Pathfinder International

  www.pathfinder.org
  www.pathfinder.org

Pathfinder International Reviews

Updated October 23, 2014
Updated October 23, 2014
15 Reviews
2.9
15 Reviews
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Recommend to a friend
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Purnima Mane
10 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    I have been working at Pathfinder for almost two years in a junior role

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

    I have been working at Pathfinder International full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Mission-driven organization: Most of the staff are passionate about our work and the organization is well-respected among other nonprofits doing similar work.
    Benefits: Pathfinder offers great benefits for an organization of its size (health insurance, generous PTO, retirement plan with no need to contribute)
    Staff: In general, I've found many of the staff to be pleasant to work with. There are some staff who are certainly more challenging/don't seem to care or support the mission of the organization, but they would be the outliers

    Cons

    The reason for the 3 star rating really comes down to two things: lack of growth opportunities and senior management's lack of leadership and transparency. As a junior-level employee, there is very limited opportunities for growth. My limited job description precludes me from taking on responsibilities that prepare me for leadership roles in this field; as such I feel that I am not growing at all in my current role. My boss has been receptive about giving me more responsibilities, but I still feel that my skills and experience are underutilized. I also feel that the senior management does not value input from junior employees. Never in my two years here have I been asked to serve on a task force or provide input on big picture organizational goals. Moreover, no one seems to know how these task forces are formed (or even that they exist) until our monthly meeting where senior executives debrief the staff on what they've come up with (with no additional input from the rest of the organization). This, coupled with low morale in general, could partially explain our high turn over rate lately - people are literally leaving every week.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Almost all of the reviewers have commented on poor management practices - clearly things need to change, and fast if you want to avoid more staff departures. From the perspective of a junior employee, you really need to make an effort to be more transparent about decision-making within the organization and make an effort to engage staff at all levels within the organization. I was incredibly passionate Pathfinder's mission when I first joined, but am now starting to question whether or not this field is right for me based on my experience with this organization.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    Important mission, experienced managers, reasonable opportunities for growth and for flexibility.

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

    I have been working at Pathfinder International full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Pathfinder works for an incredibly important mission of sexual and reproductive health and rights around the world. I consider this work my life's mission and feel Pathfinder is the best place to work on the issues about which I care in an effective, important way. I feel lucky that the salary and benefits are generous (retirement contribution even without matching) and this has contributed to my staying with Pathfinder.

    Cons

    Pathfinder isn't too big so there isn't a ton of room for professional growth long-term, but it does happen and medium-term I think managers make room for progression. We all do work hard, so while there are complaints of work-life balance at Pathfinder, I believe we each have the responsibility to make it work and I think managers are generally flexible that balance can be achieved.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep up the progress in communication to all staff about your goals and initiatives. The monthly all-staff meetings and Extended Leadership Team and shift to our extranet/ishare have been big steps forward.

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

    We are all trying to leave!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Program Coordinator in Watertown, MA
    Current Employee - Program Coordinator in Watertown, MA

    I have been working at Pathfinder International full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    There are some very passionate and dedicated people who love the work that they do. However, they tolerate being treated horribly for fear of loosing their job if they speak up.

    Cons

    While I have not been at Pathfinder for very long, it does not take long to realize that the organization is dysfunctional. The new CEO (2 years) is not a leader and can't manage. The top senior program leaders talk behind the CEO's back about her lack of program knowledge. I hear that the Board does not seem to care or want to know, staff are miserable and morale is very low, and in spite of some new senior leaders that have been brought in, there are some long timers who will not allow for or tolerate any change. Nothing is being done about senior managers who mistreat employees. Since I have been here many people have left as a a result of the poor treatment and lack of attention. I don't see a future for Pathfinder under the current leadership.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The CEO must take a long hard look at the things that are not working and then have the courage to make some serious changes. My colleagues all complain about how they are treated but no one will do anything about it - they are scared. One of my colleagues even went to talk to the CEO and still nothing was done. Almost everyone I know islooking for another job and the opportunity to leave the organization.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5.  

    Fast-paced, diverse work environment

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Pathfinder International part-time

    Pros

    Everyone who works here is dedicated and passionate about the work that Pathfinder does. Departments work hard to coordinate their efforts in supporting the complex programs Pathfinder manages. Beautiful office, and one of the nicer non-profits I've worked at.

    Cons

    People in the organization can be a bit hierarchical, but not really any more than any other company. Newer systems are well coordinated, but most things done over 2 years ago are disorganized and confusing.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Continue to revise older systems.

  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Unless you are specifically looking to work in this industry, save yourself the trouble.

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

    I have been working at Pathfinder International full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Once people open up and acknowledge you, there are some genuinely nice people. There is a change in motion but it's like stopping a speeding train and then pushing it backwards; slow. There is coffee, tea and milk for everyone. Summer hours. 403b contributions.

    Cons

    No one will talk to you when you are new, you spend majority of your life at this place and you are isolated in the beginning. Some Sr staff believe they can talk/email you in whichever way they please with no reprimanding. There is no time for even lunch because there is not enough staff for all the work. If you thought you were getting paid well, divide it by the number of hours you work. There is nothing as appealing as promoting/hiring staff with no experience than giving to staff who are doing the job already for years, seems to be the theme in 3 departments. All the people who travel get offices that see the outdoors and life.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    A personal thank you can go a long way. More family events. Recognizing staff and their family for when the staff steps up to do multiple jobs, stay long hours constantly and /or disrupt their family time to assist Pathfinders mission. Take notice of your employees hours in the office.

    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7. 2 people found this helpful  

    Great mission, poor leadership

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

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

    Pros

    Well formulated and vital mission
    Some great people
    Great potential
    Real commitment to social justice and most vulnerable populations

    Cons

    No vision for the future
    Under-investment in operations and employees - very little training, career progression or opportunity
    Gap between management claims of transparency and day to day experience
    Poor teamwork modeled by executive team
    Management does not trust employees => constant micromanagement

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Trust, grow and reward your employees

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

    Very disappointing - mission statement does not apply to lower level employees in US

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

    I worked at Pathfinder International

    Pros

    great people, great location, free parking

    Cons

    very poor senior management, very little opportunity for growth and advancement

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Invest more money in non-management staff and less in wall decorations
    Ensure company mission statement applies to all Pathfinder employees and not just to poor women in developing countries

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    P.I. is made up of a caring and highly qualified community of people working towards a shared goal.

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

    I worked at Pathfinder International as a contractor (less than an year)

    Pros

    ~Well educated, enthusiastic, experienced, highly qualified staff
    ~Very comfortable and friendly work environment
    ~Good salaries
    ~Active Board of Directors

    Cons

    I can't think of any cons.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I think you are on the right track.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Getting better day by day

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Technical Advisor in Watertown, MA
    Current Employee - Technical Advisor in Watertown, MA

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

    Pros

    The mission of the organization is great and I am proud to be associated with it. While the immediate past president drove the organization into the ground, the new president is working diligently to turn it around. It will take time. Under the old president the systems were allowed to age, poor behavior was tolerated and encouraged, top talent was not identified and recruited, the president was a figure head and not a leader (his second hand was the real CEO and that was not good) and that takes time to change. The new president, now building a new Executive Team, is making significant changes. There is more recognition of employees and their efforts, information is shared more regularly and things are more transparent than ever. There is still work to do and I am confident in the new president that she will make the right decisions for the organization. There has been a lot of progress in the short time she has been in the seat. We are not quite out of the woods yet but we are well on our way. check back in one more year!

    Cons

    We are still resources strapped to accomplish the work every day. So many systems need to be replaced and updated, this takes time. The board of directors was in the dark but appears to be waking up a bit as they conducted a real review of the president this year - let's see if it will continue?

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Continue to invest in the organization. we need more staff, we need talented staff and need to let some of the less talented staff go. Please continue to build the leadership and the level beneath and invest in management professional development. Continue to build morale with the type of activities that have been taking place more recently. Continue to address the poor behavior and make improvements - Stream line the core activities and the areas in which we work so that our resources have the biggest bang for the buck. demand that the leaders in the program areas get along and work together.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 3 people found this helpful  

    Hard work, long hours with limited resources and recognition for proven change in women's lives.

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

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

    Pros

    Great mission. Field work in country is impressive and works. Talented staff give 150% to achieve the mission as effectively as possible. Under new president for 18 months, the organization is trying to improve/ implement/update static processes after two decades under the same president.

    Cons

    Dogmatic leaders on the executive team paralyze and largely prevent the organization from considering risk or change. Work of organization chases funding which muddies purpose because the organization does work outside of mission (because its funded). President is overly deferential to the board and board president, board leadership has too much say in day-to-day administration. Not enough resources to get the job done in 40 - 50 hour week. Long hours taken for granted. Achievements and effort go unrecognized unless outcome is uber extraordinary.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Increase staff or reduce scope of work. President needs to lead, instead of deferring to the executive team or the board president and other board leaders.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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