Director, External Affairs- Japan, Emerging Markets & Australia (JEM&A)

Lake County, Illinois
Jul 09, 2021
Required Education
Bachelors Degree
Position Type
Full time
About AbbVie
AbbVie’s mission is to discover and deliver innovative medicines that solve serious health issues today and address the medical challenges of tomorrow. We strive to have a remarkable impact on people’s lives across several key therapeutic areas: immunology, oncology, neuroscience, eye care, virology, women’s health and gastroenterology, in addition to products and services across its Allergan Aesthetics portfolio. For more information about AbbVie, please visit us at Follow @abbvie on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn.

The Director, External Affairs, Japan, Emerging Markets & Australia (JEM&A) will serve as a strategic partner to JEM&A organization, and provide meaningful, strategic guidance and support to priority affiliates across JEM&A regions (LATAM, EEMEA, JAPAC) to ensure the development and execution of high impact environment shaping strategies that accelerate access, contribute to business goals, and protect our company’s reputation.  This position is responsible for government affairs, policy, communications and public affairs to support the JEM&A organization and advance the efforts of its affiliates.    Responsibilities include:
  • Provides critical support and strategic guidance to priority affiliates to ensure (1) proactive shaping of external environment to address access and reimbursement barriers for pipeline and on-market brands and (2) effective countering of policies that limit access to innovative medicines and our ability to operate.
  • Working closely with critical internal functions (Global/Area/Affiliate Commercial, Market Access, Legal, Medical Affairs, Regulatory Affairs), identifies priority access challenges and public policy/public affairs opportunities, and works with affiliates to co-create, advise, align and refine external affairs strategies to maximize commercial success and reputation.  Ensures affiliates are fully equipped with global resources, policy positions, research, evidence, and communication tools to support their engagement.
  • Maintains deep knowledge of business and access priorities for priority markets and therapeutic area and provide strategic counsel to the JEM&A organization on the political, policy and communications landscape and trends that may impact these priorities. Anticipates challenges and risks, and advises cross-functional counterparts on potential impact, offers recommendations and solutions to mitigate risks.
  • Identifies international advocacy opportunities, including with the US government, trade associations, multilaterals and other international and regionals bodies to advance affiliate priorities, and proactively drives AbbVie’s agenda where appropriate.
  • Collaborates with Global to pull through to affiliates external and internal communications, media and public relations initiatives that drive a greater understanding and appreciation of AbbVie’s medicines and therapeutic area leadership; that promote and protect AbbVie’s business objectives, image, and reputation; and that enhance stakeholder perception and competitive position. 
  • Builds capabilities of affiliates to effectively develop and execute policy, advocacy, media and multi-stakeholder strategies to address key access priorities and challenges and policy/reputational issues; shares best practices and learnings across markets to inspire innovative solutions; and encourages effective ways of working to ensure integrated, high impact strategies.  

Basic Requirements:
  • Minimum 10 years’ experience in positions of increasing responsibility in government affairs, public affairs or public policy in pharmaceutical and/or health care industry and/or trade association and/or government including relevant experience in in health care; experience with the pharmaceutical industry preferred, as well as an understanding of how governments make decisions and what types of input can help shape those decisions.
  • Experience executing external affairs strategies at a country or regional level with proven results (emerging markets experience a plus); should possess high degree of strategic thinking, decision-making, and tactical skills to develop broad strategy and policy, options, and recommendations to address issues expeditiously.
  • Well-honed political sensitivities and the utmost integrity while having the executive presence necessary to deal effectively with high-profile stakeholders such as elected officials, executives and a variety of external constituencies including governments and leadership of multi-lateral organizations. 
  • Candidate must possess strong analytical, critical thinking and interpersonal skills, the ability to speak and write persuasively and with clarity, strong organizational skills, flexibility and adaptability to changing requirements, resourcefulness and creativity, strong attention to detail, a proven track record of being able to work under deadlines and an ability to work collaboratively in a fluid organizational environment.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills along with knowledge of emerging communications trends and technologies.
  • Excellent business acumen with the ability to anticipate company and team needs
  • Must be an individual who works well in a team environment and enjoys working in a collegial, yet highly demanding culture. Must be able to work collaboratively with business leaders and other internal stakeholders across different geographies.
  • Bachelor’s degree in related field such as health care administration, political science, public administration or policy preferred. Advanced degree preferred.

Significant Work Activities
Yes, 20 % of the Time
Job Type
Job Level Code
Equal Employment Opportunity
At AbbVie, we value bringing together individuals from diverse backgrounds to develop new and innovative solutions for patients. As an equal opportunity employer we do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, age, sex (including pregnancy), physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, marital status, protected veteran status, or any other legally protected characteristic.