Edelman Reviews

Updated September 2, 2015
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3.8
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Edelman President and CEO Richard W. Edelman
Richard W. Edelman
838 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

1,062 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (5)

    Don't work at Edelman if you can help it

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Vice President in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Vice President in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    They have decent business prospects.

    Cons

    Mean, politically motivated know-it-alls at all levels. You are looked down at if you are not Jewish -- and I'm part Jewish. Very few people are happy here, which is too bad. I've worked at a few agencies and this is tied for last place with Weber Shandwick.

    Advice to Management

    Stop PRing the work environment to the outside world, without actually making it a good place to work. PR has enough reputation issues without the Edelman smokescreen.


  2. Helpful (6)

    Great reputation, not a great place to work

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Account Executive in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Account Executive in Seattle, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Edelman is a place that is full of very smart people who, in my mind, are thought leaders in the PR industry. The training and education they give to employees is truly valuable and overall the clientele is very interesting. Beyond thought leadership and great clients, they have beautiful offices around the U.S. that are aesthetically pleasing to walk into every day.

    Cons

    Upper management shows extreme favoritism to those who fit a particular mold. They will promote them relentlessly and noticeably allow them to micromanage the rest of the team (regardless of their title). If you are not one of their favorites, upper management will always find a reason why you shouldn’t be promoted and not give you a constructive reason why you cannot move to the next level. Aside from there not being an opportunity for career growth here, the pay is terrible. I am making 10 to 15 thousand less than my counter parts in other firms, and do not have any benefits like compensated travel (parking, bus, train) or a reduced rate on a gym. Aside from all this the people truly make this place miserable. They are passive aggressive, arrogant and will do anything they can to take credit for good work they did not do. I would not recommend working here.

    Advice to Management

    If you demand certain things of staff, then demand that same quality and performance of all staff. We know that times are tough – but it is not a reason to underpay and under compensate your staff.


  3. Helpful (1)

    Unless you want to be overworked, underpaid and regularly backstabbed...don't work here

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Account Executive in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Senior Account Executive in Seattle, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    You will learn a lot about media lists, media relations and social media while working here. This knowledge is very valuable. You will also learn a lot about office politics, which comes with a price but could be valuable eventually. Overall, the ultimate “pro” is that you will walk away with a major name in the PR industry on your resume.

    Cons

    To name a few cons, Edelman Seattle is full of poor management, favoritism and toxic people. If you are not a favorite of the general manager, upper management or HR don’t expect to get a promotion, a raise or even be heard when you have an issue. If your manager feels at all threatened by you and your talent, you will be demeaned in front of upper management and clients, not promoted for reasons you will only find out during your review and will be positioned by your manager as “not meeting the mark” (regardless of meeting/exceeding client expectations). Some other cons include low pay, long hours and very little appreciation.

    Advice to Management

    You are losing talent to office politics, a terrible HR department and toxic people.


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  5. Helpful (2)

    Ouch, that hurt

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Account Executive in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Senior Account Executive in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Ability to do things you may have never done before if you get a good account. Lots of variety of tasks, challenges and the opportunity to participate nominally in minor decision making.

    Cons

    No real teams here, rather it is individual competition within the team, Politics in the office is not the best way to help clients. Really poor leadership and stratified management style. Very Old School. There is definitely an inner circle, a need to know attitude and poor morale overall all. This agency is about billable hours and you better not forget it. You can grow there if you can get "in" with certain people, not by accomplishments. I was disappointed and disillusioned, They had good PR about their company, I chose them over another but regretted it within my first week.

    Advice to Management

    Empower and enhance all your employees, not just your buddy pool. Flatten your management system and instead of lunching with a reporter etc.. every day maybe Richard should lunch with employees. Provide better platforms for employees to advance. Read Managing Upside Down.


  6. High expectations and demands without giving mentoring & professional development back

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Account Executive in Los Angeles, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Account Executive in Los Angeles, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Benefits are fair. Company well known in the field. Managers are totally available via phone, email, IM, BBM, etc. (not sure this is a pro).

    Cons

    Management focused on bringing in new business & protecting their practice's bottom line. Leads to not sharing knowledge & resources with other practices in the same office; and keeping team members fully&over utiliized even if it means over-servicing (anything to keep the client happy in a recession). Also, many times teams are top heavy with SVPs and there aren't enough junior staffers to do the bulk of the work. So junior staffers end up doing a lot of work well below their level. There is a serious lack of opportunities for jr. level staff to take the lead or serve as point person on projects or accounts. And the lack of interns (except for the most profitable practices) means a lack of ways for jr. staff to develop supervisory skills. Plus, with not enough hours in the day, there isn't really time for the senior staff to mentor. Very political environment where the deemed "up and comers" are favored heavily for advancement. (You hear the same names again and again.)

    Advice to Management

    Advice to junior level staffers riding out the recession: Be your own advocate. If possible, be on a winning new business team (sure way to earn brownie points). Keep your resume updated & and your confidence up.


  7. Helpful (1)

    Inefficient processes, incompetent senior management. Good place to start, bad place to stay and a lot of BS.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    Not really a pro, but nobody there expects anyone to be accountable of anything, nobody ever gets fired for mistakes Roster of easily recognizable clients Opportunities to travel Global company, some of the international projects are quite interesting Inspiring owner/CEO

    Cons

    No work-life balance, No feedback or mentorship Senior management in the West Coast digital group is under-qualified or straight out incompetent Senior management functions based on old cliques, professionalism and competence are secondary Creativity is not valued, pitched ideas are safe to mediocre

    Advice to Management

    Recruiters need to look for competence and not just hire for the sake of filling positions


  8. Paranoid environment

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    - Good industry to be in - Good worker bees (meaning nice people)

    Cons

    - Paranoid and controling environment - Political environment - Control the message AND their people - Office is losing good people - Most senior folks are not business people and don't know social media

    Advice to Management

    Establish some values for the office and for how you conduct business and stick to them


  9. Helpful (1)

    I don't work on the PR side. And because of that, this place is not the place to work.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Camaraderie amongst the team I work with. Some levels of understanding. I have flexibility in time off.

    Cons

    There are just too many things to list. I'm just very frustrated here. But there is a lack of respect for what we do in our division. There's a high enough turnover rate. We have a severe lack of process which I hope changes. And there are just so many other issues.

    Advice to Management

    I do not have the energy to discuss this.


  10. Helpful (5)

    Local management revolving door

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Portland, OR
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Portland, OR
    Doesn't Recommend

    I have been working at Edelman full-time

    Pros

    Great clients (for now) and a lot of talented people at the staff level.

    Cons

    Great clients and great staff are overshadowed by a revolving door of incompetent local management. Just when you think the standards have hit bottom, a new low is reached. This is as of August, 2012. Maybe things will get better?

    Advice to Management

    If Edelman senior leaders care about the Portland office, please do some house cleaning!


  11. Helpful (9)

    I've had better.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Portland, OR
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Portland, OR
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Edelman full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Large company names look great on resumes. Once you get your foot in the door you can transfer to other offices/cities. If you get the rare chance to work with other offices (new york/chicago/atlanta), you can learn a lot. Severance packages tend to be generous (or so we've heard).

    Cons

    Culture is driven by fear. Local management has zero agency management experience. Turnover of respected and talented employees is extremely high. Agency brand recognition is low in the market. All the free coffee and soda (or meal replacement shakes....) in the world can't make up for a hostile work environment.

    Advice to Management

    If you want to be respected, don't scream at or patronize your people so much.



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