PEAK6 Investments Reviews | Glassdoor

PEAK6 Investments Reviews

Updated October 18, 2016
119 reviews

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3.1
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PEAK6 Investments Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Matthew Hulsizer
Matthew Hulsizer
76 Ratings

119 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • The office space is impressive and can attract people to the company on its own (in 19 reviews)

  • Lots of good snacks, smart people (in 14 reviews)

Cons
  • work life balance is tough specially in technology area (in 4 reviews)

  • Upper management tends to be more ruthless than not (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (3)

    "Manager"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Manager in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Manager in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    good company to start your career.

    Cons

    work life balance is tough specially in technology area.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Aug 25, 2016 – CTO

    Thanks for taking a moment to review your experience at PEAK6! We’ve put a lot of effort into giving new hires lots of changes to grow and develop, so really glad to hear you think we’re a good fit ... More


  2. Helpful (11)

    "Great place to learn and move on"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Trader
    Former Employee - Trader
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    The training program was a highlight of my time at Peak6. It's a great firm to learn from and then take the skills elsewhere.

    Cons

    The negatives mentioned in these other reviews are all very real. There is a ton of micromanagement and very little input given to traders on changes at the firm level. Ostensibly innovation is encouraged but in truth new initiatives are rapidly shut down if they are not immediately profitable. Traders are consistently left in the dark on firm changes.

    Advice to Management

    Show some respect to your traders by giving them input on firm changes. I can tell you that morale on the desk is at an all time low.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Feb 13, 2017 – COO

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts on PEAK6. As you note, we do invest heavily in our training program and believe that it provides a great foundation for our traders to grow and develop at PEAK ... More


  3. Helpful (14)

    "Really look at the theme of negative reviews here"

    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
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments full-time

    Pros

    Similar to what a lot of people have mentioned about the office. Really large office space, kitchen, building, etc.

    Cons

    If you look at all the negative reviews, you'll see a recurring theme about management. This is sadly true. There is a lack of respect for employees, and you are continuously viewed as an asset or a liability. The money is sub par compared to industry peers, but it's really the culture that drives talented people away. Accept with a grain of salt whatever the company says. They will stick to their bread and butter trading strategies and the same managers will be in their positions for years to come. Also very little career opportunities since many ventures started by the company shut down soon.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Feb 13, 2017 – COO

    Thanks for posting – sorry to hear you didn’t have the most positive experience at PEAK6. I’m particularly disheartened to hear you feel there’s a lack of respect for employees. We work hard to ... More


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  5. Helpful (12)

    "Data-Driven=Micromanage"

    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

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments full-time

    Pros

    Good Salary, cool snacks, unique office space

    Cons

    Beware- "data-driven" = Micromanage. Revolving door at manager level. Arbitrarily appoint people management positions because of company tenure, NOT based on skill or background, creating an uneasy atmosphere of more jr. people managing more qualified employees.
    Terrible tech bottleneck, no clear technical direction, developers are always pissed their work gets scrapped on a whim when a partner changes their mind. Arrogantly/foolishly have a 6 month non-compete because, according to the tech leader, "our environment is so proprietary that after 6 months no one will be able to hurt us." Multiple failed ventures (Cardbucks, Bottlenotes, Achievement Asset Management) that pull employees out of their team and leaves the rest of the team to fill the gap and do the extra work. If you didn't start with them a while back or you're not connected to a major player there, you don't have a long future here.

    Advice to Management

    Stop selling micromanagement as a "data-driven, collaborative environment". Create an actual Org Chart and define manager's and teams vs. the ad-hoc plug and play that ultimately leaves huge gaps of work for remaining team members to pick up with no additional compensation or reward.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Aug 22, 2016 – CTO

    I’m genuinely sorry to hear that you had such a negative experience at PEAK6. It’s especially discouraging to hear that you feel you were micromanaged and that we weren’t thoughtful around providing ... More


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Challenging but rewarding place to work"

    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
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    PEAK6 is challenging but definitely rewarding. The company grows employees internally and often promotes from within rather than bringing external people in. This gives high performing employees opportunity to develop and move up within the company. PEAK6 also supports employee development and sponsors conferences, classes, etc.
    I like the fact that this is a small enough place where you can voice your opinion and ideas and actually be heard. It doesn't mean all your ideas will actually be utilized but at least there is a way to put them forward to management.

    Cons

    One of the negatives is that there is too much bureaucracy for a company this size.
    Sometimes it is hard to figure out who your boss is because you get directives from multiple sources and they are often conflicting.
    One other issue is the tech bottleneck which has gotten worse in recent years. It is hard to get things done and it is not clear on how to proceed to get your work prioritized.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to improve communication and collaboration between departments.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Jul 22, 2016 – CTO

    Really great feedback, so thank you for sharing. I’m very encouraged to hear that you feel that there’s a lot of opportunities for development and advancement for you at PEAK6. I appreciate your ... More


  7. Helpful (3)

    "Meh"

    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
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    The workspace is really nice, in a great part of the city, in a historical landmark.

    Cons

    The tech is substandard, the management isn't very good, the senior leadership aren't very nice.

    Advice to Management

    Empower your employees to make decisions without being constantly micromanaged and under budgetted.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Oct 5, 2016 – CTO

    Sorry to hear that you didn’t have the best experience at PEAK6. I wish we would’ve been able to get this feedback during your time here so we could learn from your experience. We strive to give ... More


  8. Helpful (6)

    "analyst"

    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
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Has bright and driven employees. Cool office space with food in kitchen. Daily excitement with trading and attempts to implement and leverage technology

    Cons

    Not open to new ideas. Hard to get a serious audience. Will ignore data that is inconsistent with prior beliefs.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    May 25, 2016 – CEO, Capital Management

    Thanks. We definitely have a fast paced environment and things move quickly. Sorry to hear you felt we’re not open to or don’t see the value in new ideas. As you might imagine with a business our ... More


  9. Helpful (1)

    "Great place to start your career"

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

    Pros

    Extensive on-board training and mentor program

    Cons

    Hard to know where to focus

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Apr 22, 2016 – President

    Good to hear — thanks. We have a pretty comprehensive training program, so glad to hear you found value in the program. And, if you have more insights on your comment about finding it hard to know ... More


  10. Helpful (4)

    "Challenging but rewarding place to work"

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

    Pros

    As many others have pointed out, this is a fast paced, high risk, high rewarding environment.

    PEAK6 has a great track record and reputation in the options trading industry, but they've also had success at launching new businesses, selling businesses, and fixing broken businesses.

    The office space is very impressive, and they have many nice perks (great health benefits, annual parties, poker tournaments, willingness to send people to conferences, stocked kitchen, Friday bagel days, etc).

    The reason I stay at PEAK6 is because of the people. Management has focused on improving the culture over the last few years and it's paying off. Is this the perfect place to work, no, but the perfect place doesn't exist. PEAK6 is constantly looking to improve the environment for their employees, and they reward those who put in the time and effort.

    They have sophisticated home grown trading technology that continues to get better with time.

    This firm is one of the best at managing risk, which is why they've been around for nearly 20 years and have managed to avoid blowing up.

    Cons

    This firm and industry are challenging to work in. Management demands that employees give their best, which makes this a place where lazy people can't hide (I actually think this is a pro).

    Long hours are required (so work life balance suffers at times).

    The org structure can make it feel as if you have numerous bosses at times (instructions and priorities coming at you from different directions).

    Communication continues to improve, but still has a way to go.

    Advice to Management

    Keep pushing your employees. It helps us all grow and become better individuals and professionals.

    Continue to diversify and identify additional business opportunities that employees can help operate, this is what sets PEAK6 apart from other traditional trading firms.

    Comp is an area where other firms may provide an advantage, so make sure you're paying the people you don't want to leave. Once they are gone it's too late.

    Make sure your top talent isn't at risk of burning out.

    Identify the disgruntled employees who are clearly unhappy, and help them find the door. The negative/unhappy people do nothing but complain and hold the team back.

    Advice to others -
    We all have choices in life, and where you work is one of them. For those that are still working at PEAK6 but are rating it low stars and complaining on glassdoor, please move on. You owe it to yourself to be happy.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Mar 30, 2016 – President

    Great review — thanks for the feedback! You hit on a number of important issues at PEAK6, and capture a number of things we talk about regularly. I love your last point around identifying people who ... More


  11. Helpful (1)

    "Open and encouraging environment"

    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
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Decent level of flexibility and independence is given to employees responsible for profit generation.

    Cons

    Sometimes high expectations are given without tangible support or guidance. Almost like a double-edged sword. Employee talent can be underdeveloped as they can end up spending an inordinate amount of time working on something less ideal just because it's useful for someone higher up.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Mar 30, 2016 – President

    Thanks for taking the time to provide a review about your time at PEAK6. It’s good to hear that you felt empowered. I agree that we have high expectations for people and we do want people to work in ... More



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