Learning Ally (formerly Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic)

  www.learningally.org
Work in HR? Unlock Free Profile

Learning Ally (formerly Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic) Reviews

Updated Apr 27, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

1.9 15 reviews

15% Approve of the CEO

Learning Ally (formerly Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic) President & CEO Andrew Friedman

Andrew Friedman

(13 ratings)

14% of employees recommend this company to a friend
15 Employee Reviews
Relevance Date Rating
in
    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities

    1 person found this helpful  

    Interesting Job. Great training. Management was lacking

    Development Associate (Current Employee) Hollywood, CA

    ProsProvided training on the job.

    ConsManagement was lackluster and decisions were not handled in a timely manner.

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Can't Believe They're Still in Business

    Volunteer (Former Employee) Philadelphia, PA

    ProsGreat cause - providing much-needed service to people with print disabilities. Staff and volunteers at local recording studios are incredibly committed.

    ConsManagement is horrendous. Upper management draws inflated six-figure salaries while closing recording studios across the country. They demonstrate absolutely no understanding of the nonprofit world and no compassion for staff, volunteers, or the people they serve.

    Advice to Senior ManagementManagement should take significant pay cuts, or, better yet, resign en masse.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

     

    This once-fine organization has entered a death spiral.

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee) Princeton, NJ

    ProsGreat "feel good" mission, laid-back nonprofit culture, prime location.

    ConsAfter failing utterly to adapt to technological and funding trends, the organization has lost over half of its revenue and fired over half of its workforce in response, including many people who have been there for decades. The Senior Management, who have zero nonprofit experience between them, are resorting to increasingly desperate, flailing endeavors to get things on track with increasingly disastrous results. The organization will likely be insolvent in the near future.

    Advice to Senior ManagementIt's likely too late, and you know it. Run.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

  1. We want your feedback – Are these company reviews helpful to you?  Yes | No
    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    Outstanding organization to work for, passionate about the mission

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee) Princeton, NJ

    ProsThis organization cares about career growth and truly listens to their employees. Have felt comfortable since day one, and have had the opportunity to learn from experienced management.

    ConsNot many downsides, may wish to have more collaborative workshops.

    Advice to Senior ManagementWould be beneficial to hold more multi-disciplinary workshops when conceptualizing new products.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

     

    Our Founder would be Sad

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsLearning Ally's founder believed that "Education is a right, not a privilege" and being the driving force of the mission to make all textbooks and literature books accessible to all who are print challenged, was and could still be the best job in the best workplace in the world.

    ConsUsing a for-profit business plan to sustain a non-profit organization. Marketing to the check writer instead of the end user. Moving from the goal of being user friendly for the actual user to slick and pretty in the competitive market. A web site designed for those who diagnose our members, grade our members and live with our members, but not for our members.

    Advice to Senior ManagementTalk with employees, not down to employees. There is value in what we have learned at our level. Downsizing is not the only answer to downturns. It takes a larger community of workers to reach a larger community os users and just 1 VP salary equals the salary of 3 customer serving workers. Sustainability is maintained with a community of workers who take pride in the service they provide and feel valued. Sustainability is not threatened by economic downturns but it is always at risk in hostile work environment and a workplace of incivility and disrespect.
    We could have spent less time with the blind veteran or the frustrated teacher and completed a goal of many more calls each week without cutting our staff and making trained professionals a call center. We just never believed profit was the goal

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    Organization Gaining Ground after a Downturn

    (Current Employee)

    ProsI feel increasingly positive about where Learning Ally is heading after undergoing some tight times and major changes over the past several years. It's a leaner organization now, but individual staff recruiting and team building has been intelligently conducted -- to me, the talent pool is in many respects outstanding; teams are focused on business goals, new production innovations and new ways of serving membership, more than ever before. All of that is noticable lately and bodes well for the future. Management has recognized a need to share more information to staff about our place in the industry, the state of the business, financial performance, strategic and practical planning, etc. Mostly I feel positive about constant improvements in response to member needs; much deeper integration into the community of parents and educators around us; the organization's great service is steadily becoming more widely known to families and schools that can most benefit from it.

    ConsCriticism has been heaped on by several staff who left or were let go; I don't think all of it is fair or grounded in understanding of what is happening in our space and the need for change in order to be sustainable. Many nonprofits are by necessity adapting to new business models and so personal fallout is inevitable, but I regret seeing some of the ad hominem attacks on leadership and think they should be taken with a grain of salt.

    Advice to Senior ManagementCommunicate consistently, courteously and thoroughly.... Try to recognize when 'stretch' goals turn into 'strain' goals; avoid freneticism; keep improving our products and services; seek balance to get the job done for the fiscal year and build bedrock for years to come.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

     

    A good non-profit gone bad!

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsGreat mission with many staff members working hard to try and get help to children in need.

    ConsA senior leadership team who is running the company into the ground. They have lost the original mission of the company and are running as if it were a for profit business.

    Advice to Senior ManagementListen to your staff and customers, pay your employees fairly and provide them with reasonable benefits.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

     

    outstanding mission and dedication but no leadership

    Director (Former Employee) Princeton, NJ

    Prosgreat dedicated volunteers and service oriented staff.

    Consdysfunctional top management not customer or employee focused. Arrogance permeates management. Inability to bond with key federal departments for support. Deliberate vagueness of direction to avoid accountability. Poor ineffective communication.

    Advice to Senior Managementdefine organization structure, clearly present chain of command, develop clear precise unambiguous job descriptions. send President to "charm school".

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Poor management, including a few arrogant people who think they're geniuses. Great mission

    (Former Employee) Princeton, NJ

    ProsGood mission, a great service for those who need their special audiobooks, and work hours are not bad.

    ConsLayoffs come often, as management apparently can't achieve their goals and then get rid of people below them via "organizational restructure" twice in as many years. There are some in leadership positions who seem to think they're geniuses because they've read some self-help books. Received no training and just had to pick things up as I went along.

    Advice to Senior ManagementTake a look in the mirror: perhaps the problem lies there.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • No Opinion of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Good people below senior management

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee) Princeton, NJ

    ProsPassion for the cause of helping kids with learning differences -- everyone was knowledgeable, well-read, considerate; many had or knew kids with learning differences

    ConsSenior management too dismissive of front-lines employees; cliquish; chronically under-resourced; lack of professionalism; performance reviews based on personal opinions rather than objective performance

    Advice to Senior ManagementAsk, and then listen to, those who are closest to your end customers; drop the hubris

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

Worked for Learning Ally (formerly Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic)? Contribute to the Community!

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.