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3 people found this helpful  

If you came to contribute to making the world a better place, you may be more effective elsewhere.

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

I have been working at The World Bank full-time (more than 5 years)

Pros

Mandate and unique role in the global development.
Benefits
International travel
Potential resources for individual projects
Potential to affect large scale impact.
In various countries, the bank has enormous influence and often have a seat at the table.
Some incredibly interesting and talented people.
Some incredibly insights that few people in the world are privy to.

Cons

Culture: at it's worse -hierarchical, politics dominates, cronyism, rent seeking behavior, and even bullying, sexicism and racial insensitivity.

Institutional behavior: top down, top heavy and not open to change, nor dissent. Incentives encourage individualistic behavior to the extent where development and country objectives become secondary to the priorities of furthering the individual's own interests - particularly persistent amongst those who have made being 'a banker' their career objectives vs development. Particularly noxious when these people get promoted to or are in high levels of the organization.

Professional development: non existent in the substance - flows from the persistence of individualistic behavior. No incentives for mentoring and team work, and the environment can get close to predatory - people stealing ideas, taking projects, blocking projects, creating obstacles or using other people's work in their name to further their own careers.

Lack of strategic forethought as to how to manage and develop teams, people and resources. Reverts to cronynism, reputational effects and gossip. Opportunities given along those factors (vs merit or skills).

Inflexible and bureaucratic: In reality, being able to process product through the institution takes more precedence than developing the project idea. Lots of paper pushing.

Some incredibly incompetent, and unprofessional people: Some, just plainly there for the benefits and taking the bank for a ride.

Lots of talking and not enough doing.

Accepting the Status Quo: having to accept: 'this is just the way it is', the wasted opportunities, the waste of resources, the misuse of people's skills and talents, the departure of talented people, the irrationality and the frustration in a non-merit based world, the potential to be better faster more dynamic in fulfilling the mission - and not doing it. If your heart is in the right place to do development, the institution may well break that heart.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Look at how staff resources are utilized, how to effectively leverage those resources and align behavior toward a common goal. The institution system serves the objective, not the other way around. Everything in the institution ought to be so to make development happen - from IT to procurement to every consultant hired. Every chain links to another chain, and everybody in that chain needs to respond with solutions, rather than barriers, and everybody needs to work together - and not as individual careerists. Everybody in the entire institution ought to understand what our mission is, and why what they do contribute to that mission.

Not a great idea to replace a matrix with another matrix, or a set of thematic strategies with another set of strategies, or replace one set of cronies with another set of cronies - the objective of reducing poverty hasn't changed for all of time. The objective is clear.

What needs to change is the efficacy of the institution to implement, respond and address the needs of developing countries. This requires an internal look at the incentive structure, processes, management and working culture of this institution as well as look externally as to what are some solutions to incentivize team work, better staff utilization and improve efficiency, and at the end of the day, actually adopt the real change that this institution needs.

Doesn't Recommend
Negative Outlook
No opinion of CEO

302 Other Employee Reviews for The World Bank (View Most Recent)

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  1.  

    Has been a good place to work over the years, but lately, the changes and old thinking are holding it back

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Information Analyst in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Information Analyst in Washington, DC

    I worked at The World Bank full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    good benefits, and multi-cultural environment. Contributing to a good cause. Work is rewarding.

    Cons

    doesn't promote telework or flex time. not a 9-5 job. No work-life balance.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    management needs to be more flexible in their thinking and management styles.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great organization but no chances to improve your contract

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

    I have been working at The World Bank as a contractor (more than an year)

    Pros

    Multicultural environment, interesting projects, great people to work with

    Cons

    Until 15 years ago, end of the 90s, it was easier to get an extended term or at least an open ended contract, but now you stuck in the organization as a consultant for years, and when there are open staff positions it seems they are only for internal people working already with an F or G level. Consultants are treated like staff, as they should work only 3 days per week but in the end they are always there, and get no benefits at all.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    More possibilities to young people and to consultants to grow up into the organizations, especially when they reach already 2 years of consultancy with no health insurance, no benefits.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO
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