Gooru Reviews

Updated August 31, 2014
Updated August 31, 2014
11 Reviews
2.2
11 Reviews
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Prasad Ram
7 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    From teacher to tech geek. Couldn't be happier.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Academics/Tech  in  Palo Alto, CA
    Current Employee - Academics/Tech in Palo Alto, CA

    I have been working at Gooru full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    I am relieved to move from teaching in public schools (where innovation is often resisted or actively discouraged) to the start up world where it is valued ant encouraged. Great people, AMAZING mission statement and people actually believe it: Education is a Human Right.
    Lastly, every Friday there is a chance to celebrate successes and share visions for our product. I feel that all ideas are embraced and visionary goals are welcome.

    Cons

    I read some of the other reviews. I must say that my interactions with leadership have all been very positive. Sometimes it is difficult to quantify innovation, so being flexible and adaptable is essential. It is true that this is more than a 9-5 clock in/out job, so if you don't really believe in the vision, you may feel strained.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep dreaming big! As the product gains more and more traction continue to consider scalability. Because we are a non-profit, consider if all the money we spend on food is really the best investment... In terms of some of the other reviews, it sounds like the kitchen actually is really important.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Not a pleasant experience

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

    I worked at Gooru full-time

    Pros

    Stocked Kitchen
    Catered lunch on occassion

    Cons

    Overworked,Underpaid.
    No good introduction on what the company is aiming to achieve.
    Colleagues were not welcoming.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 4 people found this helpful  

    Unfortunately One of the Worst

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

    I worked at Gooru full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Initially the mission of Gooru attracted smart, dedicated, interesting and caring people to the company. Most of the people hired were just out of college and what they lacked in experience, they tried to make up for with energy and fresh ideas. However, most of them have quit after being overworked and undervalued by the CEO and his "leadership" staff.

    Cons

    The CEO/founder treats the staff like they are slaves. He overworks them, underpays them, and then questions their commitment when they aren't willing to work "25 hours" a day, "8 days" a week. He promises the public and investors that the company and its product is further along and capable of more than it actually is, and then comes back to his staff and expects them to make him not a liar by playing catch up under impossible deadlines. When his bright and committed staff finally burn out in less than a year, they go from being his "star" pupil to being someone he berates and belittles in front of other staff. There is no senior staff to keep him honest and give him any perspective. Most of his leadership staff have quit, with the exception of one person who is only a few years out of college, with no previous management experience, but is totally willing to do his bidding. Most of the remaining staff either hate her, or feel sorry for her. It's an extremely unhealthy and unhappy place to work.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop treating people like they are worthless. Offering them more salary and a bigger bonus after they're already burned out and have to quit is too little too late. People aren't just motivated by money, they are motivated by respect and being valued as human beings. It's a shame. And you should be ashamed.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 3 people found this helpful  

    Nothing to say

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

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

    Pros

    Almost none-but you can make some good friendships.

    Cons

    where do I start
    - so called leadership team (comrpised of 2 people) are the main reason people leave. an individual who knows nothing about people management manages 90% of us. this individual is selfcentered, disrespectful and has very little knowledge outside of design.
    - bonus scheme is a farce
    - performance management processes are a joke.
    - expectation is to work 25X8 - according to a perf management deck they presented
    - people leave every month - at least 25 people have left the org this year. senior professionals are never able to stay for long.
    - we even manage to run our vendors' and partners' patience to the ground.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop giving the incompetent and insecure leader more responsibilities.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 2 people found this helpful  

    Get good experience and get out

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

    I worked at Gooru full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Motivated, intelligent colleagues and middle management
    Variety of opportunities available for workaholics
    Opportunities to teach yourself/learn on your own
    Free snacks

    Cons

    Inhuman hours and lack of empathy for work/life balance
    Sometimes hostile and dishonest environment
    Lots of talk of improving culture, but a failure to deliver

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    A one man show is just that - a show with no substance. Cultivate patience, and the ability to focus, and listen. Great minds are being squandered or dismissed because of the environment.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7.  

    Honest Communication, Please.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Academic Operations Fellow
    Former Employee - Academic Operations Fellow

    I worked at Gooru as a contractor for less than a year

    Pros

    Interesting and creative work. It's nice to contribute to any process that will improve public education.

    Cons

    I worked remotely and never set foot in the offices, so my perspective may be skewed due to the limited interactions I experienced.

    It was a struggle to balance the high quality work I wanted to produce for them with the high quantity of work they wanted. Lack of honest feedback, lack of company consistency, lack of employment policy - these were the issues that gave me an overall negative impression. The company is young, the people are young, perhaps they both just need more life and business experience.

    I am glad I did not end up a full-time employee.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Please be honest. Please set realistic deadlines. Please don't play games.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  8.  

    Good Learning Experience

    Current Employee - Software Development  in  Palo Alto, CA
    Current Employee - Software Development in Palo Alto, CA

    I have been working at Gooru as an intern for less than a year

    Pros

    Great startup experience, nice open environment, motivated colleagues , loaded kitchen!

    Cons

    Need to get a good process in order

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Continue going in the direction that you are currently going!

  9.  

    Great startup experience

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Palo Alto, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Palo Alto, CA

    I have been working at Gooru

    Pros

    Company with lots of potential
    Small company allows one to collaborate in many important projects
    Great vision and mission
    Fully stocked kitchen and catered lunch once a week
    Nice open office setup

    Cons

    Poor work/life balance, not encouraged
    Poor direction from management
    Lack of internal communication and from management
    Lack of transparency

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Improve communication across and vertically.
    Hire experienced managers to run day to day operations.

    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    ehh

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

    I have been working at Gooru

    Pros

    free snacks
    young company
    young co-workers (20s-30s)

    Cons

    upward mobility within the company.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Lovely people, lovely office, but there's something amiss when everyone is grumbling...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Palo Alto, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Palo Alto, CA

    I worked at Gooru full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Great snacks in the kitchen.
    Really great coworkers to work with.
    Serving a well intentioned purpose - spreading education worldwide.
    Pretty office. Standing desk area is cute.
    You can tell people are passionate about what the company does-- though maybe not so much what they do for the company.

    Cons

    No real space for advancement.
    Everyone starts on a 3 month fellowship (less pay + benefits) during which you're told you may be let go if you don't work hard enough, meaning you pretty much work yourself to the bone. If you're a workaholic, that's great, but people here are obviously stressed and burnt out. The social environment is really bizarre because new people aren't really formally introduced to everyone else. You can walk around for weeks wondering who that "new guy" is. There are no forms of real socializing/in-office-networking events, so you always feel like all your coworkers are strangers, except for the ones who sit near you.
    Also sickness seems to spread really quickly around this office, maybe because people can't afford to take a sick day what with the policies.
    Policies - Gooru is a startup that's quite new so of course it didn't set its policies right away, but the problem is that they "set" them and would let people know but then they would "change" them again, which wreaked havoc on some people's plans.

    Basically, when I look around, I see unhappy, overworked employees. The turnover rate is extremely high, and for good reason. I've spoken with a substantial number of the employees about their discomfort with the way the company is run, but they stay for other reasons (until they leave in a few months, of course).

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Even though technically your employees are expendable, try to stop treating them as such.

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