Pandora Media Reviews | Glassdoor

Pandora Media Reviews

Updated September 21, 2017
22 reviews

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2.0
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Pandora Media CEO Tim Westergren
Tim Westergren
3 Ratings

22 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. "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.


  2. 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.

  3. "Big Data Developer"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Oakland, CA
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Oakland, CA
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Pandora Media as a contractor (More than a year)

    Pros

    The office location is near to bart

    Cons

    Contractors are not treated well. They are not given proper desks to work and are not valued.

    Advice to Management

    Treat everyone equally.


  4. Helpful (5)

    "Software Engineer"

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

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

    Pros

    Lay back relax everyday, free fruit and soda, good view in workplace and good traffic. Free gadgets in vending machine.

    Cons

    Less money less impact, politic oriented, especially excellent people are leaving and the product is dying. If you met some bad colleagues, may force be with you :)

    Advice to Management

    Almost no management, engineering resources waste a lot. People should be able to transfer without making their manager feel ashamed.


  5. Helpful (5)

    "Company is a mess"

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

    I have been working at Pandora Media full-time

    Pros

    Great pay, all the comforts of a bay area tech company, cool office space

    Cons

    1) Inexperience executive leadership team. All first time folks at the helm of the company.
    2) No good strategy from pulling the company out of the free fall it is in currently
    3) Inexperienced people throughout the company getting promoted too fast and not able to deliver what they should be at the levels they are promoted to
    4) No 401K match
    5) Just went through a large round of layoffs 7% of workforce and most likely is the first of many more layoffs to come
    6) No real accountability for the leadership teams from maintaining financials to delivering products on time
    7) Internal systems not set up well and require a lot of manual work to get at information that should be readily available
    8) No solid manager training
    9) No collaboration between groups

    Advice to Management

    Hold all levels of management accountable for what they say they are going to do. Tighter controls of financials.


  6. Helpful (6)

    "Mixed bag"

    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 (More than a year)

    Pros

    Diverse group of people that are generally nice and helpful.

    Great life/work balance.

    Cons

    Seems like nice is valued more than competent. Very political environment.

    Culture of lax work output and quality.

    Super conservative, slow decision-making and confused leadership.

    Advice to Management

    There have been so many big changes and so much talk... the words don't match the actions trickling down.


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Sales & Marketing"

    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

    Great people, beloved product, evolving for the future

    Cons

    tons of pressure, matrixed organization, lack of transparency, conflicting objectives

    Advice to Management

    Practice what you preach. Actually enforce a culture of openness, transparency and team building rather than just talk about it. Ensure this culture is consistent across offices and not just maintained at headquarters. Make it easier to get things done, empower decision makers , and spend more time plotting out job responsibilities before posting head count. We are too lean top heavy!

  8. Helpful (5)

    "Overworked and Miss Managed"

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

    I have been working at Pandora Media full-time

    Pros

    Great kitchen in the New York Office. Employees are friendly and information flows quite well from upper management to the rest of the company. The relationship between Sales and Client Services is great compared to other companies Iv'e worked with.

    Cons

    The atmosphere tends to be very cutthroat and there is a huge aspect of pointing fingers if sales does not meet goals. Instead of learning from mistakes and moving past them, management records and gathers creating a log of errors that follows you around. Such as a permanent record in high school. This creates unhealthy relationships between CS and Sales pods and a negative outlook on Management in general. This goes hand in hand why 80% of all employees leave their place of work due to their supervisors.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to your employees and take advice from them as well. Make sure all parties in all relationships are happy because happy people are productive people.


  9. Helpful (5)

    "No Career Growth + Poor Compensation"

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

    I have been working at Pandora Media full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    nice offices, snacks, etc - superfluous perks.

    Cons

    Nepotism & favoritism run rampant, middle management is useless, non-competitive compensation, and absolutely no growth. As our team continues to work harder and are given more tasks, management hasn't made it clear how any of this work will actually help our career at Pandora.

    Advice to Management

    make a structure for growth instead of talking about it in our "growth and development plans"


  10. Helpful (3)

    "Performance Sales in Oakland"

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

    Pros

    Great brand, good operations and account managers.

    Cons

    Condescending, unhelpful and inexperienced middle management who are not interested in helping getting the sales mission accomplished for clients but rather just inflating their egos like a scene in a bad frat movie. If you aren't one of "them" it's unlikely you will succeed on the sales teams they manage.

    Advice to Management

    Stop promoting people who can't work internally with others much less clients.


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