Active Communications International Reviews | Glassdoor

Active Communications International Reviews

Updated October 3, 2017
61 reviews

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2.9
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David Whitmore
41 Ratings

61 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • I am going to make this very simple: David Whitmore is the CEO, he's from London (in 4 reviews)

  • in fact the base salary is barely over ( (in 3 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Account Executive"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Active Communications International full-time

    Pros

    I am person that loves a challenge and this job sure provided me with that. I worked with some amazing people who helped me succeed at reaching my goals. This job proved to me that hard work and determination pays off. I was sad to leave the company but decided to continue my education which would not allow me to cont witb aci. I will say that if you work hard and are determined this is a perfect position.

    Cons

    Paid once a month for salary and twice on commissions. You have to schedule vacation 30dys in advanced.

    Advice to Management

    Raise pay and pay salaray 2x a month.


  2. "Pleasantly Surprised"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Active Communications International full-time

    Pros

    Good staff and fun to work with. I just started, but I've made sales already.

    Cons

    Commission is good, but a higher base would be nice.

  3. "Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Active Communications International full-time

    Pros

    -No weekends
    -Holiday pay (off Christmas day to New Year's Day)
    -Great co-workers who help the day go by fun
    -Fun office parties
    -Able to get help when requested
    -Free parking downtown that is a big plus for me!

    Cons

    -Pay is a little on the low side
    -Doing 150+ calls a day can be boring
    -Black out days for vacations

    Advice to Management

    Raise base salary


  4. "Dont do it"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Sales Associate in Milwaukee, WI
    Current Employee - Sales Associate in Milwaukee, WI

    I have been working at Active Communications International full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    None there is nothing there but to rip off the industry in which you are selling to.

    Cons

    You're better off working for a bug

    Advice to Management

    Get out


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Account executive"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    I have nothing positive to say about this company and their ethics

    Cons

    I am a seasoned sales person and was a small business owner, and this was the worst experience of my life. Stay as far away from this company as possible. I was paid $10 per hour, and never received any commission. I was expected to sell sponsorship packages to top fortune 500 companies. The packages were from $25,000 to $5,000. But conferences attendees were averaging 25 people. This is a horrible ROI for any company. The marketing group was very helpful, but the expectation of David Whitmore were unobtainable. His language and ethics were extremely unprofessional. And just to putting salt in the wound, the HR person called our office and said to pack up our things, they were shutting it down that day. And then they cancelled my health insurance without an opportunity for me to purchase Cobra. The only saving grace was my direct supervisor was wonderful. I would have been better off flipping hamburgers at McDonalds.


  6. Helpful (7)

    "Bernie Madoff of the Conference Industry!!!! ( Your Better of Working at McDonalds)"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sponsorship Sales in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Sponsorship Sales in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Active Communications International full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Unlimited coffee from the Keurig machine.

    Cons

    Picture the worst job in America and times that by ten and it still won't equal how bad of a company ACI is. The company is run by David Whitmore from London who is known as the Bernie Madoff of the conference industry. Over the last (20) years he has made a fortune producing some of the worst conferences you could possibly imagine.
    For starters, the company invests less than ($1,000) per conference and they are usually held at a dump of a hotel. Since the company does NOT pay for any of the conference speakers the production team has to reach out to approximately (500-750) individuals just to secure (12-15) speakers. The average ACI conference is lucky to have (12-20) attendees per event. That being said, the speakers and sponsors leave pissed off and vow to never do business with ACI again.
    There are several major corporations who will never do business with ACI again and informed that the company had taken their sponsorship dollars for events that were never even produced. That's right, ACI does NOT issue any refunds as they have a long line of unhappy customers demanding refunds.
    If these details don't scare you enough, did I mention that ACI will hire anybody as long as they know how to breathe. That's right, show up for the interview and your hired! Worst of all nobody who works at ACI can even remotely pretend that they make any kind of money. You are better off working at McDonald's literally! in fact the base salary is barely over ($100) more a month than working at McDonalds.
    Did I mention that ACI does not conduct any background checks and regularly hires convicted felons to work in the office putting all of the employees at risk.

    If this was the last job left on the planet I still would recommend that you look elsewhere!!!

    Advice to Management

    Give it up, your cimpany is a joke and won't even be open in 2018. It's only a matter of time until your exposed as being a fraud.


  7. Helpful (5)

    "Don't waste your time."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Milwaukee, WI
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Milwaukee, WI
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Active Communications International full-time

    Pros

    I can't think of many. You get weekends off and paid holiday. There is a bar next door.

    Cons

    They take anyone off the street... Including management. The CEO is a bit repulsive and doesn't value a single employee.. Even the top sales. They will tell you it is warm calling, but definitely all cold calls. Good luck landing a deal considering 80% of sales are snagged up by management.

    Advice to Management

    Hire people who have managerial experience. ANY little bit would help.

  8. Helpful (3)

    "Get used to lies and lying"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Milwaukee, WI
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Milwaukee, WI
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Active Communications International full-time

    Pros

    Some of the people there were quite nice

    Cons

    There is no direction or guidance to this company. They put people in positions of authority and power, simply on the basis of lucky sales. Sell more than the guy sitting next to you? Bingo, you're a manager. We had seen people promoted to management and leadership roles after being there for a matter of weeks. People who could not tie their shoes if they didn't have a script to follow. Don't let them fool you if you go in for an interview, this is phone sales. That's all. You're expected to make a high-volume of calls in a day (close to 200) and you WILL get tagged if your number drops. The conferences they offer are overpriced, overhyped, and often radically changed at the last min. We would often get VERY angry sponsors and attendees call us after our events and demand refunds. We'd usually give them a discount on an upcoming event.

    Did I mention overpriced? I'd often talk to people for sponsorships that would laugh at me when I mentioned our pricing. These were people used to spending about $1200 for an event with well over 10k attendees, and here I was asking for upwards of $10,000 for an event with "200", but usually more like 35-40.

    Being a sales rep was bad enough, but some of the management took to drinking in the office to cope with the stress and pressure they got from above. Everyone was in a panic when the Big Boss came to visit, because 9 times out of 10 in meant someone was going to be let go.

    Advice to Management

    There is nothing good about this company. The environment is horrible. You're breaking down good people. Just shut down already.


  9. Helpful (3)

    "Work Here If You're Absolutely Desparate Or Stupid"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Active Communications International full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    -Location - The office is inside the Michigan Plaza which has many restaurants and stores inside. They also have holiday events/treats for all the companies

    -Coworkers – I worked with some very kind people. They were all very friendly and helpful to one another and we were all on the same page – we hated our jobs

    -There’s a holiday break - a full week off PTO following Christmas BUT it counts towards the 10 PTO days you have for the year (so you really only have 5 PTO days by choice for 1st year)

    -If called in for an interview – you’ll get the job – they take whatever they can get

    Cons

    I worked here for about 14 months and I could top a Stephen King horror story about this place from all the stuff I’ve witnessed here. This toxic and absolute joke of a company has zero care for its employees and it’s ran by David Whitmore – a man that consistently lies and cheats his employees. He uses insults, threats, and fear to motivate(?) his employees – I’ve seen him make people cry and I was in a small meeting where he told my supervisor to go kill herself because she wasn’t performing to his expectations. He works/lives in London and visits the Chicago and Milwaukee offices for 3 days every month. You’d think to yourself that it isn’t that bad if he isn’t around much – but trust me, it is.

    If that isn’t enough, I’ll describe a few other reasons why this company has the highest turnover rate out there. It doesn’t matter what department you’ll be in (sponsorship, marketing, sales/account executive, production, etc) – you will hate your job. Production is extremely micromanaged by yet another rude British man. Marketing, sales, and sponsorship are expected to sell laughable “upscale, strategic business conferences” to decision makers (directors, C-class, etc) via 100+ phone calls/day. There are 1 or 2 decent conferences we do every year – microgrids and women’s health – and by decent I mean there’ll be around 30-40 people there. Every other event averages 10 people or so. Some events only have 4 or 5 people but the event has to go on because sponsorship borderline scammed large companies to pay a minimum of $6,500 to sponsor the event. Sorry – no refunds. We never have rebookings because as soon as a poor sucker attends our event, they don’t want to do business with us again. To sum this up, sales are extremely difficult because they are extremely expensive and their quality doesn’t nearly reflect the price.

    Lastly, if a dreadful CEO and terrible sales concept don’t phase you, perhaps a small paycheck will! You won’t make much at all in any department mentioned above. Why? Unless things have miraculously changed - for marketing, sales, and sponsorship, your base salary is a monthly salary that comes out to be minimum wage. For marketing/sales, you get 15% commission for each sale but it’s actually less than that because there’s some service charge that’s deducted from your commission. Don’t worry about the monthly quotas/bonuses they tell you about – you won’t hit them (ok maybe once or twice if you’re very lucky) and even if you do, it’s possible they won’t pay you out for it. I hit my sales goal 3 times and almost a 4th and I still didn’t make that much money – it wasn’t worth it.

    I mostly stayed there for so long because the manager position looked good on a resume and it’s a pain in the butt to job seek and I am admittedly lazy. Luckily, I had money saved up so I could handle the minimum wage checks if I wasn’t making sales.

    If you’re still reading this, thank you. I trust that this will persuade you not to work here or even come in for an interview. Do not believe any 4 or 5-star review here – they’re fake. Save your time and dignity. If you need a job, work part-time anywhere else and use that extra time to find a legitimate full-time job.

    MORE CONS:
    -Anything and everything you can possibly think of that isn’t listed in the Pros section
    -Minimum wage pay + poor commission structure
    -Awful CEO
    -Difficult and dumb sales job – You get poor, old leads and new people are fired after 3 months or so if they don’t make any sales
    -Their so-called “benefits” are below standard. Insurance isn’t cheap, 5 PTO days by choice (the other 5 you get are used up for the holiday break). No sick days – you can take the day off but you won’t get paid. 30 days in advance to request PTO.

    Advice to Management

    Where to begin? I honestly think you should close it down – nobody is happy nor successful there. If you don't listen to the aforementioned, then you should pay your employees real salaries, respect them, and stop lying to people in the interviews. Everyone including myself was misled as far as what the job responsibilities and expectations were. Also, you should drastically change the sales structure and process.

    Best of luck. You’ll need it.


  10. Helpful (4)

    "ABSOLUTE SCAM!! DON'T FALL FOR IT! EXTREMELY HIGH TURNOVER!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Active Communications International full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    You can sleep on the job or use the time to look for something else. People are nice. All the managers are in London, so no one is there to micromanage.

    Cons

    They are just liars. Plain and simple. They charge companies $8-$25k to exhibit at a conference with no venue or agenda that will have 75-100 "Decision Makers". But, the conferences are lucky to get 2 or 3...somtimes none! No one is ever refunded so they have to eat it. I find it disgusting that they would sell a $2,000 !!! ticket to a surgeon who specializes in Pediatric Lung Transplants to go to a conference that essentially doesn't exist.

    Advice to Management

    No one believes the positive reviews, so stop it and just stop everything. David Whitmore the so-called "CEO" admitted he had amassed $20MM doing this awful scam. Just throw in the towel. It's not a real company anyway.


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