There are newer employer reviews for Coursera

Helpful (43)

Cultural nightmare, leadership disaster, and no moral compass

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

I worked at Coursera

Doesn't Recommend
Neutral Outlook
Disapproves of CEO
Doesn't Recommend
Neutral Outlook
Disapproves of CEO

Pros

It's fun to be a part of a rocket ship, especially one that is viewed so positively by the public and the press.

Cons

Two co-CEOs with too much ego to realize neither is qualified to run a company leads to the worst leadership team ever. The situation is so bad, in fact, that their investor (KPCB) forced on them another executive - so now they have two CEOs and a President. The culture is so bad that other than the original students (at Stanford) under Daphne and Andrew (in the CS department), most early employees leave as soon as they hit their one year vesting cliff. Since so many employees leave in disgust, the leadership has begun request they sign a Non-Disparagement Agreement.

Although the company built its reputation on a veneer of social impact and the motto of "Do what's best for the student," they've done nothing to back it up and lacks any clear mission statement. Leadership has been brought in from YouTube and NetFlix, and even at 50+ people, there are only three educators on staff. Although classes remain free, no effort has been spent to improve - or even measure - student learning or outcomes, and Coursera ignores even the most basic fact of education - that students do not learn by watching videos and regurgitating facts. Then again, with a completion rate below 5% for most classes, it's not clear people even succeed in watching the videos.

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  1. Helpful (3)

    Best place I've ever worked

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

    I have been working at Coursera full-time (more than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Two things: People and mission. I've had the pleasure of working alongside some of the smartest, most creative, and — most importantly — most caring people I've known. Fun, quirky culture that values good ideas and strong execution.

    Cons

    Cons would probably apply to any startup of a similar size. The company has changed a lot, reorganized, shifted directions. Wouldn't call this a "con" per se, just a reality of working at an organization at this stage.

    Advice to Management

    The company's organic culture is amazing. As the company grows, however, it will be important to think more deliberately about how we can maintain the open, quirky, and caring feel of the company.

  2. Helpful (4)

    Amazing people, mission-driven culture.

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

    I have been working at Coursera full-time (more than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Autonomy to take on projects that you think are important, friendly and humble colleagues, very strong focus on students and their needs.

    Cons

    No major complaints - I absolutely love working here! If you're looking for a place where there's a clear and formalized path for promotions, you won't find that at Coursera - although I think that's common among startups of our size.

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