Head of People @NEARprotocol


Zug, Switzerland Remote

Full time


Jan 13

This job is no longer accepting applications.

Zug (CH), Berlin (GER), Remote


The NEAR project is unlike anything else out there -- it combines the collaborative community of an open-source project with aspects of developer platforms like Amazon's AWS. This provides a unique opportunity for a visionary people leader: you will not just help the NEAR Foundation to build and support its internal team, but you will be a vital part of creating cultural initiatives which echo throughout the ecosystem and affect potentially thousands of participants. In that way, there is both the scrappy culture of a startup and the impact of a large enterprise or a cultural movement.

About NEAR and the NEAR Collective

NEAR's purpose is to enable community-driven innovation to benefit people around the world and its mission is to drive the adoption of Open Technologies. The NEAR platform provides a decentralized application platform that is secure enough to manage high value assets like money or identity and performant enough to make them useful for everyday people, putting the power of Open Finance and the Open Web in their hands.

The NEAR platform, NEAR Protocol, and associated tooling are being built by the NEAR Collective, a collection of the best engineers in the world who work across teams, companies and countries similar to other large scale open source projects. Core contributors include a couple of 2-time ICPC world champions, 4 gold medalists, a Latin American champion and multiple other competitive programming finalists.

About the NEAR Foundation

The NEAR Foundation is a nonprofit, non-beneficiary foundation based in Switzerland which supports community-driven innovation and the Open Web with a specific focus on the NEAR platform. The Foundation distributes grant funding into the NEAR ecosystem, coordinates governance among participants, educates people about the protocol and ensures that relationships among the community members are as strong and sustainable as the apps they build. It seeks to combine the inclusive care of a community-driven NGO with the at-scale effectiveness of a Silicon Valley startup.

The Role

As the NEAR Foundation's Head of People, you will occupy this driver's seat position for both the organization and the ecosystem. At the NF, we are building the team rapidly across every part of our global footprint. We also support the developers and entrepreneurs of the NEAR ecosystem along their respective journeys as much as we can. Our goal is to create an inclusive ecosystem where its members grow, learn and collaborate together rather than operate in silos.

To achieve the first part of this, you will need to extend and augment the NF's existing people operations to handle the scale at which we need to operate. That includes managing the sourcing and hiring of both executive and individual contributors to support core operational, marketing, community and education functions. You will also own the implementation of programs which support the culture of the ecosystem as a whole, including everything from skills training to events. Basically, your mission is to make everyone working not just within the NEAR Foundation but on the NEAR platform to wake up each day excited to be a part of this interconnected community.

Because people are the lifeblood of this team and project, you will have full access to the resources and people you need to facilitate your mission. You will be expected to own the result and do whatever it takes to get there, including laying out a roadmap and building out your own team along the way. You will be a visible face of the NEAR ecosystem and will interact frequently with the teams and individuals which comprise it.

To be successful, you will need to bring the unlikely combination of 3 things:

  1. A strong and creative vision for building a world class, people-focused, open source culture
  2. Experience building, leading and managing teams which are people-first but also highly effective and operational
  3. Familiarity with the zeitgeist of the blockchain and developer-focused open source communities

Key Outcomes

  1. Implementation of a clear people and culture plan for the NF and ecosystem
  2. The NF hires the best people quickly for all open positions
  3. The ecosystem attracts and retains the best talent in the world
  4. There are clear pathways for community contributors to uplevel themselves and move from casual contribution to more formal levels of engagement with organizations in the ecosystem.


This is a senior-level position which requires someone who combines the experience of working in successful technology ventures with the scrappiness of someone who understands startups and the open source communities we support. Specifically:

  1. 8+ years of experience working in people operations, recruiting, human resources and similar roles which required you to own both the sourcing and optimization of world class talent.
  2. Demonstrated ability to build world class teams and create strong cultures in large organizations.
  3. Excellent communication skills, particularly in English.


This is a full-time, partially remote position with the NEAR Foundation. Preference will be given for candidates located in Switzerland or Germany.

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