Gensler
3.3 of 5 144 reviews
www.gensler.com San Francisco, CA 1000 to 5000 Employees

Gensler Reviews

Updated Jul 9, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

3.3 144 reviews

                             

78% Approve of the CEO

Gensler Executive Directors Andy Cohen, David Gensler & Diane Hoskins

Andy Cohen, David Gensler & Diane Hoskins

(45 ratings)

66% of employees recommend this company to a friend
144 Employee Reviews
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Review Highlights

Pros:
  • "Great people, no attitudes (that;s hard to find in the architecture industry)"
    in 9 reviews
  • "Profit Sharing & revenue base performance bonus a"
    in 7 reviews
Cons:
  • "Work life balance can be a challenge depending on the person"
    in 8 reviews
  • "Difficult to advance your career"
    in 3 reviews
  • Show more review highlights

Reviews

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    • Approves of CEO

     

    Great company to work for!

    Project Accountant (Current Employee)
    Washington, DC

    ProsGreat open environment. Staff is great, work is great, office is beautiful, espresso machines are amazing!

    ConsWorkload is a lot and days can get extremely busy. Must go in everyday with an attitude to work!

    Advice to Senior ManagementWork-life balance is great; Gensler really encourages its employees to socially interact with one another.

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

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    My best job yet!

    Studio Coordinator (Current Employee)
    San Francisco, CA

    ProsThe firm works on some really interesting design projects all over the world. My managers are supportive of my growth and career development. I'm surrounded by talented and competent people that are a pleasure to work with. Low stress. Great work/life balance. Lots of social activities. Lovely office. Two bonuses per year. Good retirement and medical benefits.

    ConsPay could be more competitive. An org chart would be nice.

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

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    Solid company, entrepreneurial organization.

    Project Manager (Current Employee)
    Houston, TX

    ProsQuality of design
    Quality of client
    Quality of co-workers
    Opportunities for career advancement
    Collegial work environment
    Strong culture
    Very open attitude to employees' desire to try on new roles, move into new practice areas (there are 25+ practice areas)
    No micro managers

    ConsThe office is VERY busy. Depending on your projects, practice area, and studio work loads, there can be lots of overtime work involved.

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

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    • Culture & Values
           
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    A Design BUSINESS. Business is first- then design

    Interior Designer (Current Employee)
    New York, NY

    ProsIt is a well oiled machine and there is strength in numbers. Knowing that there are over 40 offices worldwide and the reach that has with both clientele and colleagues is a definite pro. There is a strong brand and a community. The size and reputation does attract some great clientele as well and with those are some global possibilities.

    ConsThe size of the NY office has become too big and impersonal unfortunate and since the last recession, leadership has preferred to take on almost all work that comes it's way without consideration of the staff. There is a tendency by leadership and project managers to say yes to incredibly tight schedules and budgets without understanding how the work actually gets done. There seems to be a big gap in that consideration. Promotion is done by who has become close to leadership and played their game. Sometimes it's those people that make the biggest mistakes that get rewarded as well because they know how to pass the buck so well. All businesses have these kind of people and their egos, unfortunately in this leadership, this is what is rewarded and not actual good design. The word/ initiative to be 'innovative' is spread around as the key phrase but no one understands really what true innovation really is - or do they allow it. Rather there are innovation standards.

    Advice to Senior ManagementOpen your eyes and really see the true talent you have and nourish it. Cultivate it. Stop squashing it with being safe. Stop judging by appearance and background. Yes, you do that. Understand that True Leadership is wanting and helping and inspiring those around you and those that work for you is what this is. You are only as successful as those that work for you are.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    Good short term, not good long term

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsOver my 10 years at the firm, I had the opportunity to meet a great number of fellow staff from other regions and abroad. The brand name is strong from 40+ years of good reputation built on Art Gensler's name (but he's not the leadership anymore).Since the firm is well known, clients and reps just seem to be drawn to it not knowing really anything about how the firm, staff or projects are managed.
    Large important projects across the world but most people work on local or small projects. Projects in magazines are from specific offices and favorites who get the best opportunities. New computers and lots of new gadgets in the offices pretty often. Senior override bonuses in June and ESOP program $ are great to supplement salary and provided me a serious nest egg when I left.

    ConsAs a senior staff member with over 20 years of experience, I have seen a variety of firms. I enjoyed the people I worked with and many of the projects I worked with, but after more than 10 years, the underlying internal politics, coercion of senior staff by principals to keep projects profitable at any cost (not charge any overtime, overhead time and to use PTO on time card if fee was gone) as well as constant marketing spin (make the ordinary seem extraordinary) and constant addition of "new project policies" which created more non-project related, non billable, tedious paperwork, was just too much to take, as I was already attending "required" meetings on my own time during the work week. It was hard to come up with 40 hours of billable time even though I was at work for almost 60 hours a week. I worked in several offices in the Southern California region. The requirement to do more work with less time and resources wears out staff at all levels. I participated in senior level activities and realized that it's best to be a young designer at the firm, where you get to do interesting things if working under strong seniors, including travel and other perks, but as you grow your opportunities are replaced by dealing with problems that the junior, untrained staff (who are used to keep project costs low) create.

    Advice to Senior ManagementThe problems with quality and development would benefit from a solid teaming structure and the creative collaboration on all projects that the firm preaches, but doesn't actually practice. I didn't see much of that at all over many years. From the mumblings and offside opinions heard from fellow seniors who were at the firm in the past, It seems as though the 3-part exec leadership and the rotating firm management team is not in touch with the people the way that it supposedly used to be.… And it's more of a production \management firm, than what Art originally created. Looks like you need to get some of that old firm mentality back.

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    2 people found this helpful  

    Frustrating

    Senior Designer (Former Employee)
    Houston, TX

    ProsDiversity of people.
    The potential for good work.
    Skilled designers

    ConsNepotism, favoritism, lots of management and little leadership.
    Leaders afraid to push any boundaries - more focus on revenue than good design.
    Corporate cult emerging.
    Hierarchies strictly enforced - architects, interior designers - others.
    Addiction to lateral hire.

    Advice to Senior ManagementBring in a younger, inspiring leadership quality.
    You can be profitable and do good design.
    Abide by the principle you tell your clients - "We are a design firm" - not and architectural firm etc.
    Promote from within rather than seek outsiders.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    1 person found this helpful  

    Lots of opportunities

    Designer (Current Employee)
    San Francisco, CA

    ProsVery diverse portfolio.
    Overtime pay
    Lots of opportunities

    Consbig company
    less competition participation
    projects can be more experimental

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

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    Very good employer, some people fall through the cracks, but many more thrive

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsIt's a good creative environment

    ConsCan be too corporate at times

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

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    • Culture & Values
           
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    Pretty systematic firm

    Architect Assist (Former Employee)
    New York, NY

    ProsGood quality design and good enterprise culture. It's a good place to work in long term.

    ConsDepends on which office. some office is a little stressful, and most of the people are very nice.

    Advice to Senior ManagementGeneral creativity quality could be enhance in the average speaking.

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

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    Great company

    Intern (Former Employee)
    New York, NY

    ProsAs a big company, they have many valuable resources that would help your personal growth. They are supportive for your credits earning. People in the office are very friendly. Great lunch and learn time for fresh food, and nice happy hour on Friday! Overall, my internship experience is wonderful!

    ConsYou don't get to know everybody in the office because there are too many studios and employees. But the chance is there if you are the kind of people enjoy holding some events or lectures. Work-life balance is Ok.

    Advice to Senior ManagementNot much.

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at Gensler reviews and ratings — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for Gensler CEO Andy Cohen, David Gensler & Diane Hoskins. All 144 reviews posted anonymously by Gensler employees.