The Conference Board

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The Conference Board Reviews

Updated October 20, 2014
Updated October 20, 2014
39 Reviews
2.3
39 Reviews
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Jonathan (Jon) Spector
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Employee Reviews

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  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Seemingly accessible leadership, strange culture

    Current Employee - Summer Fellow in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Summer Fellow in New York, NY

    I have been working at The Conference Board as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Worked as a Summer Fellow in a small department. My direct managers, and the leadership of the organization were really accessible to the summer interns. Great opportunity to contribute and the workshops/lunches they put together for summer staff were useful career development.
    Teleworking is big here, which is cool... sort of.

    I ran into someone who worked as a Research Analyst during my time as a fellow about a year after my experience. She told me my entire department had been replaced...

    Cons

    Somewhat strange office culture- everyone is either right of school or has been around for 20+ years. Younger people are very cliquey, and is lacking some real diversity. Human capital practice is clearly their main focus, which is understandable but disappointing.

  2. 8 people found this helpful  

    96 years old and such potential, but lousy results. Will we make it to 100 years?

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Research Analyst in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Research Analyst in New York, NY

    I have been working at The Conference Board full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Bright, enthusiastic co-workers.
    A chance to get to know Fortune 500 companies and their staff well
    Great technology upgrades allow flex work
    Non profit means you are trying to help the world too

    Cons

    Senior team is disconnected from rest of the organization
    Trustees rubber stamp CEO and CFO plans, but those haven't worked out for the last 3 years
    Hotelling at unassigned desks means you don't get to know what other people are working on, and we all repeat the same mistakes or miss chances to collaborate
    Compensation is fine for an NYC non profit, but they promise bonuses and don't deliver them- stop promising!
    No training that is actually useful or consistent

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The senior team needs to stop trying out new things and then not taking responsibility when it fails. They are simply eating into financial reserves. They laid off 10% of the workforce and are too self satisfied and comfortable to take a 10% pay cut! They laid off mid managers, looking for higher financial savings, but it hurt the organization a lot. Members that don't know the inner workings really like the organization, but it needs to step up its game- focus on 3 key businesses; use its own findings internally; modify the seating to have 'neighborhoods' . Have the trustees do a real 360 review- maybe Spector has reached the limit of his abilities and should move on or be moved.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 4 people found this helpful  

    Poor management decisions making skills

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Relationship Manager in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Relationship Manager in Los Angeles, CA

    I have been working at The Conference Board full-time

    Pros

    Employee culture, diversity and team building

    Cons

    Low compensation and no 401 k = a very poor plan for retirement

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Train staff, bring in consultants, practice our content sugeggetions

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    The Conference Board Response

    Dec 9, 2014Vice President, Human Resources

    Thanks for sharing. We do have a great team. And are constantly striving to be better.
    You might want to check with HR about your retirement planning: TCB does offer a 403(b), which is the nonprofit
    ... More

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  5. 9 people found this helpful  

    Great company, but I wouldn't recommend anyone to work here

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

    I have been working at The Conference Board (more than an year)

    Pros

    Work from home, flexible, nice people, free soda,

    Cons

    Upper management is as wishy washy as a high school teenager, departments are clique-y (so as long as they like you, you're fine. If they don't, well, that's not their problem). Many things in this company are OLD, and are becoming less and less relevant to the 21st century. I question why some people got to their positions, and I realize it's because they have connections with some of the higher ups.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Own your mistakes and instead of asking external people to evaluate your problems, ask feedback internally.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. 7 people found this helpful  

    The good, the bad, the ugly

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

    I have been working at The Conference Board full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    There's a great work-life balance due to the hoteling policy and technology in place. My colleagues over the years have been wonderful -- oftentimes like family.

    Cons

    A huge amount of turnover in recent years. The family-like feeling is gone. Hoteling removes all privacy and, as an introvert, I hate it. I find I talk to fewer people than before the hoteling was put in place. There is little room for advancement and the benefits aren't great. No matching contributions anymore, and the heath plan has gone downhill.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The leadership style is pretty poor. The CEO, intentionally or not, comes off as bully and is perceived to ignore -- or, more accurately, not even entertain -- the views of others. I don't pretend to understand the strategy decisions being made, but things are not moving in the right direction.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7.  

    Organization is going through an adjustment phase, which is tough but much overdue and best way forward.

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

    I have been working at The Conference Board full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Organization, which is approaching its centenary, has a very good reputation with more than 1000 companies from around the world as members. It also has a societal mission in contrast to many of its competitors. Many opportunities to meet or work with high-level business executives from around the world. Organization is small enough to get to know pretty much everybody on staff. Staff is being asked and appreciated for their opinions and their contribution to strengthen the company's value to its members. Very flexible working environment, including a great virtual setup to work from home.

    Cons

    The organization is facing a lot of competition and works under tight budget constraints including a recent 10 percent reduction in positions, which also affects pay raises and bonuses. Organization is trying to get more focus in their member offerings which means some great activities have been stopped, while limited funding to develop new activities.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stay the course on how to improve the benefits to the member companies. Don't sacrifice the organization's societal mission, which is what many staff and executives from member companies like about the organization. Communicate clearly to middle management and all staff on changes and implications of restructuring. Start paying salary increases and bonuses sooner rather than later so that people feel better rewarded for their hard work.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 5 people found this helpful  

    A company with great employees being led by mismanagement

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

    I worked at The Conference Board full-time

    Pros

    * It is a great place to learn and acquire new skills as you have the opportunity to be exposed to great research and resources

    * Employees at the "lower" and mid levels of the organization were extremely helpful and easy to work with

    * Has a rich and respected history to Fortune 1000 organizations

    * Solid work/life balance

    Cons

    * The upper management has really dropped the ball and are held unaccountable at the expense of non executive employees

    * Recently reduced about 10% of staff after poor decisions by C-suite and the decision makers are still in place despite failed ideas

    * They have favorites for specific products and services at the offset of other products and services

    * C-suite will either need to change mentality but most likely need to change personnel to succeed going forward

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    * Hold yourselves more accountable and not to blame the frontline for lack of results for lack of creative ideas to innovate for member organizations

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  9. 6 people found this helpful  

    A once great institution on its way down

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Delegate Sales Manager in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Delegate Sales Manager in New York, NY

    I have been working at The Conference Board full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Employees have always been very dedicated.

    Cons

    All sense of teamwork has been destroyed. Upper management treats the top 10-15 employees as above the rules.
    These people, long in charge of failing departments, are never terminated or get cut in their pay. When the profit losses come, which is frequently, CEO just gets rid of anyone below this top level. It's like a bad country club. No one has any private space or time. Once had a great reputation which has fallen beyond repair.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The board of directors should pay attention and get rid of the C-suite execs who have been running the company into the ground for 7 years or so.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 4 people found this helpful  

    Organization with a good reputation but needs help.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Director Associate Services
    Current Employee - Director Associate Services

    I have been working at The Conference Board full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Well respected non profit economics and business services membership organization. Publishes all of the Leading Economic Indicators on a monthly basis.
    Publishes the Consumer Confidence Index monthly.
    Councils are recognized as a solid membership opportunity that benefits the people who serve on them.
    Chief Economist, Bart van Ark, is a respected and recognized professional who does an excellent job. Is available to visit with clients and advise or make presentations.

    Cons

    Not enough support to effectively perform job duties. Requires long hours (60--70 per week).
    Benefits are OK but should be less costly to employees.
    Lack of committment by senior management to employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 4 people found this helpful  

    Good training

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

    I worked at The Conference Board

    Pros

    Good exposure to best practice research.
    Opportunities for a wide range of experiences.
    Generally positive working environment, though this is greatly dependent upon the department.
    Nice group of people, especially so in the lower and mid-level positions.

    Cons

    Mediocre pay.
    Ivory tower mentality, somewhat disconnected from practical concerns.
    Tendency to rest on past laurels, rather than stay current with or ahead of the field.
    CEO pay and perks are way out of line (high) for a 501 (c) 3 of their size. They ought to reduce CEO total compensation to $500K and use the money saved to raise the salaries of those who are barely making ends meet.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire senior execs who are inspiring leaders.

    Recommends

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