CEB Reviews | Glassdoor

CEB Reviews

Updated July 19, 2017
1,215 reviews

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3.5
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CEB Chairman and CEO Thomas L. Monahan III
Thomas L. Monahan III
640 Ratings

1,215 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Great work life balance and opportunities for development (in 145 reviews)

  • Being able to connect with C-Level Executives (in 45 reviews)

Cons
  • Compensation may be slightly low compared to industry standards but work-life balance is much higher compared to industry standards (in 67 reviews)

  • Sometimes sclerotic senior management processes (in 44 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (2)

    "Great model, great product, misguided direction"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director in Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Director in Arlington, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Fast promotion opportunities. If you're willing to sell your soul to be "senior" somewhere, this is the place for you! Also, the research product, although in less demand than before (executives want to network, not read research), is really excellent.

    Cons

    Don't stay there too long, or else you'll become unattractive to outside employers, as no one knows what the heck people at CEB actually do. Management is comprised of great researchers, but terrible operators (i.e. - I'm not actually sure management is aware we're a publicly-traded firm, and hence in the business of making money).

    Advice to Management

    Hire someone who's run a company before.


  2. Helpful (4)

    "Know what you are getting into, otherwise avoid avoid avoid."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Director in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Director in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    CEB does pay well, but only depending on the program that you are with. Before you join CEB make sure that you know the year to year growth of the program that you are joining, in just about any role that will effect bonus. If you are joining a sales function (formally known as Marketing) I recommend joining new programs. In many cases the old programs such as CLC, MLC, SEC have cold called everyone under the sun and burned too many bridges. The newer programs have better chances of being a new to the ears of prospective clients.

    Cons

    Management Management Management. I always describe CEB as a place that is great to work at IF you know what you are getting into. Like many consulting firms, you are a commodity, CEB will squeeze you until you can't give anymore, at that point they will find new blood. Clearly this doesn't apply to ALL positions, but it does to most. If you don't believe me just talk to people on the streets of DC, there are so many FORMER CEB'rs. I have yet to find one that says, "oh yeah it was great, but I just wanted to do something else." It is almost always a story of someone getting rolled over by the CEB machine. This applies to ALL levels too. One of the main problems at CEB is that they tend to promote only from within. This means that year after year, the culture continues through management that doesn't know any better. There is also a term at CEB called "run to criticism" which should be a positive mantra for self improvement, however it has devolved into the only feedback you get from managers IS criticism. This was especially true in the SMAC family of programs.

    Advice to Management

    Bring in new blood for all levels of managers. Happy employers are loyal, and will work hard regardless of the stock price. If you treated your employees more like a family and less like troops you would probably have lower turnover rate (one of the highest in the area).

  3. Helpful (2)

    "Good place to start but leave as soon as you can so as not to pigeon hole yourself."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director in Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Director in Arlington, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Good place to start your career.

    Cons

    Management skills are lacking in 85% of senior management; no consensus, no direction; no communication between business units; employee morale is always low; instead of giving recognition and feedback you get accusations and negative reinforcement; constantly told that we just need to work harder (longer hours) to get to outcomes; colleagues gossip about each other constantly - it makes for a very HOSTILE working environment.

    Advice to Management

    Re- think who you have allowed to run your practice areas, business units and individual franchises- most are sorely lacking and are doing damage to your staff- the frontline folks with the knowledge and relationships that are sometimes irreplaceable.


  4. Helpful (5)

    "Thinking about CEB read this"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Management in Arlington, VA
    Former Employee - Senior Management in Arlington, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    There are a TON of great and hard working people there. The company has great potential, but they need to clean house within HR, sales leadership, and at the executive level in order to overcome most of the issues they have.

    Cons

    The company has extremely poor executive and managing director level leadership. There is a severe lack of experience, vision, strategy, and execution within the top two management layers. Most of the people in CEB's exec leadership and managing director roles have been with CEB for a very long time and have limited or no experience in other companies, industries, or in the job they current hold within CEB. Although, they talk a great deal about hiring people for what they bring to CEB, the corporate culture doesn’t not embrace any experiences outside of the CEB way of life. Integrity, accountability, and collaboration are NOT part of the culture or the vision, nor are these values encouraged in any way. Most levels of leadership enable and reward ghastly conduct, questionable and unfair practices, and poor skill set.

    Advice to Management

    Leave and get (and embrace) some experience at other companies and industries. Get some real training and mentors (non-CEB) for the roles you current have. The firm hired and lost so much great talent because of its narrow thinking, poor management, and lack of acceptance of anything non CEB.


  5. Helpful (5)

    "The Cobbler's Children Have No Shoes"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Director, Member Services in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Director, Member Services in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Casual dress code. Interesting product/research.

    Cons

    Extremely poor, immature, inexperienced management that have made their way into positions WAY over thier heads, simply due to tenure at the organization, and not as a result of ability or intellect or experience. It's created a fraternity/sorority atmosphere where "outsiders" are not accepted.

    The senior management has absolutely no connection with the employees or clients and demonstrate no awareness of the fundamentals of sales/account management, among other things. There are so many things wrong with this organization, it could fill a book. But the stock price paints a pretty good picture.

    The whole situation is quite ironic (and frankly, sad), given that the company researches and sells "best practices" but doesn't take their own advice. It would be like walking into Apple headquarters and instead of finding employees equipped with the "latest and greatest" Macs, they were all working on outdated PCs.

    Advice to Management

    Check your (overinflated) egos at the door. Either step down or allow outsiders to come in a save this company before you run it into the ground.


  6. Helpful (5)

    "Sinking Ship"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate Director in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Associate Director in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    The people at the corporate executive board are the only reason for coming to work everyday. CEB hires great young people who are smart, enthusiastic and willing to do whatever it takes to get ahead. The Corporate Executive Board also offers a very good Paid Time Off (PTO) policy. The CEB also offers many fun events, including company sponsored happy hours (which unfortunately more often showcases how out of control some of the staff is) and incentive trips to places like Yellowstone, St. Martin, Dublin, Cancun, and Barcelona (although given the current climate at the CEB these days may be long gone).

    Cons

    The Corporate Executive Board is one of the most disorganized, dishonest and greedy corporations in the world. They have made so many shady moves to truly screw over their employees. Most employees are incredibly disheartened and feel no loyalty to the company at all. The CEO has made some very poor financial decisions, and as a result, the caring young people who thought they were joining a great company have been most affected. The recruiting practices at CEB are far from honest, often promising many things that do not exist. CEB has recently been through 2 rounds of layoffs and has handled this with utter disrespect for their employees.

    Advice to Management

    You need to get someone in a management role that knows what they are doing and actually cares for the employees.


  7. Helpful (4)

    "Run the other way"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate Director in Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Associate Director in Arlington, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Good pay, huge pool of intelligent, interesting people. Great opportunities to learn business management theories and how to apply them in the real world.

    Cons

    This company has perfected how to transform intelligent, interesting people into autobots in a surreal, Koolaid drinking atmosphere. Little consistency from above, leadership is ego-driven and recognition / promotion depends somewhat on buddyism and frat allegiances.

    All those who enter may leave hopes of a decent work-life balance at the door. 11 hour days are the norm.

    Advice to Management

    Grow up. Advertise. Apply your own best practices and ideas.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Pay close attention to the negative reviews, they are about 98% accurate"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Good name in the industry and an opportunity to get in front of big name companies. Great entry level opportunity for folks right out of college but be ready to have no life outside of work.

    Cons

    Immature internal environment very similar to High School. Employees and senior management spend more time worrying about popularity and clicks than customer service. Corporate Executive Board does a good job delivering reviews and studies to companies, however, none of that learning is applied internally. Employees are micromanaged and never empowered by an inexperienced senior management team. Stay away from this company if possible. When I read the negative reviews on Glassdoor, I ignored them, big mistake.

    Advice to Management

    Read your own HR studies and apply the learning internally. Place more value in your employees.


  9. Helpful (5)

    "Use this company as a professional stepping-stone then quickly get out"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Strategic Research Consultant in Rosslyn, VA
    Current Employee - Strategic Research Consultant in Rosslyn, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    If you want some great resume bullets, need to change careers, or are otherwise unemployed, CEB is a good bet. It's was like a second MBA in many ways. Pay is good. Your co-workers rock. Maintain as much distance from folks above MD as possible.

    Cons

    Having worked in numerous places including military, finance, consulting, and non-profit, I can confidently say that CEB is the worst run organization I have ever seen. I've worked with C-level execs, diplomats, general officers, and senior elected officials and I have never witnessed a less professional cadre of management. Senior mgt inherited an amazing product which they have thoroughly trashed. Exec committee meetings are embarrassing, literally a joke. The board is clueless, absolutely clueless, about the product. They simply do not know what the company does. No idea where the shareholders are....

    Advice to Management

    ask for help, then actually implement the advise; or do something else


  10. Helpful (4)

    "Not what it's depicted to be"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Great coworkers. Some very talented, intelligent young professionals. As a starting point out of college it was not a bad place to start my career...initially

    Cons

    Communication coming from management is conflicting, deceptive, and overall very disorganized. Management is promoted based mostly on friendships and not because of any discernible management competencies. One's experience there is largely dictated by your direct manager. This usually varies from "eh, ok" to "absolutely terrible". The managers are more caretakers and gatekeepers of information than they are people who know how to motivate and encourage performance. Most just use what's called a management template that consist of pointless meetings and games when it comes to influencing performance.

    Advice to Management

    Hire managers that can actually manage, rather than just promoting someone because they were adequate as an associate and display a bubbly personality and are your friend. Be honest with your workers, we're all adults and can take the truth.


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