Counterpart International

  www.counterpart.org
  www.counterpart.org

Counterpart International Reviews

Updated June 26, 2014
Updated June 26, 2014
12 Reviews
2.6
12 Reviews
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Joan C. Parker
8 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Good place to work

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

    I have been working at Counterpart International as a contractor

    Pros

    Friendly staff, quiet environment, multi-cultural staff

    Cons

    very fast working pace in finance department. Due to the department location(small corner on first floor), not very great working environment

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    incredible people doing important work

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

    I have been working at Counterpart International full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    one of the more genuine international NGOs interested in the actual work as opposed to how much money they're going to bring in. willing to take new approaches and ask tough questions if it's going to help the work have greater results. many returning professionals (alumni) are making the organization find its core.

    Cons

    transitions have taken their toll on the organizations, and with too many new people (especially at senior leadership level) they think they're going to fix everything. there is a strong history in this organization. senior leadership doesn't put forward behaviors and messaging that supports the culture of the organization. certain units are not transparent and open--that's a morale killer for everyone.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    keep on the new strategy work. it's exciting and keeps us in the staff going forward. reward good behavior, but more importantly keep executives accountable around the same standards--unprofessional communication should not be tolerated from anyone.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 2 people found this helpful  

    Good place to start a career, but glad I'm out now

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

    I worked at Counterpart International full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Young staff are exposed to a lot of different work which beefs up the resume.
    Lots of opportunities to get involved in different teams and projects.
    Generally friendly environment.

    Cons

    Interns used as program assistants (with the full responsibility that entails) and as receptionists!
    Overall low morale due to layoffs, lack of transparency from upper management, and lack of direction set for the organization.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Make a decision on what Counterpart is going to be and stick with it! Then focus on retaining the hard-working staff you've been ignoring the past few years!

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5.  

    Great mission and great people. Yeah, the sector is changing fast, so Counterpart is going through some big changes.

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

    I have been working at Counterpart International full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Like the direction we are going. I love the people. Very family friendly. I see lots of opportunities for me. I like that some of the weaker folks have left - yea, they didn't like the changes.

    Cons

    Hit a rough patch in 2013. It seems to have made the organization stronger - but still early days. We lost some good people - very sad - but also lost some dead wood.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep up the internal transfers between countries and invest more in staff learning.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    My experience at Counterpart provided opportunity for growth, but not for all and not in a direct, well-understood path.

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

    I have been working at Counterpart International full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Professional relationships with colleagues, international travel experience, reasonably good benefits (but also keeping in mind it is an NGO).

    Cons

    Management - lack of communication of vision and direction of firm
    Turnover - Many people leaving for a multitude of reasons that are not fully understood
    Compensation - Pay is relatively non-competitive when compared to other development firms, and the broader market as a whole. This is true at all levels of management.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be as open and transparent to staff not only about the opportunities at the firm, but also the challenges it faces and provide motivation to those who remain to keep their spirits up that the company is in fact moving in the right direction.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Organization suffers from instability and ongoing flux

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Technical Advisor in Arlington, VA
    Former Employee - Technical Advisor in Arlington, VA

    I worked at Counterpart International full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Generally, co-workers are great - very supportive, dedicated, and willing to work long hours to achieve results

    Cons

    Pick a direction and stick with it - constantly changing and reorganizing the structure adds unnecessary stress and confusion.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    From friends at Counterpart that I have remained in touch with, I would advise management to stop adding senior level positions. This will not solve the problems, will only result in top-heavy structure that is not responsive to the needs of those in the field who are doing the work on a daily basis.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8.  

    They've been hemorrhaging talent the past year!

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

    I have been working at Counterpart International full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Depending on which team you work on, work-life balance can be good, and family-friendly management allow for maternity leave and an understanding that someone has to leave at a specific time to pick up kids at childcare/school.

    Cons

    Talent has been jumping ship the past two years. There was rapid unsustainable growth a few years ago (with rampant overspending), and then a rift to let people go. Many staff members feel overburdened with no help in sight to even replace people who have left. Morale is completely in the dumps. There is no sense of leadership whatsoever. Managers are hired or promoted with zero training in management. The organization always seems to be fixing problems of the past, while creating new problems that will have to be fixed a few years from now. The organization has been, and continues to suffer, with a personal identity crisis, not clear on who it wants to be. And, finally, HR is the worst I've ever witnessed, completely non-transparent, and creates and amends policies ad hoc to suit their needs (or the needs of a few favored employees) without ever even conveying changes to existing policies. This is a serious hurdle for any advancement in the organization. HR offers no training whatsoever, is biased, and perceived as non-trustworthy.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Bring back the active participatory leadership who understood what was going on in the programs. Train managers how to manage people. Overhaul the HR department. Focus on improving the retention rate, and applaud those who are clearly overburdened and have been for some time.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9.  

    Typical Government Contractor interested mainly in maximizing expenses

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

    I worked at Counterpart International full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Good Healthcare plan. Retirement plan is useful only if your contract is extended beyond 2 years.

    Cons

    Heavy on senior management. No commitment to projects that might entail innovation or risk. No experience or interest in technology projects. Non-existent IT support. Most decisions driven by an incompetent and disorganized finance and compliance department. Overspends on overhead while frugal on field work. Incapable of managing non-HQ-based employees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Management should learn the jobs of their employees. Focus less on simply "being nice" and take on the real challenges of effectively running projects with real results.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10.  

    Not the best place to work !

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

    I worked at Counterpart International full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    There are very handful of peoples with extensive workign experiences in international development world from whom you can learn several things.

    Cons

    The managment is undoubtedly the worst I have ever come across in my career. Most of the managers got promoted instantly without having any skills or knowledge of how to communicate with your staff and more importantly supervise juinor staff. They treat you as if you know nothing and yet expect you to be a professional in everything. The program development is the worst in the organization where there's no teamwork effort and no courtesy of learning and leading. The organization may give opportunities to international staff in their local offices by promoting new professionals, but in HQ- there is no chance of learning and be appreciated of what you do everyday.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Please recruit qualified managers who have years of experience in their areas of expertise rather than promoting someone who just started as an intern !! In the long run, it has and it will cost the orgnization to loose the very few outstanding in-house professionals. My advice specially to the Program Development team is to learn to respect all staff and be open-minded. Micromanaging often doesn't bring productive results especially when senior officers intimidate juniors ahd harrass them by being a watchdog.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11.  

    not as great as expected

    • 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 Counterpart International full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    great mission
    staff are passionate about the work they do

    Cons

    HR and management challenges. Some staff in managerial positions lack management skills and experience. Staff are overall dissatisfied.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Make sure the staff promote to managerial positions actually have management skills and experience. Improve salaries and base them on experience and put in place a system for advancement within the organization.

    Doesn't Recommend

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