Youth Villages

  www.youthvillages.org
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Youth Villages Reviews

Updated Jul 18, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

2.5 125 reviews

50% Approve of the CEO

Youth Villages CEO Patrick Lawler

Patrick Lawler

(90 ratings)

34% of employees recommend this company to a friend

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Youth Villages always works in the best interest of the children and families they serve(in 10 reviews)

  • If you are looking to make a difference, then this is your place(in 7 reviews)


Cons
  • Work-life balance is non-existent and they blame you if you cannot make it better(in 13 reviews)

  • Long hours, unrealistic expectations from managers, and poor work/life balance(in 14 reviews)

125 Employee Reviews
Relevance Date Rating
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    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    4 people found this helpful  

    Never again.

    (Former Employee)

    ProsI loved the actual time I spent with my clients and the work I was able to do with them. You are so involved with their lives, meeting with them so many times a week, that the relationship alone creates such a positive impact on their lives. I enjoyed the meaningful helping relationships I was able to create with my clients and their families as well as watching them grow and evolve towards a more harmonious sense of self and home environment. I truly miss that. It was the only thing that was hard to leave. Very very hard.

    ConsThere are no boundaries with this job. I felt like I was working ALL THE TIME. Probably because I was. You are on call to your clients 24 hours a day during the work week and around once per month you are also on call for everyone's clients through the weekend, resulting in 24/7 being on the clock and ready to work with no time to regroup and focus on self care or have a life of your own outside of work. I've often heard my fellow employees close to tears speaking of how they feel the organization expects them to prioritize their client families at the cost of neglecting their own families. Suddenly the reasonable salary for this field becomes very unreasonable. Another major boundary issue is do not expect to be using a work line at this organization because all of your contact is through your personal cell phone, often via texting with your clients. Anyone who is familiar with clinical settings would know that this requirement is a complete and utter 'no no' in the field. In addition, the paperwork is absolutely insane. Now I know what you're thinking.. paperwork is always insane in this field. I agree. Paperwork is going to be intense no matter where you go. But I've worked at multiple different agencies, so I am not new to the field, and I can tell you honestly that yv's paperwork responsibilities are above and beyond the standard frustrations. I think besides unmanageable and constant deadlines, what made the paperwork so frustrating was that it was so obviously redundant and often unnecessary which became very discouraging and unmotivating when you found yourself frequently working into the night, losing time with your loved ones as well as time for self care. I do want to note that perhaps some of these major concerns can be mitigated depending on the quality of your relationship with your supervisor and/or your supervisor's management style. So for me, my lacking of a consistent and reasonable supervisor/supervisee relationship undoubtedly exacerbated these issues. With that said, I'm willing to admit that perhaps things aren't so bad at every yv office. However, the overall issues that I have outlined will surely still be present to varying degrees.

    Advice to Senior ManagementDon't just pretend to care about your employees well-being. Actually care. And show it by responding to their feedback in a positive, constructive manner. The management at youth villages likes to put on airs telling you how much they care about employee feedback by encouraging specialists and the like to complete comment cards stationed at all area offices to be reviewed at "town hall" meetings. This and other things including the fact that they truly do promote from within.. i'm pretty sure most everyone in management started as a specialist.. made me feel like I could expect great support at this organization when I first started. Unfortunately, I quickly came to realize that this was just for show. Youth villages management, you can not ignore your high turnover rate. And forcing your new employees to sign off stating that if they leave before a year that they will be responsible for all costs of their MANDATORY trainings and pre employment physical is not the right and ethical way around it. Apply the same listening and empathy skills specialists are to use with clients. Specialists are overworked and set up to fail by being held to impossible standards. You will continue to lose good people who truly care about the work that they do and aren't just there to climb the corporate ladder as long as you continue to run them into the ground. Which is such a shame because the ideals YV obviously began with are wonderful.

    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

     

    My experience with Youth Villages has been extremely challenging both personally professionally, but also rewarding.

    Family Intervention Specialist (Current Employee) Memphis, TN

    ProsThe organization has a sincere interest in serving at-risk and families, providing the opportunity to build a purposeful career. There are tremendous training opportunities and position-specific perks as well as organizational inclusiveness and perks. Working for YV is like working with family.

    ConsThe hours and schedule of ANY position can be extremely stressful and challenging. Support is available from peers and leadership, but there is a very high-level of stress to be considered based on the field itself.

    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
    • Approves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Although intense, the work is important and rewarding.

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsThe philosphy of the organization aligns with my personal philosphy that families and children should remain together. I believe in the mission and values, although the work is very intense and demanding, I feel it is necessary. The salary is competitive with other mental health providers in my area.

    ConsDue to the nature of the work, there is difficulty maintaining a work life balance. I have gotten used to being on call and there is a lot of support after hours when handling a crisis, but the on call can be overwhelming at first.

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

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

     

    The work our specialsits do is amazing!

    Manager (Current Employee) Memphis, TN

    ProsGreat benefits; provides multiple career paths for those wishing to grow in the field; the majority of the senior managers have worked in direct care jobs and understand the complexity and challenges of the positions

    ConsWork life balance can be a challenge

    Advice to Senior ManagementFind opportunities to engage with your employees; continue to look for ways to increase your employee's success; finds ways to help employees with time management to create work-life balance

    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

    3 people found this helpful  

    Challenging, rewarding, and completely unmanageable.

    Family Counselor (Former Employee) Asheville, NC

    ProsYouth Villages is a stable company that follows the treatment models that they offer. As long as you can survive, there are many "battlefield" promotions you can have. Although the salary is not competitive or commiserate with the work you do, they offer good benefits and many trainings. There are some completely awesome people that work there and give so much to families and kids. The actual work with families was very rewarding and I became very close to many families.

    ConsThere is this delusional "cheerleader" attitude among upper level management that is offensive to us in the trenches. Instead of helping us process difficult events, upper management would make comments like "I really want to focus on what went well" after hearing really traumatic events of crisis. Many times, I felt an ethical dilemma from forcing treatment onto people who did not want it. Many families wanted to actively pursue an out-of-home placement for their child, and management would force us to "sell" treatment because our census was low in our office and they were desperate for clients.

    There were many huge pink elephants in the office like the dissatisfaction of the employees, which was never discussed by management. Instead, they hung out in each other's office laughing, while we were on the phones, typing notes, and trying to meet "units." Out of the six clinical staff in our office, five were looking for other jobs including myself. When I brought this to the attention of my direct supervisor, she seemed shocked and told me that she had no idea. Instead of addressing the low morale among employees, Youth Villages found another way to deal the with lost money for training workers. They force you to pay back all of your trainings-close to $1,000 if you leave before one year. No other people in community mental health I talked to had ever heard of such a practice.

    Although they are upfront about the crises, paying back for the trainings, and nontraditional hours, they were misleading about the amount of support they would provide and the over 12 hour days we would be working.

    Advice to Senior ManagementGet support for your front-line people-hiring extra case managers or peer support specialists to balance the workload. Addressing morale among the employees is crucial. Upper management needs to work on recruiting local clients, so clinicians don't have to drive over an hour to see a family.

    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

     

    Youth Villages Review

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsTraining, working with families, gain great experience and growth potential.

    ConsLong hours, unrealistic expectations from managers, and poor work/life balance.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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

     

    YV is the Force for Families

    Regional Manager (Current Employee) Woburn, MA

    ProsYouth Villages always works in the best interest of the children and families they serve. The staff have what it takes to help families be successful. Its a tough job being on call 24/7 but it works. Seeing a family in crisis and helping guide them through it is what really matters. There is always a sense of team collaberation and willingness to brainstorm interventions needed to help families. Staff have the opportiunity to be promoted within which ensures each member of leadership, managers, directors and clinical consultants, even the CEO has been in the front lines doing the clinical work that is talked about, that means the most to me. I believe in the mission and values that YV represents.

    ConsIn the beginning, finding that work life balance can be tricky. YV offers a "flexible schedule" which is great, with the realization that some days and weeks will be longer than others. Once employees master the balance this type of schedule can be very rewarding. Training does take a while, the learning curve for me was about 3 months to really learn and understand the treatment model, but once I did I really liked using it.

    Advice to Senior ManagementContinue the efforts to hear staff and put their needs at the top of the list. YV NE has made some great strides to improve the atmosphere for staff.

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

     

    Youth Villages is not just a company or a job....it's a family!

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsSupportive co-workers and supervisors, tuition reimbursement, company-wide competitions to promote wellness, high success rates with youth & families! Youth Villages is only getting bigger which mean more opportunities. Everyone I work with truly believes in the mission of helping kids & families to live together successfully, we all have the same goal in mind.

    ConsYou won't get rich working for Youth Villages but they do have great benefits. The job can be intensive but also allows really flexible schedules which most of us appreciate.

    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
    • Approves of CEO

     

    Challenging

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsYou have much opportunity to make a difference in creative ways.

    ConsLong hours are often required and expected.

    – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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

    4 people found this helpful  

    Favorites are played and people are misled

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsThe actual job is extremely rewarding. Helping young adults that want the help is great. You get to make your own schedule which is also a great aspect of the job. The salary is average, they reimburse you for your cell phone and mileage too.

    ConsManagement is not appropriate at all. You basically get promoted if you become friends with the right people which isn't fair or right. Some of the supervisors are great but some are awful. Some don't follow the rules and flat out lie. In a job that is so emotionally exhausting you need a supportive supervisor. The company expects you to give part of your paycheck back to them, which in the beginning seems nice but if you decline (even though its supposed to be anonymous) you are treated differently by the people who know if you did/did not donate. Some people aren't able to financially do this, but that doesn't matter. Being on-call 24/7 can be tiring. Events are planned that are so far out of the way and are late at night, being one of the workers on-call makes it hard to go to these events but again if you don't volunteer for them or give your own hard earned money then you get looks and treated differently.

    Advice to Senior ManagementPromote the right people. Just because someone has a master's degree doesn't mean they are appropriate to be a leader. Sometimes experience is just as crucial not the paper saying you have an advanced degree. Treat people equal.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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