Evanta Reviews | Glassdoor

Evanta Reviews

Updated October 13, 2017
75 reviews

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2.1
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Evanta Founder & CEO Robert L. Dethlefs
Robert L. Dethlefs
48 Ratings

75 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • The benefits are best in class with gym reimbursement, free parking and 20 days of PTO aside from Holidays (in 10 reviews)

  • business model and throughout the evolution of the business, diligently holding true to the tenants of this business model (in 6 reviews)

Cons
  • It's no wonder even with an ask (demand) that positive reviews be written he still only has a 54% approval rating (in 7 reviews)

  • Leadership is highly criticized behind closed doors (in 4 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (5)

    "What I saw at Evanta"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Executive Vice President in Portland, OR
    Former Employee - Executive Vice President in Portland, OR
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at Evanta full-time

    Pros

    I recently retired from Evanta and want to share with the Glass Door community what I saw during my dozen years as an executive at the business in order to help prospective job seekers understand the career opportunities there as well as give balance to negative opinions posted on this social media site.

    What I saw the business do:
    • Begin in 2003 with two conferences for executives and by 2016 grow to over two hundreds conferences and meetings
    • Begin in 2003 with three people based in Portland and by 2016 grow to nearly two hundred based in several states and Canada
    • Grow from less than $1M in annual revenue to nearly $50M
    • Achieve double digit growth rate in 11 out of 12 years
    • Grow a network of executives from top organizations from the hundreds to the tens of thousands
    • Create a uniquely powerful leadership mentorship program for frontline (newly emerging) leaders by tapping Evanta’s network of executives and thought leaders for their insights on leadership
    • Mobilize the information security executives into a coalition to collaborate on defending North America’s economy, and their businesses in particular, from cyber attacks
    • Begin as a privately owned business started by two guys with a vision that was acquired by the largest publishing company in Great Britain, which sold the business to a world class private equity group that after several years sold Evanta to a premier business research and advisory publicly traded company.

    What I saw the CEO do:
    • Exemplarily lead the business through the evolution of start-up business to the industry leader in its space
    • Install and expand the executive leadership team with exceptionally talented individuals who in addition to being great managers are also truly good persons
    • Create the powerful “By CXO, For CXO” business model and throughout the evolution of the business, diligently holding true to the tenants of this business model
    • Establish fair and achievable individual and group business goals for sales and non-sales personnel
    • Implement many “fun factor” activities for employees
    • Establish a regularly recurring company-wide meeting as a forum for individuals to share their recent achievements with their peers as well as publicly praise other employees for their contributions to the business
    • Inspire many individuals over the years with his leadership style and philosophy.
    • Incorporate as paramount to employee recruitment the assessment of the individual’s personality traits of Attitude, Effort, Enthusiasm, Responsiveness, Resourcefulness, and Confidence
    • Form strategic relationships with world class non-profit organizations such as St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Medical Teams International.
    • Transition day to day management of the business to others within the company

    The business is now owned and operated by CEB, a publicly traded company which appears to me to be populated by very smart and good people. No doubt there will continue to be evolutionary changes at Evanta, but I believe it will continue to be a great business to be employed by with career opportunities and personal enrichment experiences.

    I’m compelled to comment on the maligning comments on this social network website. Over the years of reading these comments, I’ve noticed most of the negative comments are unsubstantiated generalizations without any supporting facts. If it were not for the anonymous nature of the forum and absence of direct dialog with the commentator on the issues being referenced, I personally believe almost all the negative comments would be completely debunked.

    This not to say I think Evanta is “the perfect place” to work and spend part of your career. It’s not because that “perfect place” does not exist. Also, Evanta is not the right place for a lot of people. However, if you are one who wants to achieve high performance, doesn’t mind being around a lot of extroverts, and would like the opportunity to be exposed to, and even meet in person, high level business executives and thought leaders, you should consider working at Evanta.

    Cons

    Please make sure you understand the culture. It's not a fit for everyone.

    Advice to Management

    I have tor recuse myself from giving advice to management.


  2. "So much potential"

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

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

    Pros

    Great collaborative environment, fun culture at times

    Cons

    Poor leadership, high turnover, often unrealistic expectations

    Advice to Management

    Promote the qualified candidates and retention would be better!

  3. Helpful (3)

    "I have respond to the joke of a review made obviously by the former CEO"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend

    I worked at Evanta full-time

    Pros

    NONE. I mean it. NONE!

    Cons

    I just read a review by the former CEO. And I about punched my computer monitor. He tried to say that every negative review about this company, (Of which there are nearly 70) were fabrications??? No. If anything, people have not exposed enough of the truth about how Evanta is one of the most dishonest, phony, and downright pathetic organizations in the country. I have never seen a company treat people more poorly. Not even close. Not allowed to take vacations, completely lied to about your compensation, getting in trouble if you go to the bathroom more than once a day, allowing your absolutely moronic management team to absolutely bully people in front of an entire staff, treating women like its the early 1900's, I could go on and on. I have never seen anything like it. Nor have I ever seen a company with a higher turnover rate. So I say to you, Mr. Founder and hopefully former CEO. What you saw and what everyone else sees is about as far a part as it gets. You are the most despicable human I have ever met. And you management team you assembled is not far behind.

    Advice to Management

    Keep your guards up. Some day someone is just going to turn around and punch you in the face. Especially you KL.


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Over worked, underpaid."

    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

    Pros

    A positive work culture.

    Cons

    Over worked, underpaid, terrible management.


  5. Helpful (6)

    "Run Away!"

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

    I worked at Evanta full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    I've sat here for 10 minutes and cannot come up with anything, take that as you will. Free parking, I'll give them that one. A very large pro is free parking in Downtown Portland.

    If you are REALLY needing a job, its not the hardest place to get hired because they have such high turnover. Nobody wants to stay for longer than a year. If someone is there for more than a year, they are either stuck, or they're in management.

    Cons

    Everything, literally everything. As I have read the (few) positive reviews I can hear in my head who wrote them purely because they are so biased. Management thinks they are the best thing that has happened to the world, and they make sure you know it. They slowly sap the life out of employees and have to have "praise progress" where you hear all about how amazing management is and the Sales teams. If you are not a sales team member, you are treated like a lesser being. You are not a valued employee, you are just there to promote the sales team and how great they are.

    I have never felt worse about myself at a company, you will not be a valued employee and will be micromanaged by everyone above you. Your skills will be ignored if they like someone better. It is very much a popularity contest in every aspect of the job. If you are not the favorite, you will be left doing to lowest tasks and you will be ignored.

    Overall, I am hopeful that CEB will turn it around, but Evanta is the worst place to work as of right now. I would rather work at Starbucks honestly if they had the schedule and the benefits.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to employees. They don't feel heard. Everyone has to put on a fake face because when they speak honestly they are ignored or "encouraged to leave". Also, maybe appriciate those who are not Program Directors a bit more. They are used to being ignored and spoke down to from PDs. When a PD says thank you for anything (besides the typical thank you for helping me that happens at praise progress as a show) there is shock because it is so rare. Treat your employees like actual human beings. Everyone at every level is important so take time to understand how deeply you are marginalizing a great deal of your employees.

    Stop lying to your employees as well. If I listed all the lies I have been told, we would be here all day. My favorite is that we "dont have the technology for people to work from home" and yet EVERYONE can see at praise progress that you DO have that technology..... if that employee is a Program Director. Seriously, being lied to is the worst when you can see it in front of your face.


  6. Helpful (9)

    "Just say no to Evanta"

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

    Pros

    If you're in such dire straits that you've ignored all the other Glassdoor reviews and are currently considering a job offer from Evanta, it's OK. You're not the first. Take solace in this: Your professional network will expand almost instantly, giving way to extensive networking potential. This will allow you to quickly make your Evanta escape plan, ensuring you can flee after less than a year of working for the company.

    Cons

    You will have a lot of PTO, but you can only use that PTO during very select times of the year and even then only if your manager permits it. You will be subjected to micromanaging daily. You will be expected to devote 50 hours weekly to your 40 hour work week, and that's if your workload is light. You will be coerced into extensive amounts of team bonding. You will be surrounded by people who think they're important, when really all they do is cold call important people. You will be told your work is crucial to the future of our country, when really all you do is organize events. You will notice the lack of diversity and the old boys' club that oversees the company. You will hear women crying in the bathroom and men yelling at each other behind closed doors. And ultimately, you'll spiral into a pit of existential despair in which you will question how you got to this place in your life, wasting your energy on such a miserable institution.

    Advice to Management

    This goes out to CEB: Fire all existing managers. Especially Bob, who is probably the worst CEO I've ever worked for. Evanta's business model is lucrative, but profit will be hindered if you retain the current leadership team. Their old school management style is toxic and the #1 threat to employee retention.


  7. Helpful (7)

    "Worst Job I've Ever Had"

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

    I have been working at Evanta full-time

    Pros

    Free parking and the view from the 10th floor of Mt. Hood

    Cons

    The entire company itself.

    Advice to Management

    Stop making promises and lying to your employees.

  8. Helpful (7)

    "PD"

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

    Pros

    Some really good people, and truly a great business model. The CEO is out, which is great; he is the most disingenuous human I have ever met. CEB is assuming more control, maybe they will be a pleasant surprise? Great work hours. Free Parking, great location.

    Cons

    First, I wonder if the C-level executives and their direct reports that we serve know just how poorly we are paid? This is not the place for independent thinking. Aggressive sales types are not welcome. Do not be fooled, as a "sales" person you do NOT control your income. The comp. structure is a disgrace. This is an environment where the Kool-Aid drinkers are rewarded. If you are an experienced pro, or have Adult responsibilities this is not the place for you. Period!!! Most folks that have options are all looking for jobs; regardless of what they say-the moral is in the toilet. We all say what they want to hear....It is a survival instinct until something better reveals its self. if you need a resume builder,or are recently out of College this may be a good fit. You will at least have beer money.

    Advice to Management

    Promote real leaders and not the classroom pet.


  9. Helpful (19)

    "Hurricane Evanta"

    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 Evanta full-time

    Pros

    The potential for this to be a cool business to be in attracts young, motivated and hard working employees, who then get suckered in. The extremely high turnover rate means there is always a crop of fresh faced enthusiastic people who innocently believe all of the lies and that Evanta presents to them. That fresh zest and desire to want to do well is a positive.

    Note: Usually it takes about 6 months for newbies to realize that maybe this place is not all it is cracked up to be. Once someone reaches the year mark they have likely lost all belief. And they have likely endured an unrelenting strand of constant mental abuse and unfair treatment at the hands of people who believe they are leaders (the executives- not the SPDs).

    Cons

    This is the easiest and the hardest question to answer. The cons list is FAR too long of a laundry list to capture here. I will try to provide a highlights reel below, but before I get to naming off the atrocities, I have one favor to ask; if you are honestly considering sabotaging all sense of self worth by allowing this hellhole to employ you, please please connect with someone who has formerly worked there. Ask them to give you their unfiltered opinion of their time there. My guess is that you will hear horror stories that these reviews don’t reveal. I hope you are smart enough to avoid this place. Evanta is a plague you cannot ever recover from- don't welcome it into your life!

    At Evanta it is common:

    - to be asked to stretch/bend/ manipulate the truth or to blatantly lie to fellow co-workers, executives of Fortune500 companies, sponsors, vendors - whatever it takes!
    - to witness employees weeping in the bathroom on the verge of, or in the middle of, mental breakdowns
    - to see 2-4 people quit each week
    - to be threatened, laughed at or made to feel you were worthless and incompetent
    - to be spoken to like you are a child
    - to be thrown under the bus at any moment
    - to be micromanaged exponentially
    - to hear the CEO talk about how rich and powerful he is (and get denied for a raise in the same week bc it is not in the budget)
    - to not be listened to- ever
    - to have to sit through an all company meeting every Friday and watch the biggest show of fake enthusiasm all to offer a false sense of reassurance to the insecure CEO
    - to have your ideas, passion and soul stolen

    Everything at Evanta is a game- don’t become their pawn. Do not let them exploit your brain and skills - you can definitely do better. And you deserve better.

    Advice to Management

    It is up to you to be the change, you have great people working for you, get out of their way and let them be great. You have had more people leave on bad terms with left over resentment and anger because of the hostility and negativity you breed


  10. "Great experience in continually changing environment"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Evanta full-time

    Pros

    The people are a unique breed and generally supportive of your interests and career desires. I had the wonderful opportunity of being on an incredibly supportive and intelligent team.

    Cons

    Sometimes conflicting priorities made it difficult to achieve the best quality events and communications at times. It's a case of changing the wheels on a moving bus, but it was also great practice for many other similarly fast-paced environments.

    Advice to Management

    Maintain a unified and comprehensive vision and mission that can be effectively communicated to staff. Understanding the biggest priorities is key for even entry-level employees.


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