Pandora Media Reviews | Glassdoor

Pandora Media Reviews

Updated September 21, 2017
210 reviews

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3.7
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Pandora Media CEO Tim Westergren
Tim Westergren
60 Ratings

210 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • The work/life balance of Pandora cannot be matched -- speaking from the design side of things (I hear sales isn't so lucky) (in 41 reviews)

  • Great culture and genuinely a great place to work (in 32 reviews)

Cons
  • Work/Life balance can suffer at times (in 6 reviews)

  • The opportunity to make significantly more money in the Bay Area is everywhere (in 8 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Love the people and work, but structure can be frustrating"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales
    Current Employee - Sales
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Pandora Media full-time

    Pros

    -People
    -Work/Life Balance
    -Company focuses on diversity and inclusion
    -Established brand

    Cons

    -Lots of changes in company, but hopefully its for the better
    -The changes in team structure don't always make sense
    -Sometimes feel like you're punished for performing well, needs to be fixed


  2. "Campaign Specialist"

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

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

    Pros

    Amazing environment. The people are fun to work with and the office is welcoming and fun. Great work/life balance and fun times in the office.

    Cons

    The role can be a bit boring and Campaign Specialists do not get as much recognition for their work as they should.

    Advice to Management

    Reward those who are doing well.

  3. "Amazing people, horrible HR"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Project Manager in Oakland, CA
    Former Employee - Project Manager in Oakland, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    The work/life balance of Pandora cannot be matched -- speaking from the design side of things (I hear sales isn't so lucky). The team I worked on was amazing, believed in personal and professional growth, and kept 1:1's consistent to make sure I was heard. Specific pros include:

    • Great management training
    • Location to public transit / food options
    • Work/life balance
    • True transparency from the top down on why decisions are made
    • Amazing diversity
    • Awesome social "groups" to meet others outside of your team

    Cons

    The human resources department is so worried about not offending a single person, that they don't intervene with the intense amount of cyber bullying. The entire company works within a communication chat system for both work and hobbies (team updates / comic books / gaming / buying-selling item / etc). Within both sections of communication, I can name, off the top of my head, 10+ examples of team members publicly bashing other team's hard work, as well as employees bashing one another's personal opinions. HR seemed to care less, as most of them remained unsubscribed to these public channels because "they were too negative." The strongest part of the HR team is their on-boarding process and their commitment to diversity.

    Advice to Management

    Require HR to be more hands on to avoid internal turmoil. Other than that, continue doing what you do well!


  4. "A Trainwreck"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Oakland, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Oakland, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Pandora Media full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    The people are cool for the most part.
    In-office concerts are fun.
    Free snacks.
    Undercover WFH is good.

    Cons

    There are meetings about having meetings about meetings at this place. Worst part about this is 90% of them are covered in emails that no one reads.

    Senior management is clueless and scatterbrained. That translates to finger-pointing and high-school-like gossiping.

    The product is years behind its competitors and most employees are too full on the kool-aid to attempt to get ahead of the curve.

    Career growth is non-existent.

    Innovation is frowned upon. Ideas are encouraged but responses are almost always within the vein of "we've never done that so we can't do that."

    The office politics here are like the first half of "Mean Girls" without any of the comedy.

    Management changes direction regularly and the market share is decreasing exponentially - yet they are convinced it'll magically turn around without any innovation.

    Advice to Management

    Clean house with senior management and pull in real leaders who have a clear strategy and can rally the troops.


  5. "Long time Panda"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Marketing in Oakland, CA
    Current Employee - Marketing in Oakland, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Pandora Media full-time

    Pros

    - Employees are passionate about music across the board. Many are musicians themselves.
    - Transparent leadership - as transparent as you can be with a publicly traded company.
    - In my experience, micromanagement is not a thing. Employees are trusted to get their work done, wherever and however they can.
    - Great office space in Oakland, and in all of the major hubs (NYC, Chi, Santa Monica).
    - People-first culture. Lots of opportunity for career growth.
    - PERGS - awesome hobby groups that the company supports.
    - Best culture I've ever been a part of. Amazing people.

    Cons

    - The direction/vision for our future, and how to get there, is not clear at the moment.
    -Lots of leadership changes and turnover over the last 18 months, including layoffs.
    -Lack of investment in infrastructure.
    -People work in silos at times, and folks trip over themselves when it comes to cross collaboration.
    -Process heavy in a way that can make us a day late/dollar short.
    -Our product needs to differentiate itself more from competition and invest more into CE/Auto.
    -Lots of passing of the buck / no point people.

    Advice to Management

    Take care of your people. Praise publicly, give negative feedback privately. Figure out how people can work across departments more easily.

    You're losing great people at a fast clip. Invest in the culture, and invest in getting the product into the hands of millennials (campus marketing).


  6. "Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Oakland, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Oakland, CA
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Pandora Media full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great people, collaboration across departments, independence

    Cons

    Business objectives and strategy are always changing. Exec team has changed a lot in the last two years, which has caused inconsistent messaging and a lot of restructuring within departments.


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Great company, poor management culture"

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

    I worked at Pandora Media full-time

    Pros

    Great company, product, leadership team and perks. A great mix of talented and kind people.

    Cons

    Tenured managers lack skills to develop and coach talent. West / East coast team cultures are very different which creates miscommunications and impact on productivity. Very limited career growth opportunities.

    Advice to Management

    Focus on building better managers as coaches and leaders across the board.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Designer"

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

    I worked at Pandora Media full-time

    Pros

    The overall company has a great culture and a strong product.

    Cons

    My department did not embody the company culture—it operated in a way that made it feel like a different company. The company overall rewards extroverted, outspoken leadership which can overshadow people who are more quiet, introverted leaders. This results in some of the better leadership being overlooked for people who talk a big talk but can't back it up.


  9. Helpful (2)

    "Don't Be Fooled - Not a Great Company"

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

    I have been working at Pandora Media full-time

    Pros

    - Decent work/life balance.
    - Culture is great, and you get to work with many people your own age.
    - Free snacks.

    Cons

    So many to list, but I'll do my best.

    - No obvious career path for many roles in the company. Nobody seems to want to fix that. You get in your role then have to wait for a manager to quit, then basically beg to be a manager, while fighting with all of your coworkers for the same role.
    - People are promoted for having "positive attitudes" but have no idea how to do their job. They end up being lazy managers that have zero accountability and are just mouthpieces for upper management.
    - A lot of cross-teams don't like to play along and will often give you attitude or push work back on to you.
    - Upper management hides many truths from employees, pretending that everything is positive. Lies are made up to cover up truth.
    - Compensation is not great, but supposed to be balanced with stock. Take a look at the stock price and tell me if that is supposed to cover the rest of a reasonable salary to live in the Bay Area
    - The Pandora name was something to be proud of once, but now seems very antiquated. What is the company doing to stay relevant?

    Advice to Management

    Hire and promote people based on merit and hard work, not just "yes-people" that will do whatever you tell them to do. You need people who are Strategic in leadership positions.


  10. "Great company culture"

    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 Pandora Media full-time

    Pros

    Lots of enthusiasm around the product
    Company social events
    Snacks, rotating kegs, bagel Wednesdays, pizza at big meetings

    Cons

    No 401k match
    Uncertain long-term prospects against competitors

    Advice to Management

    Make sure to draw energy from the bottom up - people want to make changes!


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