Coleman Research Reviews

Updated June 27, 2014
Updated June 27, 2014
26 Reviews

2.7
26 Reviews
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Coleman Research President & CEO Kevin Coleman
Kevin Coleman
18 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great Place To Work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  New York, NY
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY

    I have been working at Coleman Research full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Great culture. Engaged leadership. Great place to learn if you are early in your career.

    Cons

    Nothing to add at this time.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    My advice to those considering employment....

    First, it’s a great place to work and I’ve worked at enough places to know. There’s plenty to learn here. Those who have left Coleman, whether happy or disenchanted, cannot say they didn’t cut their teeth on some challenging work, honing skills that will be invaluable going forward. The business is tightly connected to the critical workflow of the client, which means your contributions every day have an impact allowing you to regularly assess your successes and areas for development. And the management team could not be more supportive. The notion of “open door” is an understatement here. Everyone from the CEO to regional team leads are always available and connected passionately to the development and happiness of the staff. The culture is vibrant and supportive.

    People should do their homework before interviewing. Coleman is not a large company but has emerged in its 10 years as an industry leader. This came about through people, innovation and, like any company, trial and error in some areas. It makes me think about some of those early candidates who first interviewed with Bill Gates who either declined an offer or left after a very short stint because they didn’t see a career path, or personal growth plan etc etc. I get that hind sight is 20/20 and that Coleman is not likely to be the next MS. However, I think the point is clear. If you're looking for big structure, global career pathing, company store etc etc. you might be unhappy here. If you're looking for a place to make an impact, meet great people and learn, then perhaps there's a fit.

    Look, I’m not one who typically takes the time to do things like this. I’m not a fan of any “opinion” or “feedback” site. Free access to the worlds opinions just seems to make the world that much more apathetic, misinformed and angry. You know what they say about opinions…I don’t need that kind of free access. My advice is, think for yourself, talk directly to people and take chances.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Great opportunity to learn - Young, growing company with flat structure and new, proven management team.

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Coleman Research full-time

    Pros

    - Intelligent client base, interact with some of the world's smartest clientele and key opinion leaders

    - Flat management, easy to interact with Sr. Management.

    - A lot of emphasis in skill development. Extensive training (phone skills, public speaking, how to conduct a meeting, extensive overview of financial markets).

    - Hands get dirty, able to do a lot of things rapidly that you wouldn't be able to do at a large company.

    Cons

    - Hear a lot of complaints about pay or that it's a bit lower than industry peers and or raises aren't as frequent as they should be. You hear this a lot at the junior level with first years and 23-26 yr. old.

    - Limited career growth due it being a small company and there are only so many new mid to senior level positions that open up with the growth of the company.

    - Tight budgets, company is run from the top down fiscally conservative, which is smart but can a lot of complaints.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    - Continue to invest in the brand (as it's beginning to pay off and I'm sure they will continue to do so)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    A sinking ship saturated with terrible management, poor working conditions, and low morale.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Research Associate  in  Raleigh, NC
    Current Employee - Research Associate in Raleigh, NC

    I have been working at Coleman Research full-time

    Pros

    --Salary and benefits are commensurate with other entry-level jobs; looks good on your resume
    --As a Research Associate (RA), you develop good oral and written communication skills as you consistently reach out to industry professionals
    --Young office, decent social environment

    Cons

    --Favoritism. Middle and senior managers handpick a few individuals and prune them for promotion within the company. Yes, that is how most businesses work, but most of the individuals they select are not overwhelmingly more brilliant and hard-working than the rest; in fact, many are incompetent, especially in a management role. Account Managers (AMs) can also seem to do no wrong as they oversee our company's accounts with high-profile clients.
    --Unrealistic goals. Admittedly, senior and middle management have recently scaled back their goals because they've finally realized that the ones they initially proposed were virtually unattainable. That said, the company is still having a lot of difficulty in achieving these goals, probably due to the very high rate of turnover and disillusioned RAs.
    --Management's meritocratic strategy is flawed, as "great" RAs (those who manage to set up a high number of consultations) do not equal good middle managers. Most of the RAs who advanced to management positions (particularly on the Research side) have been unsuccessful in effectively leading their teams, mainly due to poor professional maturity and leadership skills.
    --Inconsistency in promotion strategy. It's perplexing when they string along potential candidates for management positions for several months and then offer similar positions to candidates who have been have been at the company for less than six months. They're not upfront about letting candidates know that they are not interested in advancing them.
    --Senior management has an annoying tendency to select a few individuals to chat about working conditions in the office. These individuals are unofficially deemed "rising stars," usually RAs who have been nurtured for success and promotion (generally not by their own merit). Many of these individuals are unaware of or unconcerned with the very poor working conditions and low morale that pervade the office. They need to speak with a broader range of people in order to get a more informed perspective of the general mood of the company.
    --To be brief about other cons: ill-trained and unprofessional middle managers (many of whom are condescending, micromanaging, and/or incompetent); enormously high amounts of communication within and between departments in the company, leading to erroneous perceptions of individuals and teams by other groups; extremely high rate of turnover, with an average of one employee leaving the company per month; and, finally, a plateauing of the learning/professional development curve (at least for the RA) after about 4 months of employment.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I think the recently flurry of negative reviews is enough to give you an idea of what you need to do. You need to better train your middle managers. All of them are on their high horse and exercise their power pointlessly and abusively. Micromanagement does not work. Other reviewers on this website have stressed this, and we know you read these, so please relay this to your middle management. Micromanagement discourages individual work ethic and contributes to low morale, which subsequently affects company-wide performance. Promote more wisely. Especially if this is their first job out of college, no one should rise to a management position with less than a year of experience unless they have demonstrated leadership skills and professional maturity--most of your middle managers do not. On another note, stop being so selective about hiring. Your company is severely understaffed due to large droves of people leaving the organization. Obviously, you need to scrutinize candidates for their ability level and potential in a company whose business model relies on the application of effective communication skills, but it makes no sense to screen applicants on their responses to the abnormally high number of irrelevant questions you pose in an interview. Finally, listen to the issues posed by your employees. While Research Associates seem to express the most issues with the company on this website, other departments (including Data, Scheduling, Account Management, and Sales (among others)), have voiced strong frustrations with current working conditions at the company. It suggests a very poor outlook on the company when more than 70% of your employees (a modest percentage) are severely dissatisfied. Begin to change or you will falter.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Look for work elsewhere; if you're already there, get out of there as fast as you can.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Research Associate  in  Raleigh, NC
    Former Employee - Research Associate in Raleigh, NC

    I worked at Coleman Research full-time

    Pros

    --Comp and benefits good for entry-level
    --You have the opportunity to explore a diverse range of industries
    --Work/life balance can be OK if you don't let the stress and frustration affect your outside life
    --Looks good on resume

    Cons

    --Micromanagement from middle managers who are inexperienced and poorly trained
    --Few career advancement opportunities that they only offer secretly to people that they've selected at the outset
    --Management on all levels is blind and deaf to Research's voiced concerns
    --Excessively long work day and pointless hours around holidays...since we spend 100% of our time (at the Research level) looking for experts, vetting them, and sending them to our clients, it makes no sense to work on Black Friday, Christmas Eve, or July 5th (especially this year when it fell on a Friday), because most people we reach out to will not be reachable. They keep us open when the New York Stock Exchange is open, but it makes no sense since we're not doing any financial analysis or modeling and are only at the beck and call of clients who do (who often ignore us during these times, actually).
    --Awful website and marketing materials. Our competitors destroy us in this regard.
    --General ill-feeling towards management from Research and other departments
    --High, high, turnover in a company that can't afford it. Most people leave not simply because they're looking for better opportunities, but because they can't take the terrible working conditions anymore
    --No incentives other than unattainable commissions, secret promotions, and selective raises/bonuses. Researchers (and other ground-level departments) feel under appreciated.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    While incentives such as raises or career advancement opportunities would be helpful, the main problem is poor organization and management. Your middle managers are generally incompetent and rude, and they often micromanage their subordinates. Enough with all of the secrecy in promoting people. You'll get better work performance when you express your gratitude and appreciation of your employees. Researchers may be young and mostly inexperienced, but their ground-level work drives your revenue. Account Management is indispensable but is only a part of the equation, so treat your RAs with the same level or respect that you treat your AMs.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Soul destroying

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Research Associate  in  Raleigh, NC
    Current Employee - Research Associate in Raleigh, NC

    I have been working at Coleman Research full-time

    Pros

    Hardworking peers in research. Office is big but OK.

    Cons

    Account managers can do no wrong even if they are lazy and rude
    Salary is terribly and much lower than competitors
    No career advancement
    Researchers are treated very badly
    Higher targets than the other offices

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    stop pretending this is a good job with prospects, we all know its not

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7.  

    Ambivalent

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Research Intern  in  New York, NY
    Former Employee - Research Intern in New York, NY

    I worked at Coleman Research as an intern for less than a year

    Pros

    Young people, quickly growing company

    Cons

    Work quickly becomes monotonous, hours get long

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Management should clarify the career development path

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 7 people found this helpful  

    "Don't waste your time on this sinking ship. "

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Research Associate  in  Raleigh, NC
    Current Employee - Research Associate in Raleigh, NC

    I have been working at Coleman Research full-time

    Pros

    Looks good on your resume. The office is young which makes for a pretty good social environment. You do improve your communication skills as you're constantly contacting experts in a given industry. You become a master at LinkedIn! Base pay is decent for recent grads, and benefits are also good.

    Cons

    As an entry-level employee fresh out of undergrad (or relatively recent out of undergrad), you can't expect to be entitled to the best of benefits and situations. But there needs to be some sense to the madness. As a Research Associate (RA), you stop learning anything useful after your 4th month here. They market the company as if there is ample room for professional development, but it's completely false. You spend 9-10 hours a day searching for people on LinkedIn and other more sketchy resources. All day, every day. You are not doing market research--it's basically glorified telemarketing. The commission structure is also frequently unattainable, and their goals are unreasonable.

    The place is ridiculously disorganized, in that middle management mostly consists of inexperienced and young recent grads who have no skills communicating to senior management the problems RAs frequently encounter. Project Managers (PMs) and Research Managers (RMs) also micromanage often. This never works. Because of this, there is definitely a "revolving door" culture here. They can't retain most of their RAs for more than 2 years (most leave between 1-2 years).

    That said: turnover! We lose an average of one employee a month (we lost 6 last month), and we're a very small company. It's particularly bad on the Research side, because training RAs takes a while, and people develop at their own pace. In the meantime, projects are neglected due to understaffed teams being unable to handle all of the work. It's a mess. This isn't a kind of job anyone can do. They don't hire as quickly as they lose people, which results in increased workloads we can't handle and a whole bunch of frustrated clients.

    No upward mobility. They dangle potential promotions in front of people's noses and never follow through. They make tons of false promises in order to provide encouragement to work harder and "chase calls." Management positions offer very little too. PMs basically only proofread and are only helpful (sometimes) when there are issues out of the RAs control. But RAs are expected to handle most things on their own.

    There is no accountability in other departments. Account Managers (AMs), many of which are incompetent and/or rude, seemingly can do no wrong. Since they oversee our client accounts, they're given preferential treatment, and senior management/middle management turns a deaf ear/blind eye whenever they have issues with Research in which they're the offending party. AMs are often extremely rude and unrelentingly demanding to Research, and Research has to suck it up. If Research retaliates in any way whatsoever, they're reprimanded. The politics concerning AMs are obscene. Some of our other departments seem incompetent too, but that's not entirely their fault because there's a bit of a "revolving door" culture among them as well, and people are never fully/adequately trained.

    The industry is unsustainable. Recruiting experts poses its own challenges and unpredictability, but clients make our jobs harder because they decide at their discretion whether to accept or reject an expert we've sent them for a potential consultation, and it can end in failure even if you send them the perfect expert in a reasonable amount of time. It's very discouraging. Yes, you deal with it and move on--that's life. But it isn't fair to the RA when you hold them accountable for things like this that are out of their control. There's nothing we can do if the client decides to put a project on hold, and we suffer for it because it affects our numbers at the end of the month. We then get criticized for bad performance that is usually in small part our fault. I understand that the bottom line is making sure that we set up these connections, but there are so many factors that can prevent that from taking place. When you tell your direct managers (PMs and RMs) this, they always generalize your difficulties and tell you to "make an extra push."

    I don't care how much experience a person thinks they have and how great you think you are--rudeness and condescension is always unprofessional. Middle managers (especially Project and Research Managers) are the main culprits of this. There are better ways of providing constructive criticism than by making someone feel inferior. Intimidating your subordinates is not only cruel, but it's very bad management and business strategy. Don't make generalizations about a person based on how you think they act outside of the office or how you think they process information. Also, if someone in the office is experiencing issues from another colleague in the office, don't turn your head or write it off--you're promoting that kind of harassment. If you're rude or unprofessional, at least be decent at your job.

    Besides respectably improving your communication skills, you don't really learn anything apart from "how not to manage your employees." I guess you get better at surfing the internet aimlessly.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire and train better middle managers. Just because someone was a "good" researcher does not mean that they possess any management skills. Managers should not be in their early/mid-twenties unless they are exceptional at leading their teams, and also if they're experienced. It's not age-ist...it's better business strategy. Everyone, across all departments, should be accountable for their problems, not just Research. Micromanagement and intimidation do not work. Please internalize this. Stop with the underhanded preferential treatment and secret promotions. Stop focusing on the trivial things and start focusing on the bigger picture. Stop forcing your employees to quit. I'm sure the extraordinarily high-rate of turnover isn't helping you. Small improvements can change so much and improve everyone's quality-of-life. Most importantly is respect. We're young and mostly inexperienced, yes, but that does not allow you to treat us like machines and ignore our judgement. Your company will fall if you continue to operate in this manner.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 3 people found this helpful  

    Tedious boring work, unrealistic goals at all levels, awful management.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Research Associate  in  Raleigh, NC
    Current Employee - Research Associate in Raleigh, NC

    I have been working at Coleman Research full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Young colleagues, experts can be interesting people to talk to, very occasionally you can learn something new and interesting or consider something differently, cheap health insurance, good office location. Looks good on paper.

    Cons

    Management at all levels has no respect for employees, who are treated as disposable. Turnover is very high, morale is very low, nobody cares about the future of the company and the results are a very toxic environment. There's no career future, they make it clear that you shouldn't stay more than two years. Individual goals are not calibrated to business volume, low percentage of employees EVER hit monthly goals. Many employees have to find a second job to make ends meet given the wage structure. Hours are way too long for compensation.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Start treating employees like they're important to the company. Training for the people that are promoted with NO management experience. Set realistic, not completely demoralizing goals for staff.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10.  

    Great place to learn about financial markets and equity investing processes across multiple sectors

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Account Manager  in  New York, NY
    Former Employee - Account Manager in New York, NY

    I worked at Coleman Research full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    -Ability to work independently but also with a team
    -Ability to work on multiple projects for clients at various stages
    -Hard work will get you far in this company

    Cons

    -Steep learning curve if you don't put forth your best effort
    -You won't get very far if you don't put forth your best effort

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Largely a great experience, and I mean it is STILL a great experience.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  New York, NY
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY

    I have been working at Coleman Research

    Pros

    Great people from the top down. A good business with plenty to learn if you look in the right places. Opportunity and experience gain. Comfortable culture, and currently a great location. Great benefits package and above average compensation. This really is a great place to work.

    Cons

    No transperancy. Current industry difficulties and operations shifting south are breeding uncertainty and leave stability in question. Water cooler rumors. Lots of turnover with some at the senior level. Lack of seniority inspired enthusiasm in all departments.
    Still a great place to work.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Honest communication from the top tier to the group regarding the present and future of the company in order stop the rumors and the turnover. Top tier and middle managers should inspire their teams to be motivated and enthused. Lead the teams back to big call numbers by getting into the middle of the action with them. CRG is a great place to work, but it could be amazing.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

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