Pew Charitable Trusts Reviews | Glassdoor

Pew Charitable Trusts Reviews

Updated April 25, 2017
182 reviews

Filter

Filter

Full-time Part-time

182 Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date

Pros
  • This is a place that values work/life balance (in 32 reviews)

  • Smart people and great benefits (in 34 reviews)

Cons
  • Senior management continues to micro-manage activities, despite our size (in 15 reviews)

  • It is a culture of fear in which people are scared to do or try anything (in 7 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (7)

    "Toxic and racist environment"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Payment Services in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Payment Services in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Pew Charitable Trusts full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Benefits are great and hours are fine if you request and are approved for flex time.

    Cons

    We recently had a CFO from the Washington Post who only hired her Washington Post co-workers for high positions. She screwed me out of a proper bump in salary. Luckily, she only stayed at Pew for about a year and a half and is gone now. Next, the work environment / co-workers are VERY racist. The majority of the people will walk past a colored person while looking at the floor, ceiling, or walls and not greet you, but, when they see someone of their own color, they drop what they're doing, go out of their way, and say hi. STAY AWAY FROM THIS RACIST COMPANY that doesn't like to promote anyone.

    Advice to Management

    Learn to congratulate your co-workers for their hard work and learn how to promote with PROPER pay bumps. If I could rate this company with no stars, I WOULD!!


  2. Helpful (7)

    "What Ever Happened to Research Conducted by Researchers"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Research Officer in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Research Officer in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Strong organizational history, good benefits.

    Cons

    Based on its history and my interview, I assumed Pew placed greater value on formal research training. I find myself all too often having to cede discretion to lawyers and MBAs. Even topics like consumer finance must be studied as a rigorous decision science. Not sure if this is common across Pew or just localized to my group, but its jeopardizing the integrity of our research and needs to end.

    Advice to Management

    Provide greater autonomy to your PhD researchers. Lawyers and MBAs play critical support roles, but do not have the necessary training to effectively lead research studies.


  3. Helpful (12)

    "Potential for greatness"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Associate in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Senior Associate in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Pew Charitable Trusts full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    The benefits package, including retirement contributions and matching, healthcare options, and vacation accrual are incredibly generous.

    Cons

    An incredibly toxic work environment with low morale. Out-of-touch senior management, unjustifiably arrogant and patronizing middle management, and defeated and demoralized staff.

    Advice to Management

    Pew has great name recognition and recruitment is not a significant obstacle for the organization.

    The organization's greatest shortfalls are retention, personnel management, and employee empowerment. Throughout my career, I have never encountered an environment where so many smart and talented people are gathered under one roof yet lack any empowerment to do what they do well. Staff at the Senior Associate level and below are treated as inept lackeys. There is a condescending and patronizing culture that permeates and it will continue to drive away qualified, passionate, and enthusiastic staff.

    The CEO actually claims that staff leaving for other organizations is a compliment to Pew, as it speaks to the quality of employees within the organization. This is horribly misguided and Ms. Rimel (and other senior leadership) need to shift retention to their primary concern.

    Having spent a great deal of time in Washington, I fully understand that arrogance is a part of this town's professional culture. In most other environments, however, there's at least some degree of justification for that arrogance. Middle management at Pew are their own biggest fans and go out of their way to make sure staff know how great they (think they) are. Belittling those that fall below you in the Pew hierarchy is the norm.

    The organization identifies many great environmental and government performance areas for research and other work, and there is potential for incredible and profound impact, but there is a stagnancy and toxic culture that don't show any signs of changing.


  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. Helpful (2)

    "Great co-workers, resources to succeed."

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

    I have been working at Pew Charitable Trusts full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Work with smart, motivated colleagues. Resources and contacts to change policy. Excellent communications and public relations department. Sterling Pee reputation helps open doors.

    Cons

    Large organization with lots of bureaucracy. Internal policies and procedures often changing and confusing. Every team is different and management is not consistent across organization.

    Advice to Management

    Trust the smart people you have hired to make decisions.


  6. Helpful (3)

    "Learned a lot, was ready to move on"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Associate in Philadelphia, PA
    Former Employee - Associate in Philadelphia, PA

    Pros

    Company offers great benefits
    Worked with smart co-workers

    Cons

    hard to advance in your career
    leadership is not transparent, leading to lots of speculation


  7. Helpful (6)

    "Worth a look"

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

    I have been working at Pew Charitable Trusts full-time

    Pros

    Located in a great part of town with easy metro commute.
    Interesting and meaningful policy work that really makes a difference.
    Building has lots of windows and beautiful art.
    Great benefits and work-life balance.
    The company brand is impeccable, and I am proud to be associated.

    Cons

    Some chaos related to rapid growth over the past several years.
    The quality of your life depends directly on who you report to. Unfortunately, Pew hasn't yet figured out how to select the best managers to guide and support their team members.
    Senior management continues to micro-manage activities, despite our size.
    Very little opportunity for development within the organization.

    Advice to Management

    Reduce the hierarchy of so many channels that must approve every bit of work.
    Provide for more advancement within the company.
    Hire managers for their ability to manage people effectively.


  8. Helpful (3)

    "A culture of obsequiousness"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Research Associate in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Research Associate in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Pew Charitable Trusts (More than a year)

    Pros

    Smart, friendly co-workers. Beautiful office. Potentially interesting work.

    Cons

    It all depends on the team you are in, but my experience was that a bad manager can ruin the scope of policy research and squash interesting, innovative ideas. In order to conduct a panel discussion or convene a meeting, the research needs to be innovative and often times the research is not adding anything new to the dialogue. Managers are incredibly obsequious all the way up the chain to the CEO. Often, managers are not honest about how well their project REALLY is doing and instead concoct misleading narratives about their successes.

    Advice to Management

    Create a better to find and reward innovative talent that are already employed within Pew.


  9. Helpful (5)

    "Do not waste your time."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Operations in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Operations in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Pew Charitable Trusts full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good benefits, although they hardly make up for the entire package. The only thing this place is good for is to have the same on your resume.

    Cons

    No work life balance, lower than average compensation, zero room for growth, management stinks, entire group/team I worked in has since left. Only 4 people still there out of the 30 or so in my dept. that were there when I left. What does that say? Environment is catty, people act like they are entitled, interoffice romances (that's one sure way to get promoted). There are few people that are solid, and they are still trying to get out!

    Advice to Management

    A CEO has been there for 30+ years nothing is going to change.. so advice likely won't be listened to.


  10. Helpful (8)

    "Do your homework"

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

    I have been working at Pew Charitable Trusts (More than a year)

    Pros

    I get to work with some incredibly smart people in an incredibly collegial environment - everyone is so willing to share their expertise and skills. You're expected to learn quickly and develop deep understanding of new content areas fast, and the standards for the work are incredibly high. If you want a crash course in non-academic policy research, you'll get that at Pew.

    Cons

    Unfortunately, not every department is like mine. I'm fortunate to be under a great director, but I know there's some awful ones that actively promote an environment of distrust and blame. If you're seriously considering a research job at Pew, you probably have some connections to the organization through your network. Use them to dig deep into who's running the team. There's some people you'll want to stay away from, and others you'll love to work for.

    And of course, it's too bad that I know I'll have to leave in another year or two in order to move up. From what I've seen, I'd be happy to stay in my dept if there were opportunities for advancement, but I know sticking around would be shooting myself in the foot in terms of career development and lifetime earnings.

    Advice to Management

    Focus on making sure that everyone in management is actually good at managing. It's too bad that the experience of working at Pew varies so much across departments.


  11. Helpful (8)

    "Senior Associate"

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

    I worked at Pew Charitable Trusts (More than a year)

    Pros

    The name only. Good benefits.

    Cons

    It's a place where you are constantly made to feel bad about yourself and the directors can treat you like a punching bag without any recourse for bad behavior. Everything I read on Glassdoor before I took the job was true and then some.

    Advice to Management

    Get rid of the incompetent, redundant, dead weight (most in director positions managing senior associates and officers). Infuse the culture with one of positivity and empowerment.


Showing 182 of 187 reviews
Reset Filters