Commercial Partnerships Manager

Location:Greater London

Role summary

Based at the CBI’s Cannon Place office, you will be part of the CBI Commercial Partnerships and Corporate Events team and be responsible for generating commercial sponsorship income from existing CBI activities and new initiatives, and for account management through to delivery.

Reporting into the Head of Commercial Partnerships, you will take a lead role in managing a key income stream for the CBI and have personal responsibility for significant income generation. The position will require a mix of commercial nous and project/client management skills in order to see commercial projects through the entire product cycle, and will be responsible for liaising with internal stakeholders to identify appropriate activities for sponsorship; developing client proposals and contracts; and managing relationships with past, current and future partners through pro-active account management and post activity reporting.

You will be expected to be able to work autonomously at a fast pace, showing initiative in handling all aspects of the sales cycle, and will work closely with the Head of Commercial Partnerships to ensure a strong pipeline of opportunities and interest to grow this income stream. The role will involve some travel and is offered on a permanent basis.

Key responsibilities

Sponsorship selling and account management

  • To manage the generation of sponsorship and commercial revenue for all appropriate CBI plans including conferences, dinners, surveys, reports, campaigns and digital activity
  • Responsibility for delivering income against targets for agreed activities and identifying and developing new opportunities for commercial exploitation
  • Take day-to-day responsibility for sourcing and agreeing sponsors across multiple opportunities; this will include managing interest and making targeted approaches, managing negotiations with senior stakeholders, and securing contractual agreements
  • Provide exceptional account management against contracts, ensuring that sponsorship agreements are delivered to the highest standard and that opportunities are exploited to deliver maximum ROI for partners
  • Provide strategic input, and act as a source of support and information for the wider team and organisation, including best practice and advice on developing plans and opportunities for maximising income generation and member engagement. Work to ensure an integrated approach to sponsorship across the CBI as a senior member of the team
  • Coordinate and communicate with internal departments to ensure that sponsorship engagements are recorded and profiled, and that each element of the agreement is being met, project managing delivery across teams where necessary
  • Build a strategic network of business contacts across all sectors and maintain an understanding of the external environment, business and marketing objectives
  • Build a database of sponsorship prospects/pipeline to ensure continuity of income should any contracts be terminated and to target for new commercial activity, highlighting risks and opportunities to the Head of Commercial Partnerships
  • Regularly review and suggest new ways of working/approaches to sponsorship to ensure that packages and offering are still delivering in terms of member and commercial value. Keep up to date on market trends and proactively suggest new ideas based on understanding of current business environment and member need
  • Own, review, and update, the commercial sponsorship elements of the CBI website, and maintain an overview of upcoming opportunities that can be shared with interested parties.


  • Maintain a strong understanding of the CBI’s Business Plan and how external factors are affecting delivery on the ground
  • Understand the current business environment and issues affecting business, and use this knowledge to develop the sponsorship offer
  • Collaborate across the organisation on projects and membership engagement, sharing information and supporting where required
  • As part of the wider commercial team you may be required to assist on event delivery and to assist the wider team on non-commercial activity on an ad-hoc basis
  • Act as a role model and mentor for other members of the team to ensure that an excellent standard of customer care is provided to CBI members
  • Provide professional sponsorship advice for corporate and directorate projects as well as ‘best practice’ advice for colleagues
  • Take a lead role in identifying and raising issues, opportunities, and in ensuring personal and team performance against the team objectives
  • Take part in cross departmental projects as and when required.

Knowledge and experience

What an individual must know or understand to be able to fulfil the role’s requirements.

  • Educated to degree standard or equivalent (preferably in a business-related subject)
  • 3 to 5 years of experience in Business Development/Sponsorship
  • Able to demonstrate experience of delivering complex and/or high-value partnerships across multiple channels
  • Experience within a membership organisation or trade body would be preferable
  • Strong experience and understanding of the consultative sales approach
  • Excellent knowledge of sponsorships’ role within the marketing mix
  • Experience working closely with marketing, press, social media teams to deliver sponsorship packages
  • Experience of delivering income against targets
  • IT literate with strong knowledge of MS Office packages.
  • An interest in business and current affairs would be beneficial.


The practical actions required to be able to fulfil the role’s requirements.

  • Excellent communication, persuasion, negotiation and presentation skills
  • Excellent project management, organisation and multi-tasking skills
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills with the ability to adapt these to suit audience
  • Excellent rapport building skills, proactive in building networks
  • Self-motivated, solution-focused, resilient with a positive attitude
  • Strong team player with the ability to lead and motivate others to deliver outcomes
  • Commercial awareness with ability to identify risks and opportunities
  • Excellent IT skills
  • An entrepreneurial individual with flair, creativity, and tenacity
  • A sense of humour to counter the inevitable stress of high-profile events.


The behaviours and characteristics required to be able to fulfil the role’s requirements.

  • Collaborative – Listening, seeking views and sharing information; constructively challenging when appropriate.
  • Taking ownership – Ensuring delivery and holding others to account; can influence, irrespective of hierarchy.
  • Agile – Proactive and responsive to provide a strong member service; responding positively to shifting priorities.
  • Commercial – Awareness of the wider business environment.
  • Innovative – Exploring, sharing and integrating best practice; generating new ideas and challenging a mind-set of “what we’ve always done”
  • Analytical – gathering information and using logic to analyse, problem solve, evaluate risk and make decisions.

Equal Opportunity Employer

Our aim is to create prosperity for all! To do that well, we need a workforce that is more representative of the businesses we serve.

We know through experience that different ideas, perspectives and backgrounds create a stronger and more innovative work environment that delivers better results. To support an inclusive environment where employees feel empowered to share their experiences and ideas, we’ve encouraged the creation of a variety of Employee Resource Groups - Women, LGBT+, BAME and Working Families.

We recognise the many benefits flexible working can bring. Many of our employees work flexibly in many different ways, including part-time. Please talk to us at interview about the flexibility you need. We can’t promise to give you exactly what you want, but we do promise not to judge you for asking and will accommodate where possible.

How to apply

Please submit your CV and cover letter to with 'Commercial Partnerships Manager' as the subject.