XPRIZE
1.5 of 5 17 reviews
www.xprize.org Playa Vista, CA 16 to 50 Employees

XPRIZE Reviews

Updated Jun 19, 2014

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1.5 17 reviews

                             

7% Approve of the CEO

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Peter H. Diamandis

(14 ratings)

12% of employees recommend this company to a friend
17 Employee Reviews
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    2 people found this helpful  

    Exciting concept, questionable execution.

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
    Playa Vista, CA

    ProsGreat people, exposure to stimulating ideas and experiences, relaxed work environment. Most people seem very engaged and committed to their work. The organization is attempting to take on massive global issues and isnot afraid to "think big" or "outside the box"

    ConsDifficult and slow to execute on everything. Even the simplest tasks and processes require massive amounts of red tape. Leadership is split between two very different management philosophies which rarely coincide and create problems for trying to execute on objectives.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Unfortunate management, no hope of change

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsSome of the employees are truly talented and wonderful people who want to make a difference in the world.

    ConsThere are some truly appalling things that happen at this company: corruption, bad management behavior, and a thick, oppressive bureaucracy. I guess to sum it all up, I felt very disrespected as an employee here.

    The turnover was incredible. I can't count how many employees came and went in the time that I was there, but it was rare to find someone that had been there longer than 2 years. Other than the management, of course.

    My perception of X PRIZE prior to working there was extremely positive and I was very excited to join the team. I think the worst part for me was the immense disappointment I felt as I discovered the reality of the organization. The joke around the office was, "Making the possible, impossible." Sadly, it really felt that way most of the time.

    Advice to Senior ManagementConsidering that management doesn't exhibit much respect for the employees' opinions, I would suggest that the board takes a more active role in the organization, in an attempt to rein in management misbehavior (and replace the managers, if necessary).

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

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    1 person found this helpful  

    Cult of personalities hampers smart, dedicated personnel

    Director (Current Employee)
    Culver City, CA

    ProsThis organization is full of bright, professional, hard-working people who are genuinely excited about their work, their mission, and the difference that XPRIZE can make. The subject matter we work with is varied and interesting, so there are many things to learn while working here. Some of the current competitions truly are inspiring in their far-reaching goal to benefit humanity.

    ConsTHE BAD: Many of the bright, hard-working souls here are shackled by cumbersome, complex, bureaucratic processes that limit their efforts to move forward with truly meaningful initiatives. Or they’re forced to go on mercenary wild goose chases with half-baked ideas that fall short of XPRIZE’s lofty mission but guarantee funding by certain sponsors, whether or not it’s a natural fit. The organization generates some fascinating concepts and competitions, but a slow, stubborn Marketing Department, for example, impairs the vast potential of the projects they oversee.

    THE REALLY BAD: Leadership. It is an iron throne of personality, formed around brilliant, charismatic, but managerially crippled leaders and their lieutenants. Collectively, they’re prone to knee-jerk decisions and combative office relations that destroy rather than build a sense of teamwork and encouragement to continue the long work hours. Ruling by intimidation, fear, and the occasional tantrum creates an environment that rewards criticism of others to shield ones’ self from harsh reprimands.

    Advice to Senior ManagementHire inspired, smart people (doing a decent job there), and then get out of their way (extremely poor job there). No matter how good the personnel is, bad management apples can ruin the sense of a collegial environment. The underlying culture of micromanagement, distrust, and intimidation comes from the top. Until that changes radically, this organization will continue to disappoint those seeking a fulfilling, professional workplace, and XPRIZE may sadly continue to struggle with its public identity as a result.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    1 person found this helpful  

    Great in theory. Poorly Executed.

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsCreating an environment which is pleasant for everyone is difficult in fact it is almost impossible. In hopes of achieving their goal of becoming an "award-winning place to work", X Prize created a new contemporary office space which is appealing to visitors. The ideas that come from the development team are astounding in theory with a network of visionaries and leaders that would rival any Fortune 500 company. The operations team takes a concept and creates legal, ethical and inspired competitions meant to change the world. These are not easy tasks nor are they commonplace. It takes a remarkable group of people to create and operate these prizes.

    ConsUnfortunately, the cons far outweigh the pros. Management is so focused on nurturing their own egos and covering their own tracks that they don't focus on their constant internal discrepancies over everything from the core values to their management philosophies (or lack thereof), annual objectives or organizational missions. There is great autonomy when working at X Prize because management doesn't understand how to manage without micromanaging. The staff is continuously confused about the mission of the organization, there is no camaraderie because everyone is pointing the finger at everyone else to avoid the wrath of management and the amount of money spent on new offices should have been spent elsewhere because apparently nobody bothers to show up to work. There are a good number of excellent people who work at the organization but they won't stay for long once they realize there is in fact no change occurring in a place whose mantra is to revolutionize the world. Management is borderline tyrannical. There have been employees who have fallen out of favor who have suddenly and without explanation disappeared from the organization without a trace never to be heard from again. It puts employees on edge and creates a stressful environment.

    Advice to Senior ManagementLook at the culture you are creating in an open-minded and honest fashion and pay attention to what your employees are telling you. Listen don't judge. Question don't defend. Create a more open line of communication with your staff. Allow your staff to do their jobs without creating fear.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Don't waste your life working her

    Executive Assistant (Current Employee)
    Santa Monica, CA

    ProsNone. This is a horrible place to work.

    ConsSo many....this company is run by a bunch of amateurs with huge egos.

    Advice to Senior ManagementLeave! You have no management skills.

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

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    1 person found this helpful  

    A Dream Job Come True

    Senior Director (Current Employee)
    Los Angeles, CA

    ProsI get to work with talented interesting people on projects that make the World a better place. I get to wear jeans to work every day and work in a relaxed and engaging atmosphere. I get a comfortable office and pleasant coworkers and I actually get paid to do things that I want to do. I get respect and autonomy without being overworked and every day is a new and exciting challenge. I'm happy.

    ConsIn my wanderings around the office, I often encounter people who are doing even more interesting projects that I am, but I can't just drop what I'm doing and join their team. The ever-present supply of fruit, snacks, and beverages in the kitchen is making it difficult for me not to gain weight. I still haven't figured out how to get one of those cool XPRIZE jackets.

    Advice to Senior ManagementWork on putting more efficient processes, technology and systems in place to make it easier for employees to get everything done more quickly. Need to work on orientation of new hires to make sure they get all the information and connections that they need right away.

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

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    1 person found this helpful  

    Awesome concept, frustrating execution

    (Current Employee)

    ProsChange the world, work with some amazing people and innovators and learn about fascinating things. Good benefits package, workplace food, often get extra days off!
    HR really tries. Looks good on resume (for those who don't know the organization).

    ConsLeadership with limited/no experience in running successful companies/non profits, yet some of highest salaries in non profit field and also a bonus package. Both leaders have two assistants. Board of Directors (not Trustees) full of friends of leadership so does not take a stand. Senior management likes to empire build. Relationships with related companies / personal business interests for leadership leads to self interested decisions. Inefficient and rigid processes and practices lead to poor donor stewardship and poor funds stewardship as well as frustrating good employees.

    Advice to Senior ManagementClean up the entanglement issues before they cross the line. Think about what wouldn't look good if the LA Times did an investigation and get it sorted. Hire people who actually know how to lead a non profit. Focus on sponsors and donors and proving great value or they won't return and will say bad things to other potential donors and sponsors.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Please pay attention - flock won't follow

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    Prosideas that could change the world
    People that care to make change in the organization

    ConsThe leader, the leader, the leader and then other 2 musketeers (president and cfo). Totally don't get it. Focused on their own wealth increase. Tyrants, egos, narcissistic megalomania

    Advice to Senior ManagementTreat people with respect. Get out of the way. Stop unethical practices. Stop feeding your own other companies with XPF donor funds.

    The board needs to get on board and make this stop.

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

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    2 people found this helpful  

    Non Profit Sweat Shop

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsName recognition. Looks good to have it on your resume. That's it, especially if you can survive for 6 months

    ConsArrogant and cocky culture. Need to drink the kool aid and be a gopher for management or you will find your self the door with out any notice. They burn thru employees

    Advice to Senior ManagementImprove employment culture, reward low to mid level employees.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    5 people found this helpful  

    Making the Possible, Impossible

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
    Playa Vista, CA

    Pros- In its rawest concept, the X PRIZE Foundation is a great idea: think up some seemingly impossible task, and dangle a large cash prize to lure the best and the brightest to complete it.

    - There are numerous employees who are brilliant, kind people.

    Cons- In actuality, the creativity is lacking. The prize ideas that get funded are completely within the realm of possibility currently, and are frequently things that have already been done.

    - The brilliant, kind people get fired at Christmas time after devoting years of service.

    - The approval process is dismal, and entirely too time consuming. Frequently, the people you need to approve things are not in the office (Senior management takes numerous vacations and unnecessary travel).

    - Senior management and consultants are overpaid, and normally only in the office a maximum of 4 days a week.

    - After securing a multi-million dollar donation for operations, two key workers were fired for no apparent reason.

    Advice to Senior Management- Streamline the approval process.

    - Eliminate the ADP time tracking system - it's a colossal waste of time.

    - Don't fire people around the holidays; it's bad for morale.

    - When you do fire people, at least pretend to be remorseful.

    - Listen to your employees; we can make this place run smoother. Also, as others have said, let people do their jobs.

    - CEO needs to think bigger.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at XPRIZE reviews and ratings — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for XPRIZE CEO Peter H. Diamandis. All 17 reviews posted anonymously by XPRIZE employees.