Muscular Dystrophy Association

  www.mda.org
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Muscular Dystrophy Association Reviews

Updated Jul 23, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

2.4 195 reviews

59% Approve of the CEO

Muscular Dystrophy Association President & CEO Steven M. Derks

Steven M. Derks

(69 ratings)

26% of employees recommend this company to a friend

Review Highlights

Pros
  • I knew I wanted to make a difference for the people that changed my outlook on life(in 17 reviews)

  • The client families are amazing(in 7 reviews)


Cons
  • Potential for nonexistent work-life-balance during busy seasons depending on local leadership(in 18 reviews)

  • Long hours, little pay, no bonuses, no comp time, unrealistic goals and expectations(in 14 reviews)

195 Employee Reviews
Relevance Date Rating
in
    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    Mission rich job

    Divisional Staff (Current Employee)

    ProsCo-workers and clients/families we serve keep me coming to work everyday.
    Office culture varies greatly from office to office. Our office is fantastic.
    time off is good.

    ConsThe company has been changing and has not found its own "culture" yet
    company continues to down size giving the remaining employees more work
    no pay raises in 6 years
    new staff are brought in at same pay as current staff who have been here for awhile with no pay raises
    no pay for performance
    no matching 403b
    no career advancement/opportunities (especially in administrative areas)
    no recognition unless you are bringing in $$
    you are only as good as your last event

    Advice to Senior ManagementPlease stop the restructuring. enough is enough
    Pay for performance. adjust pay for people that have not received raises. Administrative staff are not 2nd class citizens

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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

     

    Great families and an amazing mission, but leaves much to be desired if you are employed here.

    Fundraising Coordinator (Current Employee)

    ProsThe families- I personally have developed great relationships with many of our families... this is something that for me extends beyond MDA's bureaucracy. Working with these people is easily the best part of my job. I feel blessed to know that the money I work to raise is going to help find a cure for muscular dystrophy. Many of our long term sponsors are amazing, most notably our retail partners and firefighters.

    ConsBloated, out of touch upper management, which plays favorites with employees in odd ways, such as passing competent and dedicated staff over for promotions in favor of others that are less able but who have been in place longer. An antiquated business model and hiring process. Like other non-profits, there is not very much money allocated to keeping up to date Compensation that is nowhere near market rates... as for a raise, forget about it. Benefits are terrible, as is vacation time (5 days of vacation in your first year of employment). Touts itself as an employer that "respects work-life balance", but this is far from the truth. Arbitrary and ever-changing territory lines make it difficult to engage new sponsors that you try to recruit- you are absolutely not allowed to "cross" territory lines, and are required to hand over new contacts located in that area over to the district office in that territory, even if you have a prior existing relationship. There is an odd focus on "signature programs" that are no longer relevant, are time sucks, and do not bring in very much money. It is difficult to engage or recruit top level donors or potential sponsors without support from the national office.

    There have been MANY recent changes in the past two years that I have been employed here, nearly all for the better... however these are things that should have been changed a very long time ago, so it is hard to get excited about them. At other similar non-profits, these changes would have been a no-brainer.

    Advice to Senior ManagementYou need to offer similar benefits as other non-profits (increased compensation, more PTO, flex time, improved technology in offices) to retain or attract top talent. Steve Derks is doing good work but changes need to roll out faster.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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

    1 person found this helpful  

    Great work experience, even better life experience.

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsThe people that work at MDA, and especially the families that you get to work for, make each day worth it.
    You get to do various events and experiences that make it different than previous jobs and gives a strong growth of skills.

    ConsThere has been a lot of change of the past several years and it's been tough. Smaller teams make it challenging for those trying to get everything done in the best way.

    Advice to Senior ManagementFollow through on what is said and remember your current team members are your strongest advocates and resource.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm 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
    • No Opinion of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    The Rewards Far Outweigh the Challegnes

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsThe people you encounter while working at MDA are remarkable - from the families we serve, to the sponsors and colleagues who work along side you - the people are the best of the best.
    The work allows you to use all your talents and learn and discover new ones.
    The families made it all worthwhile.

    ConsMDA has been going through a lot of change and change is tough. The work is hard and demanding and not for everyone at every time of his/her life.

    Advice to Senior ManagementCreate an environment of trust and respect that crosses all lines of the organization.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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

     

    Cold call business and community leaders and recruit them to become jailbirds to raise bail money for MDA.

    Volunteer Recruitment Coordinator (Former Employee)

    ProsGreat mission. Comfortable station/desk. 1 day of training/coaching. 30 minute lunch (unpaid though). Friendly co-workers. Incentives to get you get jailbirds/nominations.

    ConsCold-calling. Meeting quotas. Quota of 1 volunteer/hour. Temp position that's about 30 days. Adding personality & excitement to a long script without them hanging up/cutting you off (sales pitch). A little bit of people to call, so having to get nominations. Gatekeepers (especially doctor's offices, schools, and big companies) make it difficult to reach key leaders. Constantly sent to voice mail with no call backs. People are rude and get agitated if they've been called before. People are also busy, or just not interested in helping nonprofits. People say they'll check with their district manager and get back to you, when you have quotas to meet. People don't respond well to jail theme/ cheesy script

    Advice to Senior ManagementIncorporate mailing and email to get past gatekeepers. Start recruiting earlier. Change dates so it's not during vacation/busy times. Change script to be more conversational/ have interaction

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    Fraudulent activity prevalent

    Recruiter (Former Employee) Downers Grove, IL

    ProsNone that I can think of

    ConsThe manager of this office allows recruiters to indicate they work for the venue which is hosting the lock up event. This practice continues despite my numerous complaints. It is nearly impossible to make your quota without taking advantage of this little trick. I was called out for doing what the most successful recruiter in the office does every day and was told I could not do it. Management does not listen and there is no documentation by recruiters. I have no idea how they report on activity since their recruiters do not document. Wa.y too much work for the money.

    Advice to Senior ManagementListen to people who are older and wiser and have much more corporate experience than you do. Do not allow double standards. Rules apply to everyone.

    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

     

    Great mission, toxic management - on all levels.

    Fundraising Coordinator (Former Employee) Raleigh, NC

    ProsI had the pleasure of working with a few great people that I would work with again if given the opportunity.

    The families were my motivation! They are an amazing and unique group of people that I will keep in touch with for years to come!

    ConsWork load, stress level, LONG hours, unrealistic expectations, no respect from management, no matter how good you are/do it's never good enough.

    No work life balance...all work all the time.

    Micromanagement at its worst.

    Advice to Senior ManagementCHANGE IS GOOD!
    The only way this organization will make thrive again is for upper management to change! Either change the way they think, act and treat their employees or for several new people with new and fresh ideas to enter those positions. If you don't start treating your employees like they matter and you respect and appreciate all that they are doing, you will continue to receive reviews like these and have one of the highest turnover rates of all nonprofits!

    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

     

    Only of you really need a job

    Fundraising Coordinator (Former Employee)

    ProsThe families were great. Some co-workers also very motivated and fun to be around.

    ConsPoor management, poor pay, poor compensation. No reason to work hard and meet your goals when the person next to you isnt. So much turnover and minimizing office staff increasing the work load of staff. They are putting money in the wrong places. No leadership on the district level. No growth opportunities as they keep cutting positions.

    Advice to Senior ManagementClean house and try again. What you have isn't working.

    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  

    Unfortunate State of Affairs

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsMotivated to work for a cause to see hope in the eyes of those you strive to help.

    ConsPoor compensation, executive management, work life balance is non-existent, poor asset control.

    Advice to Senior ManagementRevisit compensation and leadership of both National and Divisional Offices.

    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
    • No Opinion of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    A very structured work environment with great impact on patients and families.

    Executive Director (Former Employee)

    ProsVery clearly stated goals
    Ability to make a difference in patient's lives
    Variety in daily tasks

    ConsLots of phone work
    No flexibility in schedule
    Lots and lots of oversight and management

    Advice to Senior ManagementSimplify the mountains of rules, forms and procedures
    Allow people to match schedules to work load

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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