Edelman Reviews

Updated July 3, 2015
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Edelman President and CEO Richard W. Edelman
Richard W. Edelman
39 Ratings

Pros
  • Work life balance is good as well (in 65 reviews)

  • Many smart people to work with on a diverse portfolio of projects (in 62 reviews)

Cons
  • Work-life balance can be difficult to achieve (in 137 reviews)

  • Long hours; org structure difficult to understand/navigate (in 94 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

75 Employee Reviews

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  1. Assistant Account Executive

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Assistant Account Executive in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Assistant Account Executive in Washington, DC

    I have been working at Edelman full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Hands down some of the best clients in the industry - so you'll get an advantage of building out your resume. People are willing to share advice and sit down with you, if you ask for it.

    Cons

    Salary much below the market. You have to manage your career from the very first day you become full-time, otherwise you will be left behind and looked over for promotions - which acts as a nod for you to seek employment elsewhere. Highly political, more career management than work. It gets exhausting quickly.

    Advice to Management

    A lot of turnover on both a junior and a senior level should speak volumes about the direction of the company. Look deep and hard into what is happening in the internal culture and where Edelman wants to position itself. Pay junior staffers more if you want to retain talent...but then again, it's another great indication of how fast people are leaving.


  2. Unappreciated for work

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Account Executive in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Account Executive in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Edelman

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Lots of opportunities on big name clients; if you push yourself, you'll learn a lot. Some opportunities to travel depending on the account. Great resume builder.

    Cons

    Your account sets your experience and work/life balance. I was unlucky that I ended up on a big name account that was very demanding. This translated to very high levels of work and being extremely underpaid for what I was doing. Managers expected perfection and touted a work/life balance, yet chastised you if you tried to have one. It was extremely negative and the tone was set by the VPs on the account. VPs expected junior staff to do all major work and run on full cylinders all the time.

    Advice to Management

    Learn to be flexible and realize that people need to learn from their mistakes. Not every deadline should have to be rigid if it's internal. Compensate fairly and don't expect 100% perfection in order to be promoted.


  3. Helpful (5)

    Hire Beware

    • 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

    I worked at Edelman

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Yes, the agency has blue chip clients - you'll get to touch some prestige accounts. It has all the "big agency" bells & whistles -- fancy office digs, free Starbucks. There are some talented individuals there.

    Cons

    Highly political. Atrocious on-boarding. Not respectful of those who come from outside big agency or outside Edelman -- skills notwithstanding, it's more about the "process" there. Rewards come to those who follow the rules (if you can figure out what they are) and make the right friends in high places, not necessarily those who are most skilled. During my tenure, VERY volatile leadership environment - massive turnover, lack of quality hands-on management for senior level talent. Nearly impossible to find quality mentoring -- everyone is too busy and agency doesn't value it, so it's not a priority. Reputation as a "best place to work" is, to me, laughable. Lots of lip service to the culture - but not a healthy work environment. Little to no socialization with colleagues -- competitive and highly political. Tendency to rest on laurels and not push the envelope with truly creative work. Effort to become more "full service" has them poaching talent from ad agencies - but "creatives" used to ad agency model don't work well with PR account teams...lack of respect between the two disciplines creates tension.

    Advice to Management

    More accountability for managers (at SVP and up level.) Less focus on policy and protocol and more respect for raw talent. On-boarding that actually prepares someone from outside the organization to succeed. Integrated communications teams need an environment of mutual respect. Developing senior level talent requires a commitment to mentoring at a VP level and above (not just for junior team.)


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  5. Helpful (1)

    Glass ceiling low in Silicon Valley office

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

    I worked at Edelman full-time (More than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Client calibur is high, culture is friendly at the surface

    Cons

    While this company brags about being #1, the Silicon Valley office has been losing clients, losing money, and losing staff like crazy lately. A high-level exec recently came to the office and ripped a new one to the entire staff (mostly comprised of new hires, by that point, with all the recent turnover) implying that the whole country is watching the office, waiting to see if we fail or succeed. Promotions/raises have been extremely minimal this past season and promise to be similar this season, at which point Edelman Silicon Valley is bound to exacerbate the Great Exodus of its most valuable talent. That's good news if you're looking for an immediate hire but bad news if you're looking to grow in a career. The other piece is: Edelman states its low salary compared with competition is outweighed by its career growth potential--well, not in the Silicon Valley office, with this trajectory. Look at the cards: if everyone is leaving, it's probably for a reason.

    Advice to Management

    Know your audience, and use appropriate motivational techniques with the appropriate groups. Invest in those who slave away their nights and weekends for you, and maybe you'll see new business and employees stick around.


  6. Helpful (1)

    Writer

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

    I worked at Edelman

    No opinion of CEO
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Fun business sector and interesting

    Cons

    Really rude and arrogant people


  7. Helpful (6)

    Bound to burn out

    • 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

    I worked at Edelman

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Most Junior and Mid-level staff are very friendly and easy to work with. The culture is relatively fun. Learned a lot on the job due to some great Mid-level managers who were willing to take the time to help teach/foster new skills.

    Cons

    Expecting a positive work/life balance is completely frowned upon and will impact your opportunity for new work. Senior management is rude, unfriendly, backstabbing and incompetent for the most part. Raises are given based on tenure, even if the worker is incompetent. Raises for Junior staff are miniscule and almost an insult. Little room to move up unless you sell your life to the company.

    Advice to Management

    Focus more on what you're doing to Junior and Mid-Level staff. They're burnt out and unappreciated. There should be more opportunity for upward movement based on performance.


  8. Helpful (2)

    Admins are overworked and under appreciated because we are not "billable."

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Executive Assistant in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Executive Assistant in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Edelman

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Food cart on Tuesday & Thursday
    Thirsty Third Thursday's
    Free fruit & Starbucks coffee
    Casual dress code

    Cons

    Too many low, mid and high-level managers giving you work to do. It's rediculous.

    Because it's a pool-based system for VPs and above, they overwork employees and don't hire enough so they can pocket the remaining budget money at the end of each fiscal year.

    Ageism: they will not hire someone in their late 20s and 30s hoping to break into the industry in an entry level position (AAE) as they like to start them out of college.

    It's very tough to transfer to the account side when you've been hired as an admin.

    No career growth for admins. Period.

    They run the private company as if it publically owned as they are so focused on profit. Even at the expense of employees.

    Turnover rate is alarming.

    Long hours, especially near the end of the fiscal year.

    A few long-term male managers are very flirtatious which creates an uncomfortable work environment.

    Advice to Management

    Your reputation will continue to be reduced by both former and current employees, until you make changes to your management paradigm.


  9. Helpful (4)

    Overall a great company; local office incredibly challenging and facing a difficult future

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Mid-Level in Portland, OR
    Former Employee - Mid-Level in Portland, OR

    I worked at Edelman full-time (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    -Constant challenges, diversity of experiences, access to top talent across the globe, lots of interesting IP comes out
    -Many leaders outside the local office are fantastic and have become trusted mentors

    Cons

    -Local management has created a fear-based culture
    -Constant turnover
    -Lots of drama and rumors, gossip
    -Management attempts to be transparent, but it is completely inauthentic
    -The best leaders leave; ditto for staff members (generally)
    -Local leadership tends to be filled out by staff who, frankly, are socially awkward, work with their doors shut nearly all of the time and treat work as if the office is life and death (people absolutely lose their passion here and the majority have one foot out the door)
    -Training became a joke
    -Technology is old and IT support is poor (the local IT guy was great, but we rarely had access to him)
    -Work-life balance absolutely does not exist in this office
    -Company as a whole can move as slow as molasses
    -Can be incredibly arrogant and judgy of other agencies/companies/clients
    -Salary is not competitive
    -Someone in tears nearly every week (if not more)
    -Not a level playing field - feels like "friends" are promoted and granted ridiculous awards
    -Lack of professionalism from local management - inappropriate remarks made in front of office was not unusual (and they wondered why people were so quiet in meetings!)
    -Weekly happy hours are a joke - felt very "forced" and the senior leaders clearly didn't want to participate (ditto for the holiday breakfast they would grudgingly make)
    -Social media efforts of local office are a joke; everything has to be approved and it's obvious. So "corporatized" it's ineffective

    Advice to Management

    Needs new local leadership


  10. Did a great job branding itself

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - AAE in Atlanta, GA
    Current Employee - AAE in Atlanta, GA

    I have been working at Edelman

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Great client roster. Lots of booze. Nice benefits. Smart, fun people.

    Cons

    Will only promote you during two periods a year. If you're hired the DAY before this period, you missed the boat and they won't consider you until you've reached a full "term" and the time limit. Extremely draconian in promotions. Salaries are below local averages. If you say you ARE the best, you should pay like the best. Bonuses and promotions not given after management promises them to employees.

    Advice to Management

    Keep your promises. Change promotion timelines to be more merit based. Stop playing favorites among employees. Don't make direct reports feel bad for taking sick days. Fairly extend telecommute options to everyone who is salaried.


  11. Helpful (1)

    Administrative Assistant

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

    I have been working at Edelman

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Benefits, and that's all really

    Cons

    No room for personal and professional growth, admins are not considered promotable, very little training, time-off is frowned upon



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