Room to Read Reviews

Updated October 28, 2014
Updated October 28, 2014
18 Reviews
4.0
18 Reviews
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Erin Ganju
9 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Amazing place to learn, grow and be challenged

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

    I have been working at Room to Read full-time

    Pros

    My colleagues are smart, driven, passionate, and fun! The work is meaningful and I am pushed professionally, but with appropriate support.

    Cons

    The org is in an in-between phase of growth, so is still building up its infrastructure (IT, policies and procedures, etc...).

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Burn out organization, 60% turn over and VERY little career/salary growth opportunities for non leadership roles.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - External Relations in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - External Relations in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at Room to Read full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    The staff in middle and lower leadership positions have a sense of humor and make the job fun. The entry level staff enjoy this fun culture and helps retain their commitment and loyalty to the organization. The Co-Founders and Board of Directors are passionate about the mission. This inspires great financial support from Boards of Directors in global markets and Major Gifts Donors to advance the work.

    Cons

    The organization hires very green staff at low salary levels and fails to create a culture nor organizational budget where people can advance in responsibility and particularly in compensation. This creates a revolving door effect and 60% turn over especially in the External Relations Department, and fund raising team. Many of the staff shared with me that they do not enjoy working with the Co-Founders and find them to be very inflexible, married to their jobs and unwilling to create work life balance for their staff. While the Executive Team members enjoy high salaries, line staff are often brought in under market rate, and move on in the pursuit of salary growth offered elsewhere since RtR is not competitive with the market. This organization is less than 10% supported by Annual Fund Raising, and unfortunately is dominated by the interests of handful of powerful large donors instead of being broadly supported by the public.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Adopt a culture which HIGHLY values the contributions of lower staff, and provides them with solid career and especially salary advancement opportunities so as to avoid the reputation of being a "burn out" organization. People are energized to join and be part of a worthy mission, until they are too sick, tired, and or feel so undervalued that they move on. John Wood needs to be less involved in the day to day fund raising, and the organization needs to become only 70% dependent upon gifts over 25K. CREATE A MUCH STRONGER ANNUAL FUND and grow your base of the donor pyramid from donors who are giving gifts under $5K in very large quantities.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3.  

    Great mission, great people, great work, poor leadership.

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

    I worked at Room to Read full-time

    Pros

    The work this organization does is very important and has wide impact in areas where the help is desperately needed. I had the opportunity to work with people in places I would never have otherwise thought of. The staff are very dedicated (almost to a fault) and are great to work with.

    Cons

    Poor leadership and executive-level management. It seemed that executive-level management was of the mindset that they set the agenda and developed all of the plans and everyone else was there simply to execute on their plans. Staff was never brought into the decision-making process and executive management seemed to get defensive when their decisions were questioned or challenged. They failed to take advantage of the expertise of the people they hire and trust them to make decisions, which resulted in high turn-over and low morale. There was a complete lack of cohesion between executive-level managers; they didn't seem to like working with each other and this had a "trickle-down" effect to middle-level managers and line staff.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Mixed experience of working here.

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

    I worked at Room to Read full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Exhausting, great learning experience, picked up a lot of skills in the office, and everyday had a new challenge. I had the opportunity to do international projects- it is what you can make of the experience, don't expect any mentorship. Great training opportunities.

    Cons

    Bad leadership, terrible office culture, HR is not trustworthy and makes terrible hiring decisions or manage change. Too many leadership changes will hamper growth.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Top heavy organization, hiring people with inflated salaries. Need to innovate on program structures.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Very nice non-profit which does fantastic work in global literacy and girls' education.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Room to Read full-time

    Pros

    People are fun, smart, motivated, well traveled and have lots of interests.

    Cons

    Young organization trying to do the right thing which is hard when you're working with limited funds.

  7.  

    Challenging work, smart and committed people.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Development Associate in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Development Associate in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Room to Read full-time

    Pros

    The staff is top notch. People work and for the most part support one another really well.

    Cons

    Not a lot of space internally to advance.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Great place to work and contribute to a good mission

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

    I worked at Room to Read as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Great environment with smart and hardworking staff who shares the commitment to a common goal.

    Cons

    Didn't experience any cons during the period I was there.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep up the good work!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    I've learned more in my 3 years at Room to Read than I have in my prior 10 years of experience combined

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

    I have been working at Room to Read full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Fun, passionate, driven, talented staff combined with a mission that speaks to my heart. Stretch opportunities galore. Never, ever bored. Beer cart Friday - enough said!

    Cons

    Given its age in the growth cycle of an org, Room to Read is in its "adolescence". We're no longer a start-up, but we're also not quite yet a mature organization. We're still learning to put in the infrastructure, systems and processes in place to catch up with our growth, which sometimes results in some growing pains. But, we're getting there!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  10.  

    Very exceptional opportunity for professional growth

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Fundraising in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Fundraising in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Room to Read full-time

    Pros

    You will get to take on projects at Room to Read that you would never dream of at larger, more traditional non-profits.

    Cons

    Room to Read is for the passionate and ambitious so if you are not looking for continuous challenges to solve it can be stressful.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  11.  

    Great Organization. Work is rewarding and challenging.

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

    I have been working at Room to Read part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Fun culture, really smart and dedicated people. You will learn a lot, be challenged and work with incredible people.

    Cons

    Not a lot of mentorship, professional development opportunities or growth opportunities. Very limited upward mobility.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

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