Como Park Zoo and Conservatory


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Horticulture Curator

Job Title

Horticulture Curator

Job Qualifications

Technical Expertise

1. Demonstrates an expert level understanding of the full range of principles, terminology, techniques, and procedures of the science of horticulture, including botany, genetics, and plant physiology and pathology. Applies standards and principles to the cultural and educational resources of the Como Park Zoo and Conservatory.
2. Demonstrates an understanding of diverse landscape design methods applied or typically used in a northern climate, and the needs of the specialty display gardens and zoo exhibitory. Provides expert level management of diverse botanical collections.
3. Demonstrates an advanced ability to coordinate the programmatic functions of education, research, outreach, and marketing.
4. Demonstrates an understanding of the full range of federal, state, and local laws, rules, regulations, manufacturer specifications, education standards, policies, and procedures governing the horticulture field.
5. Demonstrates an understanding of and ability to use a range of current and modern job-related equipment, tools, computer hardware, software applications and best practices. Trains others in using current technology best practices and how to research and implement new technology.
6. Demonstrates an expert ability to identify, minimize, and resolve the full range of operational issues, risks, and liabilities associated with horticulture work. Analyzes consequences and takes effective and appropriate action. Refers potential problems to management and the City Attorney’s Office as appropriate.

Decision Making & Problem Solving

7. Demonstrates an ability to develop plans and resolve the most difficult and complex work problems.
8. Demonstrates an ability to meet deadlines, define, measure, and evaluate project and program results. Prioritizes and sets deadlines for own work and the work of others.
9. Demonstrates an ability to analyze community trends, demographics, and emerging industry innovation to plan strategically. Applies analytical skills to understand, compile, and analyze data and reports.
10. Demonstrates an expert level ability to identify potential problems and resolve conflict using varied interpersonal methods. Discerns when and with whom to consult and collaborate within the organization in solving problems. Asks questions and uses creative problem-solving strategies when resolving issues.
11. Demonstrates analytical skills required to compile and analyze data and prepare reports easily understood by the intended audience.
12. Demonstrates an ability to develop, prepare, implement, and maintain a section budget and manage the associated funds. Identifies opportunities and assists in the preparation of grant proposals.


13. Demonstrates an ability to effectively listen, speak, write, and interact tactfully and professionally in both a work and public setting. Communicates instructions and information in a clear, concise manner.
14. Demonstrates an understanding and respect for the diversity of customers and coworkers and an ability to effectively communicate with large and small groups and in one-on-one situations.
15. Demonstrates effective meeting facilitation skills, public speaking, presentation skills, and an ability to interface with local media. Produces written and visual materials that are easily understood by the intended audience or reader.
16. Demonstrates cultural competency in communicating with people from different cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds. Exhibits effective interactions with people from all cultures and responds respectfully in manner that preserves the dignity of individuals, families, and communities.

Teamwork, Leadership & Management

17. Demonstrates an advanced understanding of the Como Park Zoo and Conservatory mission and values and the priorities, goals, and objectives. Understands the roles, responsibilities, and expectations of effectively desired results.
18. Demonstrates an ability to effectively advance the mission of the Como Park Zoo and Conservatory. Represents Como Park Zoo and Conservatory with organizations such as horticulture groups, national, professional, and scientific organizations, government and community organizations, and the media.
19. Demonstrates an ability to articulate and implement the strategic vision and mission of the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory and expand its profile as a cultural and educational resource. Works collaboratively with campus staff and partners to promote the visibility of the Como Park Zoo and Conservatory in the Midwest region.
20. Demonstrates an advanced ability to set expectations and evaluate performance. Provides training, coaching, and mentoring; selects employees best suited for assignments, manages employee development; and aligns staff development with department succession planning strategies. Effectively communicates performance expectations to employees and addresses performance issues.
21. Demonstrates effective membership and leadership of a work group through encouraging individual participation, being supportive of staff and the group decision making process, and managing conflict.

Customer Service

22. Demonstrates an ability to establish customer service standards. Serves as a positive example of providing good customer service and implements improvements to customer service standards as necessary. Communicates and trains others in the application of these standards to improve customer service delivery.
23. Demonstrates a commitment to continuously evaluate and improve customer service. Coordinates staff and facilities to meet the request of internal and external customers.
24. Demonstrates an understanding of and respect for the diversity of customers, coworkers, and supervisors, including individuals with disability or whose first language may be one other than English.

Education and Experience

A Bachelor’s degree in horticulture, floriculture, or a related field, and six years of experience in the propagation, planting, culture, arrangement, and exhibition of a wide variety of ornamental flowers and plants. Three years of the experience must have involved managing public gardens, such as a conservatory, botanical, landscape arboretum, or zoological gardens. The experience must meet the following requirements:

Progressively responsible experience supervising a team
Involvement in budget development

Must have a Minnesota Department of Agriculture Non-Commercial Pesticide Applicator License (written tests part A and E) within six months of the date of appointment.

Position Application