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- Comp & Benefits
- Work/Life Balance
- Senior Management
- Culture & Values
- Career Opportunities
I worked at Forum One full-time for more than 3 yearsPros
The company has a few things going for it:
-The atmosphere and culture are laidback
-People are smart and, for the most part, passionate
-Family-oriented business (good for some, not for others)
-Company launched an ESOP which shows the owners do care about employees
-Bonuses are decent
-Company is very transparent (i.e., earnings, growth, client satisfaction, etc.)
-Free snacks/drinks and nice location (Del Ray)
-Company is growingCons
The company also has a lot of things it needs to work on:
-Lack of standardization and commitment from middle management (i.e., the project directors mostly) to actually change. For example, I would constantly be managing 3-5 projects with 3-5 different directors/upper management who required teams to do things their way and use the tools they're comfortable with.
-The company was trying to move to an all-agile shop which was a total disaster. It's a matrixed company with limited capacity and rainmakers continually bid on non-agile projects to hit their new business targets.
-ALWAYS competing for resources and people, ALWAYS.
-Tech team is completely mismanaged. Project managers are required to micro-manage projects to ensure work was actually gets done. Not that the team was lazy, they were just overworked.
-360 evaluations were ridiculous. For the record, I got great evaluations but the things I needed to work on were completely subjective and not constructive at all. Profitability and customer satisfaction are key metrics used, but for the most part out of the control of PMs -- most projects are doomed to fail due to next point.
-IMO, many of the issues with the company begin at the proposal stage. Projects are constantly scoped incorrectly and underbid. Rainmakers are more concerned with winning projects than actually thinking through the actual costs or if projects are worth going after.Advice to ManagementAdvice
1. Strip some of the autonomy away from project directors and standardize the process. Make standardization a requirement and something that everyone is evaluated on.
2. Be more SELECTIVE at the proposal stage! If being an all-agile shop is the end goal, don't take on large projects that aren't just to hit quarterly/annual targets. Coordinating a small pool of resources among different types of projects (i.e., waterfall vs. agile) is almost impossible.
3. Revise the evaluation process. I managed a strategy project with a project director, the project budget was limited so it was suggested that we used a lot of the work I had don't on a previous strategy. I did not feel comfortable with it and that project director went to my career manager and raised concerns that I wasn't fully engaged, which was put on my evaluation.Doesn't RecommendPositive OutlookDisapproves of CEO