Evanta
2.9 of 5 39 reviews
www.evanta.com Portland, OR 50 to 149 Employees

Evanta Reviews

Updated Apr 1, 2014

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2.9 39 reviews

                             

52% Approve of the CEO

Evanta Founder & CEO Robert L. Dethlefs

Robert L. Dethlefs

(29 ratings)

45% of employees recommend this company to a friend
39 Employee Reviews
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  • Culture & Values
         
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  • Senior Management
         
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  • Disapproves of CEO

6 people found this helpful  

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Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
Portland, OR

I worked at Evanta full-time for more than 3 years

ProsThere are many positive and accurate things in previous reviews.
There are many negative and accurate things in previous reviews.

At Evanta, you take the bad with the good.

ConsIt looks like the long-standing desire of the CEO to manipulate every minute detail must have resulted in a request or order to staffers to post positive reviews on Feb 21, 2014...

Advice to Senior ManagementWords without matching actions are meaningless.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Recycled air

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Evanta

ProsYou'll find an active social group within your demographic if you're fresh out of school.

Great place to absorb valuable career development...if it's your first step.

Close to the waterfront.

ConsThey are quick to implement short-term remedies to soothe office moral only to ignore larger issues including but not limited to: moral, departmental structure and operations, implementation of technology for the benefit of production, etc. etc.

Advice to Senior Managementtl;dr right?

First, the company loves to tote how they were ranked in some top ten "Best 100 Large Companies to Work For" and "Fastest Growing Companies" in Oregon...back in 2008. They enjoy holding onto past accomplishments with this idea that it still reigns true. Stop waiving around your 8th grade report card with that A you got that one time.

Evanta also loves to recount stories about how they've taken employee's on amazing excursions; you'll learn quickly that majority of said expeditions all pre-date 70% of the office.

Still, I admit, it was pretty cool to be able to go skydiving on the companies dime...but it's like, how about you implement some of those changes to sales methodology / implement proposed technological modifications to production / stop feeding us unfulfilled promises, instead of dangling fun and adrenaline in our faces?

Every 7-9 months each department will leave the office maybe an hour or so early to go do some classic team bonding aka bowling. They'll pay for drinks, the food, the entertainment, and, depending on what your relationship is with your colleagues, this computes to an enjoyable time...if we wanted to just hang out and have drinks, we already do that on our own...how about you listen and support our ideas for new ways of departmental operation?

Basically it's like Evanta are those divorced parents who're trying to give you some cool presents so you'll love them more.

The problem is that Evanta treats these moments as a band-aid which loosely holds together an ever growing wound. It's a cosmetic moment of moral improvement that nobody asked for.

So what's the problem?

Put simply, senior management is content with operating their departments, their ideology, their application of technology, their whole work philosophy around that with which they started with. Departments and subsequently their employee's and the work said employee's produce, are managed under this idea that what worked when the company started still applies to the company it is today; and that's simply not the case.

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PRAISE PROGRESS

Every Friday morning the company is rounded up for a weekly all-staff meeting. This comes advertised as an opportunity for employee's to catch a glimpse of what their colleagues are up to in other departments. It's supposed to be a time where guests are invited, either future employee's as part of the interview process, or friends / business partners of some senior management executive.

What it turns out to be:

1. The CEO holding the microphone. What I mean by this is that he finally has his stage/platform to express his need for approval from those he surrounds himself with. He'll go on tangents as he recounts stories of 'glory days past', either related to Evanta, it's business, or some obscure party he attended in college.

2. Sales people talking sales numbers related to sales goals.

3. An opportunity for various employee's to practice what they think passes for stand-up comedy.

4. Poke fun of the usual suspects.

5. A waste of your d*mn time.

HOW TO WIN AT PRAISE PROGRESS

1. Get there early and claim your spot in the back, preferably behind someone who'll block your view from Death Row aka where all the executives sit.

2. Don't let the CEO think you're sleeping or he'll throw stuff at you.

3. Bring a pad and pen for Praise Progress BINGO. Some fan favorite squares include:

- Somebody. says something inappropriate where 'Archer' would say "phrasing".
- The CEO makes fun of somebody for eating.
- The CEO tells a story that has absolutely no relevance to business operations.
- An executive then replies to the CEO and says "well, that's not exactly how it happened."
- "Amazing"
- "Fantastic"
- "Fabulous"
- "Glad to be here"
- "just want to praise everyone on my team." <cue applause cue 'awww'>
- An animal shows up

4. Consume caffeine or cocaine; basically some form of stimulant to keep you from falling asleep (see #2) for duration of the meeting (generally last 2 hours).

Oh, and should you ever submit a request for PTO (a day off), better not let it be a Friday. The CEO and senior management deeply frowns upon those who miss "family time" (his words); big no-no.

I know what you're thinking..."it's only 2 hours, each week, not that bad." True, on paper it doesn't seem so, and it does seems ridiculous that I'm even voicing my opinions about it...but when you inhabit a work environment which stresses high volume of production squeezed out of every minute of the day, whether sales or non, you end up just tacking on the hours you lost to the end of the day. Kind of annoying when that's every week and you're sitting there wondering, "wait, couldn't this just be an email I can ignore and continue working on X project?"

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You'll fall into one of two categories if you find yourself employed at Evanta:

1. "I need a paycheck, there're some kinda cool people here, let's keep working until I can find something better."

2. The person at happy hour each week who complains and complains and complains and complains about their complaint never been rectified...only to go back in the next day for more of the same.

It's quite easy to play along if you:

1. Say you live on the east side of the river (for some reason the CEO and upper management love to ask this question to new people. They think it's a riot).

2. Say you like the Ducks, specifically their football program.

3. Nod your head in agreement and don't challenge their way of operations.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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It really is unfortunate that there is such controversy on this forum. My aim is to write an authentic review.

Program Director (Current Employee)
Portland, OR

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

Pros- Exciting future prospects with new business sectors
- Friendly Staff
- Individuals in your business unit that are willing to help and collaborate
- A business model that clearly works and is effective
- Compressed work weeks
- Christmas shut down
- Year-end parties
- Bi Annual reward vacations for top sales performers
- Competitive Salary (I can only speak for myself)

Cons- High pressure environment (not necessarily a con but just know that you are expected to be a high achiever)
- Underlying feeling that some people stay here despite being unhappy
- I completely understand the need to grow exponentially every year and thus the need to launch more regional events, the concern is at what point do we hit a saturation point for domestic events. The future will be in international events and in our other business segments.

Advice to Senior ManagementI feel that the ask that was put out in one of our meetings (not by the CEO in fact, but by another senior executive) was a sincere ask to leave an open and candid analysis of the company, however I feel this was a strategic mistake... it just amplified the desire of those that were unhappy to voice that discontent 10x louder then those that are very happy or moderately happy, as is normally the case.

Unfortunately some of the comments left here are pretty scathing, and seem somewhat embellished to me, but I am just one employee.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Terrific people, great space in the industry, like most jobs, could use some work

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

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

ProsThe employees are amazing. Genuinely wonderful, helpful, talented and smart. Opportunity to work with the best and brightest executives in the world. Create something tangible from your efforts. Intellectually challenging.

ConsSales staff are elevated above other departments, more praise, more opportunity and more rewards. (in fairness, if things go wrong they do take more heat.) The CEO is still very involved and you have to fit into a certain box (outspoken, gregarious, visibly drinking kool-aid) to be valued by him. Emphasis on limiting spend in the office means missed opportunities for increased efficiencies through technology.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Not a heads down company

Content (Current Employee)
Portland, OR

I have been working at Evanta full-time for more than 3 years

ProsIf you are the type of person who is always high energy, never taking your foot off the gas at work, you will enjoy working here. If you like being a part of a team where no one is allowed to slack, you will enjoy working here. If you believe in leadership and want to work at a company where making leaders better is the product, then you'll enjoy working here. If you don't want to be invisible, but instead want to be known for your contribution and pushed to work hard, you'll enjoy working here.

Evanta has great benefits and we're in a great location downtown.

We're still small enough that everyone knows everyone and the office environment encourages people to connect and talk. No sterile, boring, quiet days here.

ConsEvanta is a private company, and there is not the separation of personal politics and work that you might experience in larger public companies or the non-profit world. In other words, leaders here feel comfortable talking about religious and political beliefs during staff meetings. We laugh together a lot, but we also have some work to do as a community walking that line of being a family and bringing the personal to work while creating a place that is inclusive for everyone regardless of politics, sexual orientation, ability, etc.

No work flexibility in regards to working from home, flexing hours, etc.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Amazing Company to Work For

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Evanta

ProsI am seriously so proud to work for this company. When people ask what I do I'm excited to tell them about what I do every day. This company is so unique compared to others. We have fun here! This company is growing rapidly and I feel lucky I joined the team when I did. Everyone is super nice and fun. We help each other. So if anyone tries telling you that the culture sucks here, don't listen to them! Seriously. And Evanta offers amazing benefits. We get full health, dental, vision, life, and 401k at a very low cost to the employee. Exec staff realizes that our health is very important and offers us this amazing coverage. That makes me secure knowing I will have low health costs.

ConsI can only think of 2 cons, one is that the salary isn't amazing. But I also am young and just beginning my career. I understand I need to work hard and pay my dues as a professional. Bob (the CEO) wants his employees to be succesful and always encourages employees to think of new ideas to grow. Opportunities for financial growth are available, you just need to work hard (which is totally understandable, that's WHAT Evantians do!)There might be some talk out there about how exec staff only thinks of themselves. This is NOT true! I have personal experience with some members of the exec staff and they care so much about the people who work here. So if you have an amazing attitude and work hard, you'll be succesful here. The 2nd con is that HR is very unprofessional. I've had an experience where HR shared very personal information about me with others in the company and has lied to employees about opportunities. I wouldn't recommend trusting HR.

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A fun environment. Management is working to improve. Opportunity is yours if you go for it!

Program Director (Current Employee)
Portland, OR

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

ProsTons of growth. Fun company events. Network with C-Level executives. Reward hard work. Great schedule (M-F 6am-3pm). Excellent employees. Fantastic benefits (vacation days/insurance are both top notch) Salaries are competitive and there is room for salaries to grow.

ConsHyper Competitive environment could be difficult for some to thrive in. Push to always be positive can wear on some people and at times can lead to manufactured happiness (this is a perception, rather than a concrete reality)

Advice to Senior ManagementContinue on the trajectory you are on. Continue to elicit feedback from company on how to improve and grow. Keep having fun.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Perspective of a "non-sales" team member

Non-Sales (Current Employee)
Portland, OR

I have been working at Evanta full-time

ProsLike the title states, I'm considered one of the team members who doesn't directly contribute to revenue generation within the company (I'm not what we call a program director). I am however, and have always felt, that my job at Evanta has always contributed value to our customers. I've always felt appreciated because I've always worked with people who genuinely thank me for the work I do. I can honestly say that I love working with every single person I come into contact with. I don't often interact with the executive team however - I'm talking about all the "middle managers" and "support staff" people at Evanta that I have the honor of working with every day. They are the reason I love my job.

I will also say that the executive team, even with what little exposure I have to them on a daily basis, honestly do care that we're happy and taken care of. I think every effort they make to that end, comes from this drive to create a fun and valuable culture for all of us. They don't always hit the mark, but I think they always come from the best place possible.

Some examples of cool things I love about working here: (1) An awesome holiday company party that is fully paid for by the company, that has an awesome peer-based awards ceremony that gives us the opportunity to celebrate each others hard work. (2) We have "Crockpot Wednesday" where employees make each other food, paid for by the company. (3) Recent efforts made by exec staff to reward and appreciate those hard workers that aren't in sales. (4) Random outings as a company to just have fun...bowling is a popular choice. (5) Exec staff took ALL our feedback on whether or not to move our offices and took our vote into serious consideration to stay downtown. (6) Pretty great health benefits. (7) They pay for our parking or transportation costs! (8) They reimburse us for our gym membership at the end of the year!

I feel like there may be more things I could add but I'm not trying to write a novel here.

ConsAs far as the overall company culture - I will warn some of you that it's not a fit for everyone. Executives will talk politics or religion in company meetings; someone will make an off-hand personal joke that will make people uncomfortable or feel offended. I think there have been people who have questioned their professional integrity because of personal remarks made at the wrong time and the wrong place. Again, this all comes down to whether you think you can live within this kind of culture or not.

Advice to Senior ManagementI wish I had a solution to give management that would make everyone happy, but I think it's naive to think that exists. Not because I don't think senior management is capable, but because I really don't think you can run a successful business and keep everyone happy.

Perhaps I would ask executive staff to consider that we're a large and growing company that can't act within a "small company" culture anymore. Meaning: we have to evolve somehow and find a way to get past the growing pains. Again, I'm not sure I have a solution here though.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Fun, fast-paced culture

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Evanta for more than 3 years

ProsHaving worked for a few different companies before I came here, I can say that this is definitely the best company I've ever worked for. It's exciting, the people are great, the work is interesting and the communities you work with are impressive. I love the team I work with and something new and exciting seems to happen every day.

ConsWe're growing fast, which means some of the typical growing pains you see in mid-size companies. Lots of work and projects that move quickly.

Advice to Senior ManagementThe business model is excellent, the product is solid, and the people we attract are great. I would suggest continually investing in leadership training for all employees (which the company has started). As long as the company continues to grow, there will always be more work than we know what to do with. Giving people the leadership tools to manage that growth is the key.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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The best company I've ever worked for....but not for everyone

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Evanta full-time for more than 5 years

ProsThe ongoing growth of the company while creating a fast pace environment provides significant opportunity for growth. The CEO listens to feedback and even restructured the compensation plan for the sales team based on organized feedback. It's a work hard, play hard company. The benefits are best in class with gym reimbursement, free parking and 20 days of PTO aside from Holidays. People truly care about each other.

ConsIf you don't want to work hard you won't like it here. If you want to complain and resist seemly silly things (ringing a bell when you sell something) that are only meant to keep hard work fun then you probably shouldn't work here.

Advice to Senior ManagementStrike a better balance between taking in feedback and staying the course. Silly criticism from outlier employees who only seek to find an easier path seems to carry too much weight. Make sure feedback is representative of a significant majority before reacting.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at Evanta reviews and ratings — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for Evanta CEO Robert L. Dethlefs. All 39 reviews posted anonymously by Evanta employees.