Starr Companies Reviews | Glassdoor

Starr Companies Reviews

Updated December 17, 2017
83 reviews

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3.0
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Starr Companies Chairman and CEO Maurice R. Greenberg
Maurice R. Greenberg
4 Ratings

83 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • Senior management does not seem to care about you and does not want to reward their employees for doing well (in 5 reviews)

  • Everyone is a scapegoat because the upper management is afraid to tell the CEO the truth (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "CAN'T GET OUT OF HERE FAST ENOUGH"

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

    I worked at Starr Companies full-time

    Pros

    Pay and benefits are comparable to the rest of the industry in New York City.

    Cons

    Culture in general is extremely stuffy, old fashioned, cold and aloof. Primary motivator is fear. Turnover amongst younger employees is high since most companies no longer believe that to get the most out of your employees you have to keep beat them along.

    Little to no opportunity for career advancement and promotion.

    The floor in general is depressing. Nothing is dynamic and no one is enthusiastic about what they're doing. There is no camaraderie or even a basic feel of a team between different departments. Condescending cliques abound including the groups of young men in their twenties who are sadly vying to be the next generation of arrogant, aloof and socially awkward Starr management.

    Top down management style. Your input as an employee, regardless of how much experience you have, is not sought after nor is it welcomed when offered. This is in spite of the fact that I was told this is why I was being hired (i.e. the extensive prior experience I brought to the table). Within the first month of being employed I saw numerous red flags with regard to how the unit I work in was being run. From agency relationship management (very bad) to certain underwriting guidelines that were begging for trouble, endless SELF created problems were everywhere. Whenever I tried to respectfully and constructively bring up these issues I was essentially told to shut up and sit down.

    Starr's culture is do or die, sink or swim, shut up and do your work. Certain issues that turned into huge problems could have been avoided if only the profit center was listened to. If a policy has a claim then it's a bad risk and should never have been written and you should have been able to predict that.

    Internal reporting capabilities are an embarrassment. Countless hours are spent collating data just to obtain basic information. I've worked for smaller companies that were light years ahead of Starr a decade ago.

    Chief Underwriting Officer was never an underwriter and always plays the role of a contrarian. No matter what you do it's never good enough and you can never give a satisfactory answer. Largely unsupportive.

    Several colleagues have told me that they have been chastised by their managers telling them, "Don't put things in writing."

    Advice to Management

    Please shut your office doors when yelling at employees or each other.

    Try hiring managers who are actually experienced in the product they are managing, who understand the agency side, what the forms mean and how they are interpreted and also what is usual and customary in insurance practice.

    Listen to the profit center when it's telling you what it needs to meet the goals you've set for it.

    Go business casual.


  2. "Good Company"

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

    Pros

    A good company with lots of recourses.

    Cons

    This company can be more influential.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Worst company to work for-- do not work here!!!!"

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

    I worked at Starr Companies full-time

    Pros

    There aren't many. It's 9-5 which is nice. Taking vacation is relatively easy. It's a decent learning experience (mostly learning what not to do to run a company).

    Cons

    Where do I start? Management is an utter disgrace. Many managers should not have that title and should not be allowed to manage. They micromanage and make employees' lives miserable and then wonder why you're not happy at your job. Some are insecure that those below them will succeed so they try to undermine them. When people try to complain about their managers, no one does anything to fix the problem. People at this company are generally very stupid, it was very hard to work with them. The pay is terrible. Senior management does not seem to care about you and does not want to reward their employees for doing well. HR does nothing with complaints.

    Advice to Management

    Put some money into infrastructure and in to training your managers so that people's lives aren't as miserable. They should pay their employees better so people want to stay at the company. Also, try to higher smarter people!!!


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Underwriting Assistant - The job you definitely don't want"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Underwriting Assistant
    Former Employee - Underwriting Assistant
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Starr Companies full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Jeans days, summer Fridays you often got to leave an hour early, long lunches are okay

    Cons

    Extremely boring and HR will tell you anything you want to hear to get you in the door. There is absolutely no "team" environment. People barely talk throughout the day unless its about two words on work. I was told that everyone hangs out after work, there's tons of company events, and its just a fun place to work in general. I was also told people quickly get promoted. It didn't seem like there was a path to promotion anywhere as there are absolutely no new responsibilities or chances to go above and beyond and coworkers in similar jobs had been in the same job for ages. Work is very slow (many days where I only had five minutes or work to do and I'm not exaggerating) and if you ask for more responsibilities or if you can help anyone else with anything you're scolded because you should be able to find things to do on your own. Employee reviews and goals were never given despite being told I'd get them many times. Employers don't even want to hear your goals because it's their job to set them, not yours. I wouldn't recommend this job to anyone ever.


  5. Helpful (4)

    "A nightmare lesson to be learned from."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Reporting Analyst in Phila, PA
    Former Employee - Reporting Analyst in Phila, PA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Starr Companies full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    They issue paychecks on time. If a holiday falls on a Monday, they let out early the preceding Friday. Everyone is on a first name basis.

    Cons

    This was a terrible place to work, and as long as I live, I'll never forget it for only that sole reason. I started here young and naively vulnerable in the corporate world yet very bright and highly motivated at the very beginning of my career. They took great advantage of all of this from me. Ever since, this company has become my exemplary model for where I DON'T want to work as well as the basis for all the workplace warning signs which I now recognize going forward. Stifling, intense corporate politics and unnecessary drama created a regularly drab and dismal atmosphere. Unprofessional management whose sole aim was to intimidate, undermine and demean their employees in exchange for needing their egos constantly stroked. No training offered for underwriting or administrative roles at all. Don't dare ask for training or assistance with anything otherwise you will be scolded & humiliated by upper management, and this will all be made into a public example among your department. Don't ever try to even slightly defend yourself from their insults and foul language, otherwise you will be perceived as a threat and threatened with being reported to HR. This is also what will happen if you try to suggest any good work-related ideas for the company. Corporate racism is rampant here-- minorities are not promoted to higher positions no matter how hard they work and how well they do; instead they watch their Caucasian counterparts vetted, promoted above them and easily groomed for management roles with no experience, training or even slight interest in promotion. At the very best, they'll offer you a "promotion" to a new title with more work/responsibilities and no salary increase. All of this is more than common at Starr. Management is infamous for making frequent threats, lies and broken promises to their employees. Greed, nepotism, under the table deals and criminal activity are also very common and quite blatant at this level. One manager I worked for was embezzling money directly from the company, He threatened and harassed anyone who was on to him. This place needs a serious audit by the IRS and an investigation by the FBI. To this day, one of the best decisions I ever made in my life was to leave this place, and I am happy to have been made wiser from this experience not have had such another horrible experience since.

    Advice to Management

    Get over your petty selves. Otherwise, quit your jobs and go work as prison guards.


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Not too bad commercial insurance carrier"

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

    I have been working at Starr Companies full-time

    Pros

    Nice people, cooperative work environment

    Cons

    Bad management, buddy-buddy recruitment, small version of AIG

    Advice to Management

    Stop following AIG


  7. Helpful (1)

    "It is a job"

    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

    I have been working at Starr Companies full-time

    Pros

    good money
    get your hands into many different aspects of the business
    a lot of room for growth

    Cons

    all about the business, the humanity is removed
    it is all numbers, work done does not matter
    everyone is in over there heads with the work pile up

    Advice to Management

    stop working 20 hour days

  8. "Employee Review - Senior Underwriter - London Office"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Underwriter in London, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Senior Underwriter in London, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Starr Companies full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    An entrepreneurial company where the right employees can make meaningful impact to company strategy and results.

    Cons

    It’s a lean organization which requires the best from its employees. This is a good thing but does separate the wheat from the chaff.


  9. "Great opportunity for the right person"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Underwriting Associate in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Underwriting Associate in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Starr Companies full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    They take care of people who take care of them. Not a lot of hand holding when it comes to training, so if you can prove you have what it takes to figure it out on your own, you're golden

    Cons

    If you need training wheels, not the place for you

    Rigid day to day - business dress in NYC office - could be more flexible

    Advice to Management

    Get a work from home policy in place


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Not great"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at Starr Companies full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    There aren't many. In the past a lot of freedom was given to employees, not so much anymore.

    Many staff are genuinely smart and knowledgeable about their fields but seem not to be utilised effectively by senior management.

    Cons

    -Nazi management style.
    -Neposistic hiring policy particularly poaching from AIG most of whom would not get jobs anywhere else.
    -Managers have built empires and unwilling to change.
    -More IT than insurance people.
    -Company does the bare minimum to satisfy stakeholders rather than look to be leaders in the industry.
    -Pay is poor compared to peers, bonuses poor and no share scheme to incentives employees for the long term.
    -Tends to hire mediocre people because they have less chance of leaving shortly after.
    -No ideas or growth plans from management.

    Advice to Management

    -Resign and give a competent management team a chance.


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