Lastar
2.8 of 5 13 reviews
www.lastar.com Dayton, OH 150 to 499 Employees

Lastar Reviews

Updated Feb 4, 2014
Lastar – Moraine – “Lastar Office”

All Employees Current Employees Only

2.8 13 reviews

                             

50% Approve of the CEO

Lastar President & CEO William Diederich

William Diederich

(6 ratings)

38% of employees recommend this company to a friend
13 Employee Reviews
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    Account Manager/Business Development

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
    Dayton, OH

    ProsVery good products to work with.

    ConsCEO makes every decision in every department.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    Brick wall for career advancement, Downsizing & preparing to sell off

    Account Executive (Current Employee)
    Moraine, OH

    ProsThere are some really fantastic people that work at Lastar. Many of them are honest & sincere.

    ConsManagement has favorites. As others have said, there is an "in" crowd. Upper management and the leadership team only pretend to care about employees.
    Lots of people at this place are related. You find this out after the rumor mill starts and you find out the hard way. No trust, it's like an elementary school with gossip and backstabbing to get ahead. Middle management is awful, many of them are just babysitters to keep the contributors motivated. Nearly all of them are in their positions due to the "buddy system" rather than professional skills. Meanwhile, the company is preparing to be sold, tweaking every dollar out of their bottom line, and making itself look good on paper (by whatever means necessary) so the founders can cash out. I was surprised to find out that they hadn't been sued for their awful middle management tripping on their own shoes or the discriminatory practices.

    Expect 3-5 years before realizing you just wasted that time and you should move on. No career advancement past the middle (at best). Where as you will need to sell your soul to get there.

    Expect to be told one thing on comp then get back doored with no reach around.

    Advice to Senior ManagementEither care about your employees or don't, stop pretending.
    Take a hard look at your Directors. There are alliances that play their superiors for fools.
    Sexism is alive and thriving. How many single moms work there?
    Quit changing comp plans to your benefit every year.
    Stop doing massive layoffs because you don't have the gall to cut people who blatantly don't care about their jobs or have the skills to be successful.

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

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    Great place to work

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsHelpful, understanding, great environment, loved working here

    ConsNone, I can not find any complaints

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

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    Mixed experience

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsThe people are great, warm, welcoming to new employees for the most part. Employee satisfaction is very important. Place a lot of focus on being a great place to work.

    ConsNo diversity. Can be difficult to "break into" established friend/family/co-worker groups. Almost everyone same age, sex, race. Not sure they know how or are willing to do what it takes to be a great place to work.

    Advice to Senior ManagementA lot of good people get passed over for opportunities because they are not part of the "favorites" crowd or the opinions of favored people have limited their chances of advancement. Take a good look at the employees you currently have and evaluate them for the skills they have instead of what certain people think of them.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Decent place to work but don't expect to be paid very well

    Sales (Current Employee)
    Moraine, OH

    ProsLastar is a fun place to work. The people are generally very easy to get along with and work with. The dress code is very relaxed and you can have fun while working. They do promote self development and will pay for industry certifications as well as college classes through their tuition reimbursement program. Their benefits are pretty good and they have a 401k match.

    ConsTheir pay and salary package is awful. It is so atrocious that they have quite a bit of turnover in key sales positions and it isn't uncommon for outside sales people to leave for inside sales positions at other companies and make a substantial amount more at an inside sales job. Management is very slow to react to internal challenges and they show a general lack of empathy. I understand that this is a private business and that they are "for profit" and that the majority of the money is consumed by the shareholders, then what is left is distributed to the people that actually generate the sales. By the time compensation is handed out, it ends up being way below market value for the job title, job description, and the amount of work and extra duties that you are expected to perform. They are also notorious for changing compensation plans EVERY year so you have no continuity in how or why you get paid. They also are notorious for shifting accounts around from sales person to sales person which upsets a lot of their customer base because they don't have the same sales rep from year to year. If you are fresh out of college and this is your first professional job then it is fine for the first year or two, but after that your salary expectations grow with the experience that you have gained yet Lastar stands pat at the low level of pay that they offered you right out of college. They have a very hard time recruiting or retaining top end sales talent because the pay is so low. There is literally no incentive to stick around. The bottom line here is this, Lastar is a good company to work for right out of college. It is a great place to learn business skills and get some real world experience. Their training is decent and they will promote from within, though there are limited opportunities to break into management so you should expect a very low ceiling for advancement. Once you have been there for a few years and have the experience, it's time to move on and that is what most people do.

    Advice to Senior ManagementMake a commitment to actually compensate your sales people fairly. They are, after all, the people that drives sales that line your pockets. There are other employment options in Dayton, Cincinnati or Columbus that pay much better and will continue to poach your top talent until you pay market value

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Just the facts

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsLastar is a privately owned Dayton based company specializing in cable manufacturing that offers connectivity solutions in niche B2B markets. Training programs that prepare you for various challenges within Lastar's unique inner working culture. Think of it like a community college for B2B sales, but getting paid for it. Strong entrepreneurial business outlook and approach: a thirst for expansion into new markets and ongoing global expansion. Organization is very transparent in communication, a very rare trait for a business. The founding Chairman's and VP/CEO are true entrepreneurs and great at relaying quarterly wins, losses, and business objectives. A select few business units within the company have impeccable leadership traits. You may be fortunate that a leader of this caliber is present within the line of business you move into: learn from them, let them mentor you, and those merits and accolades will cascade down to you for your own personal growth. Summary of Pro's: Chairman's/VP-CEO, community charitable work, recognition programs, competitive goals, a very giving organization for charity, education tools and training, growth opportunities, executive level sincerity, nimble, easy promotional advancement, slow revenue growth - at least its growth for a dying city such as Dayton OH!

    ConsMajority of leadership falls victim to the Peter Principle syndrome; promoted way above and beyond their level of competency, functional ability, and business outlook. Organization strongly fosters the "type-a" personality: in so many words work comes first, family second. Do whatever "cough" it takes to win that whale account. Learn how to provide an extraordinary customer experience by incentivizing your clients with visa gift cards or other beguiling methods. If your skills lean in favor towards communication, golf, and internal politic, then you might have a strong chance of being successfully assimilated to the Lastar mold. I would encourage taking the job so you can get paid to routinely read leadership-self development books at your desk, take advantage of free internal training courses, and other activities of self improvement that are in most cases irrelevant to the organization's business strategy. Summary of Con's: dubious middle-upper management leadership, reactive-indecisive-counter productivity (the Peter Principle), nepotism, plagued internal caddy culture, sales focused methodology… not innovative focused, debilitating employee review metrics, laughable incentives and compensation, extremely heavy turnover and routine layoffs.

    The powers that be may state this review to be slanderous, callous, and inflammatory. In retrospect work 6-8 months at Lastar, observe your surroundings: employee disgruntlement, caddy culture, resource turnover. Then reflect back to this review and recognize the accuracy in these statements (both pros and cons).

    Advice to Senior ManagementI would encourage the executive level to thoroughly evaluate your business approach and adhere to it: fluxes and shifts in the economy are always present and commonplace in running an organization. Having the proper leadership within each business unit that can forecast upcoming years will ensure the slightest financial murmur doesn't cripple your capitol. While your intentions are noble and forthcoming, probably not a good idea to consistently broadcast dismal quarterly statements, or questionable organizational structure changes. This only prepares the employee community to prep for employment elsewhere to avoid the inevitable future layoff. Be mindful that knocking off lower tier worker bee employee's in an effort to recoup quarterly losses unfortunately will only maintain a repeat outcome if leadership is the primary gap. Be cognizant in resource planning, recruitment methods, and extravagant organizational extracurricular activities that are equivalent to a combined dozen full-time employees annual wage. It is increasingly disheartening for an organization to throw a mid-six figure company event catered to specific individuals, only to run a wave of layoffs 2-3 months later. Consistency in these actions further destroys company culture, morale, and motivation to excel. Unfortunately rewarding an exempt employee with motivational t-shirts and hotdogs for working 60 hours a week do not pay the bills.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Production associate

    Production Associate (Former Employee)

    Prosonly pro I can think of is the co-workers who are on the same level as you.

    ConsThis company underpays their employees while still making them work as if they're getting twice the pay. Lastar makes you feel as if they are doing you a favor by giving you a low pay job and getting a promotion for production people is near to impossible. If you are good where you are at, then they keep you there never letting you get additional training to get a higher pay. They try and act as if they care by putting on monthly meetings and showing if you're doing a good job or costing the the company money. Certain supervisors will find any reason to fire you is they just don't like you that much though you're doing more than everything asked of you.

    Advice to Senior ManagementIf you want your employees to be better workers, stop pretending you care and actually do something about it. Maybe the management team is happy but i can honestly say 90% of your production workers are not happy with their job.

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

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    Don't look to get rich here.

    Are You Serious? (Current Employee)
    Liars Corner, OH

    ProsThere are a lot of good people at Lastar/Cables To Go.

    ConsA few years ago, I enjoyed coming to work here. Sadly the whole atmosphere has changed. Management micro manages and you are made to feel that no matter what you do, it isn't enough. I used to be in sales. I met my quotas, but what I found out was that they randomly change everyone's accounts at the end of every year. They stress customer service and establishing strong relationships with customers, but they pull the rug out from under you every January and you basically start over. You might get to keep a few accounts, but growing sales year after year at Lastar is not rewarded. Kind of weird, but you are better off if you hit 90-99% of your quota. Because what they do is raise your quotas by anywhere from 25%-75% (depending on how good you are doing) and then they lower your gross profit payback percentage. So you could actually make less money if you sell more. They have two tactics for sales: (1) keep mixing accounts up so that no one rep can form long-term relationships. They want all accounts to be "house" accounts. Every January reps have to call accounts and explain that they are the new rep. Then the customer asks, "What happened to _________". Obviously the customer wants their old rep. Then the Cables To Go rep gives a management prepared response to the customer explaining that even though their old rep is still there, it is better off this way because________. The second tactic is to limit sales rep pay. They don't expect reps to last more than 3 years. They figure that they can get a new recruit, pay them less. Turn over doesn't really matter because accounts will be shifted every January anyway.

    Advice to Senior ManagementJust be honest with your employees. Tell them that their pay has a ceiling. No one but executives have a chance to make money. If a person can be in management and go through their career at Cables To Go WITHOUT lying to their direct reports, it would be...well I don't think it can be done.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    A pretty good place

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
    Moraine, OH

    ProsThe people are energetic, dedicated, and colorful. The company is profitable and growing. Upper management is ethical and honest. Employees are valued and the company invests in them. Compensation package isn't best-in-class, but it's reasonable considering the local economy.

    ConsThe company is in a commodity market and struggling to innovate and find (or create) competitive advantages. The size of the company and low rate of turnover makes moving up a long-term commitment. Middle management is spotty and not well integrated which results in confusion and struggles when working toward strategic goals.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    Great place to be overworked

    Account Manager (Current Employee)
    Dayton, OH

    ProsThere are alot of opportunities for professional growth. They do support continued education and will pay for professional certifications.

    ConsThey try and make do with minimal resources so you tend to be given a healthy workload. Depending on your department you can sometimes be in a position to wear multiple hats

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at Lastar reviews and ratings — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for Lastar CEO William Diederich. All 13 reviews posted anonymously by Lastar employees.