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Internal Application: Director of Operations

Operations | Multiple Locations / Remote | Full Time | Opened about 2 months ago | Applications accepted until Sep 30, 2021

Job Description

About Prota:

We are an operator-investor group that brings experience, capital, and talent to bold ideas. Our teams utilize time-tested approaches, strategic thinking, story-driven design, and rock-solid engineering to bring digital & physical products to market, including IoT, blockchain applications, AI, and other emerging technologies. 

Every member of Prota is expected to bring a genuine entrepreneurial spirit to the table; many of our product ideas are generated internally and brought to market in collaboration with our incubation partners, which include both large enterprises and new founder teams. 

This is a remote, full-time position, starting with a contract evaluation period. We are a remote and distributed organization with teams centered mainly around Chicago and Seattle. 

Importantly, we include our team members in much more than just their domains of work. We value human flourishing, education, and a multidisciplinary approach to problem solving. We strive to include everyone - as they are available/interested - in all aspects of business development, design, engineering, and marketing across our organization. 

The Ecosystem: Prota Studios, Labs, and Ventures:

Prota Studios is not a typical consulting agency. As a key part of the Prota ecosystem alongside Labs and Ventures, Prota Studios exists to support entrepreneurs of all stripes, from solo founders to “intrapreneurs” looking to innovate within larger corporations. Accordingly, our approach to engagement structure is extremely flexible. Some projects may be more traditional, cash-only consulting engagements, while others may involve equity and other incentive alignment mechanisms.

Additionally, we use a portion of Prota Studios’ margin to invest directly back into the entrepreneurship ecosystem, providing early funding for founders to rapidly experiment with new ideas and concepts out of our Labs division. This is a core part of the Prota mission and serves as yet another way to support entrepreneurs and founders at every stage of their lifecycle.

Similar to Studios, Prota Labs supports early entrepreneur teams and innovation departments of larger organizations. However, what is unique about Labs is that it works only for equity on projects and supports new startup ideation in collaboration with founders. 

Finally, Prota Ventures is able to invest capital at the earliest stages of startup growth from teams that emerge from our Labs and/or Studios divisions. By working in the trenches together with founders we invest in, this provides both robust diligence and tangible value-add to increase the value of the companies we work with.


Primary responsibilities of the Director of Operations include:

  • Digest the vision (values, purpose, mission) of Prota and lead initiatives to translate the vision into specific strategies across Labs, Studios, and Ventures for operational success.
  • Architect a world-class onboarding and engagement experience of Founders, Investors, Talent, and Partnerships in our ecosystem.
  • Proactively design, implement, and improve systems and procedures to ensure each person in our ecosystem has the tools, resources, and opportunities necessary to flourish. 
  • Lead meetings with our Managing Directors, Venture Partners, and Operations Staff.
  • Oversee HR, Legal, and Finance staff to ensure smooth and optimized operations.
  • Work with our product managers, designers, and engineers who are building our internal software application (The Prota App) to coordinate information, people, and deal flow between founders, investors, and talent in our ecosystem. This app will include KPI dashboards to surface to Partners and Managing Directors to aid with operational leadership and management.
  • Help hire, train, manage, and collaborate with our directors of Studios, Labs, Ventures, Marketing, and Business Development. 

Requirements and Qualifications:

  • 15+ years experience in operations leadership, ideally as a COO and/or CFO of a small-to-medium-sized organization. 
  • Strong interpersonal, relationship management, and team leadership skills
  • Ability to quickly context-shift as needed between high-level management and ground-level engagement
  • Comfortable developing and implementing non-traditional and innovative operating models
  • Desire to support entrepreneurs and founders at a variety of company lifecycle stages
  • Critical thinker with good organizational, time management, and problem-solving skills
  • Team player with an attitude of “leaving the campsite better than we found it” and “we’ve got each other’s back” state of mind
  • Participation in regular team stand-ups across multiple time zones
  • Effectively communicate with peers, superiors, and stakeholders
  • Make rational, logical decisions and defend them to your peers, superiors, and stakeholders.
  • Take responsibility for your work and mistakes.

Life at Prota / Benefits:

As discussed above, we are a fully remote organization, with team members around the world. While the plurality of the organization spends some time in Chicago, there is no location requirement as long as you have a space to work and a good internet connection. We normally meet in person 1-2x per quarter, which may necessitate travel depending on your location.

With Prota, you’ll be able to control your own destiny with a compensation model that allows you to work flexible hours on a wide variety of projects, get exposure to multiple disciplines outside of software engineering, and have the opportunity to earn equity in startups.