Intellectual Ventures Reviews | Glassdoor

Intellectual Ventures Reviews

Updated June 7, 2017
111 reviews

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3.0
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Nathan Myhrvold
63 Ratings

111 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • IV compensates fairly, work / life balance is appropriate and benefits are competitive (in 13 reviews)

  • The company is full of really, really smart people (in 16 reviews)

Cons
  • Not all policies apply to everyone; decision-making by top management takes a while (in 7 reviews)

  • Career path after intellectual ventures is very niche (in 4 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "A great place - growing, but keeping it together."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Bellevue, WA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The environment is very team oriented. Everyone is encouraged (and does) share information willingly, and looks to see their peers and leadership succeed. Typically a very positive environment.

    Cons

    Project preplanning is not always there - new projects come up at the last minute, and are needed right away.

    Advice to Management

    Keep doing what you're doing, and remember the people helping to build the company. Good leadership is crucial, but people to follow the leaders are required. The happier they are, the happier the company is.


  2. "Challenging, Smart, leading"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director in Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Director in Bellevue, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Smart people, interesting problems, leading edge company tackling issues in invention and innovation; very entrepreneurial, with support to try new things; above average compensation

    Cons

    see above - the downside of that is that decision making tends to be distributed, silos are created and exist throughout, people can be arrogant, and there can be a lot of pressure; if this environment is not for you, then you will find it stressful

    Advice to Management

    Decide on a few key principles and stick to those - and communicate
    Decide how decisions will be made and stick to that - and communicate
    Communicate


  3. Helpful (1)

    "Been here 5 years, growing pains have lead to improvements in leadership"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - IT Infrastructure in Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - IT Infrastructure in Bellevue, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Intellectual Ventures full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Work life balance, compensation, location, new leadership in the last couple of years, I get to work on a lot of different things, and I feel supported and appreciated by the new IT leadership. Lots of clubs, HR has good employee focused programs, peer lead technical training, and the people support and help each other.

    Cons

    STG (IT) went through a really difficult period due to poor leadership but that changed at the beginning of 2012. Some people still get stuck in the old defensive mindset and need to be shaken out of apathy. Makes getting things done take longer. Recent layoffs due to growing too quickly.

    Advice to Management

    Stop trying to turn success into a process and just support what works.


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Excellent place to workplace"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Network Engineer in Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Network Engineer in Bellevue, WA
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Intellectual Ventures full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Upward mobility, exciting environment, great team. Everyone is working to change the world together. It has been fun to watch this company grow.

    Cons

    If you are too specialized, this environment will be challenging. It is a smaller company so many people wear more than one hat.

    Advice to Management

    Keep improving


  5. "Great place to work, fun people"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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

    Pros

    Great people and environment

    Cons

    Can't think of any Cons at this time


  6. Helpful (2)

    "I believe!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Bellevue, WA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at Intellectual Ventures full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    IV is fighting for the rights of inventors. It may not always get everything right, but IP and Inventions are important for the economy and IV is making a real difference.

    Cons

    It is sometimes tough to be around so many smart people and when the media tells it, it sounds horrible. But read beyond the hype and see the great things that IV does. It is not just about law suits but if we don't defend these rights, they are at risk and that hurts innovation.

    Advice to Management

    You have great leaders. Unleash and utilize them!


  7. Helpful (3)

    "Smart People, Great Environment"

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

    I have been working at Intellectual Ventures full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    I feel that the finance department has clear goals. We are given the necessary resources and freedom to work toward those goals. We are a very collaborative group who willingly solve problems together. Our executive leadership is transparent to the extent they are able regarding expectations, performance, achievements, failures and future aspirations.
    We are always looking at long term solutions that all groups can integrate with. We are a dynamic business with complex business practices. This keeps things interesting and exciting, especially when a finance job typically becomes stale and boring. IV compensates fairly, work / life balance is appropriate and benefits are competitive.

    Cons

    People outside of IV seem to form opinions of our business model quickly. I remind those that we are in the business of world changing innovation. If we do not protect our inventors ideas, then we are at risk of losing some of the most brilliant, innovative people in the world.

    Advice to Management

    You have a lot of talented, intelligent and seasoned employees who operate effectively in a complex organization. I believe the finance department operates very lean and extremely efficient. Maybe consider an award system to better align with the long term view of the business model. This could eliminate the risk of losing high performers during the periods where the pendulum is swinging the wrong way.


  8. Helpful (1)

    "Growing company"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Most all employees act respectfully
    Employees have potential to make recommendations that can positively impact company processes and performance
    Flexible work schedule (within reason & position dependent)
    Potential to take on tasks outside of official position job duties
    Compensation package is very competitive

    Cons

    Interdepartmental communication can be lacking
    Not a good place to work for those used to employment at conventional companies in which job-duties are position specific (e.g. "Jack of all trades" will be more successful)
    IT support has recently become more limited
    Seems to be becoming more "top-heavy" with management
    Still very much a start-up culture in the sense that processes and procedures and organizations are constantly in flux

    Advice to Management

    Improve the flow of communication between departments
    Do more 360 performance reviews for everyone (especially mid & upper level management)
    Limit re-orgs
    Establish and implement standard sets of processes and procedures that can be utilized in various organizations/departments but also in which each can supplement with additional info to customize for their group
    Before rolling out new processes or procedures, obtain input and feedback from those who would be most affected by the changes


  9. "My experience so far at IV in Finance ... Four years and counting"

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

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

    Pros

    IV is pioneering a new asset class and business model, so there is no well trodden path to simply follow what others have already done. This creates massive opportunity, but one needs to be a "go getter" and accept that things will fail from time to time which is at the essence of invention itself. However, the type of person that succeeds is one that is strong willed, inventive, persistent and can collaboratively work with others and clearly understand the strategy and translate that into tactical deliverables. From the leadership down everyone is hard working so don't expect to coast along ... its not that kind of place ... Also people who do well are those that grab responsibility and lead rather than being told what to do. The Finance management do a great job at keeping that balance which promotes opportunity to succeed.
    I can't think of a more invigorating and challenging place to work ...

    Cons

    IV is not as competitive "pay-wise" as the street so many good people have been poached. It's traditionally spread the compensation more broadly at year end, than being targeted to those that really make a difference and will commit to the long term.
    Given the state patent market, its feeling a little bit vulnerable now, but its poised to re-bound.

    Advice to Management

    Acknowledge the current state of the market and continue to streamline and trim, and lock-up the high performers as they are very important. Ensure groups are aligned into bringing more revenue deals, capital while having fun and complying with the rules.


  10. Helpful (2)

    "Great place to work, if you have the right attitude."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Bellevue, WA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Expectations are high, but if you like a challenge, you'll get all you can handle.
    It is never, ever, boring.
    You work with extremely smart and driven people.
    Salary compensation is average or above average, but the potential for additional income is huge.
    You work on interesting, and in some cases world-changing, technologies.
    Potential, on all fronts, is staggering.

    Cons

    Mostly senior and experienced people are hired to work here, so if you're looking for a typical 'career path' you won't find it.
    The business model is mostly in people's heads. Processes are not documented or well understood.
    Communication is an issue. Too many smart, driven leaders who don't really talk to each other, or their subordinates.

    Advice to Management

    Trust in the integrity, intelligence, and experience of your employees.
    Share the info!
    Have a strategic vision, articulate it, and then encourage the really, really smart people who work for you to build the processes to implement it.


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