Dolby Senior Manager Reviews | Glassdoor

Dolby Senior Manager Reviews

13 reviews

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Senior Manager

1.8
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Dolby President and CEO Kevin J. Yeaman
Kevin J. Yeaman
9 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • years) and new employees, a modern, fresh, work environment in San Francisco, 9/80 work schedule, ability to contribute to important initiatives (in 39 reviews)

  • The company has a true work/life balance, without sacrificing either (in 33 reviews)

Cons
  • Slow decision making with very little accountability (in 19 reviews)

  • Too many decision makers with contradictory agendas at upper management level (in 8 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (6)

    "Great place to learn and grow - interesting work and excellent colleagues"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Dolby full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    I've been at Dolby for almost seven years. While here, I've had tremendous growth opportunities: I've learned a ton from a variety of challenging projects across all areas of my field, and I've been able to advance my career. I really appreciate:
    - Working on a daily basis with highly intelligent, analytical, interesting people both within and outside my function. Respecting and learning from the people around me is super important to me. The interesting thing about Dolby is that many of these people tend to be humble as well.
    - The availability of challenging, worthwhile "problems" to solve - you can really make an impact here; the level of complexity can be frustrating at times, but for the most part guarantees you won't be bored or complacent
    - The leadership team's commitment to high quality and high integrity - we make high quality products, we take pride in solving difficult problems, and while I may not agree with every leadership decision I have never questioned whether leaders would "do the right thing"
    - In general, I think many people enjoy good work-life balance here and the off-Fridays are a great benefit

    Cons

    Many of our challenges are not unique to Dolby and include:
    Being a truly "global" company in which our non-US HQ regions are set up for success
    A leadership style and culture that is more "traditional" and "hierarchical" than many tech companies, although I see some evidence this is changing
    The difficulty of making real progress when multiple departments, systems, processes, and stakeholders are involved - change can be slow here at times with a lot of up-front buy-in required

    Advice to Management

    Continue to hold people to high standards, high quality, high integrity - that's a big part of what attracts great people to Dolby and keeps them working here
    Don't be afraid of more transparent communication
    Encourage more risk-taking and "failing fast"
    Keep holding leaders accountable for empowering their people to make decisions
    It would be great to see top executives engaging with employees in a more informal way


  2. Helpful (4)

    "Senior Manager"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Dolby full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Employees are friendly. Pay is high. Bonuses and sales commissions get paid, regardless of results. You will notice that every review cites the "off fridays" as the main 'pro'.

    Cons

    The company spends money like a drunk sailor. Except for the legal team, the company is equally productive to a drunk sailor. Zero accountability or leadership from middle management all the way to the Board.

    Advice to Management

    Cut costs. Create some accountability. Find some focus.

  3. Helpful (12)

    "Hopeless"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Every "pro" description includes Fridays off as a pro. It's easy to get used to this sleepy pace and total lack of accountability. Plus many fun toys to play with if you are an engineer (with no expectations that you will bring a product to market!). Even if you are not an engineer, you will have plenty of consultants to do your work for you.

    Cons

    All of the "pros" above are actually "cons". Inexperienced management: Politics. Politics. Politics. Talk. Talk. Talk. Spend. Spend. Spend.

    Advice to Management

    No advice. Situation is simply hopeless. But if you want to keep the dream alive for a while longer get rid of the consultants and the 9/80s. Hold yourselves accountable first, then your employees.


  4. Helpful (5)

    "Great People, ADD Management, Changing Culture"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Product Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Product Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Dolby full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    9/80 Work schedule, San Francisco Location, good salary and benefits, interesting work.

    Cons

    Excessive feudalism amongst upper management, systematic dismantling the "old guard" and corporate culture that made Dolby successful, WAY TO MANY V.P.s/ Decision Makers. Excessive Political Favoritism, Attempts to reinvent the company without understanding the long-term implications.

    Advice to Management

    Senior V.P.s should not be allowed excessive autonomy.
    Every team in every business unit should be judged on how well they execute their plans and meet their commitments to schedule and product. Favorite projects and teams have carte blanche to spend and dawdle, while other teams are starved of money, resources and support.
    This company could use an actual board of directors rather than a bunch of passive retirees.


  5. Helpful (5)

    "Seems nice on the surface"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Dolby full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Every other Friday off; smart people; fun events;

    Cons

    Dolby is a small company that operates like a large company with all of its bureaucratic processes; over 30% of the employees are new within the past 3 years; while the company seems very employee centric, town halls, events, training etc there is something nasty beneath the surface; employees seem to disappear over night, there one day, gone the next, no warning, no communication. There are undercurrents of unhappiness in many employee groups. Jobs get "eliminated" on a whim. There are managers who are renouned for behaving badly to their employees including temper tantrums and out bursts, yet nothing is ever done. There may be some good employees but there are so many more excellent ones that have left or been pushed out ..mostly to much better jobs; All this might be tolerated if the company offered great salaries or bonuses but they pay on the low end and for tthe past few years, bonuses have been slim

    Advice to Management

    Dust out the cobwebs; Get rid of some of your VPs and managers and their cronyism


  6. Helpful (2)

    "Great place for audio buffs"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Dolby full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Flexible schedule. Good people who care passionately about the experience of audio

    Cons

    SAn Francisco Location isn't great.

    Advice to Management

    Focus on what really matters and the core strengths of the company.


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Not what it once was, still better than most"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Dolby full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Many creative and talented employees, especially engineers
    Great benefits, Insurance, 401K with matching
    9/80 schedule (every other Friday off)
    Competitive pay
    Very profitable and growing

    Cons

    Senior management is all new since the IPO – not from audio/entertainment industry
    Dolby is still struggling to transition to a growth oriented company after 40 years as a privately held company
    Company is more average in non-engineering areas

    Advice to Management

    Listen to employees
    Focus more on enabling engineering and keep engineers connected to customers
    Develop leaders from within, let them lead

  8. "Great people, lack of clear direction from management"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    9/80 Work Schedule
    Smart Fun People
    Exciting Industry

    Cons

    Location
    Poor Marketing
    Decisions made by consensus only
    Lack of clear direction in product development
    Under utilization of exceptional talent

    Advice to Management

    Commit to products / market opportunities earlier and do what it takes to OWN the markets we're in (like we used to)!


  9. Helpful (4)

    "Dolby is living off it's past glory and is out of touch with current market realities"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Reputable brand
    Talented employees
    Exciting industry (although Dolby is missing out on the big opportunities)
    9/80 work week
    San Francisco

    Cons

    Utterly clueless exec. management team, several of whom lack the qualifications, training and experience required of their roles.
    Decision making is glacially slow...by the time a decision has been reached, the market opportunity has been lost (Dolby's indecisiveness=Competitors gain)
    Talent is severely underutilized...employees brought in for their past achievements & great/creative ideas and then left to "die on the vine" once they're in their job.

    Advice to Management

    The CEO (and EVP Sales/Mktg) need to be replaced with experienced & talented leaders. Both have been placed in roles that are incompatible with their skill set and experience, as evidenced in Dolby's declining market share, consumer confidence and employee dissatisfaction.


  10. "Products and technologies dominate; Marketing still catching up"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Product Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Product Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The vision is consistently grand -- revolutionize entertainment technology again and again. Very smart people in nearly all functions and levels.

    Cons

    The mission is so broad it is difficult to focus. Acquisitions and size (1200+) make it more difficult to stand out as an individual.

    Advice to Management

    Assign dedicated engineering resources on market segments so that individuals develop a personal alignment with customers in their respective markets.