Business Advisor – Agronomy

Dara town with field travel, SNNPR 
Career Level:
Mid Level ( 2+ – 5 years experience)
Employment Type:
Per the organization scale

Job Description

I.  TechnoServe Background:

TechnoServe works with enterprising people in the developing world to build competitive farms, businesses and industries. We are a nonprofit organization that develops business solutions to poverty by linking people to information, capital and markets. Our work is rooted in the idea that given the opportunity, hardworking men and women in even the poorest places can generate income, jobs and wealth for their families and communities. With more than four decades of proven results, we believe in the power of private enterprise to transform lives.

   II. Program Description: The primary objective of the TNS agronomy program will be to increase production of the coffee tree for coffee farmers through both yield improvement and behavioral shifts due to price incentives. This production improvement will be achieved through educating project farmers on agronomy and environmental best practices, farm management, and assisting them in applying those techniques at an individual farm level. TNS will use two year farm college training and individual farm visits to improve farmer knowledge of agronomy techniques and oversee implementation.

  III.    Position Description:

  Support the implementation of strategies that will enable small holder coffee farmers to achieve sustainable increases in coffee quality and yields as per Technoserve quality requirements. Responsible for day-to-day execution of the coffee agronomy program, activities plan and supervise project deliverables of farmer trainers to ensure the timely achievement of targets.



1.    Planning and management of FT’s

·         Submit BA weekly work plan  – details when will attend trainings

·         Review FT weekly work plan with dates

·         Collect weekly training plans and data from FT’s

·         Clearly communicate goals and roles and responsibilities to all staff

·         Provide feedback, coaching and development activities related to performance management, following HR guidelines. 

·         Notify Supervisor of any performance issues as soon as observed.

·         Develop a team spirit among all reports.

·         Submit Farmer Trainer of the month nominations for own reports.

2.  Conduct Quarterly Agronomy trainings to FTs

·         Model that the quarterly agronomy training to FTs at local farmers field. 

·         Supervise teach-backs and give feedback.

·         Ensure each training modules is completed within the allocated 3 months’ time.

·         Observe full training to farmers

3.    Observe FT is delivering training at the farm level

·         Observe full training to farmers

·         Give feedback and coaching to FT based on observation.

·         Check visited HH list, cross check with the list in the database. Ensure reported data is accurate.

4.    Back checking farm Support Visit

·         Pick farmers visited by the FT at random

·         Visit randomly selected farmers and complete on farm back checking survey and send SMS.

5. Visit Demo plots

·         Check demo plot status, complete form and give feedback to FF

·       Meet with FF and discuss things done well and things needed to be implemented on the demo plot.


6.    Tablet survey M & E

·         During each farm visit, check for the correct completion of the survey completed by each FT, before they synchronize their tablet to the system to upload the completed surveys. 

·         Discuss any issues that might seen and give feedback how to overcome these issues. (Problems with the survey, problems with GPS recoding, problems with submitting final surveys.)

·         Discuss any issues with FT’s, supervisor and develop action plan for improvement.

·         Compile weekly Farm Support visit update and submit to Supervisor.

7.    Prepare & check FTs expenses

·         Collect official voucher receipts for transport and accommodation

·         Submit these documents to the Supervisor in a timely fashion.

8.  Stakeholder Management

·         Create a good working relationship with stakeholders. 

·         Holding meeting with Agricultural Development and administration offices of the appropriate Wereda’s once every quarter.

·         Meet with Kebele leaders and Cooperative to give progress report every quarter.

·         Support FTs to mobilize farmers at the Kebele level.

·         Perform other duties as assigned by the Senior Business advisor 

Job Requirements

  V. Required Skills & Experience:

·         Bachelor’s Degree in Agronomy, Plant science, Crop sciences, Agricultural Science etc/.  May accept experience in lieu of four-year degree.

·         At least four years’ professional experience for BSc and six years’ experience for Diploma – ideally private sector – in one or more of the following areas: Coffee Agronomy, Coffee processing, cooperative management or agriculture.

·         Strong planning skills and experience working to strict time-guidelines

·         Strong interpersonal and cross-cultural skills

·         Willingness to spend significant time in rural areas

·         Excellent communication skills, written and oral, in both English and local language .

·         Computer literacy, Business Acumen

·         Motor bicycle riding license, ability and willingness to ride a motor bicycle is a must

·         NGO experience         

VI. Success Factors:

Competency is a combination of knowledge, skills and abilities (KSAs) directly related to successful performance on the job.

Core Competencies include:

  • Integrity and honesty : Is widely trusted; seen as a direct, truthful individual; presents truthful information in an appropriate and helpful manner; keeps confidences; admits mistakes; does not misrepresent himself or herself for personal gain.
  • Team Work/ Relationships:   Works co-operatively and flexibly with other members of the team with a full understanding of the role to be played as a team member and/or leader, to achieve a common goal.  Ability to build and maintain effective relationships and networks.
  • Learning attitude:   Proactively takes advantage of opportunities to learn. Actively identifies new areas for learning; applies and shares new knowledge and skill appropriately.
  • Diversity/Inclusiveness:   Demonstrates an understanding and appreciation for diversity and supports diversity efforts. Interacts effectively with and inclusively with people of all races, cultures, ethnicities, backgrounds, religions, ages, and genders.
  • Communication:   Expresses ideas effectively in individual and group situations. Listens effectively; shares information, ideas and arguments; adjusts terminology, language and communication modes to the needs of the audience; ensures accurate understanding; acts in a way that facilitates open exchange of ideas and information; uses appropriate non-verbal communication.
  • Decision making/Problem Solving:   Is able to analyze situations, diagnose problems, identify the key issues, establish and evaluate alternative courses of action and produce a logical, practical and acceptable solution.  Is able to make effective decisions on a day-to-day basis, taking ownership of decisions, demonstrating sound judgement in escalating issues where necessary.
  • Results Oriented/ High Quality Deliverables:  Stays focused on the efforts necessary to achieve quality results consistent with programmatic or departmental goals. Demonstrates the ability to achieve effective results; works persistently to overcome obstacles to goal achievement. Accomplishes tasks by considering all areas involved, no matter how small; showing concern for all aspects of the job; accurately checking processes and tasks.
  • Planning & Time Management:   Establishes a course of action for self and/or others to accomplish a specific goal. Effectively plans, schedules, prioritizes and controls activities; identifies, integrates and orchestrates resources (people, material, information, budget, and/or time) to accomplish goals. Prioritizes work according to the program or department’s goals, not just own job responsibilities; manages own time effectively.
  • Business Acumen:  The ability to use information, ask the right questions and take decisions that make an impact on the overall business performance.

 Job Specific/Technical Competencies include:

  • Financial & Resource Management: The ability to estimate, justify, and manage appropriate funding levels to support goal accomplishment. Managing Resources is about understanding human, financial, and operational resource issues to make decisions aimed at building and planning efficient project workflows, and at improving overall organizational performance.
  • Computer Literacy: Demonstrates knowledge and ability to use specific computer programs or applications for own functional area. Has the ability to improve performance by integrating new and existing technology into the workplace.
  • Donor/Partnership Management: Identifying opportunities and taking action to build strategic relationships between one’s area and other areas, teams, departments, or organizations to help achieve business goals. .
  • Innovative Mindset: Curious inquiries, asks questions and seeks out information from multiple sources, learns from mistakes, sees change as an opportunity.
  • Internal Client Focus: Client Focus is based on the ability to understand the client’s needs and concerns in the short to long-term and to provide sound recommendations and/or solution.


How to Apply

VII. Application Instruction

·         Qualified and interested applicants should Click here to apply for this position and submit a cover letter and resume as a single document (either Word or PDF)  by December 25, 2020. Applications will be reviewed and considered as received/on a rolling basis. Please identify the position for which you are applying in the subject line.  Only applicants meeting minimum qualifications will be contacted.                        

                                        TechnoServe is an equal opportunity employer.

                                              Women are highly encouraged to apply.

                                       TechnoServe has the right to cancel this advertisement
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