Mattel

  www.mattel.com
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Mattel Reviews

Updated July 22, 2014
Updated July 22, 2014
227 Reviews

3.2
227 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Mattel CEO and Director Bryan G. Stockton
Bryan G. Stockton
85 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • good work life balance, good salaries, half day fridays, good health insurance plan (in 63 reviews)

  • There are many work/life balance initiatives to take advantage of (in 23 reviews)


Cons
  • work/life balance is nearly non-existent: emails and work on weekends, late nights (in 13 reviews)

  • Some long hours and weekend emails (in 11 reviews)

More Highlights

32 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Lack of leadership and innovation

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

    Pros

    Mattel hires talented hardworking people with good salaries and strong benefit package.

    Cons

    Unfortunately, bad behavior is rewarded in a highly political culture. Leadership is non existence and shallow. The Leadership team and CEO lack vision. The company systems are completely antiquated.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take a leadership role as the largest in the industry and make toys relevant again instead of lining your pockets with cash.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 5 people found this helpful  

    Very conservative, crucially imbalanced

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

    Pros

    Good benefits, holidays. Weak leadership means slack work environment for lazy people, lots of opportunity to contribute for self-motivated people.

    Cons

    Very focused on old-school commodity-manufacturing business approach. Principle business values are savings and cost cutting; essentially no commitment to growth through investment in people, processes or innovation. Doesn't understand or embrace the direction the industry is going, or the impacts on its core business of digital, technology, and changing play patterns.

    Significant bonuses, and stocks, are reserved for executives. Executive incentives are too large, and are based on short-term performance, so no one will take risks or think for the future, or invest in any timeframe longer than they can see themselves personally benefiting.

    Punishes failure and unsuccessful risk. Innovation is difficult and not rewarded (unless someone gets lucky and a project they are associated with happens to make a ton of cash). These factors create a climate of fear and weak, indecisive leadership. Buys outside ideas while internal ideas languish.

    Weak leadership causes long development cycles, with a great many unnecessary variants explored, creative frustration, and business costs due to the large number of projects cancelled late in the cycle.

    Climate of fear and imbalanced incentives also create an extremely hierarchical organization, a strongly consensus-based culture, and a strong wall between individual contributors and executives. A cynical emphasis on "team” is used as an excuse to not praise, encourage, reward or retain individuals. The overall tone of the culture is one of lip service to poor ideas if endorsed by higher-ups, empty cheers and false smiles.

    The organization thinks of the business as a machine, and of people as interchangeable. No possibility of career growth for the majority of employees. Quality of people is low. Ranks and leadership are both full of deadwood, sycophants and the underqualified. Best and brightest don't stay long.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Parachute out the old dogs. Hire some people from startups, tech industry. Get fresh thinking, especially at the senior leadership level, and in marketing. Hire the best, give them the resources to flourish, and incentivise them to do their best. Invest in the future, in innovation, in new markets. Reward risk taking, inspired failure and new ideas.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 2 people found this helpful  

    Great people increasingly undermined by not great leadership

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  El Segundo, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in El Segundo, CA

    Pros

    Robust, iconic content, some amazing people and performers, can be a fun environment. Very good benefits.

    Cons

    Increasingly political, out of touch and vindictive leadership, high pressure, unrealistic expectations by people because they can, not because it is necessary. Depending on the group you're in, room for advancement can be limited (though good benefits help offset that).

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Value the people who have committed years of energy, intelligence and dedication to your company and who are top performers. Right now you do not do so. Also stop being so incredibly short-sighted in terms of business cycles. You do not need an unrealistically high return every single quarter, you need to perform well over time.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 3 people found this helpful  

    Mixed experience with IT department.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - IT Director  in  El Segundo, CA
    Current Employee - IT Director in El Segundo, CA

    Pros

    Great experience working on enterprise projects

    Cons

    Senior management isn't engaged with their staff. They are more concerned with keeping their jobs than doing what is right for the company.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Implement 360 degree reviews.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. 5 people found this helpful  

    ruthless culture

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Manager  in  El Segundo, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Manager in El Segundo, CA

    Pros

    Known brand, very involved in the community. Fun products, creative people. Good benefits, lots of holidays.

    Cons

    Ruthless, highly political culture, but great at marketing themselves as otherwise. They allow lots of bad behavior -- most of leadership perpetuates the toxic culture. Very top-heavy. People are given promotions and high-level titles as rewards for technical accomplishments and fire-fighting, not because they are exceptional managers/leaders capable of developing their people and creating great teams. Last century HR processes and systems. Some people sit back and rest on their laurels while others work so hard and so much that they don't have time to have good work/life balance. If you are accomplished at corporate politics and can check your conscience at the doorway, you'll do well here.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Think about that fable "The Emperor Has No Clothes" -- and own up to the fact that you are that naked emperor. Everyone knows it's a house of cards, but who cares when you have a name brand like Mattel? Start caring about all the dead bodies you leave in your wake. Bring in new HR leadership. Stop operating as silos and start modeling cooperation, collaboration and teamwork. Take a serious look at workloads and re-evaluate the distribution of responsibilities. Pay attention to which areas/groups of the company bear the greatest burden when multiple change initiatives are implemented simultaneously. Act like you care about more than your executive perks and bonuses.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Mattel Interactive Barbie Team

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - International Producer  in  El Segundo, CA
    Current Employee - International Producer in El Segundo, CA

    Pros

    Half day Fridays, slow work pace.

    Cons

    Corporate environment, non-innovative teams, process does not make sense, off shore development team and a bunch of old dogs that do not understand digital trends.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire people that have a vision and know how to develop, design and produce the latest in digital. Use internal teams to develop, do not use off shore when you have a company this size and keep current on the latest digital trends, classes your team can take and create some structure that make since, include all teams in brainstorming, have a goal in mind .. keep up with competitors.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    No Work Life Balance

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Financial Analyst  in  El Segundo, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Financial Analyst in El Segundo, CA

    Pros

    half day Fridays (in theory), great coworkers, solid cafeteria and gym, relevant products, easy to rotate to other departments

    Cons

    feel like a cog, very bureaucratic, no avenue to give safe feedback to management, bad IT. They romance you with a great corporate culture, but I found that there was no work life balance and a lot of office politics. Hours were long and "peak time" was practically all the time. It was impossible to make plans during the week. They made us work MLK weekend and 4th of July. I think other departments had it easier, but it's pretty difficult being in Finance. Morale was low in our department due to being overworked and with layoffs pending.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 3 people found this helpful  

    Does not care about its people.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Analyst  in  El Segundo, CA
    Former Employee - Analyst in El Segundo, CA

    Pros

    Half day Fridays. Decent cafeteria food. Discount on toys. Recognizable brand.

    Cons

    The company does not care about its people. They will lay you off despite how long you have worked there. There have been people that were laid off after only being there for 2 to 6 months. That is definitely not enough time to have contributed to the company's poor performance. Think twice before thinking about quitting your job to come here.

    The systems are also extremely outdated. Depending on how and when you pull data, it will be different from the next person who pulled it. This makes work 10x more difficult because you will not know who has the correct data. You will spend more time QAing the data than analyzing it.

    Management is also afraid to take risks and think outside of the box. They would rather set goals low so that they can come out looking like heroes if they exceed them.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take care of your people. They are doing the ones doing the most work.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    Dinosaur of a business trying to survive in a dynamic world.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Analyst  in  El Segundo, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Analyst in El Segundo, CA

    Pros

    Half Day Fridays
    Lots of Holidays/Time Off
    Onsite Facilities - Gym, Dry Cleaning, Cafeteria, Toy Store, Credit Union
    Great Brands
    Great on Resume

    Cons

    Old School Management Mentality - Old Boy Network
    CYA environment. Being cc'd on too many emails
    Some long hours and weekend emails
    Too many direction changes
    Too many exceptions to the rule. Too many accounts do it "their" way
    No accountability
    Too much movement of people. No consistency of procedures
    Continuous threats of lay off
    Being Laid off to see your position posted externally immediately.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get rid of some old management. Too many kiss asses. Old Management afraid to speak up/stand up.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 3 people found this helpful  

    Horrible management and HR, preach about work-life balance, but not true.

    Former Employee - Project Designer  in  El Segundo, CA
    Former Employee - Project Designer in El Segundo, CA

    Pros

    Great brands and creative work. People are friendly for the most part.

    Cons

    Management seems like a high school clique looking out for each other. Moving up is slow, and too many re-organizations contribute to that. Although work-life balance is preached about, it is not true as the workloads do not allow for it. Workers are unappreciated and treated as expendable.

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