Management Sciences for Health

www.msh.org
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Management Sciences for Health Reviews

Updated January 6, 2015
Updated January 6, 2015
10 Reviews
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Management Sciences for Health President Jonathan Quick
Jonathan Quick
10 Ratings

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  1. 8 people found this helpful  

    Awful. Do not even consider working here.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Management Sciences for Health

    Pros

    4 weeks of vacation, generally better work life balance than the for-profit world (although this varies based on function), younger staff are nice and approachable.

    Cons

    Leadership is ineffective and nonexistent. They've been trying to find a new VP of business development for months and nobody seems to want the job, which is no wonder considering the poor quality of proposals lately and the declining reputation of MSH. The CEO and COO are totally ineffective. They both seem clueless and don't seem to understand their jobs. Also, the CEO recently announced that he's taking a 5 month "sabbatical" away from the company. Excuse me? Sabbatical? You mean paid vacation? The fact that a CEO needs a "sabbatical" should cause one to question whether or not he should be the CEO.

    Internally, this place is a mess. There are quite a lot of very senior, highly paid people who don't do very much but are kept around because they're friendly with someone important. At the same time, opportunities for junior staff are very limited, and staff are not encouraged to advance themselves. People often get trapped here, railroaded into a specific function. The organization is not structured efficiently, and although there have been steps taken to fix this, it is still a major problem and will continue to be for the foreseeable future.

    There is very little direction, and it is very apparent that the senior leadership have no idea what they're doing. They have failed to run a viable business, and have turned a once-thriving and vibrant culture into a workplace with low morale and poor performance.

    My supervisor does not communicate well with me and my colleagues, which creates an unnecessarily difficult and stressful work environment. I feel very isolated, and have no expectation that anyone would support me if I had an issue. My supervisor is not an advocate for me - this is a theme in keeping with the pervasive trend at MSH.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If you aren't able to nurture a positive culture while leading with clear direction and purpose, step aside and let someone else try. Personally, I think you are all in way over your head, but unfortunately the board is too removed from the company to understand this.

    There are some good building blocks here if senior management was able to take advantage of them. There are plenty of people who want to make this place better, and have good ideas on how to do that, but they are never heard from.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 8 people found this helpful  

    The most toxic environment I've seen in my career

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cambridge, MA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cambridge, MA

    I worked at Management Sciences for Health full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    - Interesting, challenging work
    - Truly global - people in the field and those who cycle through headquarters
    - Good work goes on "in the field"

    Cons

    In my career, I have not encountered a nastier, more miserable group of people. Founded with a noble mission, they have strayed far from their roots. Headquarters-led efforts to drive increased performance, compete in a competitive world, and build efficient systems and processes have largely been failures, and in the process they have lost their humanity.
    - Political, nasty, backstabbing work culture
    - Headquarters ivory tower, isolated and insensitive to good work that goes on in the field
    - Availability expected during evenings, weekends, vacations
    - Individual rewards based on favoritism rather than performance
    - Lack of career advancement opportunities for middle-level or senior-level professionals
    - Weak, competitive, and unaligned senior team
    - They have burned out and pushed out many high-quality professionals. However, everyone I know is happier after they've left.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Change only comes from the top - the very top. Nothing will change until the CEO or COO goes.

    Doesn't Recommend
  3. 8 people found this helpful  

    Management is AWOL

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Management Sciences for Health full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Interesting work; opportunities for telecommuting - some of the time

    Cons

    For an organisation that promotes the so-called 'tao of leadership' this one doesn't have any. Senior management is completely AWOL. High ups from head office in Boston rarely darken the doors of the Arlington office and if they do they never leave their offices. The CEO has just announced a new policy of sabbaticals for the 'senior leadership team' and his way of leading is to be the first to take four months off - at a really critical time for the organisation's future - which doesn't say much for the judgement of either him or the board. Morale is appalling; HR is inept and obstructionist (and behaves like a core function instead of a support dept); the quality of the product is declining. Sad to see what was once a good organisation reduced to such a state by the ineptitude of an ego-driven management team who really have no idea of what goes on in the trenches.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Find a CEO with vision and commitment, and the wherewithal to really lead. Get poor performers out of senior positions and put in people who can get the job done. Stop treating the staff as if they are stupid and cant see beyond the ends of their noses. The organisation could be terrific, but at this rate is going to go out backwards .

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 11 people found this helpful  

    A great public health organization... in its own mind.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Management Sciences for Health full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good vacation time (if you can take it) and good 401K contributions.

    Cons

    The name, "Management Sciences..." is a joke. Management is clueless - many don't know how to manage staff or are put in charge of departments they know nothing about and yet feel entitled to dismiss input from staff with proven experience. Leadership knows (has stated!) certain departments and staff are mistreated and clearly doesn't care as nothing is done. Rewards mediocrity, penalizes hard workers that try to make a difference. Long-term "technical staff" are frequently unprofessional at best, rude and abuse at worst (yelling, harrassing, slamming doors) - both to new and/or younger colleagues as well as external stakeholders. High turnover as a result, including those leaving for lower salaries just to get away. Organizational ego is incredible. A lot of thinking that external criticism is flawed rather than assessing and revising strategies to improve performance. As a result, donors have closed several projects early or shifted the funding from MSH to another organization, yet MSH maintains its "we're the best, there's nothing wrong with us" mentality.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Let go of the ego. Start treating staff fairly and thinking about the future, instead of favoring "old friends" and clinging to the past.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 10 people found this helpful  

    Dilbert Lives at MSH

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Management Sciences for Health full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    MSH is a good place to work early in your career. There is a lot of opportunity to learn and to grow. There are a lot of experienced and knowledgeable staff from whom to learn. The best thing about compensation is the company contribution and match to the 401(k).

    Cons

    The review from September 25th is a joke. The C-Suite (CEO, COO) probably wrote it themselves or instructed the new communications/change management person to write it and post it. The "few bad apples" are people who genuinely care about the mission but are frustrated by MSH's leader and his inability to articulate answers to any of a number of critical questions, such as why the two dozen organizational changes in the process of rolling out right now and distracting staff are beneficial to the organization at a time when MSH is not winning new work; why the measurement that MSH applies to its client work in terms of impact and benefit is not applied to the changes being considered internally, or why MSH spent over $600k on one management consulting firm last year and will probably spend even more this year. You can see this on MSH's most recent IRS 990.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop trying to find the "few bad apples" and consider that the issues are real and need to be addressed.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 7 people found this helpful  

    Sinking Ship

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Program Officer in Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Program Officer in Arlington, VA

    I have been working at Management Sciences for Health full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    There are flexible working hours and management is not strict about leave/vacation days..

    Cons

    no structure. every depart is siloed with their processes. no room for professional development (even senior staff jump ship after a brief stay) and most manager's have no sense of time management.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    we dont win many bids because of lack of planning and sending appropriate & qualified staff for pre-positioning.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 8 people found this helpful  

    Indecision, Paralysis and Failure to Launch

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Leadership Position
    Current Employee - Leadership Position

    I have been working at Management Sciences for Health full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    MSH does a world of good with a strong presence in global health. The organization has established itself as one of the leading development assistance organizations and has been awarded numerous contracts by USAID.

    Cons

    Leadership operates by consensus and has little power over the numerous section leaders within the organization. The decision-making process is not only convoluted, but it is as transparent as the governments that they serve in the developing world. Relying largely on historic methodologies and approaches to systemic problems in global health, MSH has lost its edge. If innovation and out of the box thinking is required to shape healthcare systems, it is not at all likely that this organization has anything to offer.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Shake up the organization or wake up. The tired old approaches of yesteryear will not lead to the momentum that you need to serve the new client going forward. Leadership needs to change and a new perspective is needed in order to foster growth. If you keep looking where you have always looked for ideas to solve new problems, you will not move forward. Donors will soon realize that this stodgy old firm cannot take them where they need to go.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    chief representative

    Current Employee - Chief Representative in Jakarta (Indonesia)
    Current Employee - Chief Representative in Jakarta (Indonesia)

    I have been working at Management Sciences for Health full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    I like the issues that we work. It is very challenging and have a great network

    Cons

    the challenge comes from management team.. Technically I do not have a big challenge but it can be updated through increasing capacity building

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    great burden and responsibility should be followed with great appreciation and adequate salary.

  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    Programme Associate-kenya

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Program Associate in Nairobi (Kenya)
    Former Employee - Program Associate in Nairobi (Kenya)

    I worked at Management Sciences for Health full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    good pay and benefits and generally good terms of employment.

    Cons

    terrible work environment, extremely bad

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    stop tribalism

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 3 people found this helpful  

    The mission is great, and means well. However, in practice, it's the worst organization at implementing.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Management Sciences for Health

    Pros

    Fair amount of vacation days. However, this includes days that are floating holidays and basically forced vacation. We all need to get the vacations approved anyway.

    Cons

    For an organization that preaches leadership and development, they sure do a terrible job of it. Senior managers that many do not respect are permitted to continue doing things that do not work and poorly manage people. It's no wonder everyone keeps leaving this organization. No professional growth for junior or mid-level professionals.We are all forced to put together a PPRD that is completely pointless and the merit increase was 2%, which isn't even enough to cover the cost of living adjustment. They argue this has to do with being a non-profit organization, and yet funds are mis-managed during everyday business.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    people do not always approve of senior management at the director to C-level but are afraid toi truthfully express their concerns. Open your eyes to see what is going on! We should not have to tell you any of this. Just because individuals have been with the organization for many years does not mean they are effective leaders.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

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