PETA - Get another job, seriously. | Glassdoor
Pros
  • "If you aren't committed to animal rights uncompromised then why work here" (in 42 reviews)

  • "I get paid to help animals and save lives" (in 27 reviews)

Cons
  • "The pay is low, but that's to be expected" (in 12 reviews)

  • "animal rights movement (think "I am the Senate" (in 15 reviews)

Employee Review

Employee Review

Helpful (17)

"Get another job, seriously."

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

I worked at PETA full-time (More than a year)

Pros

Nice coworkers (on the lower levels of the org), vegan potlucks, pretty office environment, and cute dogs in the office.

Cons

My coworkers at PETA were some of the kindest and hardest working people I've ever met so it's a shame that the corporate/employment side of the organization is all around terrible. I have never worked in such an unprofessional environment in my life and am honestly surprised the place is still "functioning" today. Some of my concerns (that were never addressed) include but are not limited to the following:

- I can only recall 2 weeks within my entire career at PETA where I only worked 40 hours a week but was never recognized for my unpaid overtime. It only got worse when I eventually moved into management and was informed that coming in late after working weekends was not an option. Even when not a manager, they expect you to be on e-mail and essentially on-call around the clock and will be scolded if you don't.

- I didn't take a full sick day for YEARS because there was never anyone to cover me and I always felt like I was going to be fired otherwise and yet the H.R. department had the audacity to send out an e-mail saying we should be taking less sick time because we're compromising the welfare of animals. This was particularly upsetting because I know that most of my coworkers worked around the clock and had no life outside of their jobs.

- Promotions are rare and subjective. You can work your butt off, get nothing but good reviews but no career path or raise is ever promised. I knew people who were there for 5-6 years with no growth.

- PETA asks its staff to donate money way too much. It's bad enough that people already don't make a lot of money there but they'll often ask staff to use their tax returns to donate to PETA, help with bail fees, etc. The president even sent out an e-mail saying in order to be considered real activists, we need to conserve every dollar possible and compared us to a woman living on a mattress on the floor. She needs to stop making her staff feel guilty for just trying to live normal lives.

- Many of the staff in upper management are rude in their communication and are out of touch with reality. Others are untrained and often try to overstep into areas that they have no knowledge in, so their changes and input just create unnecessary work and waste peoples' time.

- Some staff members spy on you and instead of talking to you directly, they report to the president like the organization is some sort of a cult. There was once a staff member who visited another PETA staffer who apparently hadn't cleaned her litter boxes frequently enough. Instead of talking to her directly, she contacted the president who then sent out a mass email to all of PETA shaming her in front of everyone.

- PETA also struggles to understand what it takes to keep staff. If people are paid so low but the offices are located in some of the most expensive cities in the world, you'd think they would just let people work remotely to save money so they can stay longer and then PETA would SAVE money. However they do not allow that at all and then hold it against people when they leave.

- The way they treat people who leave really turned me off, too. Some managers take it personally and will talk down to you when you leave claiming it's nothing to be proud of since you've "left the fight." They even say managers can't be a reference for former employees when applying to jobs!

Advice to Management

Apply for work elsewhere so you can get some outside experience and understand how a real company works before you try to run your own corporation.

Also, pay people more or at least try to compromise with them so they'll have different options to stay ... and show them some appreciation for their hard work.

PETA Response

Jan 6, 2019 – HR Representative

We want to thank you for writing a review of your experiences with PETA, all feedback that we receive is reviewed carefully and shared so we can look at where we can make improvements. There are a... More

Other Employee Reviews

Other Employee Reviews

  1. Helpful (6)

    "Decent job with little room for growth"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at PETA full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Flexible Schedule, friendly coworkers, dogs in the office

    Cons

    Low pay, upper management seemed to resent having to pay some of us to do the jobs we were doing. Every time a minimum wage would go up, we'd hear complaints about how many animals were going to be killed for each dollar that was having to be added to salaries. Also lots and lots of red tape to ever get anything approved.

    PETA Response

    Jan 6, 2019 – HR Representative

    Thank you for your feedback. We appreciate you taking the time to share these notes with us and appreciate all that you accomplished at PETA during your three years at our organization.

    We wish... More


  2. Helpful (12)

    "Narcissistic management in a cult-style environment."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Norfolk, VA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Norfolk, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at PETA full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    I worked in several departments at PETA over a few years. My colleagues consistently showed pure, empathetic hearts for animals. All of us worked ourselves desperately into poor mental, emotional, physical, and social health. Everything was about sacrificing all personal resources to help the animals. My colleagues and I saved the lives of so many vulnerable furry, feathered, and scaled souls. But in the process, most of us were passively destroying our personal lives for “the cause.” This is admirable... but unsustainable.

    Cons

    Narcissistic management: There is a hero-worship mentality surrounding the VPs and Directors. They can do no wrong and will readily throw anyone “beneath” them under the bus should something go amiss on a project. Watch your back. Be prepared to spend your professional life quaking in fear of the wrath of the PETA “gods.” No matter how many degrees and accolades you have to your name, management won’t hesitate to berate you like an 8-year-old-child over email or in meetings. You must bow to them, but they can treat you like garbage. I have seen many colleagues’ self esteem plunge into the toilet from the incessant verbal, written, and psychological abuse. No one ever does a “good enough” job, despite a slew of staffers who hold PhD, JD, and master degrees. We all could easily snag a job anywhere else.

    Cult-style environment: You must publicly support 100% of the PETA platform. Gossip will get you if you don’t. Say, for example, you differ in opinion on whether euthanasia is proper in particular circumstances, or whether feral cat colonies may ethically be left alone, or whether pit bulls should be banned... don’t speak up. Anyone disagreeing with even one tidbit of the official encyclopedia of PETA positions is seen as an enemy combatant. You have no autonomy; you’re a clone of the PETA “gods,” or you’re out.

    Impossible hours: You are a PETA staffer 24/7/365. One VP even sent a mass email to her department, which said that in her opinion, 8 hours of sleep was “excessive.” Whether you are salaried or hourly, you are expected to be accessible via phone/text/email every second of every day. Whether you’re on vacation, holiday, or sleeping at 3am, your phone better be on at all times. There is no distinction between work and personal life. On top of the unreasonable hours (60+ was normal for salaried folks, and the hourly folks feel compelled to work unpaid hours on the weekends—in violation of federal law), staffers are also strong-armed into “volunteering” for monthly emergency pager duty, protests, fieldwork, etc. If you don’t do what you’re “voluntold,” expect to be replaced by someone without any personal life.

    The workplace at PETA is the most toxic I’ve ever experienced. Colleagues lived in constant fear, had no genuinely adequate personal time to recharge, and were berated on a regular basis. Ultimately, there are two types of PETA staffers: (1) the ones who recognize the toxic burnout and leave before it’s too late; and (2) the ones who recognize the toxic burnout and get sucked in. Looking around at my colleagues who’d been there 10, 15, 20+ years, I feared for my health. Many of the “lifers” appear so haggard, much older than their chronological age. Unending stress and negativity will do that to you.

    Advice to Management

    You’re losing incredible staffers at a rapid pace. You assume that PETA is the epitome of “making it” in the animal rights sector. So, you treat staffers like garbage, believing that they’ll take the abuse because any other animal rights career would be a “step down.” But that’s wrong. We have other options. Fighting for vulnerable animals doesn’t mean we must become martyrs, subjected to verbal abuse and slave-like hours. We can fight this fight while still keeping our dignity, and we must, because miserable burned-out people are no good to suffering animals. And they’re rotten examples of happy healthy vegans.

    PETA Response

    Jan 6, 2019 – HR Representative

    Thank you for your contributions to PETA, and for your feedback on working with us, even if it is disappointing to hear about your experience. You’re right, we are dedicated to the animals and are... More

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