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Senior Director/Executive Director, Program and Commercial Communications

Sage Therapeutics
Working from Home
Start date
Nov 23, 2022

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Marketing, Marketing/Corporate Communications
Required Education
Position Type
Full time
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Job Details

General Scope and Summary

We are fearlessly leading the way toward creating a world in which better Brain Health is a priority by pioneering solutions that deliver life-changing medicines so that every person can thrive. Conditions like depression, post-partum depression, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, and dozens of others deserve our best effort to finding innovative treatments for these life-threatening conditions and delivering them to those who suffer from them.

Sage is seeking an enterprise-wide communicator and outstanding collaborator to lead and drive alignment for program-level communications and commercial communications across the organization. Primary focus of the role through 2023 will be on the zuranolone program which is in late-stage development for major depressive disorder and postpartum depression.

A highly visible role, this position will report into the Vice President, Corporate Communications; be a trusted business partner and adviser on Program Teams and Commercial Brand Teams; lead cross-functional Communications Subteams; and buildout a team of Product and Commercial Communicators within the Corporate Communications function.

Program Teams at Sage define and oversee program strategy and execution through the product lifecycle, by delivering recommendations and strategic optionality to enable efficient, right-on-time planning and decision making. Program Team members serve as strategic advisors, collaborating to establish program-level strategic plans and recommendations, and as leads for Program Team Sub-teams, which are comprised of cross-functional leaders who shape and drive execution of program strategy. The Communications Sub-team includes Corporate Communications, Investor Relations, Patient Engagement & Advocacy, Medical Affairs, HEOR, Regulatory and Commercial.

Roles and Responsibilities (Essential Functions)

  • Accountable for development of integrated, program-level communications and alignment across the enterprise.

  • Lead enterprise-wide communications discussions on Program Teams and proactively develop integrated communications plans for registration, launch and lifecycle management.

  • Establish and lead a disciplined approach to program message development, resulting in content, such as an overarching program narrative that aligns with the Global Scientific Platform and the corporate narrative as well as key messaging to inform milestone-driven communications activities.

  • Serve as the connective tissue between Program Teams and Communications Sub-teams.

  • Lead and engage Communications Sub-teams to understand and achieve program-level communications objectives, including:

    • align enterprise on program narrative and key messaging

    • surface internal and external stakeholder perspectives to inform program messaging and communications strategy

    • collaborate with cross-functional stakeholders to develop content and messaging, as well as strategic brand and program campaigns

    • be a catalyst for opportunities to enhance brand awareness and share of voice for the program; leveraging a strategic plan that capitalizes on business milestones, new data, disease state initiatives

  • Evaluate resourcing needs for program and commercial communications at Sage; partner with the Vice President, Corporate Communications, Program Team Leads and Commercial Leaders to develop a strategic plan to buildout the function.

  • Oversee and guide full spectrum of program and commercial communications planning and execution support, including media relations, spokesperson preparation and issues management.

  • Maintain strong knowledge of assigned programs from R&D to Commercial, including evolving treatment landscape and key stakeholders in relevant disease areas.

  • Oversee and guide management of PR agency partner for assigned programs, with the goal of maximizing the team’s impact within agreed-upon budgets.

  • Foster positive relationships with external partners

  • Manage and mentor Program & Commercial Communications team members, ensuring development of appropriate skills and competencies to meet role expectations.

Experience and Education

This is a highly visible role across the organization. The successful candidate must thrive working in a fast-paced innovative environment while remaining flexible, proactive, resourceful and efficient.

This is a high-volume people interaction role and requires excellent interpersonal and relationship-building skills, conflict management and negotiation skills and  ability to lead cross-functional teams.

Ability to analyze and activate is needed to meet expectations of the role, such as understanding issues from multiple angles; developing strategic plans, programs and recommendations; communicating complicated concepts and information in a simple and compelling manner; and mitigating risks.

Basic Qualifications

Senior Director Basic Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree

  • 10+ years of combined experience working in multiple disciplines within the biotech/pharmaceutical and communications industry, including 5+ years working in-house on cross-functional teams and simplifying complex science for broad distribution

Executive Director Basic Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree

  • 12+ years of combined experience working in multiple disciplines within the biotech/pharmaceutical and communications industry, including 5+ years working in-house on cross-functional teams and simplifying complex science for broad distribution

Preferred Qualifications

  • Advanced degree in life sciences; PhD or MBA

  • 15+ years combined experience working in multiple disciplines within the biotech/pharmaceutical and communications industry,

  • Exceptional writer and facilitator with a strong understanding of the pharmaceutical drug development process and ability to process, interpret and communicate scientific data

  • Capable of enterprise-wide thinking, leadership and stakeholder perspective-taking

  • High degree of professionalism, maturity, agility, executive presence, business understanding, organizational awareness and confidentiality

  • Experience in neuroscience field

  • Experience building a new function, developing high-performers, managing team members and leading cross-functional teams

  • Track record of working with and earning the trust and confidence of high-profile corporate leaders, serving as a trusted advisor and influencing for greater outcomes

  • Strong team player that has a customer service approach and is solution-oriented.

  • Embrace our core values of Put People First, Improve Lives, Cultivate Curiosity, Do Right and Forge New Pathways

  • Excitement about the vision and mission of Sage

Employment Type:Employee

Number of Openings:1

Job ID:R001502

#Biotechnology #Careers #ThisIsSage

All Sage new hires will be required to provide documentation that they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or, if not, that they are legally entitled to an accommodation due to a medical condition or a sincerely held religious belief.  Requests for accommodation will be considered on a case-by-case basis, and Sage will consider, among other things, whether the proposed accommodation would create an undue hardship.

Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, protected veteran status, disability, or any other factors prohibited by law.

EEO is the Law

EEO is the Law - Supplement

Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination

We value our relationships with professional recruitment firms. To protect the interests of all parties, and given the large volume of inquiries received from third-party placement agencies, we are not able to respond to all agency inquiries. We do not accept unsolicited resumes from any source other than directly from candidates for current or future positions. Submission of unsolicited resumes in advance of a signed agreement between our company and a placement agency does not create an implied obligation and, if an unsolicited candidate represented by a placement agency is hired, we are not obligated to pay a fee. Only approved recruitment firms will be allowed to provide services to Sage Therapeutics, Inc.



Sage is a biopharmaceutical company committed to developing novel therapies with the potential to transform the lives of people with debilitating disorders of the brain. We are pursuing new pathways with the goal of improving brain health, and our depression, neurology and neuropsychiatry franchise programs aim to change how brain disorders are thought about and treated. Our mission is to make medicines that matter so people can get better, sooner.

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