Gerson Lehrman Group Reviews | Glassdoor

Gerson Lehrman Group Reviews

Updated December 10, 2018
476 reviews

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2.8
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Paul Todd
40 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • "Hours are intense but work life balance is good compared to other finance/consulting type roles" (in 36 reviews)

  • "Very collaborative work environment" (in 30 reviews)

Cons
  • "The work-life balance is absolutely horrendous" (in 41 reviews)

  • "I often found myself in long hours of pointless" (in 17 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    Helpful (13)

    "Grow with a Growing Company"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Vice President in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Vice President in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Gerson Lehrman Group full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    I always say it feels good to work for a company that's doing well and GLG is on something like its 10th+ quarter of consecutive growth. That success is reflected in the fast-paced, ever-changing nature of the work which (in my experience) leads to an unparalleled level of stimulation (and requires some patience, which other reviews point out). Given growth, it also feels like everyone is working towards the same thing - people are collegial and nice, and collaboration is increasing. I've had several jobs and this is one of the few places that no one raised their voice at me. And even more refreshing, people aren't just nice - they are interested... in your perspective, in your contributions, and in your life outside of work. Everyone - top down - is interested in new, big ideas, and willing to experiment. They are well-positioned to continue to succeed, and I'm very bullish about the impact they'll have on the business world. Oh, and the offices are so nice! People (especially disgruntled reviewers) mention that as a throw away point but nice offices matter and reflect GLG's investment in its employees.

    Cons

    Rapid growth is mostly good, but it means a lot of change and sometimes it's not implemented as seamlessly as it can be. Also, while I didn't work in client services - I recognize those jobs could be both intense (like every account management job) and monotonous, but I do believe you learn a lot of transferable skills. The reviews here that refute that are too cynical. And those who say no one goes anywhere interesting after GLG is just plain wrong - people go on to hedge funds, tech companies , nonprofits, etc. Finally, while there's a lot of diversity of background at GLG, there's not a lot of true diversity -- especially on the leadership team and board. You can't change the culture to be more inclusive, or make campus / mid-level hires more diverse if you don't fix that.

    Advice to Management

    Prioritize diversity and inclusion (especially when it comes to senior hires, and on the board), continue to be communicative, recognize that not everyone is having a good experience and do what you can to help those who aren't happy (e.g. provide career transition services; anonymous HR coaching, etc.)


  2. "Company"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Business Development Manager in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Business Development Manager in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Gerson Lehrman Group full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Has a visionary CEO with a strong personality; a proven business model; smart and hardworking workforce

    Cons

    Nothing glaring; The company is growing and has some work to do in maintaining its leadership in the space, as its competition is on its heels

    Advice to Management

    Invest in diversity

  3. "Great company for anyone looking to learn"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Gerson Lehrman Group full-time

    Pros

    I've been able to constantly take on new responsibilities that have made working at GLG a great growth experience. I generally find that people across the company are smart and highly motivated. The cultural changes from the new CEO all seem positive especially around communication.

    Cons

    Performance expectations are clearly outlined but may be too complicated & prescriptive. Some of our targets cause odd behaviors that I don't think we actually have any confidence are driving better outcomes.

    Advice to Management

    Simplify the performance metrics, make sure there is room for professional judgement.


  4. "Solid Company for what it is"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    pay is good for how much you work

    Cons

    it is not that stimulating sometimes


  5. "Smart people, brilliant concept, but misaligned incentives"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Gerson Lehrman Group full-time

    Pros

    Business concept is brilliant
    Joined for the people and have stayed for the people
    I learn something new every day
    True meritocracy at entry and mid-level positions

    Cons

    Businesses are very siloed and competition for resources has negative impact on the whole
    Quarterly performance is prioritized over long-term vision
    Customer is not at the core of business decisions

    Advice to Management

    We've got this amazing service, but we're getting in our own way.


  6. "Client Services Associate"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Gerson Lehrman Group full-time

    Pros

    ability to build communication skills in a corporate environment

    Cons

    slightly monotonous and repetitive in terms of the day to day work


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Company is a good place if you have no experience"

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

    I have been working at Gerson Lehrman Group full-time

    Pros

    The PTO and atmosphere are great for right out of college grads, on-boarding is good

    Cons

    There are not growth opportunities, not a company for people that want to move up or grow in

  8. Helpful (7)

    "Amazing first job"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Engagement Team Leader in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Engagement Team Leader in Austin, TX
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Gerson Lehrman Group full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Here is a quick list on the best things about GLG:

    1. GLG is a perfect place to equip yourself with knowledge "an inch deep and a mile wide." If you do not know what you want to do professionally, GLG gives opportunities on a daily basis to learn about every industry imaginable.
    2. Career progression is relatively easy (compared to other industries) IF you are willing to put in the work.
    3. Co-workers are genuinely good people- some of my best friends in the world are from GLG. It makes sense: the company tries to hire hard working people-pleasers, so it's a fun group.
    4. You get to talk to leading experts everyday. This is often taken for granted by employees, but it is a cool perk.
    - Many folks will respond with "yeah but we are just getting their availability" or "we don't actually get any benefits as employees from them," and they would be right: THESE WORLD LEADING EXPERTS AREN'T INCENTIVIZED TO BUILD RELATIONSHIPS WITH RANDOM 24 YEAR OLDS. YOU HAVE TO BE PROACTIVE AND TRY TO BUILD THEM.
    5. The office, perks, and compensation are solid for the work you are doing.

    Cons

    General Commentary on the negative commentary on GLG:
    - I think most of the folks that are super mad are severely overvaluing themselves. First jobs are oftentimes A GRIND and you shouldn't expect them to be the perfect role.
    - GLGers talk to experts and super smart clients doing cool things every day and I think this makes them think that they are really important, but honestly it's an entry level job and most of the value is on the client/expert sides of the marketplace.

    Quick list on the REAL negatives:

    1. It is hard to build marketable skills for the NEXT job. The only really valuable experiences in the job market are: Client facing, Account Management (which is becoming harder to do at GLG), Executive Communication, and Networking.
    2. The base job gets very repetitive. You need to consistently figure out new ways to keep yourself engaged once you master the core skills. It isn't easy and that is why many people are mad here.
    3. Client Service Professionals are REPLACEABLE.
    - This is the point that really hurts, but it's true. The reason GLGers aren't paid like consultants or analysts is that they don't add enough value. It just isn't that hard of a job and you are compensated fairly because of that.
    4. Being constantly on call wears on you. Clients are kinda annoying and responsiveness really matters, but it's not a fun part of the job.

    Advice to Management

    There needs to be a greater focus on the "learning" and "network" parts of the business. GLG does not have a "network" per se, it is more like a database. A network implies that the participants (experts) interact with each other, but they really don't. This could incredibly powerful in the right environment, but GLG really hasn't focused on that.
    Also- I learned a fair amount at GLG, but I really feel like it is fairly cheap to build a better learning solution for employees given the incredible expert talent GLG has on call.


  9. Helpful (5)

    "Great place to start career"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Gerson Lehrman Group full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    -Company is growing really quickly, allowing for tons of responsibility- both managerial and with respect to client ownership- for top performers in a short amount of time.
    -Opportunity to learn is huge and probably the single biggest pro of starting your career at GLG. You can speak with C-level executives right out of college, gain a ton of knowledge about different companies/industries which will be useful later in your career, and speak with the types of clients most people will work years to be able to interface with.
    -Great people. Really bright and caring across the board at the upper levels. You will develop strong relationships with people in your new hire class.
    -Can develop great client service and communication skills through the role, as well as a strong work ethic, time management skills, and ability to work efficiently. The job is definitely demanding, but the complaints here are really overblown. If you do not like to work hard or be challenged, do not work at GLG. You will end up quitting and complaining about it on Glassdoor.

    Cons

    -Middle management is very inconsistent. Your experience will depend heavily on whose team you land on.
    -Work can become monotonous. It is up to each individual how much they learn in their daily work. If you choose to be a robot, you will not learn much.
    -Strategy has been inconsistent, though with recent structural changes, expect a clearer vision going forward.
    -Clients can be tough to deal with and demanding, meaning you will face regular frustrations and long hours on some days.

    Advice to Management

    -Focus on training for managers so that every new hire gets a really solid mentor and coach.
    -Make learning the focus of the job, and hire individuals who are eager to learn and hungry to perform well.


  10. Helpful (14)

    "Don't walk - RUN - from this place"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Associate in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Senior Associate in Austin, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Gerson Lehrman Group (More than a year)

    Pros

    Opportunity to learn about different industries and talk to leading experts in those fields.

    Free coffee (as all offices have) if you are not caffeinated out of your mind you will have a difficult time dealing with the pace and demand.

    Free food catered on tuesdays (sub par... step it up!!).

    Cons

    Oh boy, where to begin. GLG has the most rotten culture of any company i have ever worked with. Do yourself a favor and apply to Dropbox, Indeed, Facebook... ANYWHERE but this place. Theres a reason this company likes to hire out of college: they seek out motivated, people-pleasing, perfectionist young professionals and squeeze every last drop out of them and then discards them, only to go back to the drawing board and hire brand new people. Not many employees stay more than a year.

    1. Work-life balance is atrocious, it has wrecked my mental health (i am seeing a therapist now) and has frequently caused me to neglect my personal needs. I habitually worked from 8:30 AM-6:30PM and then some more from home from 8:30PM -12:30AM. This was my routine every M-TH and it was expected by the company. Not sustainable at all, most people burn out and leave after a year because of this, among other reasons.

    2. There is a stark disconnect between the metrics demanded and the time required to meet those metrics. In order to meet base metrics i had to work 60+ hrs/week. There is an expectation (both verbalized and non-verbalized) to be online and connected at all moments and responsive to clients even late hours.

    3. Evaluation of employees is extremely metrics-based and definitely ignores/understates some of the other success factors that make an employee a valuable asset for the team, as well as previous contributions made to the company.

    4. along those lines, the way people are promoted here is EXTREMELY biased and subjective. The "career path" that is presented is not reflected in what actually happens when people move up.

    5. I have seen multiple people get pushed out of the company by leadership. Rather than work with them to improve on where they are lacking, they are not given the resources they need to succeed and there is very much a message that they are not wanted.

    6. Problems that are raised to HR or leadership are constantly brushed under the rug. Employees do not feel safe flagging issues due to retaliatory culture. This place is rotten to the core.

    7. I know of numerous cases where GLG has changed employees compensation WITHOUT TELLING THEM. In some cases, payroll has erroneously deposited large sums of money into employees accounts and demands it back using threatening legal emails.

    7. Extremely individualistic culture. Everyone is pretty much just looking after themselves, either because they are drowning in work and trying to simply stay sane/afloat or because they are trying to make it up the ranks at whatever cost. Leadership does not care about its employees and exploits them to the limits of ethical behavior.

    8. Asolutely horrendous sustainability track record. This company does NOT care about the environment or its footprint and makes it completely obvious. Every time food is catered, hundreds of unused plastic cutlery (in packages) is just thrown out with no remorse. Facilities has received complaints about this and does nothing about it. This company makes it extremely obvious that it does not care about its employees or the planet.

    Advice to Management

    I hope you realize what you are doing to your employees, and that Paul Todd is earnest about changing the culture here because what I have seen and experienced at this company is extremely wrong. Change your culture, for starters, and you might improve retention. Realize that your workers are human beings. Stop burying issues and take responsibility, and hold managers accountable. HIRE MORE PEOPLE instead of working current staff to the bone. Also, work on your sustainability initiatives and be more responsible.