HARMAN

  www.harman.com
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HARMAN Reviews

Updated Jul 15, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

2.7 114 reviews

49% Approve of the CEO

HARMAN Chairman, President and CEO Dinesh C. Paliwal

Dinesh C. Paliwal

(82 ratings)

40% of employees recommend this company to a friend

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Flexible schedules creating a good work/life balance(in 12 reviews)

  • The company offers good hourly wages; good benefits package; and a clean work environment(in 6 reviews)


Cons
  • Work life balance, Technical trainnigs rea missing(in 6 reviews)

  • Cost cutting is painful and counter-productive as everything has been outsourced(in 6 reviews)

114 Employee Reviews
in
    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

     

    Soulless Bloodsucking Corporation

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsI am not stuck here forever

    ConsThe CEO is a sociopath. He says "stay paranoid" in almost every corporate newsletter her sends out and uses fear tactics to motivate employees. I feel like I live inside of a Dilbert cartoon - it truly is that ridiculous. If you are smart and talented please stay away from this company, they will chew you up and spit you out. Harman will not be around in the long term because they only care about short term growth - everything is smoke and mirrors.

    Advice to Senior ManagementYou already sold your soul to Satan if you are anything above a Director level - Directors are yes men. Either grow a backbone or get another job. Stop this insane corruption.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    4 people found this helpful  

    Sydney Harman is rolling over in his grave

    (Former Employee) Stamford, CT

    Pros- Below C-level management, there are very talented, underutilized, and dedicated people.
    - Exciting innovation coming from Infotainment and Professional divisions.

    Cons* Horrible work/life balance. Say goodbye to family and friends. You bust your hump to help the company reach its quarterly earnings, only to have the CEO/Chairman tell you to work harder. Inspirational words from one of the highest and most overpaid CEOs in the world! No appreciation and/or morale boost from upper management.

    * It's all about the company bottom line. Cost cutting is painful and counter-productive as everything has been outsourced. The infrastructure is very thin with limited resources, which makes for a difficult work environment. It won't be long before employees are asked to use both sides of the toilet paper. CEO wants to take everything to China or India, except for the Stamford office, because he'll need to be close to his $8.5M condo in NYC. Harman employees would prefer that the CEO cut his salary instead of cutting jobs.

    * CEO/Chairman is great at cost-cutting, but terrible at motivating and being a great leader to his employees. The company intranet is filled with business articles that revolve around the CEO's self promotion. Despite the cost cutting, the company is very good at spending millions on worthless initiatives, which include obtaining outdated and irrelevant "brand ambassadors" with little or no return/value. The Branding/Marketing teams have no accountability, nor does the Shenzhen Business Unit when it comes to putting out questionable products that don't work on a global scale.

    * Harman is also extremely top-heavy when it comes to the growing number of VPs and Directors. The CEO loves to tell the media that he's all about listening from the bottom up, but he has yet to prove this statement. Stop cutting jobs and get rid of unnecessary titles and senior-level positions in Stamford and elsewhere. There is probably a VP in charge of overseeing corporate trashcans. You can instantly become a VP at Harman if you're a member of the same country club or spa as the CEO. Most of the C-level management in Stamford know nothing about CE, retail, or branding/marketing audio products. This may explain why many of Harman's brands have rotted and/or died. Either way, you are in good hands if you came from money or if your parents paid $200,000+ for your degree(s).

    * Products developed in Shenzhen sound terrible and have QC issues. The company brags about the success of particular products, but doesn't talk about the warehouse(s) filled with junked, non-functional products. The Lifestyle engineering team in Shenzhen refuses to work or collaborate with any other teams inside or outside the division. They believe they know everything about audio, design, and engineering, when in fact, their products are not very good. The company is quick to highlight the Lifestyle Division's success stories with portables, but they are failing miserably in the soundbar, headphone, luxury, and loudspeaker categories. Arrogance is the norm in Shenzhen's product development process which may explain why many of their products come up short.

    * One of the most political corporations out there. Rather than promote collaboration and innovation, the company likes to pit employees against each other. The company also tolerates and encourages negative and demeaning leadership/management styles, especially from the Shenzhen office. As other reviews point out, it's all about bullying and showing you who's in charge. You are nothing if you're not a direct report to the VP/GM of SBU as he encourages and allows his direct reports in that office to manage and lead by fear, power, and intimidation. The team in Shenzhen expect you to bow down to their holiness. It's them versus you and it's a culture you won't find elsewhere. It's the most arrogant office in the corporation. Perhaps they were picked on at school and this is their way of seeking payback or revenge. This type of behavior wouldn't be tolerated or allowed at any other company. This may explain the high employee turnover at that office. This also goes to prove that if you're not cutthroat, you may not survive at Harman.

    * The company wants to imply that it's ahead of the curve and technology like Google and Apple, but at least those companies move their employees around every couple of years and encourage mentoring and career growth. Harman would rather hire inexperienced personnel from outside the company rather than promote within. The company has a very difficult time recognizing potential, experience and talent inside its own walls.

    * It is widely known that Harman is one of the worst companies to work with when it comes to manufacturing. Harman churns and burns suppliers more than any other company in the industry. It's that bully "our way or the highway" mentality that makes people not want to work with Harman. Instead of building solid partnerships, this is the type of culture the CEO/Chairman has created and supported.

    Advice to Senior ManagementRead this review.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
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    • Disapproves of CEO

    3 people found this helpful  

    Stay away - a completely dysfunctional mess and getting worse

    Director (Current Employee) Stamford, CT

    ProsGood benefits, some great people

    ConsIncompetent upper management who have no knowledge of the audio space and who are doing everything they can to devalue the brands. And new management hires are following this pattern.
    Mean and negative management who use bullying tactics and routinely engage in unprofessional behavior.
    Employees are depressed and anxious.

    Advice to Senior ManagementAdvice to the Board: replace the CEO

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
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    • Disapproves of CEO

    6 people found this helpful  

    Good People Bad Management

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsHard Working employees
    Brand Name
    History of high quality products

    ConsManagement is worse. No proper planning.They can dump you any time.
    Most of the work is outsourced to keep the cost down.

    Advice to Senior ManagementValue your employees. They are people too.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    4 people found this helpful  

    Cash Cow for the cynical CEO and his selected "yes" men!

    Senior Design Engineer (Former Employee) Bridgend, Wales (UK)

    ProsIn 2009/2010 I would have give Harman 4 or 5 stars.

    The company *was* good to work for before Sidney Harman died - plenty on training and encouragement, quality & performance of the products was paramount.

    Unfortunately this very quickly disappeared once the company's founder passed away, and the current CEO was give free reign.

    ConsUpper management - especially the uppermost management.

    The CEO's knee jerk reaction to a profits warning in late 2012 resulted in the majority of R&D talent of the organisation being stripped away to "save cost" and artificially increase profits.

    European Engineers and technicians with decades of experience were turfed out, with the master-plan of replacing them with inexperienced Chinese engineers

    This will enable a temporary increase in dividends for the shareholders over the next couple of years - this apparent turnaround is, of course, being spun as the genius of the CEO - NOT SO!

    My prediction is that the CEO will be surreptitiously selling off his shares over the next 18 months or so - capitalizing on the artificial inflation of the share price, before the removal of the organizations life blood starts to tell.

    Advice to Senior ManagementGrow some, and stop blindly agreeing with CEO!

    I give the company 2, maybe 3 years before large sections get sold off - no doubt resulting in some sort of personal profit for the upper management.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    5 people found this helpful  

    Avoid at all costs - miserable people led by blind CEO

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsYou can get discounted electronics (refurbished sometimes).

    ConsCost cutting of US work force for India. They have let go of all the good engineers and scramble when projects the engineers were working on suddenly go into crisis. Poor executive management that needs pinches pennies on individual contributors but fly half way around the world for a "meeting" . Poor company wide organization. Executives lead through fear - if you don't play ball or drink the Kool-aid then don't bother coming to work. CEO makes blind decisions and has blatantly lied in the press twice.

    Advice to Senior ManagementLet CEO go asap and clean house.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    • Disapproves of CEO

    6 people found this helpful  

    Farcical

    Principal Engineer (Current Employee) Northridge, CA

    ProsThere are still some of the finest technical folks in the world on the payroll. If you're a VP at any other corporation, it'll be easy to get a job here. Just say, "Oh, your problems aren't so hard. All you need to do is...[Insert imaginary silver bullet here]". They'll pay you a lot of money. It's easy to vacation in your office.

    ConsNo one in top management knows anything about the audio industry. Company is an ATM and entertainment provider for the CEO and his co-conspirators. Revenue generation by sales at any price and margin management by cost cutting isn't a recipe for success. Age discrimination rampant. Relentless focus on emerging market growth is a disaster waiting to happen.

    Advice to Senior ManagementTake short positions against your own company, if you haven't already.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    • No Opinion of CEO

    3 people found this helpful  

    Poor support, poor quality and poor everything

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsIs an International company, well known company in the entertainment and automotive industry

    ConsThis company did a recent start up abroad, in Mexico, but being part of it was being part of a big problem, there is a huge lack of control within overall process, there is huge scrap, and quality is a really big concern, since they need to re-work a lot of the electronic cards produced there, being in an area related to finance department it is a mess, they always wonder to get materials from suppliers without being formal in the payments and of course at the end the company needs to beg the suppliers to get it. Sometimes you end up putting from your pocket or you end up facing very angry people for not having what they need. Another complicate and messy area is the warehouse, not control at all and they, sometimes end up packing everything back to trailers because there is no control of nothing,

    Advice to Senior ManagementReview who in charge of the whole company in there, tackle quality problems, which means just loses to the company and train and rest the employees, and get a good financial planner, responsible as well there is the need to get a formal purchasing department, everybody does there whatever they want and spend money in wrongful requirements.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    6 people found this helpful  

    "Where Sound Matters," But People Don't

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsMultinational company with a good reputation for quality products

    ConsThe focus seems to have shifted from quality to cost saving, as the company had moved more and more of the operations to China, India and Eastern European countries like Hungary. The company does not care at all about its employees, having laird off longtime workers who helped to develop and sell its technologies and products. Executives tend to favor bullies, as many Harman managers and execs manage with bullying, abrasive tactics. Management is focused on getting the most done for the least amount of money, sending jobs overseas, which has affected the quality of the products. For salaried employees, there is no work/life balance, as you are expected to do whatever is necessary to meet deadlines that often change at the last minute based on Corporate's whim. Office politics run wild, and there is no room for advancement for many, especially women and certain minorities. This is not a good place for them.

    Advice to Senior ManagementFocus on the employees who make your products possible. It used to matter that your products were made in the U.S. It still should. Overhaul your HR department, and bring in some people who can show some concern for people. Take some sensitivity courses or offer training so all staff know how to deal with each other as men/women and different ethnicities. Stop encouraging bullying and rewarding overly aggressive management styles.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    4 people found this helpful  

    Environment is filled with negativity-AVOID THIS PLACE

    Engineering (Former Employee) Indianapolis, IN

    ProsDecent pay, decent benefits, good work experience

    ConsPoor management, constant arguing amongst managers and employees, managers will give you good reviews and then tell the opposite to management, VP of this location is the most unprofessional person I have ever met. Constant foul language and hand slamming on tables during meetings

    Advice to Senior ManagementQuit letting managers take 3 hour lunches while they only put in 6 hour days, Make managers perform and complete goals just like employees, allow employees to suggest ideas to improve the company

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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