Edelman Reviews

Updated August 30, 2015
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3.9
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Edelman President and CEO Richard W. Edelman
Richard W. Edelman
833 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

1,061 Employee Reviews

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  1. good

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    good training program at Edelman

    Cons

    nothing. I enjoyed my internship.


  2. EVP

    Current Employee - EVP
    Current Employee - EVP
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Entrepreneurial. Fast paced. Number 1 firm.

    Cons

    Not really any cons come to mind.

    Advice to Management

    Richards is visionary.


  3. Helpful (1)

    Save Yourself

    • 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
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Edelman full-time

    Pros

    I can't think of anything good to write here but apparently I need to fill this space with twenty words.

    Cons

    This is the most depressing place I've ever worked at. Senior level management is non-existent. Egos everywhere, I'm not sure why - most of the people have nothing to show. Junior staff is worked until they're about to go crazy with little compensation. Oh, if you work overtime and put extra effort in you just get an email scolding you about billing too many hours. Account people try to push billed hours around to fudge how 'utilized' you are. Speaking of utilization, a list with everyone's statistics on it is sent around the office basically creating a rat race. Also, if you try to deal with HR, good luck. It's like talking to a wall. You are a number, and that's all you will ever be.

    Advice to Management

    Stay at Edelman so no one has to deal with you at any other agency.


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  5. Learned a lot, but had to sacrifice my personal life, well-being and emotional stability for the experience

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Mid-level Employee in Portland, OR
    Former Employee - Mid-level Employee in Portland, OR
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Gained double the experience in half the time (since I worked the hourly equivalent of two jobs!), had the opportunity to represent high-profile clients I wouldn't have gotten to represent elsewhere, was able to utilize the vast resources of a global company, and realized how strong and resilient I really am to be able to survive under immense pressure and stress. Oh, and free soda, coffee and frequently catered meals so that you rarely feel a need to leave the office or stop working -- even for a moment!

    Cons

    It took me awhile, but I finally figured out how to erase the fake, positive review that company HR had me put up during my tenure so that I could replace it with my actual experience. I had no doubt when I started that the environment would be fast-paced and competitive. I was prepared to work hard, and in fact did so well that my first two years that I was consistently praised, given spot bonuses and thought of as a rising star taking the place by storm. I landed new business, mentored peers and was put on the most aggressive, high-profile accounts. However there is "an Edelman way", and once you stray from that, even in thought, you're done. There is a systematic and calculated approach to getting you out -- to either make you feel so low and doubt yourself that you quit out of sheer frustration, or to endlessly criticize things that had never been a problem before so they can make the case for firing you. How does one stray from the Edelman way? Start working less than 75 hours a week. Express a conflict of interest with an account. Show interest in starting a family of your own. Talk to your manager about transferring to another office. Become disliked by one of the cliquish, soulless people who has worked there for many years and whose opinion holds way too much power. You can still be doing a great job, but do ANYTHING that illustrates you no longer conform 100% to the Edelman mold and you are toast. Group think is everything, and once you stray, you're the odd man out. I didn't anticipate the extent to which managers and senior staff will go to manipulate you, put you down and make you feel absolutely crazy. Girls crying in the bathroom or at their desks, people dismissed or quitting, suddenly gone with no explanation, the forced happy hours to mimic a positive work culture instead of actually creating one, threats, judgment and so much more. I lost sleep over this job. I could never work enough. I was told that I was on track to be promoted at any moment. But every time a review came around, there was always a reason why I wasn't ready. That's the part that makes you feel crazy -- the positive reinforcement to build you up and dangle the golden carrot of a raise and title change in front of you every month on end, only to be told at the pivotal moment that you did not measure up against some new criteria you never knew existed. The only way to succeed is to give everything to this job: your time, your talent, your creativity, your personal life, your family dinners, your plans to have children, your friendships, your health. Give it everything you've got and you'll still will have work to do. The people who succeed there are not people to admire; not people who make you say "wow they've got it together. Look at how great they are. I want to be just like them!" These are people who cut others down for their own personal gain, people who tell you you're doing a great job to your face, then go to your manager to complain about you, people who binge drink at every party and every weekend because they have no other coping skills, people who sit at their desks and literally eat their hair or bite their nails until they bleed because their anxiety is at that level, people who rarely eat a meal and survive on the receptionist's candy dish because God forbid they take a lunch. A successful Edelemployee is a sad, sad person. Not someone you want to be. In order to be successful at this place, you will eventually compromise all the qualities you value about yourself and become a person you don't even recognize. Just look at the people who have been there 8 years, 10 years or longer (if they exist) -- they are some of the meanest people you'll ever meet. Unless you're a client, and then they're so very, very nice.

    Advice to Management

    You won't listen, so why bother?


  6. Great Company

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Analyst in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Financial Analyst in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Edelman (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great place to work with smart thinking people

    Cons

    Sometimes change takes longer than desired.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to seek smart individuals and challenge employees


  7. Great opportunities

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Brooklyn, NY
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Brooklyn, NY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Edelman (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Best clients, big thinkers, global network, great colleagues, supportive environment. A great employer.

    Cons

    Especially at the lower levels team members are over loaded with work, with very high expectations and long hours. Some entrenched senior leaders are not as valuable as they think they are.

    Advice to Management

    Consistently evaluate senior leaders on more than just the revenue they bring in, but on a more well-rounded skill set inclusive of coaching, mentoring and relationship-building internally and externally. These are the things that make good revenue generators into great leaders.


  8. Great agency!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Account Supervisor in Austin, TX
    Current Employee - Account Supervisor in Austin, TX
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Edelman full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Edelman is one of the few big agencies that truly cares about work/life balance and growing its people. The management is strong and creative, strategic thinking is rewarded. I have worked at other agencies big and small and Edelman has been the best at encouraging folks to carve out their own career path and then giving them the resources to accomplish it.

    Cons

    Any agency environment is going to have an intense work culture and at times Edelman is no different. Also, there can be a lot of politics internally - you'll often hear about how you have to "sell in" ideas internally before you can even bring them to clients.

    Advice to Management

    Don't let too many senior folks get in the way of good ideas.


  9. Helpful (1)

    Account Supervisor

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Edelman full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Work with some great and very smart people, opportunity to work on big brand names and test the waters

    Cons

    Crazy amount of politics and mind games. It's all about sucking up and not at all about work performance, which is so tragic to see happen. Some team members are so clearly not valued, regardless of their outstanding work performance. And the work life balance is non-existent (and you won't ever get credit for working a 15 hour day-you'll likely just get yelled at for billing too much time.)

    Advice to Management

    Take a look at the turnover rate and really try to internalize and understand the root of the problem. There is so clearly something wrong if you're losing this many really smart and talented workers.


  10. Edelman

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Edelman full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Global company with good clients

    Cons

    Pay is on the lower end


  11. Good job prospects, but potentially very frustrating

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    There are some delightful, intelligent people working there and the work is exciting and engaging.

    Cons

    A lot of structural problems. A handful of executives devote themselves fully to their positions; the rest are incompetent and lazy.

    Advice to Management

    Figure out which people at the management level are actually supporting their company and reward them. Fire the people who are simply treading water. (Your rank-and-file staff will be more than happy to tell you who falls into which category.)



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