General Plasma Reviews | Glassdoor

General Plasma Reviews

Updated September 20, 2016
17 reviews

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2.1
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General Plasma President John Madocks
John Madocks
9 Ratings

17 Employee Reviews

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  1. "OK"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at General Plasma full-time

    Pros

    You get freedom since it is small company. They have nice benefits. You can achieve veteran status if you can make it longer than 5 months as an engineer.

    Cons

    Don't get the owner upset. He will just fire you. Don't make the owner fell inferior, he will fire you. Don't tell the owner his design is inadequate, he will fire you. Just go in with the mind of being a drafter getting paid an engineers salary and just say OK all the time and you should be fine.

    Advice to Management

    This section is meaningless for this company. But in case they do care. Give real deadlines and tell them employee what it is you want and when you want it. Have an actual game plan and goal engineers can work with.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Run......Fast!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Front Desk in Tucson, AZ
    Former Employee - Front Desk in Tucson, AZ
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    The only Pro I can say is that if you don't like your coworkers, wait a week. It will change because they'll get fired!

    Cons

    In the 3 months I worked temp to hire they fired 8 people. During the interview process the Glassdoor reviews were discussed and the blame was put on a disgruntled former employee. Singular!! I wish I would have followed my gut and the Glassdoor reviews. It's PATHETIC!

    Advice to Management

    Be honest!! People are moving cross county to take positions at GPI and then are let go within 1 to 3 months!! This is a horrible place to work. The previous reviews were spot on! Quit lying about it!!


  3. "Bright Future with GPI"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Electrical Supervisor in Tucson, AZ
    Current Employee - Electrical Supervisor in Tucson, AZ
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    I have worked here for so many year till now. I do not see any problem in GPI. It feels like a family working environment. From working here, I have learned a lot of things from high technologies to valuable skills. The benefits here is very good. Also, if we get our job done there is no problem (which is the same for all other companies). Finally, there is freedom and independence in the workplace.

    Cons

    No complaints for General Plasma Inc.


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  5. Helpful (1)

    "Not an enjoyable experience"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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 General Plasma full-time

    Pros

    It is a "non-traditional" industry

    Cons

    Management provides no training and demands a flawless ascent on a very steep learning curve

    Employee morale is very low due to their extremely high turnover rate

    No feedback (good or bad) is ever given

    The location is in South Tucson which is a very dangerous area

    Advice to Management

    If you don't set your employees up to fail they usually won't


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Good Company"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Tucson, AZ
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Tucson, AZ
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at General Plasma full-time

    Pros

    This company is a small company. They run it as such so you will be doing many things. There is always something to do. They also do not babysit. There is a lot of self motivation to do projects. You may not know 100% the task assigned, but we have google so lots to learn. This is the self motivation. This is not a Copy/Paste company.

    They are also doing interesting stuff. a real niche industry. I would say, coming right out of college, 1 year at General Plasma equates to 5 years in another job. The owners also like inventing and coming up with ideas, so the RD department is always active, which also means lots of new and interesting drawing and manufacturing.

    I have worked many jobs in my life and this is by far the most entertaining and fun one i have had.

    Cons

    The mechanical side is a little rough. General plasma has really smart science built upon solid mechanical design. Mechanicals are the heart of General Plasma. So there is extra pressure and demand on them from other jobs of same type elsewhere. But not anything extra ordinary and the reward outweighs the demand.


  7. Helpful (2)

    "I worked at GPI."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Tucson, AZ
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Tucson, AZ
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at General Plasma (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Little or no direction or training. Allowed you to set your own priorities.

    Cons

    Little or no direction from Management. You would then be reprimanded for not doing what you did not know needed to be done.

    Advice to Management

    Invest in your employees. They are your future.


  8. Helpful (1)

    "Notorious for bad management and horrendous turnover"

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

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

    Pros

    It's a job, for a while. If you hate middle management, this is the place for you, because there is absolutely no one to guide you! If you can't figure it out yourself immediately, you're fired. If you can figure it out, you're fired anyway a little later. President acts like a nice guy, but he'd rather spend most of his time on the east coast (firing employees at random when he occasionally returns) than actually manage.

    Cons

    The most senior engineer at the company was employed for barely 1 year. Entire engineering staff lived in constant fear of being fired for no reason, and either lose their job or quit within months of hire. When I read the dire reviews of General Plasma before taking the job, I figured it couldn't possibly be that bad. It was worse. I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't lived it.

    Advice to Management

    Hire engineering managers, give your engineers a chance to learn the ropes, and try to have something more than a hunch before letting good employees go. Especially that part about engineering managers, it's not optional.


  9. "Challenging, frustrating, yet rewarding"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Engineer in Tucson, AZ
    Former Employee - Engineer in Tucson, AZ
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great people in all departments. Skilled, helpful, and fun.
    Travel opportunities for engineers.
    Great learning experience. If you are competent and willing to step up, you will learn a lot in a very short period of time.
    Good pay and extra effort rewarded by bonuses.
    Great potential to move up if you put in the effort.
    Management excited to teach and very skilled at doing so. You will, however have to seek this out outside of normal working hours.
    Fun projects and subject matter
    Good benefits and a real sense that management genuinely cares about your well-being.

    Cons

    GPI is incredibly demanding. If you are not willing to step up, you will flounder. If you do step up, you will be expected to put in serious hours. This is not an easy paycheck kind of place. If you're not willing to go all in, don't bother applying. You will find yourself bored, because the real learning always seems to start after 6pm.
    There are communication issues at the management level that leads to dysfunction. The open atmosphere empowers you to dig and solve these issues, but this should be the role of management. This self-resolution of course adds to your workload and hours, which is frustrating.
    There are also issues with proper acquisition and dissemination of information from customers. This makes it difficult to successfully complete a project as an engineer, as the deliverables may be vague or partially unknown until it is too late to complete them properly.
    Overburdened employees at all levels, which creates an inability to meet the high reaching goals.
    You will find yourself wearing many hats, which to some is a con from a career development standpoint. To others this may be a plus as it allows you to expand your knowledge base and stay interested.

    Advice to Management

    GPI is full of talent, potential and good technology. What it lacks is a skilled, empowered strong man with a proper management background to drive the operational and business aspects of the company while expanding communication between the departments.
    This hire would free up the existing vice president to focus on development of technology, which he is incredibly skilled at.
    Additionally, I believe you would find actively asking the technical opinions of the senior technicians would help resolve product issues more quickly and completely, saving you money.


  10. Helpful (8)

    "DO NOT, EVER Consider this place for a job. Borderline insanity."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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 General Plasma full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Very challenging and interesting products.
    Great assembly technicians.
    Great distributors.
    Great eye for talent (although a penchant for crushing said talent).
    Great distributors.
    Great "Alumni Club" after you serve you time and get crushed.
    Really good health care with a low premium.

    Cons

    If this is your first job out of college, it may break you and make you change your career. I don't want to see this happen to anyone. The insanity here is not at all what you should expect elsewhere.

    If you are a veteran, this place will make you regret leaving your last company, I don't care how bad it was.

    In either case, the story is the same: A period of flattery and good feelings, maybe even promotions and then a complete lack of support and piled up workload until you get hit by the bus. It's a BIG bus, and usually the senior management is driving the bus. It will ruin your outlook on your job, on management in general, on your profession, even life.

    Just trust me, this place has had a LOT of top notch talent and not a single one of them is there from a few years ago even. All the savvy veterans avoid this place like the plague. It is such a problem that they are forced to recruit kids out of school because they are the only ones who haven't heard of them and their notoriety.

    If you make it 6 months, you are good. A year, great. 2 years - top notch. Anything beyond that is just pure crazy.

    I have seen first hand college kids get scarce training and then get verbally demoralized in front of everyone and sent packing. Some kids decided to change their careers because it as such a traumatic experience.

    They once hired a guy from the east coast, moved him and his family in to Tucson and then fired him after 1 week for not meeting expectations. He broke down, as expected, it was really shocking and sad for him and his family.

    The positive review here was written by the senior management because they looked so bad here. This is not a lie.

    Advice to Management

    Seek psychiatric help.
    Get real, experienced management help and trust them to take your company to the next level. Your VP is killing you, and you are blind to it on a day to day basis.
    Treat people better. People deserve respect and should never be chewed out in public.
    Aim to retain several people beyond a 2 year period. Retention will give way to experience which will improve your quality and have a huge effect on your company for the better.


  11. Helpful (5)

    "Amazing Industry, but worst company ever"

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

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

    Pros

    At the time I was hired (5 years ago) there was a wealth of hard working, intelligent, extremely motivated people working there. The pay was good and the opportunity to learn a lot about a niche industry was even better. I made it through one round of great bonuses before that ended permanently.

    It may have been a revolving door, but every engineer that lasted at least a few months learned a lot about an industry with very good profit margins and massive growth potential. As long as you don't sign a non-compete (required if you are offered stock usually), working here can open doors. We used to call it GPI University and although I would equate it to "learning the hard way" - it was possible to learn a lot. I'm not sure if there's anyone left to learn anything from anymore though.

    Cons

    It's hard to know what will best describe this company without violating the community guidelines. It was a common and exceedingly true joke among remaining employees that our "previous employee" list in Outlook was several times longer than the "current employee" list. They easily fired 150-200 employees in the 3 years I worked there and when I finally quit there was about 30 employees on staff with a peak of approximately 115.

    The Owner/President is creative and technically proficient in his field. As a result he's very convincing and is able to recruit talented, motivated people. Unfortunately his "style of management" causes a predictable, repeated cycle that everyone else seems to be able to identify except him. His most obvious example is to encourage talented, but unseasoned engineers to take on huge projects - more, and more and more until eventually it's beyond too much. Once they are finally unable to manage the impossible a mistake will be made which is also usually exaggerated to justify a demotion and the cycle restarts with someone else. In my time there I saw this repeated with at least 5 engineers in a row and each time the last one tried to warn the next, but it never seems to help.

    If you're already established and successful senior professional with a proven track record - don't even think about joining GPI. The owner's other most common practice is hiring extremely capable, senior level people, offering them huge salaries and shares of the company only to end up fighting them on every issue and always fires or drives them to quit within months or even weeks. Since I quit 2 years ago, I only know of 4 people (not including the owner) who still work there - everyone else is newer than 2 years.

    Advice to Management

    There is no amount of sound advice that will change the management at this company - I tried it for years. I really cared and I really wanted to help, but none of it made any difference. Eventually everyone gives up. Don't waste your time or your effort on it - give up now and look somewhere else.



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