Creative Associates International Reviews | Glassdoor

Creative Associates International Reviews

Updated Jun 13, 2019

To filter reviews, or .

Found 65 reviews

3.2
StarStarStarStarStar
Rating TrendsRating Trends
60%
Recommend to a Friend
53%
Approve of CEO
Leland Kruvant
8 Ratings
Pros
  • "Junior staff get a lot of responsibility, technical work, and travel(in 6 reviews)

  • "Nice people and really mission-driven(in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • "The senior management is a joke, figureheads that give you lip service(in 5 reviews)

  • "As the title states, the company is a family owned business(in 3 reviews)

More Pros and Cons
  1. Helpful (5)

    "Mission driven company with lots of opportunity for professional growth"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Creative Associates International full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    You will be given a lot of responsibility regardless of your level at this company. If you want to develop new skills, especially in program management, this is a great place to do it. Creative works in some of the most challenging environments around the world which means the projects Creative implements have the potential to impact a great deal of positive change - being a part of that is very fulfilling.

    Cons

    Some systems (HR, project management, etc) are still being developed as the company grows. Ability to deal with ambiguity and change are definitely assets for employees.

    Advice to Management

    Keep investing in the professional development of junior HQ staff and increase the focus on local staff in the field.

    Creative Associates International2017-09-27
  2. "Proceed with Caution!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Creative Associates International full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Great place to test your ability of working in a fast-paced environment. There are some nice people who are helpful. Some of the leaders care about their employees and professional development.

    Cons

    Lack of processes and policies results in a dysfunctional workplace. Even with the little processes/policies in place, they are not uniformly enforced. Many senior ‘leaders’ get away with treating their staff poorly You will often get verbally abused in meetings and there’s no one to go to for help. The Sr. leadership will make excuses for these individuals and are often guilty of the same behavior. There is little room...

    Show More

    Advice to Management

    Bring in new leaders at the highest level that bring industry and field experience and aren't related to the family. Or go to the field to gain actual experience. Bring in an external consultant to conduct an employee engagement survey and create an action plan to address the low morale and high turnover. Fix the toxic culture.

    Creative Associates International2019-06-13
  3. Helpful (5)

    "A lot to work on"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Director in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Creative Associates International full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Nice location on Red Line at DC/MD border Some good and pleasant people

    Cons

    More of a clique/favorites-driven organization than others in same industry. Backstabbing is common, mostly led by a few people in senior positions. As others state, it's secretive, and HR--such as it is--is inadequate at best. Seems that certain people stay in their positions b/c they're close to The Family. Very rigid re remote work--and they don't close for blizzards. People who were happy had supervisors that...

    Show More

    Advice to Management

    Bring in a neutral 3rd party to conduct a thorough employee survey. Make senior management roles contingent on spending time in the field.

    Creative Associates International2019-03-27
  4. "Great place to work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
      Former Employee - Management Associate in Washington, DC
      Recommends
      Positive Outlook
      Approves of CEO

      I worked at Creative Associates International full-time for more than 8 years

      Pros

      I really enjoyed my time working with Creative.

      Cons

      They are quickly growing beyond their current office space.

      Creative Associates International2019-02-21
    • Helpful (1)

      "Good coworkers"

      StarStarStarStarStar
        Former Employee - Research Associate 

        I worked at Creative Associates International full-time

        Pros

        Great people at the lower levels. They were driven, smart and kind.

        Cons

        The management team, in general, was a mess. There were some managers, who did not seem to produce anything. They just sent out "internal" studies which seemingly lead to nothing.

        Creative Associates International2019-02-25
      • Helpful (7)

        "Stay Away- bad management, bad culture"

        StarStarStarStarStar
        • Work/Life Balance
        • Culture & Values
        • Career Opportunities
        • Compensation and Benefits
        • Senior Management
        Former Employee - Program Associate in Washington, DC
        Doesn't Recommend
        Disapproves of CEO

        I worked at Creative Associates International full-time for more than a year

        Pros

        At the junior and mid level nice people to work with who are competent

        Cons

        One of the worst companies I have worked for. Was there for 2 years and found it bureaucratic and secretive. People aren't nice to one another, it s a constant blame game. No one takes accountability or offers solutions to problems, they just pass the buck. There is no middle management and everyone just complains how busy they are. The senior management is a joke, figureheads that give you lip service. The culture...

        Show More

        Advice to Management

        Have some backbone. Make some tough decisions and be accountable.

        Creative Associates International2019-01-29
      • Helpful (4)

        "All about the client, doesn't care about its employees"

        StarStarStarStarStar
        • Work/Life Balance
        • Culture & Values
        • Career Opportunities
        • Compensation and Benefits
        • Senior Management
        Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 
        Doesn't Recommend
        Negative Outlook
        No opinion of CEO

        I have been working at Creative Associates International full-time for more than 3 years

        Pros

        Field visits and working on business development provides a good experience for professional growth

        Cons

        Creative is after one single mission: Getting more money and satisfying the client. It is not surprising for a for-profit. But this comes at the cost of sacrificing competent employees, especially managers, who get blamed if things do not go according to plan. Directors have a tendency not to take ownership when the project implementation goes bad and will lash out directly at their managers, even if the latter don't...

        Show More

        Advice to Management

        The CEO and COO should question the high turnout rate Creative has and hold directors accountable for program problems. They need to listen to feedback and make sure that HR does its job too.

        Creative Associates International2018-11-28
      • Helpful (7)

        "Does Not Care About Their Employees"

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

        I worked at Creative Associates International full-time

        Pros

        Good location on the red line.

        Cons

        I received stellar employee evaluations every year I worked there. However, out of the blue and with no notice, they dismissed me. I was not project-based staff so it's not like funding ran out. I was never given a full justification as to why they dismissed me. I never knew I was on the chopping block and they did not give me time to state my case or take corrective action.

        Advice to Management

        If you're going to dismiss an employee, at least give them a head's up that something is not working right. Give them a corrective action plan. Have things in writing and make sure the employee agrees.

        Creative Associates International2018-11-08
      • Helpful (6)

        "Relieved I left"

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

        I worked at Creative Associates International full-time for more than a year

        Pros

        Plenty of opportunities to travel, opportunities to try many different hats

        Cons

        Bureaucratic and backward. Long grueling hours are often expected. For for a woman owned company they sure do not have a lot of women in leadership positions.

        Creative Associates International2018-09-06
      • Helpful (4)

        "Positive HQ Experience and Mixed Field Experiences"

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

        I worked at Creative Associates International full-time for more than 3 years

        Pros

        I was an employee of Creative Associates, both in the field and at HQ. My experiences at HQ were overwhelmingly positive. My supervisors were all very hands-on and management was organized and mission-driven.

        Cons

        The problem at Creative Associates is that they view their Chiefs of Party in the field as gods. So, when you have an excellent Chief of Party, who advocates and treats you well (which I did for many years), you're golden but when you don't have a good Chief of Party, you're pretty screwed. In my particular case, on a large, complex OTI-program in Afghanistan, instead of hiring experienced managers, Creative hired three...

        Show More

        Advice to Management

        Hire director-level staff that will actually act as a check on your program management.

        Creative Associates International2018-08-13
      Found 65 reviews