship with the Consulate’s key stakeholders on trade policy, including within State governments.  You will also be the Consulate’s key point of contact for the business community in the region with a strong network across business organisations including chambers of commerce, trade associations and senior business leaders. You will model outstanding key account management for your team, supporting them to discover and develop new relationships with key business investors and influencers.

You will contribute to broader Consulate, British Embassy and UK initiatives in support of prosperity, innovation and economic growth by ensuring your team maximises the Consulate’s wider political, cultural and promotional activity for your business, investment and trade policy stakeholders. In addition, you will play an active role in the senior leadership team in the Consulate, including responding to crises if and when they arise.

About the Department for Business and Trade

The Department for Business and Trade (DBT) is the UK’s department for economic growth. We support businesses to invest, grow and export, creating jobs and opportunities across the UK. We employ over 150 people across North America, all united by our mission: we are redrawing the UK’s rules to ensure businesses thrive and markets are competitive, securing investment into the UK, advising and supporting British businesses to grow and export, opening up new markets globally and promoting free trade, economic security, and resilient supply chains.

See for further information.

Roles and responsibilities:

  • Build an understanding of and expertise in state trade policy across all key sectors in New England; negotiating with and influencing State level counterparts on a range of policy areas including MOUs.
  • Build and maintain strong networks of relevant contacts for trade policy and promotion (state-level administration, legislators, business policy representatives, senior business leaders, commercial organisations, think-tanks, media and other interest groups).
  • Understand and respond to established or emerging state-level market access barriers affecting British firms.
  • Develop an influencing strategy to build regional support for key UK-US trade policy priorities, including a Free Trade Agreement and adoption of mutual recognition of professional qualifications.
  • Develop a strategy to commercialise agri-tech opportunities across the region.
  • Translating trade policy priorities into an effective trade and investment strategy for the region, including supporting your team to deliver against State-level MOUs, including the UK-Maine MOU and the UK-Connecticut Insurtech Corridor.
  • Ensuring the DBT team in your region have the skills and tools to deliver against their trade and investment goals and manage their progress against those goals.
  • Leading the DBT team in your region to deliver high quality programmes for Ministerial and senior UK Government visits to New England.
  • Lead and develop an effective, communicative, inclusive team that values learning and development and an open, respectful feedback culture.
  • Contribute to the corporate well-being and success of the broader Consulate team, including participating in crisis preparation and response where necessary.
  • Management of regional department budget.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Resources managed (staff and expenditure):

Leads a team of 11 with direct line management of 7 Senior Trade and Investment Officers each representing a different priority sector. 

Essential qualifications, skills and experience  

  • Significant professional experience, gained within a business or economic development role.
  • In-depth knowledge of business in the New England region.
  • Excellent management and leadership skills with the ability to deliver results through others.
  • Proven competence in leading strategy development and business planning.
  • Excellent stakeholder management abilities.
  • Proven advisory and influencing skills at senior levels.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Excellent interpersonal, presentation and networking skills.
  • Excellent analytical and problem-solving skills.
  • Manage budget and make resource recommendations to senior leadership.
  • An excellent network of industry contacts and the ability to develop new networks with senior business and industry leaders.
  • Must be able to attend events outside of office hours and undertake travel in the US and internationally for up to 10% of your time.

Language requirements:

Language: English

Level of language required: Fluent


Desirable qualifications, skills and experience  

  • Business knowledge of the UK.

Required behaviours  

Communicating and Influencing, Leadership, Making Effective Decisions, Seeing the Big Picture

Application instructions

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