Next Step Living

  www.nextstepliving.com
  www.nextstepliving.com
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Next Step Living Reviews

Updated September 12, 2014
Updated September 12, 2014
34 Reviews
3.0
34 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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Geoff Chapin
25 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Good Energy

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Account Manager  in  Boston, MA
    Current Employee - Account Manager in Boston, MA

    I have been working at Next Step Living full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    An exciting fast paced environment full of energized people. Very approachable and understanding leadership. You'll work hard but leave work every day feeling like you made a difference. There is also plenty of room for advancement and career development if you work hard and have good ideas.

    Cons

    Rapid growth has led to some inefficiencies and frustrating parts of many jobs. Leadership is aware of the issue, and working on fixing it, but it is still a drag to lose productivity due to inefficient processes.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus on efficiency, improve infrastructure, and streamline processes.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Next Step Living Response

    Sep 16, 2014Employee Relations Representative

    Thanks for the review! We love to hear that our employees leave work feeling as if they have made a positive contribution and are working towards something greater. That's really why we're all here ... More

  2.  

    Some things old, some things new

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Next Step Living

    Pros

    Great mission, good energy, friendly supportive co-worker atmosphere. Interesting product and service offerings. Wide assortment of open positions providing opportunities for learning about the energy industry.

    Cons

    Struggling to keep up with their own success. Complex sales commission structure. High pressure, deadline-heavy, customer-service work. Rapid growth brings multiple 'challenges' for employees and customers.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Lighten up, demonstrate respect for worker bees, brush up on modern management approaches.

  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    First 6 months are great, then all down hill

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

    I have been working at Next Step Living full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    -Many people have a really great dream here, and that is to provide people a better existence through green(er) living in improving their home.
    -The dream that started this company was great, and that's what keeps some wonderful stead-fast employees here

    Cons

    -Management tends to be really terrible, especially in the Inside Sales and Sales departments, unable to implement direction without a whole lot of stick and no carrot
    -CEO is a really nice guy and acts as a very pretty face for the company, but has his head in the clouds and cannot seem to realize there is anything wrong with his baby
    -High-level management spend the day peacocking around the office from 9-4. I'm pretty sure the entire company is run by one of the sales managers.
    -Company has paid a great deal of money to have it's salesforce straightened out only to find it is a new configuration of terrible
    -Huge disconnect between departments, customers get lost in the cracks as departments cannot figure out how to communicate in the 'proper' manner with each other as emails and extensions are constantly changed
    -Low level workers run on passion as they are loaded down with too much work and not enough support, turn-over is nuts due to the fact that folks just break

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    -Don't fall into the common problem that green companies trend toward-Great ideals but a total disconnect with implementation and follow-through. So many green companies have limped along based on their fancy websites and great ideas, but lack a good, connected workforce. The little people make the fancy concepts come to life. Less money on a new logo every week and more on figuring out how to get the customer what they need on time please!
    -Managers should spend a week shadowing lower-level workers to get a feel of how the process works and not preach how to fix things. We get that you may have shadowed a day and spent the entire time trying to correct what we do. Stop. Listen. Observe.
    -Stop sending out 'NSL success stories' to try to improve morale. Those stories are from work done on Board Members homes. Of course they have had great service, their accounts are flagged VIP customers and they will receive the best treatment, not the norm treatment.
    -Figure out if you want to be a sales company or a green company, because customers are getting really ticked at being played on the green front and then getting gutted on the sales end.
    -CEO is trying to make inroads into other states right now when the main Boston office can barely keep functioning! Seriously, heal your problems at home and make a good, solid, functioning company before trying to blunder into more markets
    -You encourage employees to apply to other positions within the company and then shoot them down in favor of an outside contender or the managers favorite. Either be straight and don't encourage, or be fair.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Awful to their temps

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

    I worked at Next Step Living as a contractor for less than a year

    Pros

    Interesting workspace, most of the people were pleasant and helpful

    Cons

    Full disclosure: I only temped here for a few days, so keep that in mind.
    I was told I would get minimum two weeks of work, which was exactly what I needed before I went on a long-planned vacation, and I wound up getting only three days before they filled it with someone else from in the office (Temporarily! Not even a permanent promotion!) and was promptly given the boot.

    I was passed around to four different people and never actually got to do the work I was hired to do because they constantly needed something, like a computer for me to use, or a workspace, or etc etc. So I was instead basically put to filing and clerical stuff, which is fine, but after a few hours it was absolute slaughter on my back, so I would get up pretty regularly to walk around, go to the bathroom, etc, and the guy who I guess was my manager apparently didn't like that.

    When I filled out my timesheet for the tiny, ridiculous assignment, my temp agency forwarded me a nasty email from my "manager" saying I was constantly away from my desk, that I took long lunches, and that I didn't finish the assigned work. I was seriously expected to let them know every time I went to the bathroom, as if I was in freaking elementary school, and time every single thing I did. They wound up taking every single much-needed break out of my check, as well as more than my lunch break, and even one minute I was late. I support honesty in timesheets and all that, but I was getting barely above minimum wage, was doing grunt work, and was treated poorly, so I'm disgusted they would freak out and squabble over a few cents. I'm a good worker and a human being, and they didn't treat me like I was either.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Temps are people too. Honestly, if you think people should be required to announce when they have to pee, there's something wrong with you.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Next Step Living Response

    Sep 16, 2014Employee Relations Representative

    Thank you for providing feedback. I’m extremely sorry to hear that in your very short time with us you came away with that impression. We strive to foster an inclusive and supportive workforce that ... More

  6. 3 people found this helpful  

    On the rise...

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Next Step Living

    Pros

    A young and energetic group of people who are motivated in making a difference.

    Cons

    Still going through growing pains. Makes things hectic at times.

  7. 4 people found this helpful  

    Great company with hard working and fun employees.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Customer Service Representative  in  Boston, MA
    Former Employee - Customer Service Representative in Boston, MA

    I worked at Next Step Living full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Fast paced and engaging environment, great employee base, and good camraderie. Also a very successful

    Cons

    Sometimes are overworked because of seasonal swing in customer demand, and management isn't ideally transparent.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Next Step Living Response

    Sep 16, 2014Employee Relations Representative

    Thanks for the feedback! The seasonal swing is definitely a challenge in this industry, especially in New England! I’m thrilled to hear that you valued the work environment and the people in it. The ... More

  8. 4 people found this helpful  

    Solar Sales Advisor

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

    I have been working at Next Step Living full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    The Company is well run and has the optimal number of layers of management to not only improve the customer experience but also the efficiency and profitability of the company. I am always impressed that team leaders and sales managers are focused on the customer.
    NSL makes a very large impact and constantly trains its employees to better themselves, enhance their knowlege about energy efficiency and articulate that to the customer so that a family may take meaningful action to save money, become more comfortable, and improve the enviroment.

    Cons

    Salaries are not the highest but if you are in sales, your performance-pay is based on your work ethic, ability to take constructive criticism, and persistence - they teach the rest.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stay on track, utilize customer base to introduce new product offerings to help customers save money and reduce dependence on oil and gas.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9. 4 people found this helpful  

    A Fast Paced and Growing Company where employees have a real impact!

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

    I have been working at Next Step Living full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    NSL is truly a mission based company that has a positive impact on its customers and the environment everyday. I don't know many other people who are as excited and happy to go to work every day as the people that work here. There are incredible opportunities for growth here. While most employees are at NSL because of it's environmental impact, it's also a great fit for people looking a unique and rapidly growing company.

    Cons

    You should not work here if you're looking for a typical 9-5, cookie cutter job where everything is laid out for you on a daily basis. There are growing pains at NSL and it can often be hectic, but no where else are you given an opportunity like this to take a project or a job and use it to have such an impact on your own personal and career development, customers and communities, and the environment. Every day is a new challenge and a learning experience, and that's what makes it such a unique place to be.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    Low end of market range, nice people, chaotic

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

    I have been working at Next Step Living full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Great people
    Young company
    Flexibility with start times
    Quick hiring process
    Monthly socials (free food, wine & beer)

    Cons

    Rapid growth without focus on core business
    Lack of focused direction from management
    More time putting out fires than preventing them

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take a look at business practices and find ways to make them more universal and scaleable. There is a ton of lost time and money that could be prevented by more standardized/documented processes. Consider bringing in some Six Sigma black belts or similar to look at process improvement. Every situation is *not* unique, and we keep reinventing the wheel! The training team is great, but longer training times are needed, on process, not just building science. Classes could be larger than the 2-4 they often are. Great job being socially approachable.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 4 people found this helpful  

    Only if you're desperate

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

    I worked at Next Step Living full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Coworkers are nice and most share the same interests. In a good industry with many growth opportunities in the energy sector. Hands on experience with a diverse range of energy technologies.

    Cons

    I normally refrain from these reviews but I've grown tired of seeing these inflated ratings from the NSL HR department. This company brags publicly about it's growth but if you're one of the ones working within the company you loathe such growth. Very disorganized, churn-and-burn mentality with its employees and greenwashing are just a few of the things that come to mind when looking back at my time with NSL. Regardless of your role with the company you'll feel like a used car salesman because of flawed metrics and childish prize competitions for top conversion numbers. NSL hires a lot of recent college grads or professionals switching careers that won't speak up about the issues. Bottom line is only take a job with this company if you plan to stay a year at the most, which is what most do.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If you really are serious about making a difference in the residential EE industry take a hard look in the mirror and fix your core business. Too many inefficiencies in operations and poor morale can be fixed if you slow down and invest more in your employees personally and professionally.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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