The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) is recruiting a Secretary General to lead the work of the World Business Organization based in Paris.

ICC is the world’s largest business organization with a network of over 6 million individuals in more than 100 countries. It works to promote international trade, responsible business conduct and a global approach to regulation through a unique mix of advocacy and standard setting activities—together with its world-leading dispute resolution services.

ICC is the leading voice of global business on the international stage. In 2017, ICC became the first private sector organization to be granted Observer Status at the United Nations General Assembly and has major roles in other intergovernmental forums and processes.

Reporting to ICC’s Executive Board, the Secretary General is responsible for the strategic leadership of this unique global organization—from day-to-day governance through to external representation with the highest-levels of government and business.

ICC seeks a dynamic chief executive who has successfully led a major international business, organization or initiative—ideally with extensive experience working with multilateral organizations on economic policy issues.

The position – main responsibilities

The Secretary General is the chief executive of an international organization comprising a professional secretariat of over 200 permanent staff (primarily based at the international headquarters in Paris, France) and a global membership network. The mandate for this complex, multi-faceted role can be divided into four broad categories:

External voice:

  • Act as a powerful advocate for business on the global stage with heads of state and international policy-setting organizations.


  • Continually strengthen the engagement and support of the ICC Executive Board and membership.
  • Secure the support of and resources from members, some of which are represented by the CEOs of major global corporations.
  • Create stability within the governance framework of the executive function and undertake succession planning.

Network Relations:

  • Maintain a mutually beneficial relationship among ICC’s constituent parts and between ICC and its global network, including national committees, the World Chambers Federation, policy commissions, regional consultative groups, the International Court of Arbitration, ICC’s affiliates and ICC’s Commercial Crime Services division.
  • Develop the membership network to be representative of the international business community, with each national committee being self-sufficient and able to represent the organization.

Organizational Leadership:

  • Ensure the successful management of ICC’s core activities: (services to the membership, arbitration, policy advocacy and rules-writing).
  • Drive performance and ensure the strategy and preeminence of ICC products and services.

Act as a change-agent to strengthen the effectiveness of ICC work and the success of ICC products and services.

  • Prioritize issues on which ICC can make a distinctive contribution to global policy-setting.
  • Inspire and lead an engaged, high-performing global team within a complex organization.
  • Maintain a sustainable business model with diverse and new revenue streams.


Candidate profile


ICC seeks a dynamic chief executive who has successfully led a major international business and engaged with major multilateral or civil society organizations that govern or facilitate international trade and investment. This candidate must be a serving Chief Executive Officer, Managing Director or equivalent.

This candidate must have demonstrated strong interpersonal and communication skills, respected leadership capabilities and a proven track record of success in business and in global and/or regional international affairs and possess high-level, global relationships – ideally in both the private and public sectors.

To ensure credibility in this role, the candidate must have a proven track record of success as CEO of a private sector entity, be abreast of the relevant policy and regulatory issues and have a strong grasp of global trade and investment policy and international public policy issues that affect international business. This position will require a proven ability to represent an organization as a compelling advocate, to articulate strategic responses and build consensus among its various (internal & external) stakeholders.

The successful candidate must also have strong diplomatic and interpersonal skills, and a record of respect for diversity and experience in leading a diverse work environment.

Excellent communication skills (in English and ideally other languages) are also required, as is the ability to travel extensively.


Candidates for this role should demonstrate the following competencies:

  • Results Orientation: ICC requires a leader who has successfully led and created high performing, effective private sector and non private sector organizations that deliver clear, meaningful results for their clients and against stakeholder objectives. This includes ensuring financial health and maintaining relevant, value-added products and services. ICC operates in a dynamic environment that requires continuously changing levels of activity and support. Candidates must demonstrate that they have driven transformative change to meet this standard.
  • Collaboration and Influencing: ICC has many constituents and interacts with an extraordinary range of stakeholders. Candidates must be able to build cross-sector relationships, influence at the highest levels, and be perceived as the highly valued ambassador of the organization.
  • Strategic Orientation: The successful candidate must be ICC’s long-term thought leader. This requires a high level of global business awareness as it relates to international public policy, as well as the ability to integrate broad-based information, and develop the strategic direction and pathways for the organization. Candidates must demonstrate deep involvement in developing and implementing the strategic direction and pathways for their past and current organizations.
  • Team Leadership: ICC is a lean organization with over 200 permanent staff and a senior executive staff of seven person working daily with the Secretary General. The team is highly credentialed and thus it is critical to empower and strengthen the senior team, by inspiring and allowing them to develop as high performers in a complex and fast-moving environment. Strong talent management and people development skills are essential in this role.


Terms and conditions

Location: The position is located in Paris, France.

Compensation: The remuneration package will be set at a level to be attractive to the most qualified candidate.

Start date: April 2018


How to apply

Applications, consisting of a full CV and a cover letter should be submitted electronically to the selection committee at: ICCSG_applications@iccwbo.org.

Closing date for applications: 24 November 2017


Candidate briefing – About ICC

The organization:

The International Chamber of Commerce (“ICC”) is the world business organization, a representative body that speaks with authority on behalf of enterprises from all sectors, of all sizes, and in every part of the world.

The vision of ICC is a world where peace, sustainable economic growth and shared prosperity are underpinned by rules-based, open multilateral trade and investment.

The mission of ICC is to promote open, rules-based multilateral trade and investment, the market economy system, sustainable economic growth, responsible business conduct, and a global approach to regulation. These objectives are pursued through a combination of policy advocacy, practical tools and rule-setting activities by business, including world-leading dispute resolution services.

ICC’s conviction that trade is a powerful force for peace and prosperity dates from the organization’s origins early in the 20th century. In December 2016, the United Nations (UN) General Assembly granted Observer Status to ICC recognizing its contribution to global development.

As the International Headquarters for a network of companies and business associations including chambers of commerce representing around six million companies in more than 130 countries and territories, ICC advocates for policies that open markets to trade and investment by companies, and provides products and services to help companies compete in a global and increasingly complex economy. It is the international leader in the field of commercial dispute resolution, principally through the International Court of Arbitration.

The International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (“the Court”) is the world’s leading and most trusted arbitration institution. The Court, operating under the ICC Rules of Arbitration, assists parties from jurisdictions all over the world to resolve disputes. The ICC International Centre for ADR has developed a full range of other dispute resolution rules and services for international commerce.

ICC works with its members through a global network of national committees that bring together ICC member companies, business associations, chambers of commerce, law firms and individuals. The national committees represent the voice of global business to their respective national governments and act as permanent liaisons between ICC members and the International Secretariat in Paris. They provide access to national governments and advocate in their regions on issues addressed under the ICC mandate. They also inform ICC on issues and views affecting their business constituencies, ensuring that national business concerns are considered in the formulation of ICC policy recommendations to governments and international organizations.

Global business policy advocacy constitutes a major part of ICC’s work and is centered on promoting international trade and investment and enabling companies to meet the challenges and opportunities of an integrated global economy. ICC engages in regulatory diplomacy through its official status with the United Nations and with other intergovernmental organizations, including the World Trade Organization, and works with other international forums, such as the G20 and others. ICC represents the international business community on matters of public policy and generates effective solutions to collective global challenges on issues that have grown beyond resolution by national governments or individual companies.

ICC formulates policy recommendations as well as business rules and codes by a process of consultation with member companies through specialized working bodies known as Commissions. These Commissions are composed of business experts who examine major issues of relevance to international business. The Commissions prepare policy products, including statements that contribute to intergovernmental discussions as well as rules and codes to facilitate international business transactions. They make policy recommendations and write rules in areas that include arbitration, banking, commercial law, competition, corporate responsibility and anti-corruption, customs and trade facilitation, the digital economy, environment and energy, intellectual property, marketing and advertising, taxation, and trade and investment policy.

Through the ICC World Chambers Federation (WCF) – ICC’s worldwide forum for chambers of commerce – ICC fosters interaction and exchange of best practice among chambers all over the world. WCF strengthens links between chambers, enabling them to improve their performance and develop new products and services to offer to their members.

ICC is governed by a World Council composed of delegates from the national committees and an Executive Board composed of senior business leaders, and chaired by the ICC Chair, currently Sunil Bharti Mittal, who- together with Honorary Chairman Mr Harold McGraw III, First Vice Chairman Mr John W.H. Denton, and the Vice-Chairs constitute the ICC Chairmanship responsible for overseeing ICC. The Chairmanship works closely with the Secretary General, who is responsible for the overall performance of ICC. The Secretary General and the Chair are the organization’s main ambassadors to the global community of international organizations, governments, and companies. While the Chair’s position rotates on a two-year basis and is a non-executive role, the Secretary General is an executive position intended to provide longer-term stability for both strategy and execution against ICC’s long-term mandates.

The current Secretary General has decided to leave his position, ICC seeks a successor as of April 2018.