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Code and Theory Reviews

Updated February 22, 2018
84 reviews

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3.4
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Dan Gardner and Brandon Ralph
42 Ratings

84 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • the people are smart and they challenge you, positive environment, learned a lot (in 7 reviews)

  • Great office location, dog-friendly, snacks (in 7 reviews)

Cons
  • can be long hours at times but usually for a good reason (in 15 reviews)

  • Agree with several of the other reviews here: total bro club in upper management (in 7 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "One of the bests among the few bests"

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

    I have been working at Code and Theory full-time

    Pros

    Incredible projects. Great office. Teams are super talented.
    Code and Theory is really trying hard to get it right. It's growing fast and winning a ton of business. Design is at the core, data team is excellent, strategy is anything but bulshit, things gets done.
    You have to be ready though. Not a place for everyone. Be on your toes.
    New offices in OneWTC are fabulous. Dog friendly too.

    Cons

    Fast growth is never easy. But everyone is trying to get it right.

    Advice to Management

    Keep communicating


  2. "Growing Pains"

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

    I worked at Code and Theory full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - Some incredibly smart people
    - Interesting work across a range of industries
    - Gets things done fast

    Cons

    - Toxic culture with little transparency
    - Mentorship is a toss up and professional development is not a concern
    - Understaffed and overworked employees who burn out quickly
    - On-boarding is nonexistent. Jump into the deep end from the get go.

    Don't come here if you are looking to grow professionally or get support.

    Advice to Management

    The people are good and so is the work, but the culture needs to fixed.

  3. "Read this."

    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 Code and Theory full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Do you want a cushy 9-6 working with ‘awesome’ companies? Move to Omaha.

    Do you want to create cutting edge design for massive brands with some of the best people in the industry? Work here.

    Cons

    You have to be strong enough to make friends, create awesome work, and build a future here.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to focus on the new talent, making sure we’re bringing in people that can handle an agency-best work life.


  4. "Amazing place to work for"

    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 Code and Theory full-time

    Pros

    You get to work with smart people
    We have the best MGMT team “G.O.A.T”
    MGMT staff will help you with your career growth if you want to move to other departments

    Cons

    I haven’t found any yet but if I do I will keep you guys informed. If I had any issues the staff at Code and Theory is pretty good at addressing them.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work!!


  5. Helpful (15)

    "This place is falling apart"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - User Experience Designer in New York, NY
    Current Employee - User Experience Designer in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Code and Theory full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - They used to allow dogs but they are moving to the freedom tower so that's out

    Code used to be amazing... The people were all friends and the culture was amazing. The work was innovative and the clients were top-notch. People were happy, dogs cruising around, open communication, over-all a great place to be

    There are still ridiculously smart, good people here. Some of the managers are amazing and genuinely care about the people and the work.

    Maybe now that we're moving into a more business-like environment, we'll see more professionalism from leadership.

    Cons

    With the exception of some good managers and the smart people as stated above, most of the positives are not the case anymore...

    -severe lack of transparency between management and employees
    -If you aren't part of the boys club, your career will not grow there... but if they like you... good news, you can get away with whatever you want, get rave reviews for doing nothing and rarely show up to work.
    -HR is not your friend and reports every conversation to the partners... if you talk to them, chances are you will have a partner immediately call you in and berate you.
    -Severe lack of female leadership with no change in sight... instead, they got rid of the only female partner they had. Once she left, it was even more clear nothing was going to change here.
    - Very toxic environment. The people used to matter, now everyone walks around on eggshells afraid of being fired or yelled at.
    -Partners constantly bad-mouth employees in meetings that have other people in them, it gets shared with more people... creating an environment that fosters gossip, creates more gossip and bad will.
    - One of the co-founders left and it was never addressed or brought up, felt like something is happening and scares people even more about what's going on with things
    - Most of the female employees feel like they aren't valued as much (again with the boys club). Discussions between creatives prove the pay is not the same.

    Advice to Management

    Figure out how to do your job. Stop treating your employees like they don't matter. Stop gossiping like children. Stop promoting your friends and start promoting hard working people that deserve it or finding new people to lead. Start showing that you care about diversity, especially in leadership. Stop screaming at people for mistakes you make. Start being a little more transparent.


  6. Helpful (3)

    "Not for introverts"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Code and Theory full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    -Talented People
    -Very Hard Workers
    -"Cool" people (If you're looking for that)
    -Big name clients

    Cons

    -Terrible environment for introverts (unless in Tech or QA)
    -Terrible environment for people who aren't type A
    -Upper mgmt is IN CONTROL and you better get used to it. While they may front as being open minded and receptive to change, they are are not. They want to control everything.
    -Literally no middle managers. You're either a director or you're part of everyone else. And "Everyone else" isn't made to feel important.

    Advice to Management

    Let go of all the control and bolster the middle management. Trust people. Focus more on fostering a friendly, collaborative environment and less on encouraging fashionable work horses with no work-life balance.


  7. Helpful (4)

    "Place I call Home"

    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 Code and Theory full-time

    Pros

    -There is a lot of autonomy here, which might not be for everybody
    -Code really trusts and believes in their employees
    -They are continuing to grow - always staying ahead of the game
    -A lot of growth opportunity here if you take advantage of it
    -LOVE THE PEOPLE

    Cons

    It gets cold with the AC on, but we are moving so that won't be an issue soon.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work!

  8. Helpful (5)

    "Chaotic & shady"

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

    I have been working at Code and Theory full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    There used to be pros. Like dogs in the office and the Soho location. But the move to Freedom Tower has changed all that. They also used to have better clients.

    Cons

    From your first day, there are no processes in place. No onboarding at all. It’s very gossipy and people quit or are let go left and right. It’s obvious you need to be nice to certain people or you will be on the outs. The ones who have been here the longest are the worst.

    If you have a personality disorder, this might be your place.

    Leadership is a joke. The partner who was just made president sounds like an overgrown kid throwing tantrums when things don’t go his way. He also sidesteps any responsibility to really improve things or face issues head on. This lack of real leadership trickles down to those in middle management and we are all suffering for it.

    Sexism is alive and well here, and is brushed under the rug as a “boys will be boys” mentality. When I was having an issue with a male coworker, a female who has been here for years said something like “well, just do that helpless female flirty thing. Guys love that”. WTF.

    There used to be a couple cool partners/leaders who added some style and fun to the mix, but they left. Of course the one female partner was let go. Ever since the Stagwell buyout, everything feels much more corporate and secretive.

    The most dysfunctional people are the ones have been here the longest, so that should tell you something.

    People are made managers when they have no idea what it means to be a leader, while others are here for years and will never be promoted because of their crappy bosses. Something I’ve also seen happen at least 3 times in the last year: if someone is going to be let go, half of the agency knows. How does that even happen at a real company???

    My job search is on and I’m counting the days until I make my escape. It’s claustrophobic and the move to Freedom Tower just reinforces the corporate vibe that is starting to trickle in. No thanks.

    Keep in mind any recent positive reviews are likely planted by HR. The review where the only con is “it gets cold with the AC on” is hilarious. The messiness and snaky behavior that rules Code and Theory starts and ends with the toxic people in HR.


  9. Helpful (8)

    "Get Out!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Data Analyst in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Data Analyst in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Code and Theory full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Free coffee if the machine isn't broken and/or the facility keepers are in. Bagels and warm parfaits on Mondays

    Cons

    1. They hire people with dodgy backgrounds, the CFO was involved with fraudulent accounting practices during his time at RockStar Games (which was then Take Two Interactive).
    2. Vendors would switch off their services and products often, since they would never pay bills on time. Much of the time we would rely on certain clients for access to services and products, and we would piggy back off them for other clients.
    3. No one cares about your growth or well-being, in fact the company has been downsizing since the majority share was acquired by Stagwell and that it is moving to a much smaller space in The Freedom Tower.
    4. It isn't just low-level employees that are being let go, but also in the past year two partners and one of the two founders have departed.
    5. Things are so bad at Code and Theory now, that I've been told everyone's space heaters were confiscated due to a high electricity bill that the company incurred while it is trying to save money to pay off the rest of their bills. Even I think this sounds too crazy to be true, but a las...
    6. No such thing as "work from home" anymore.
    7. There are no processes for getting anything done, whether its for on-boarding a new hire or communicating within a team - communicating across departments is non-existent.
    8. A lot of early mornings and late nights; and no, they will not reimburse your expenses.
    9. No resources, in terms of time, people, or money for anything. There are no real HR policies, which means everything goes unless someone doesn't like you.
    10. I wouldn't recommend for anyone (especially women) to apply here, unless you like hearing chauvinistic comments and working in burning buildings.

    Advice to Management

    There is no management.


  10. Helpful (6)

    "A toxic place"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Code and Theory full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Lots of talented individuals to learn from
    Amazing current location (Soho)
    Diverse client list

    Cons

    -If you want to get promoted quickly, there's a lot of butt kissing to do. This is not a place where your work will speak for itself.
    -Annual review process is highly dependent on peer reviews. That means you're in for a terrible review if just one person says something bad about you, even if you do good work.


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