Zynga - Mercenaries, not Missionaries | Glassdoor
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Helpful (2)

"Mercenaries, not Missionaries"

StarStarStarStarStar
  • 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
Negative Outlook
No opinion of CEO

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

Pros

Brilliant people who came from consulting, investment banking, and a wide range of experience. Compensation was nice, good facade of meritocracy, office had ample food and snacks. Gym was a plus. I went back recently and I thought to myself that the place looks nicer than when I left, which is odd since the company's stock value has gone down.

Cons

No work-life balance, terrible leadership, idiotic management who had rose through the ranks by bullying individuals and humiliating people. Turns out when the stock price goes sour, all of these people run for the hills because they were only in the zero-sum company for the gain they could take from others anyway. I think I learned bad habits here that I'll have to recover from - like thinking that everyone else is out to get you and to think that company politics is how all companies are run.

Advice to Management

Grow up a little guys. Stop trying to over-manage things. Instead, try to embody the parts of the bay area that make startups powerful. Focus on new platforms and stop trying to optimize and milk your way to profitability. Instead, test, iterate quickly, and be like the initial Zynga, not the one it's become.

Other Employee Reviews for Zynga

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Terrible senior management making awful decisions"

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

    I have been working at Zynga full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Comp is on the higher end for gaming companies, but on the lower end relative to other public tech companies.

    There are some good folks remaining but they're all leaving like flies.

    It used to have good perks when I started, but they have gotten rid of a lot of them (no more massages, haircuts, they also laid off my trainer in December).

    Cons

    Lowest morale in all of SF and Silicon Valley right now. The last round of layoffs ended up cutting some of the best performers at Zynga (HR and C suite's decision-making abilities are questionable), leaving behind some cheaper but very mediocre performers.

    My studio has too many leads and too political to get anything done.

    All upper management cares about is pleasing the investors (not their players or employees). They haven't been able to ship a good mobile title organically, so they tap into their free cash flow and acquire other mobile gaming companies while cutting headcount. Great for the bottom line temporarily, but terrible in the long-run because some of the top performers are gone and you cannot make great games without them.

    They always claim there will not be more layoffs but a 18% layoffs occurred in May and an 15% layoffs occurred in late January. Do not believe anything upper management says anymore.

    Advice to Management

    Your last round of layoffs was done carelessly. You cut some great performers and kept some very medicore performers to save several grand per year for each employee. Now the rest of us is struggling to keep afloat in an already terrible environment.

    Your investors-first policy is only great in inflating the stock price. In a good market like this, most of your talent would not bother staying even if they have not been laid off.


  2. "The best place I've ever worked at. Think about my Z family often."

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

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

    Pros

    -Incredible amount of drive, intellectual horsepower and fun co workers.
    -We had an insatiable appetite to win and learn as much as we could.
    -Company felt like it operated in a unified front for many years
    -Quarterly rewards/recognition
    -incredibly talented culinary team & holistic health care services
    -Transparent CEO (at the time Mark) who had a passion for people and the product
    -Very approachable and personable leadership team
    -We worked long hours for something we believed in (the sweatshop comments are hilarious). No one forces you to work long hours. If you can cultivate an environment where people truly care and put in the amount of effort - it's a pro in my book.
    -Some of the smartest most down to earth folks you can work with in the valley

    Cons

    -We were trailblazing an industry with social games and there was a lot changes in that drop of a dime
    -We could have done earlier training/dev of management to prepare for the rapid growth
    -No sophisticated system in place to track how often comp wasn't reviewed

    Advice to Management

    Continue to focus on the people that have maintained focus and dedication to the product. We are all still rooting for you!

There are newer employer reviews for Zynga
There are newer employer reviews for Zynga

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