Chief Executive

November 11, 2023

Job Description

Job title: Chief Executive

Company: The Bookseller

Job description: The Society of Authors (SoA) is a UK trade union for authors, illustrators, scriptwriters, literary translators and other writers at all stages of their careers. We have been advising members and promoting writers’ interests since 1884.

With 33 staff, the SoA provides unlimited, free advice on all aspects of their work to over 12,400 members, including confidential, clause-by-clause vetting of publishing agreements. We offer members ongoing support and professional development through our publications, as well as through training opportunities, events, conferences, special interest groups and community networks in person and online.

We campaign on issues of professional interest, and lobby the creative industries and government departments, to secure and protect our members’ rights and livelihoods. We manage 15 charities which provide prizes and grants to authors, and act for over 50 literary estates.


Our Chief Executive is retiring after 13 years in this role. We are looking for the next person to lead our experienced personnel in a strategic approach to supporting authors. As the creative industries face the challenges of continuing change, ensuring that creativity, creative work and free speech are defended and valued is central to the SoA’s work.

Ideally, candidates will have significant experience in publishing, broadcasting or another creative industry. This role includes building collaborative and productive relationships with our partners to expand our collective reach and impact. Understanding the unique nature of authors’ relationships with publishers, producers and others, as well as the realities of freelance careers is essential.

The successful candidate will have experience leading a small organisation. We are looking for strong interpersonal skills when working with our friendly and supportive departments, including project management and delegation, as well as personnel management and dispute resolution when required. Candidates should be familiar with the financial management of organisations of this size. Experience with charitable organisations and the duties of trustees will be an asset.

The SoA looks to tackle structural discrimination and prejudice, and to increase inclusivity at all levels. The successful candidate will be committed to equity, diversity, and inclusion.

Further details about this role are in the Candidate Pack on our website.


As a progressive and ethical not-for-profit organisation, we offer a range of benefits to support your physical, mental and financial well-being and positive work-life integration. We’re London Living Wage Accredited and Disability Confident – Committed.

  • Competitive salary
  • Flexible, hybrid working practices
  • Family-friendly, disability confident, inclusive culture
  • Generous annual leave, including all bank holidays
  • Pension plan
  • Private healthcare
  • Death-in-service benefit
  • Employee assistance programme
  • Employee perks scheme
  • Interest-free annual travel card loan
  • Cycle to work scheme
  • Office closure over Christmas


Please go to the ‘Work for Us’ page of our website, where you will find the . Once you have read this, please send us your CV, and a personal statement which demonstrates how your skills and experience will meet our requirements (max. 2 x A4 pages).

If any part of the application process is not accessible to you, please let us know at

If you have further questions, please contact Katharine King at

The closing date for applications is: Friday 10 November 2023 First round interviews will be carried out remotely during November with final interviews in person at our offices at Bedford Row during December.

We aim to make an appointment by 31 December. The successful candidate will start work at a mutually agreed date in early 2024 and no later than April.

Salary Bracket and Location

Role: Chief Executive

Job type: Permanent, full-time

Location: London, Holborn (flexible, hybrid working possible)

Basic hours: 35 hours per week

Remuneration: £60,000 – £85,000 (depending on skills and experience) + Benefits

Expected salary: £60000 – 85000 per year

Location: Holborn, Central London

Job date: Wed, 25 Oct 2023 01:24:02 GMT

Apply for the job now!