Shalom Baranes Assoc Reviews | Glassdoor

Shalom Baranes Assoc Reviews

12 reviews

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3.2
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Shalom Baranes
3 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. "Review"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • 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

    I have been working at Shalom Baranes Assoc full-time

    Pros

    Relaxed environment and great people

    Cons

    Minimal professional feedback and little room for professional advancement


  2. "Good company overall"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • 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 Shalom Baranes Assoc full-time

    Pros

    Nice colleagues with a fairly laid back management approach in that you are not micromanaged if you don't need to be.
    Fun family events and firm funded team sports (volleyball)

    Cons

    Employees are largely left in the dark in terms of performance, whether good or bad. No real system for performance reviews where salary increases can be discussed or where you get feedback from superiors.
    The unspoken work ethic is the longer something takes, the better you are at your job when the opposite is usually always true.

    Advice to Management

    Adopt Federal Employee holiday/weather policy (most employees' family and friends in the area adhere to it, especially those with children).
    Recognize good performance with regular and informed reviews and salary increases that outpace the cost of living.

  3. "super relaxing schedule"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • 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

    This company is definitely friendly and relaxing. Good Spot, also.

    Cons

    The management structure is off-road.

    Advice to Management

    could add more positions like Job Captain.


  4. "Designer"

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

    I have been working at Shalom Baranes Assoc full-time

    Pros

    high profile projects, emphasis on design, friendly and knowledgeable staff, office makes effort to continuously improve itself

    Cons

    some management is disorganized, young staff is not used to its full capacity, most of the office has never worked for a design office before and doesn't understand that it can't be run like a standard production firm

    Advice to Management

    give performance reviews


  5. Helpful (4)

    "Depressing"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Shalom Baranes Assoc full-time

    Pros

    High profile projects with forward thinking clients, challenging programs and conditions, cutting edge (for DC) large scale designs.

    Cons

    It is one of the saddest working environments of an architectural firm many have seen. The firm invests next to nothing in its employees, and they are seen as expendable seat-fillers. Those on the design side (which is kept very far away from the production side) trace the work of the design principles day and in and day out, while the production people toil on decades old software, and even more obsolete practices. The firm rewards poor behavior in its more experienced staff, and ignores the skill sets of it's younger staff. (If you can find any.) The pay is historically substandard, and beyond that, there is little to no office culture.

    Advice to Management

    Learn to invest in employees, know their skill sets and apply them accordingly. Give staff a sense that they are seen, give them current generation tools and software in order to learn and grow. Stop rewarding poor behavior among management. Include staff in the actual workings of the firm. Educate.


  6. Helpful (3)

    "Do not know where you stand"

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

    I have been working at Shalom Baranes Assoc full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    They do very nice work.

    Cons

    They rarely take employees concerns into account. Performance reviews are non-existent, so there is no way for you to move up.


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Great Projects, lack of Communication and Disorganization"

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

    I worked at Shalom Baranes Assoc full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great projects- probably the best design work happening in the DC area. You will work with knowledgeable people and atmosphere is relaxed

    Cons

    Very top heavy, lack of communication and extremely disorganized. Essentially your happiness really depends on who you are working with. Some PMs are cool, while others abusive. Limited training once you have the initial microstation training. If you are right out of school I don't recommend working here...there's no intern development- you either sink or swim.

    Advice to Management

    COMMUNICATE! and stop being passive aggressive.

  8. Helpful (2)

    "Projects, Projects, Projects"

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

    I have been working at Shalom Baranes Assoc full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    High profile projects mainly in Residential, Office, and Government with specialties in historic building modernization and urban district master-planning. The firm has purposefully focused on local work, and many of the projects have catalyzed the redevelopment of neighborhoods around DC.

    Strong client relationships and the understanding of the value of design has resulted in consistently strong projects. Most of the time, the work-life balance is exceptional, and the hours are semi-flexible.

    As others have said, the office location is great for lunch and happy hours, and the new office is bright and open.

    Cons

    The office is planning to transition to BIM and advanced 3D modeling, but this has not happened yet.

    The firm should develop mentoring and skill development programs to promote talent from within. Studio culture is limited, and it is difficult to learn more about other projects in the office.

    Commuting to Georgetown can be annoying depending on where you live, but the majority of the firms in the city are located in the same area.

    Advice to Management

    As others have said, increasing transparency and developing talent from within are important. Think about building an office culture, which could be as much as cross-pollinating the project teams.

    Giving more employee feedback than an annual review would be nice, and asking for more feedback on staff management would probably be helpful.

    Promote the firm. Considering the breadth of projects, past and on-going, SBA deserves much more recognition.


  9. Helpful (3)

    "Not OK"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • 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 Shalom Baranes Assoc full-time

    Pros

    High-profile projects that invest in designs. They have a few but very good designers. It’s a plus if you get to work with them. But it’s a hit or miss situation, as the other reviewer says.

    Their new office provides a spectacular view over the Potomac river, but I must say their location (Georgetown) is rather inconvenient for access.

    Cons

    The staff management is very poor. They hire and fire staffs on basis without careful planning and assessment – which is a lack of responsibility on their part - and results in an insecure work environment. No office culture, no mentorship nor growth potential. No performance review. Clear division between the design and production teams, so you are likely to get stuck in one side rather than gaining transverse experiences. Top heavy and no transparency. Like the other reviewer said, it's a 100+ person firm with a management that runs like a small family business. No prospect for those who are outside the small circle. It is stuck with MicroStation and the traditional 2D drafting, and it doesn't seem to move towards BIM or Revit anytime soon.

    Advice to Management

    Hire people carefully and responsibly. Where there is no mentorship, there is no growth of the employees, which means there is no future of the company. Consider your employees as assets rather than expendables.


  10. Helpful (4)

    "Not a place to grow professionally"

    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

    Pros

    They run on projects of a massive scale which foster tremendous change in DC.

    Cons

    You will find yourself spending much time either looking for a new project to be on, or running in circles on the project you are "working" on while there. The office seems to give more priority to who you know than what you know. The structure is extremely disorganized, and forces people to try to stay on projects by networking. Their system is very inefficient, and they are not as competitive as they should be for the size of projects they receive. They seem to prefer people who will be complacent and low key. Generally they keep their employees pay low, but the company's revenue is high comparatively.

    Advice to Management

    Shalom seems somewhat out of touch with the workings of his firm. His business style is very hands off. Some insecurities within the management seem to keep the right people from reaching the right places in order to allow the firm to produce the highest quality results possible.