Room to Read Reviews

Updated August 27, 2015
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3.3
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Erin Ganju
9 Ratings

21 Employee Reviews

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  1. Great Place to Work

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - California in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - California in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Room to Read full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Forward thinking, progressive organization with passion driven, intelligent worldwide team. Strong leadership with diverse talent ranging from the for-profit and nonprofit sector. Best of both sectors- run like a business and yet, has a feel good mission that staff are proud to represent. Great place to work.

    Cons

    Work hours often occur outside of normal business hours; fast paced work environment with high expectations. Burn out is a frequent occurrence. Upward mobility options limited due to medium size of organization.


  2. Amazing cause and inspiring colleagues

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Room to Read (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Intelligent, collaborative colleagues Amazing cause and inspiring work Very hard working team

    Cons

    Depending on the area in the organization, some difficulty in advancement


  3. Excellent colleagues and friends.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Smart co-workers and wonderful mission. Some board members are involved and others aren't.

    Cons

    Founder + Co-founder need to be aligned; too much work; too hierarchical; expectations are high with little resources provided; questionable practices regarding how they keep overhead low.

    Advice to Management

    Attrition is happening through all departments - stop saying turnover is normal.


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  5. Finance Analyst

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Analyst in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Financial Analyst in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at Room to Read full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    great coworkers great culture loads of travel stories free tea

    Cons

    poor compensation management lacks vision and organization

    Room to Read Response

    Jul 16, 2015 – Recruiting Associate

    We’re sorry to hear that this employee is dissatisfied with their experience at Room to Read. As Room to Read values transparency and prides itself on being a learning organization, we take feedback ... More


  6. Helpful (2)

    Mision is great

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Room to Read full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Love the mission, the people are very special and the work life balance is good. I enjoy the team i work with and get a fair amount of freedom about my work.

    Cons

    Senior management is stuck in the past and needs to react more quickly to a changing world. There are a lot of very sharp young people who can not get exciting and helpful programs off the ground. No real opportunity for advancement and far to structured a promotion program and talent is not rewarded.

    Advice to Management

    The founders need to find new blood for senior management that is not so tied to the way things used to be done. More risk needs to be taken with innovative ways to deliver programs digitally


  7. Helpful (1)

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

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - External Relations in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - External Relations in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Room to Read full-time (More than a 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 Management

    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.

    Room to Read Response

    Feb 5, 2015 – Recruiting Associate

    We’re sorry to hear that this employee was so dissatisfied by their experience at Room to Read. As Room to Read values transparency and prides itself on being a learning organization, we take ... More


  8. Helpful (1)

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

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    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.


  9. Helpful (3)

    Mixed experience of working here.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    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 Management

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


  10. Helpful (2)

    Amazing place to learn, grow and be challenged

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    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...).


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

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Comp & Benefits
    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.



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