Muscular Dystrophy Association Reviews

Updated May 27, 2020

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2.6
31%
Recommend to a Friend
23%
Approve of CEO
Muscular Dystrophy Association CEO Lynn O’Connor Vos
Lynn O’Connor Vos
61 Ratings
Pros
  • "The families and sponsors are amazing(in 37 reviews)

  • "The mission, families, Summer Camp and work life balance(in 26 reviews)

Cons
More Pros and Cons
  1. Helpful (3)

    "A Privilege to Work for MDA and the Families It Serves"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Muscular Dystrophy Association full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Such an honor to work for an organization who puts families at the center of all it does. Staff work hard to offer first-in-class services. Has been an honor to be a part of an organization that has invested millions and millions of dollars into research, outreach, and programs to improve the lives of those living with neuromuscular disease. Employees are treated well with kindness and respect. Benefits are excellent and salaries competitive. Working with amazing stakeholders who are like-minded in the Mission. The work is tremendously rewarding. It is wonderful to work hard knowing you're blessing others in a direct and personal way and what you do really matters as has value.

    Cons

    Not really a down-side, but a reality. We work with people who have life-threatening diseases and it is painful and emotional when someone served by the organization passes away. There is an emotional toll. Not always a 9:00-5:00, 35-hour M-F work week as some events occur in the evening or on a weekend. I would not classify this as a con either, but an occasional reality.

    Muscular Dystrophy Association2017-09-19
  2. Helpful (3)

    "Upper management needs work"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Area Director in Boston, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Muscular Dystrophy Association full-time

    Pros

    The mission, my supervisor at the time

    Cons

    Upper management, constant power struggle between departments

    Muscular Dystrophy Association2020-05-21
  3. Helpful (6)

    "Needs new leadership"

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Mission Side 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Muscular Dystrophy Association full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    The families we work with

    Cons

    Leadership doesn’t care about the families MDA is supposed to serve or the field staff

    Muscular Dystrophy Association2020-05-21
  4. Helpful (7)

    "Heartbroken for the families"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Muscular Dystrophy Association full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    The families we get to work with

    Cons

    This is a shell of a once great organization. Once upon a time, this organization put the families first in everything they did. Though I'm a huge advocate for finding a cure for these diseases, there is virtually no funding for services that directly serve our families. Yet, they still advertise for fundraising purposes as if they are doing everything for the families. I'm heartbroken because we have lost the trust of the families that once relied on us for vital services, yet, they are still treated like ATMs and MDA expects them to support us. The company is not transparent with its employees or donors and over 400 employees were furloughed due to COVID. Furloughed staff have not received any communication from management regarding their employment status which makes many of us believe that MDA does not plan to hire most people back. As mentioned above, a proper layoff would have been more ethical and allowed employees to move on instead of "waiting" to go back to something that won't be there. The company has been going downhill ever since Lynn O'Connor started. Upper management and HR turn a blind eye whenever anyone offers any type of feedback. They're concerned with lining their own pockets and expecting PPP and Big Pharma to bail them out.

    Continue reading
    Muscular Dystrophy Association2020-05-27
  5. Helpful (5)

    "Horrible upper management, CEO needs to go"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Fundraiser 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Muscular Dystrophy Association full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Locally, my team is great. We work well together and have great communication. We love our families and have built great rapport with them as well as our sponsors throughout our community.

    Cons

    Worst upper management I’ve ever heard of and dealt with. They do not care nor do they even understand what those of us on a local level actually do for the company or them . The CEO is absolutely horrible and all about the money for herself and the National team. She does not show any regard for the families, MDA staff and MDA’s true mission and purpose!

    Continue reading
    Muscular Dystrophy Association2020-05-26
  6. Helpful (9)

    "Disappointing Organization"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Fundraising Coordinator 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Muscular Dystrophy Association full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    35 hour fulltime work-week feels like there is a tiny bit more breathing room in life.

    Cons

    - Misaligned mission, MDA states they are supporting families, but have moved all support to research and pharma companies, eliminating most family support programs that actually improve quality of life. Cures are important, but building quality of life programs while waiting for a cure is more important and the families will tell you that same thing. - Lack of communication throughout ALL departments. Job was spent completing multitidude of spreadsheets instead of building relationships with donors and partners. - Very old technology and outdated training systems, ongoing conflicting information on how to do your job, so you often felt like no matter what you did, you were going to get it wrong. - Mismanaged Covid-19 crisis and furlough of employees and it feels very unethical and calculated. Furloughed employees told they would have benefits while being furloughed, but now notice has been given of benefits being discontinued. Supervisors are being told that employees will be coming back to work, but information being relayed to furloughed employees is ambiguous at best, dishonest at worst. - As thier furlough of at least 400 employees has unfolded, it appears this may have been a longer term plan and Covid19 has sped it up. It's disappointing that a 65 year old company can be taken out by a crisis like this because of poor planning and having an innovative team in upper management. - A proper layoff would have been more honest and allowed employees to move on instead of "waiting" to go back to something that won't be there.

    Continue reading
    Muscular Dystrophy Association2020-05-22
  7. Helpful (8)

    "Run"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Development Coordinator 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Muscular Dystrophy Association full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    You work with many great individuals on your team being a field staff member, and working with MDA families is rewarding.

    Cons

    -Senior management is horrible and does not care about "lower-level employees" (I say that in quotes as we were referred to that on a company-wide call, super faux pas) -HR is just as bad as upper-level management. -Technology is old and outdated. Field staff have the worst technology, laptops are over 10 years old etc. Working in the field, it is often needed to use your cell phone, and the org. does nothing to compensate you for that., -Fundraising outshines the mission and makes you have no desire to go to work. When you can't be connected to the mission, it is impossible to fundraise. -Company furloughed most of its staff during the pandemic, and how it was done was super unethical. CEO announced there would be furloughs on a company-wide call and then hung up the call. Staff had to wait over 2 hours to find out if they were impacted by the furlough or not. Super unethical and wrong to leave employees in a mass panic. -There are less and less programs that benefit the families. -Entry level field staff are capped at 35 hours per week but often have much more work to do and work extra time uncompensated to complete the tasks.

    Continue reading
    Muscular Dystrophy Association2020-05-22
  8. Helpful (7)

    "Doesn’t care about employees"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Administrative 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Muscular Dystrophy Association full-time

    Pros

    Local staff are caring and competent, great to work with clients

    Cons

    Management only cares about themselves, they are reducing client benefits and leaving employees hanging. The CEO and Board seem to be betting that big pharma will bail them out. There’s no strategy that I can see in this Covid crisis beyond furlough employees, cut client services, and get out of all leases and contracts. They’ve received PPP, but don’t seem to have any intention of bringing furloughed employees back, at least in their former roles.

    Muscular Dystrophy Association2020-05-22
  9. Helpful (5)

    "Does not value employees"

    1.0
    Current Employee - Administrative 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Muscular Dystrophy Association full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Getting to know local families and firefighters

    Cons

    This is the most non-transparent, unorganized and unethical organization. Upper management is to blame. MDA is a stacked C-level and EVP organization of high-paid, non-productive people who bark orders to the field. It's a disgrace to see good people in the field treated so poorly. Not only have important mission benefits been taken away from families, but upper management has continued to staff-up people at the top while laying off and putting hiring freezes on the field year after year, not offering raises nor a cost of living adjustment in several consecutive years, demoting employees in the field, not being transparent to the field about newly created positions and overall state of the organization, creating hostile relationships between upper management and the field, intentionally going delinquent with payables placing field offices in the middle between MDA corporate A/P and the creditors who are demanding payment, and finally, the expectation of hitting unrealistic revenue numbers while decreasing our field staff and providing outdated resources and incompetent support. MDA is not an ethical steward of donor dollars and can't provide accurate and up-to-date financial reports. MDA treats donors like ATM's. The CEO has run the organization so poorly, and many long-term people in top management have left. The COVID issue was MDA's bailout, as they were already losing money and employees, cutting services to families, making rash decisions without proper planning, and trying to spin these issues as a positive to employees, families and the community. Firefighters and the I.A.F.F. will one day see the kind of organization this is and that their efforts are primarily funding overhead costs rather than the mission. Donors will see that all MDA does is repeat the words "Send a kid to camp", but really MDA can't guarantee in good faith that this money all goes towards camp. If so, we would send a lot more kids to camp than we do. No foundation wants to grant money to MDA because the rationale is that the money does not stay local and the field can't fully explain how the money circulates back to the communities. The worst part is that families trusted MDA, and we let them down. On our recent all staff call the EVP, Chief People and Administrative Officer, talked about the current situation giving us "liquidity", yet what he meant was MDA was cutting off the furloughed employees even further by taking away medical and dental benefits and forcing them to go on COBRA. MDA leaders don't have any intention of bringing back our furloughed staff. MDA will take full advantage of government assistance while hoping those furloughed will resign. When will the hatchet drop again? We can't trust what MDA says and fear for what is next. If this organization prioritized people they would have created a respectful environment where every employee is regarded as inherently valuable.

    Continue reading
    Muscular Dystrophy Association2020-05-22
  10. Helpful (3)

    "decent place to work"

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Development Specialist 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Muscular Dystrophy Association full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    co workers are the only good part of working here

    Cons

    top leadership are only out for their own benefit, they do not care about anyone but themselves and how field staff will make them money Pay is pretty low

    Muscular Dystrophy Association2020-04-22
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