CalFirst

  www.calfirstbancorp.com
  www.calfirstbancorp.com

CalFirst Reviews

Updated October 21, 2014
Updated October 21, 2014
25 Reviews
2.4
25 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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Patrick E. Paddon
15 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Great co-workers, Managers treat you with respect. Very professional environment. Fun place to work.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Inside Sales in Irvine, CA
    Current Employee - Inside Sales in Irvine, CA

    I have been working at CalFirst full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Excellent opportunity to earn a lot of money. Base salary and commission structure is exceptional. Great working hours.

    Cons

    Long sales cycle, must have patients

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep up the good work, You have made this a fun place to work. I look forward to coming to work every day.
    .

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Great career growth opportunity

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Account Manager in Irvine, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Account Manager in Irvine, CA

    I have been working at CalFirst full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great real world business experience
    Knowledge of speaking with C-suite executives and reviewing professional audit
    High level sales experience skills which can be translated across the board in business

    Cons

    Somewhat lengthy however rewarding sales cycle
    Need to be consistent with updating client information and persistent on reaching them live
    Necessary for high learning curve

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    none

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 3 people found this helpful  

    Create a time machine, go back, and do not accept your offer of employment

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

    I worked at CalFirst full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    As I see it, the only pro about working here was the fact that you could share a sense of mutual commiseration with you coworkers. Much like the military, many cults, and high school football teams, Management at CalFirst place their employees in a state of liminality that only has the adverse effect of banding the disgruntled employees together against big brother. Your fellow employees will be the saving grace on this sinking ship. This place is the heart of darkness. The hurt locker. I'll tell you now what I was told on my first day at CalFirst.... "Start looking for another job". I know what you are thinking, that there is something wrong with all the people writing these reviews and it will be different for you.... unfortunately, that is not the case. If you are happy to collect a meager paycheck to pound away senselessly at a computer, like an automaton making redundant phone call after redundant phone call, looking out the window longingly at the freedom you used to have like a monkey in a zoo, this job could be a match. Are you ready to sit at your desk on Christmas eve, trying to call 100 people who got the day off? Are you prepared to ask your manager if you can make a personal phone call because your kid is sick, and have him say no? Where do I sign, right? If you are a human, with human standards of ethics, decency and self respect, this might not be the right place. There is absolutely no reason that you need to dress up in a suit and tie, wake up at 5:30 am, and make 80 phone calls a day to rude people for 40k a yr at this solemn joke of a company. You will be treated like a child here, literally.

    Cons

    With pros like that, who needs cons! Like many people, I chose to leave my position for another job... The turnover rate here is high, but it is not because they fire anyone... People leave because they hate this job, not because they can't hack it. I will try to paint as good a picture as I can for you.

    - Terrible management. not just in terms of absolutely degrading their own employees, but also trash talking other employees and sales managers behind their backs. Absolutely zero dialogue between sales teams and upper management, resulting in unrealistic goals and outdated, useless sales tactics. At all times, your manager is waiting to steal the deal from you. You are not taught any of the pricing, documentation, etc, and are essentially generating leads for your manager to feebly try to close. I have never seen so many charismatic, willing and intelligent people be systematically disenfranchised as my coworkers and myself were here.
    - Miserable hours. The only upside is beating traffic. Be prepared to fell stressed out if you are awake past 10, and I'm sure you are going to love getting dressed in the pitch black because its still night out when you wake up.
    - Commissions do not get payed, and if they do, they are paid literally, drum roll please, a YEAR LATER. Be prepared for every deal to be qualified as a special circumstance, and your commissions to be cut in half. This is not a commission based job- it just doesn't happen. You are a salaried telemarketer.
    - You will have exactly 100% cold accounts. Do not expect to have even one account that we have done business with before. You won't. As a matter of fact, expect to have many accounts that have either been beat to death by deft salesmen for YEARS, or have been absolutely screwed by this company in the past, and have blackballed us moving forward.
    - Company culture is non-existent. It's supposed to be sales right? Morale is important. This company does nothing to show you that it cares genuinely about its employees or customers. Your significant other will never be able to see where you work. Your cubicle is the only space you will have, and time spent out of it will be viewed negatively by management. Imagine, making 80-100 phone calls a day without fail, never missing a deadline and still being told to get back to your desk like a kindergartener.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Without wholesale changes to the way that this company is run, I do not see this advice as being useful. They have found a business model that works for them, so why change it. They count on people buying the 8 month sales cycle, working them for 8 months, and then replacing them with another patsy. This company is a revolving door for idiots, which I found myself stuck in. So, my bit of advice to all reading this is that if you can't be a part of the solution, don't be part of the problem. Just know what you are walking in to.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5.  

    Short term solution

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

    I worked at CalFirst full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Start at 6:30am so there's not much traffic.

    There's some other cool people working there

    Cons

    There are two types of people who work here: those who are miserable and can't find any other work, and those who are too naive and buy into this joke of a business model.

    Phone blitz- you just crank through daily activities to get the same responses. Which leaves you basically short on accounts to call because you blitz through a weeks worth of activities in 2-3 days

    There's only about 3 account executives making any decent commission. And they make up the bulk of the company's revenue. The rest of us are told to call the same companies over and over to hear the same response: not interested.

    You inherit terrible accounts who have shown no interest in dealing with 3rd party lenders for almost 10 years, but you get chewed out when they don't want to do business calfirst.

    Managers do not know anything about motivation. Fear tactics do not work here as so much of the business is out of your control. Unrealistic expectations. Besides the people who are dumb enough to buy into their system, this company is a temporary stop off for a paycheck.

    Manager needs to feel important by proofreading emails- I guess he thinks changing one or two words will change the way companies have been doing business for decades huh?

    Most leads you find won't have a good enough credit to even quote a project.

    SUPER high turnover.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Realign your expectations. I have to imagine they are aware of the low morale at this place

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Sales Associate

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Irvine, CA
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Irvine, CA

    I worked at CalFirst part-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Good Hourly Pay. One week of trailing. Great co-workers. The company continued to change their client focus, etc.

    Cons

    At the time, you worked 36 hours per week until you made a deal of $400K. By doing so, they don't have pay any form of benefits. I hoped they have changed this since I worked there. They are a ultraconservative lender, which can make it very difficult to get loans approved.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Make sure you send enough one-on-one time with each member to your team to improve their efficiency and success.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7. 2 people found this helpful  

    Account Executive

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

    I worked at CalFirst full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    I would only say the coworkers. Everything else about the company is a Con. I have never seen such a pathetic company.

    Cons

    Cold call businesses around the country who have never heard of CalFirst.

    Micromanagement to the fullest extent.

    The managers have a "do as I say, not as I do" mentality.

    Have to wear ties. We work in a call center!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Don't treat the employees like 6 year olds. You don't need to read every email we send. Be friendly to everyone, not just the top 3 sale producers.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 2 people found this helpful  

    Strange Company, stranger management.

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

    I have been working at CalFirst full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Very profitable company but it is very strange why. If you like sitting in a cube and calling on companies who have already said no to 10 other sales calls that day then this is the job for you. If you like telemarketing this is the job for you. If you enjoy working for passive aggressive back stabbers this is the company for you. If you don't need more that a day of training before being handed a phone and told to call companies this is the job for you.

    Cons

    Revolving door of account executives and recruiters. Since I have been here I have seen at least 10 account executives, 1 district manager and 5 recruiters get fired. Management for this company is strange and back stabbing. Everyone is afraid of one hated vp who has upper management fooled. that person is the cause of all of the fear and mistrust in this company. The owners have to review every interview before it is scheduled. The dm's and vp's hate the interviews that are scheduled but are afraid to tell the owners. So they blame it on the recruiters. one vp only hires waitress's and friends of hid team. One senior vp has a good relationship with his team and is liked respected and the other is feared, hated and mistrusted. The owners are weird. They do not smile or say hello and they will walk right pass you like you don't exist. If you are smart you will stay far, far away from this company! Most of the people on my team is looking for another job.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Owners need to see why they are firing most people on one svp's team and almost none on the other svp's team. Owners smile and speak to your employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great company with very decent pay structure

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

    I have been working at CalFirst full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Very fair with salary & benefits. Lots of people have been with the company over 10 years. Friendly and accessible management. Great AE team, Great quality of life-40 hour weeks, no weekends

    Cons

    Long sales cycle for AE but they do tell you that before being hired

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep up the good work. But give more training

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    Worse job ever... and I've had a few

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

    I worked at CalFirst full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Best reasons...ummm... if you need a job for a couple/few months...want entry level 'experience' for a few months...

    Cons

    Just about everything...never in my 37 yrs ( i worked there when I was in my late 20's) have i dreaded waking up and going to a job worse than my 3 months here... I didn't even wait to get laid off - i just had to leave... micro managment to the max...needed to have 120+ or 3+ hours talk time per day or you are 'counseled' - they posted each workers daily output when you walked in the next day and highlighted you if you 'were not up to par' ...cold calling to the max to high level executives who already rec'd the same calls over and over and over again... 'IF' you have a potential deal the criteria is so high to actually land it - they are a very conservative lender...one buddy who lasted longer than me had a deal he worked 8 months on...5 days before funding, he was 'let go' --this place sucks - revolving door of employees, feeling worthless every day...i wouldn't recommend this place to anyone (i left in 2005 - last yr of 2010 was the furthest back avail for review form - doubt anything changed )

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get a clue

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11. 3 people found this helpful  

    sales associate

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

    I have been working at CalFirst full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Great co workers, pay is ok. Good stepping stone to get a real job.

    Cons

    Management is horrible. They train you for one week, and expect you to know everything. Lots of variables come into play when working a deal that you can't control. Management uses fear tactics to get results. Hire new sales associate at higher pay..brings down company morale.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    train your associates instead of blaming them for everything that goes wrong. Additionally, promote from within instead of hiring new sales associates with better pay.(everyone talks about how much they get paid there, you are not fooling anyone.)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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