Sotheby's Reviews | Glassdoor

Sotheby's Reviews

Updated November 17, 2017
144 reviews

Filter

Filter

Full-timePart-time

2.9
StarStarStarStarStar
Rating TrendsRating Trends
Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Sotheby's President and Chief Executive Officer Tad Smith
Tad Smith
33 Ratings

144 Employee Reviews

Sort: PopularRatingDate

Pros
  • The opportunity to learn about every aspect of art business and meet with big people in the art world (in 9 reviews)

  • fine art, fast paced work environment, and lovely surroundings; for the most part, talented and passionate coworkers and peers (in 8 reviews)

Cons
  • Very low pay but that's expected in the industry (in 21 reviews)

  • Long hours, unrealistic requirements, some staff less civilised than others (in 11 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Amazing company"

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

    I worked at Sotheby's part-time

    Pros

    high profile clients, great work environment

    Cons

    competitive, you eat what you kill


  2. "Foster Intern"

    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
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Sotheby's part-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Provide mass communication skills as an intern.

    Cons

    Working hours are crazy, and late night work everyday.

    Advice to Management

    more respect for the employee's private hours

  3. Helpful (2)

    "RUN!"

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

    I worked at Sotheby's (More than a year)

    Pros

    Seems like a sophisticated place to work based on the brand / name.

    Cons

    The culture is competitive and backstabby, no matter which department you are in. Managers do not have training, are competitive with their own employees. They do not set their employees up to succeed, Values are absent and / or not exercised.

    Advice to Management

    Train your managers. HR should building incentives to help employees, not just protect the institution. Define your core values.


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Sotheby's: Making rich people richer since 1744"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Administrator in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Administrator in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Sotheby's full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Great benefits, nice office, name recognition on resume. I worked with a great team, for the most part, who are all very dedicated to their work.

    Cons

    Antiquated systems, poor advancement prospects regardless of department, nepotism at all levels, work-life balance is nonexistent, poor job design, terrible organizational culture (built on entitlement and bullying), very high turnover rate for non-officer level employees

    Advice to Management

    Invest in culture building and IT systems. You can't sustain a business solely on the idea of making money and expect employees to stick around for the long term.


  5. "Great people, strange culture"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Trainee in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Trainee in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Sotheby's full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    fine art, fast paced work environment, and lovely surroundings; for the most part, talented and passionate coworkers and peers

    Cons

    haughty, pretentious attitude and nepotism, over reliance on manual input systems for archival work, which is not efficient


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Unfamiliar upper management and no training priority"

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

    I worked at Sotheby's full-time

    Pros

    Amazing exposure to Clients and beautiful art worldwide.

    Cons

    Managers are so pressed and stressed out that they cannot effectively communicate to their respective team(s). They expect you to know everything and nothing all at once. Unrealistic!

    Advice to Management

    Learn to delegate and check in on your team(s) more.


  7. Helpful (3)

    "HR"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Sotheby's full-time

    Pros

    Interesting and challenging work; surrounded by beautiful objects

    Cons

    Management is ineffective. Bullies

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Floater Program - Unparalleled Learning Experience"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY

    I have been working at Sotheby's full-time

    Pros

    Upon graduating from college, I interviewed for and was subsequently hired to join the floater program. This is a unique and exciting opportunity at Sotheby's that allows you to learn about the company and eventually find the department that matches your interests and skill set to the company's needs. In my positive experience as a floater, the first few months allowed me to interact with interesting and eclectic clients as well as learn from highly intelligent and passionate specialists who I am fortunate to call my colleagues. Everyone's timeframe as a floater varies, which goes to say the rate of progression is highly attributed to your dedication and motivation. Sotheby’s provides you with a plethora of resources to utilize, including a very knowledgeable and experienced HR department comprised of individuals who are absolutely happy to help guide you. The instance that most stands out to me is when I expressed my initial concern about the ambiguous nature of the floater program to the hiring manager, who was extremely responsive and personally called me while I was traveling out of the country to offer her insightful and assuring advice. Since then, I’ve found my experience in rising from a floater to securing a full-time position to be nothing but extremely pleasant. After a few months of diligent work and learning the company values, I was successfully hired to fill an assistant position that I believed would allow me to continue growing and learning, and also strategically place me in the correct direction towards my desired career path. In addition to the unbelievably notable artwork that rotates through our galleries, what initially drew me and ultimately happily keeps me here is the extensive and powerful network, both internal and external. Unsurprisingly, the company’s reputation and ability to continually evolve to stay on top of the market is unparalleled, attracting only the best, and therefore lending to an absolutely thrilling time to be a part of the Sotheby’s team.

    Cons

    I would say the two biggest cons of starting as a floater are the lack of formal training and the opacity of the company hierarchy. Due to the nature of the more qualitative work, you are tested by your ability to learn quickly on the job, as well as execute in a professional manner. This can seem daunting at first, but I quickly found that my colleagues are wonderful in regards to always being available to answer any questions.


  9. "Great Opportunities"

    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
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Sotheby's full-time

    Pros

    Great opportunities - I started as a temp and within a couple months I was able to get a full time position, everyone was really supportive and the temp position really helped me learn about the people and how the company worked before jumping into a full time position
    Great colleagues - everyone wants to be here and is always really willing to help out
    Great environment - past paced environment but very positive and exciting especially during sale season

    Cons

    There were several interviews required in the interview process


  10. "Administrator"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Sotheby's full-time

    Pros

    Inspiring atmosphere, interesting people, fast-paced

    Cons

    Department heads can be demanding


Showing 144 of 165 reviews
Reset Filters