Mahalo.com Reviews

Updated April 10, 2015
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2.3
11 Reviews
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Jason Calacanis
9 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. Extremely fast paced start-up studio, I was a director of a web show

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Art Director in Culver City, CA
    Former Employee - Art Director in Culver City, CA

    I worked at Mahalo.com full-time (more than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The office space was great, and the employees were some of the best and brightest in the industry. The work benefits were really awesome too, along with free breakfasts on Fridays.

    Cons

    Last minute decisions affected schedules, extremely tight deadlines (but to be expected), and rather harsh treatment of employees despite putting in their full effort. The layoffs were brutal as well.

    Advice to Management

    A bit more time in advance for layoffs would have been appreciated, and allow the creators to pursue new ideas for the benefit of everyone

  2. staff members with lots of talent / CEO with little empathy

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Freelancer - Writer in Santa Monica, CA
    Former Freelancer - Writer in Santa Monica, CA

    I worked at Mahalo.com (less than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    I wrote a How-To article for this company. I discovered talented staff members and editors who were professional. Their feedback for my article helped improve its final iteration.

    Cons

    I wrote a How-To article for this company. I discovered the CEO, Jason Calacanis, lived up to his reputation of being a less than pleasant personality. When I stopped by the office one time to say hello to a friend there, I rang the doorbell. Jason exited the building and asked what I wanted. I said I was there to visit my friend. He said I should call her and proceeded to his sports car (shut the door to the building, locking it) and drove away. I didn't have time to tell him: I had called her.

    Thankfully, a few minutes later she opened the door.

    But business etiquette would have guided any professional to invite a guest to enter the building and either be screened through the receptionist, or have someone call my friend, once I was inside.

    Instead I was left outside like a door-to-door salesperson.

    ---

    Jason also overworked his employees. At the time, he offered full-time editing positions of $500/week for 50 hours/week ($10/hour). At my interview for the freelance job, I spoke to another editor who said that Mahalo expects people to be constantly into their profession; he said that after his work day, he goes home and blogs about technology, and he implied that employees here should do that (he didn't require it however). It sounded like a workaholic culture, which is why I didn't continue working for them.

    Advice to Management

    Hire someone other than Jason Calacanis to run the company. It's his company I understand, but let him run it from a distance. Hire a production manager who has empathy. If you don't know how to do that, hire an HR consultant who can begin that process of introducing some humanity into the company.

  3. Lots of work for little reward

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

    I worked at Mahalo.com as a contractor (less than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    You can enjoy a flexible schedule and the ability to work from home.

    Cons

    Editors are inconsistent requiring extra rework.

    Advice to Management

    Create a simpler style guide and stick to it.

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  5. Helpful (2)

    They take advantage of recent graduates, overworked and underpaid

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Administrative Assistant/Human Resources in Culver City, CA
    Former Employee - Administrative Assistant/Human Resources in Culver City, CA

    I worked at Mahalo.com full-time (less than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    The people who work here are awesome, a really fun, creative group of people

    Cons

    Upper management cuts corners to under pay their employees (which are SKILLED positions, Video editing, writing, motion graphics etc etc), and ALWAYS ends up letting people go when they start asking for raises.

    Advice to Management

    Pay your employees well, and respect their talents and crafts.

  6. Helpful (2)

    In the beginning everything was cool. At the end it became a nightmare.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Systems Engineer in Santa Monica, CA
    Former Employee - Systems Engineer in Santa Monica, CA

    I worked at Mahalo.com full-time (more than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    You work with great people. The perks where great (until they got rid of most of them). There is a lot of opportunities after Mahalo.

    Cons

    No direction. Pivoting every 6 months. Parking was a nightmare.

    Advice to Management

    If Jason was the guy he was outside of the office, I think more people would enjoy their job.

  7. Helpful (5)

    Extremely negative work environment

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Culver City, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Culver City, CA

    I worked at Mahalo.com

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    -Great coworkers (you will make some life-long friendships here)
    -Laid-back work environment (t-shirts, jeans, sneakers, hats--anything goes)
    -Great benefits (out-of-pocket is between 0-15% of overall cost, depending on your coverage)
    -Plenty of parking
    -Washer and dryer on-site

    Cons

    -A demeaning and unprofessional leader of the company
    -A lot of hours for little pay
    -Location (an industrial-like area)

    You will be micromanaged to the point that you wonder why you're even here (do NOT underestimate this). It is normal for employees to be humiliated, belittled, and cussed at by your boss with the entire office watching. Spare yourself the constant negativity and look elsewhere.

    Advice to Management

    None. In such a negative environment, how can you inspire and motivate those who work for you? Failure is the only option at this point. After five years of trying to find something that works, it's obvious that the company is going nowhere.

  8. Helpful (1)

    Not an Easy Job, But Rewarding

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Santa Monica, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Santa Monica, CA

    I worked at Mahalo.com

    Approves of CEO
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    - A great team
    - Opportunity to learn a lot about the Web and technology startups
    - Lots of room for growth and advancement
    - Fast-paced work environment with lots of new challenges every day; it's never boring

    I learned more in my first month at Mahalo than I have in years at other jobs. It was the first company at which I was given the opportunity to step up and take on more responsibility, for which I am extraordinarily grateful. As well, I made many friendships at Mahalo with amazing, talented colleagues that have continued to this day.

    Cons

    - General lack of focus, which can make the work frustrating
    - Difficulty setting/communicating priorities from senior management to employees, freelancers
    - Rigorous and demanding schedule

    Mahalo can be a difficult place to work. The hours are demanding, the expectations are high (some might say unreasonable), the pressure is intense. Perhaps most challenging of all is the frequent shifting of priorities, goals and responsibilities, which can give work there a "1 step forward, 2 steps back" feeling. Overall, I had a worthwhile experience there, but it is not for everyone.

    Advice to Management

    Mahalo could benefit from leadership listening to employees - not just hearing them out, but taking opinions seriously - and being more open to fresh ideas and perspectives. Often it feels as if the agenda is being set

  9. Helpful (2)

    Mahalo, the idea was good once upon a time.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Full Time Guide in Santa Monica, CA
    Former Employee - Full Time Guide in Santa Monica, CA

    I worked at Mahalo.com

    Doesn't Recommend
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    It's an internet startup with a lot of potential for growth. The free lunches were very nice.

    Cons

    Pretty much everything else. Treated very poorly. While they claim to listen to everyone, only maybe two or three people are listened to. There was once upon a time a "no meetings" policy that has been completely thrown out in favor of very private meetings on a daily basis. It's very obvious that they're trying to work many people to quit. Taking advantage of everyone's time and dedication.

    Advice to Management

    Get back to your roots. Be sincere. Don't be hypocritical around the clock. Fire your editorial and video, or rather Marketing and Advertising, leads.

  10. Helpful (3)

    Great for flexibility, horrible work environment.

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

    I worked at Mahalo.com (more than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Mahalo offers flexibility on the job for life's little emergencies. Sick kid? No problem, go take them to the doctor. When you get back from the doctor though, be prepared to make up those hours, plus five for the trouble.

    Cons

    Working for Jason Calacanis is a nightmare. He comes up with horrible ideas, wants us to push them through, then "pivots" (fires people) when his new ideas don't meet financial expectations. There is a reason beds were in the building, along with showers, washers and dryers. Be expected to work overtime with no overtime pay.

    Advice to Management

    Let your employees know they are a valued part of the company.

  11. Helpful (1)

    Great team! Great leaders!

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

    I worked at Mahalo.com as a contractor (more than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    An entertaining team and many opportunities! Mahalo changed my life, because I worked only with the best! I learned and I've developed my skills!

    Cons

    Mahalo pivoted. It's not a con. I understand what Jason wanted and I appreciate the chance I had to work for them. I want them to go back to the old system but this won't happen. So, I'm good.

    Advice to Management

    None. They do a great job!

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