M. Shanken Communications

  www.mshanken.com
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M. Shanken Communications Reviews

Updated Jul 18, 2014

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3.1 12 reviews

44% Approve of the CEO

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Marvin R. Shanken

(9 ratings)

50% of employees recommend this company to a friend
12 Employee Reviews
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    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    Peaceful, low stress environment

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsDaily work life is very low-stress across the board. Many people stay here for 8+ years as a result! It's a very laid back environment, with decent perks. Health insurance, paid time off, wine giveaways, there's even a company softball team to join.

    ConsPay is a lot lower than what you'd get elsewhere for a similar title... but you do a lot less work and have limited stress.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
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    • Disapproves of CEO

     

    Absolutely no room for GROWTH!

    Retail Sales (Former Employee) New York, NY

    ProsFlexible schedule and some nice people.

    ConsThe pay is horrible, the work was boring, and the president is in denial that people actually care to purchase hard copies of magazines in this day and age. Also, there was no room for growth and a lot of people were laid off due to the lack of sales.

    Advice to Senior ManagementThe reason for your high turnover is because you don't take the time to appreciate your employees and the pay is below market standards.

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

    • Culture & Values
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    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    Great People no growth

    Marketing Manager (Former Employee) New York, NY

    Proswine give aways, get to attend some in house events, casual dress can wear jeans and sneakers. People are friendly enough.

    ConsDepending on the department you are in there is basically no growth. Decent pay could always be better. Many people are in limbo. No offer for wine tasting classes.

    Advice to Senior ManagementHigher Pay and employee appreciation goes a long way.

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

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

     

    one rotten apple spoils the whole barrel

    Executive Assistant (Former Employee) New York, NY

    ProsI have to say that I do miss the perks of this place. When they clean out their wine cellar or what have you, they place them out for the employees to take.

    ConsIf you have allergies, asthma, or any other breathing problems don't bother stepping foot in this building. Since Cigar Aficionado is also a publication of theirs, they usually have tons of cigars on hand and some higher ups smoke while in their office, one or two would be okay but for the whole lot to be doing it all day? It's just a bit much. The stench coming off that floor hits you like a brick wall as the elevator doors open. I don't think it was all but just a hand full of the same ones doing it all the time without concern for anyone’s health.

    They hire younger people and make it seem like they are doing a favor for you by giving you this job—most likely so they didn’t have to shell out much for your compensation. Even tells you that some people would kill for a job here. What they don't tell you is that it's only for 3 months... so they will hire one person and keep them there for a month then hire another as a backup assistant and after three month they let the first go and then hire another from a temp agency.

    The assistant before me was fired right at the 90 day period (in some companies there's a probation period) which, I would imagine, they would hold fast to in case of some kind of legal accusation. I was offered the position but the salary they offer was way below par, especially in NY, and required long daunting hours, with a side of verbal abuse. Eventually someone was hired to replace me; of course I was out within my three month period.

    The other VPs in the company to my knowledge was very nice, professional, and do not abuse the probation period. I would love to find out if there's a way to protect employees or individuals from this type of policy abuse. Everyone there turned a blind eye. However, it was mentioned that they have been countless assistants for that particular individual, so beware! Remember that everyone working in HR is paid by the company, and therefore isn’t working for you but the company.

     I got the impression that this company cares only to fill their pockets, nothing else. I'm completely turned off by the entire brand; I would never spend a dime on any of their publications.

    Advice to Senior ManagementInvest in your employees. Recognize abusive behaviors, don't turn a blind eye because they are among your top 5 sales people.

    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
    • No Opinion of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Laid Back but No Opportunity to Grow

    Retail Sales Telemarketer (Former Employee) New York, NY

    ProsCasual, Good work ethic, Respectful, Flexible Schedule

    ConsNo opportunity to grow
    Low pay

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

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
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    • Approves of CEO

     

    great place to work and very professional

    Sales Assistant (Current Employee) New York, NY

    ProsAwesome team
    Lots of events
    Company Culture
    No dress code

    ConsNo cons besides opportunity to grow

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
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    • Disapproves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Kleptocratic Publisher

    (Former Employee) New York, NY

    ProsA recognizable good brand. Great Brand on your resume.

    If you are bright and want to get your foot in the door in the worlds of high end luxury this is a good place to start. Famous enough to be recognized, but not big enough to make it difficult to get hired.

    ConsFirst and foremost glossy magazine brands aside this is a family business. It's a glorified mom and pop masquerading as a corporation. Do not be fooled by the celebs on the covers. So right then and there this is not your typical corporate setting. However there are great family run businesses and not so great ones. This one unfortunately falls into the latter.

    Working here is like having a glimpse of what it would have been like to live in the old Soviet Union. Upper management is dominated by lifers who have been there 30+ years. So there is zero chance for advancement beyond the middle management tier.

    Therefore the goal is only to make the CEO happy, and by extension his children who also work there. All other considerations are secondary. You will not get promoted and you probably will not get paid very much. Your job will be frustrating beyond belief because your boss whomever that person may be will have been there so long that they will have zero concept how modern business works. They've been living in "Shankenland" too long. Their only interest is keeping the CEO happy and reaching retirement.

    Forget about doing anything new or innovative either. This company is so risk averse that they only undertake new initiatives way way after every other competitor has done is and the road is well travelled.

    Best Advice. Get Hired stay long enough to get the resume credit and bounce. There is nothing else for you there.

    Advice to Senior ManagementStop listening to the sycophants around you that have been feeding garbage for 30 years and get some new blood.

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

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

    1 person found this helpful  

    Ehh

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee) New York, NY

    ProsThere are definitely great perks for working here, such as industry events, free wine, restaurant openings, and much more. They certainly support a good balance of work/personal life.

    ConsUpper management has zero idea what is important to the functionality and success of the company. Being that it is family ran, they are more interested in immediately lining their pockets, rather having an innovative approach to the changing print market. If they had a more innovative approach, this company would be much more successful and profitable, then they are. Also, zero morale among employees, based upon low wages, and awful corporate culture.

    Advice to Senior ManagementInnovation and forward thinking would help to bring this company into the future. If they continue on the path of the last 25 years, there is really no hope.

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

     

    Industry leader with sacrifices

    Wine Spectator Editor (Current Employee) New York, NY

    ProsThe company is a leader in the wine and beverage industry and offers exceptional exposure. They also offer a safe and fair work place, with traditional 9-5 hours and a relatively low stress environment.

    ConsThis is a company that lacks management skills and the ability to develop, motivate and promote. It also lacks vision, innovation and ability to change. Upper management is secretive and dishes out orders rather than engaging in discussions, they also expect a full commitment from the employee yet will not offer the same in return. The top tier of employees are paid very well, while middle and entry level salaries are severely depressed. Benefits meet the bare minimum, with high copays, no contribution to 401k and a pathetic, non-transparent profit sharing plan.

    Advice to Senior ManagementThey need to make serious investments in the future, both in terms of developing the business and developing talent. And when they do, they also need to make decisions that support long-term goals rather than looking for the cheap quick fix on which to float by for another year.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • No Opinion of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Nice..but...

    Various (Former Employee) New York, NY

    ProsIt's a family owned business, which means family oriented. The owner (M Shanken himself) does have 2 of his children working there, both in senior mgmt type positions.

    There are some very talented people who work there; all of whom or in mainly non-mgmt type positions. Work/life balance is FANTASTIC.

    You pretty much know everyone in the company while working there, as it is a small company. Office location is great as well.

    ConsNew ideas are not exactly welcome.
    Communications between upper mgmt and their staff is almost non-existent. You hear EVERYTHING through the grapevine. And really, no one addresses anything. This does lead to severe 'lowness' of employee morale.

    Salaries are low across the board (with the exception of course with the senior/executive team).Vacation policy is ok..but could be better (meaning more clear). At the time, there was NO employee manual therefore 'things' can change at the blink of an eye. Hopefully they have wised up and written one up.

    Don't try challenging anyone (senior staff), even if you have facts proving your theories. You will jsut be shot down and that will stay in the back of certain people's minds

    Advice to Senior ManagementBe more open with employees. Their morale could use it!

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