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TinyCo Reviews

Updated Aug 8, 2018

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3.1
49%
Recommend to a Friend
TinyCo Chief Executive Officer Chris DeWolfe (no image)
Chris DeWolfe
0 Rating
  1. Helpful (13)

    "Talented Developers, Terrible Leadership"

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

    I have been working at TinyCo full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Highly skilled developers. The art, engineering, design, QA and community teams are all extremely talented and hard-working. The leads for each of these departments are fittingly talented and dedicated, too. Standard game industry perks apply: there are catered dinners, a well-stocked break room, and a furnished games room. Quarterly outings are organized for each department. Frequent happy hours and free booze, if that's your thing. I will say that the culture at TinyCo is one of the most friendly and welcoming I have ever worked with. Specifically, bigotry is not tolerated among the lower-level employees. This company is a safe-space for most minority groups as consequence. There are no sexist or homophobic "brogrammers" here. If you want to work in an environment with friendly, talented peers whom you can learn from, TinyCo may be a good fit for you.

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    Cons

    Poor and inconsistent leadership. The CEO changes his mind on a dime. Socially, he is a very likable guy, but as a leader he falls short. He micro-manages. He is not good at long-term planning. Instead of taking the opinions of employees under consideration when he disagrees with them, he will refuse to listen and invent his own reasons for that disparity. People who fall out of his favor are swiftly deposed. The Product Management team has also historically been so-so. Developers are underpaid. Raises are infrequent and pitifully small (typically 2% per year), so if you consider working here, negotiate a higher-than-average starting salary. Employees are often assigned new job titles and responsibilities without additional compensation. Company has a history of glorifying long hours, with little thought to work/life balance. The "peer bonus" system, which was initially created to reward outstanding work, has been gradually tailored to reward only those who stay late or do work outside of their own job. This results in rewarding understaffing, too. Also consider including required tools (min-spec machine, licensed software, Cintiq if you're an artist, etc.) in your initial contract, because this company is ridiculously stingy. Management has a history of promising necessary tools to their team without delivering. Same if you have need for ergonomic furniture, such as a comfortable chair or standing desk. I have seen employees with back injuries be denied standing desks unless they press the point, even if they have a doctor's note for one.

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    Advice to Management

    This company needs new leadership. Hiring producers to lead teams instead of product managers has been a great step in the right direction, but I still think the CEO contributes more harm than good to development. You need to appoint a different CEO, who can trust employees to do their jobs instead of micro-managing.

    TinyCo2014-05-15
  2. Helpful (12)

    "Good intentions, incredibly disorganized and frustrating to work for."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at TinyCo full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Such wonderful people who are all trying to make great games and great products. Fun products, great creative talents.

    Cons

    Extremely strange management. Their CEO is micro managing, and I've openly heard a PM brag about their high salary, but confess to not doing any work and "pretend to type" at their keyboard. Yet hard working artists and creatives are the first to go in the layoffs. Employees chastised for having "bad attitudes" when pushing back against unrealistic expectations.

    Advice to Management

    Consider trusting employees you hired to do their jobs, and appoint managers to employees who work with them on a day to day basis rather than someone on a completely different project. A lot of the time, the manager of an employee does not work with them and often has no idea what they do on a day to day basis.

    TinyCo2014-05-01
  3. Helpful (11)

    "Surprised TinyCo Survived 2013"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Product Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at TinyCo full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Free snacks, flexible work hours (10am -10pm instead of 7am - 7pm)

    Cons

    CEO thinks he is the next Steve Jobs, but in reality he is just an arrogant and greedy co-founder with no creative talent or management skills. There is not really any other "management" to speak of, just a bunch of minions who do whatever the CEO tells them to do. In 2013 TinyCo revenue dropped so significantly that the workforce had to be cut almost in half. This is due to two main problems; first, they don't know how to market the existing games and second, not a single new product was launched in 2013. All future hopes for the company rest on the launch of one new product that was supposed to launch 6 months ago but keeps getting delayed.

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    Advice to Management

    Find real management talent and try to be creative rather than just copying other successful games.

    TinyCo2014-01-05
  4. Helpful (7)

    "Backtracking, distrust, and broken process weigh TinyCo down."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee -  in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at TinyCo full-time

    Pros

    TinyCo provides benefits to employees that allow them to care for themselves effectively. When the collaboration works right the job can actually be fun. - A loose organizational structure and poorly defined roles means lots of opportunity to make of the job whatever you want, and to learn new skills. (No official training) - Projects are fast and ever-changing, you're unlikely to get bored. - Friendly free-speaking coworkers and a highly collaborative space. - Snacks provided. Catered dinner too, if you like to work late. - Health benefits, dental, vision, tax breaks for parking and public transportation. - Neat building in the financial district surrounded by yummy places to eat. - Drinking culture could be a pro, if you're into it.

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    Cons

    TinyCo is full of people who are well qualified to work at better jobs. Collaboration and trust is often soured by scores of indecisive management. - A loose organizational structure and poorly defined roles means stress, confusion, and constantly facing conflicting demands with only a vague idea of what takes priority. - There is bickering between people of authority and few arbitrators or official channels for decision making. Backtracking over decisions multiple times is not uncommon. - Broken process cause of many problems. - Between job stress, overwork, and feeling devalued, there is a high turnover rate. - CEO fluctuates between under-engagement and over-engagement with the employees. Often reluctant to trust the expertise of his employees / sometimes seems to have little understanding of what the employees responsibilities are. - CEO seems to want to be approchable and do some of the talking himself; as a result ends up saying many things that sound very nice but are not backed by actions. - Apparent distrust at the top seems to trickle down. - Drinking culture could be a con, if you like to do something else from time to time.

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    Advice to Management

    Hire more producers to cut the bickering short and prevent habitual backtracking. Focus more sharply on improving the process which is at the heart of many problems. Find some way to foster trust between those who make the things and those who tell them what to make.

    TinyCo2013-12-28
  5. Helpful (6)

    "Company in Quick Decline with Poor Management and Lack of Direction"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Product in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at TinyCo full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    - Free Dinners - Quality people at the lower levels of the organization - Talented Engineering, Art, & Product Teams - Upper Management has at least admitted to many of their shortcomings

    Cons

    - Upper management hasn't spent the time learning how to manage. Trying to catch up, but costing good employees in the meantime. - Companies direction changes about every 6 months - CEO micro manages and can't scale to run a company of this size - Recent inability to actually ship games - Promotions were almost non-existant for years until recently - Too many levels of organization for such a small company. 5 levels of Product, 3 levels for Art, etc. - Hours are ridiculous even for a mobile gaming company. Colleagues at similar companies laugh at the number of hours required by most employees. - Steadily bleeding employees and morale at all time low

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    Advice to Management

    Bring in someone more experienced to run operations of the company and have those good at creative and new game design actually work on game design. Focus on execution and actually moving games out the door.

    TinyCo2013-12-17
  6. Helpful (6)

    "No faith in the company, very superficial upper management"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
     
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at TinyCo

    Pros

    Great art folks, late night dinners and snacks and happy hour times.

    Cons

    Upper management has this "fratboy" mentality, So many unnecessary drinking parties. Very stingy with raises no matter how hard you work for the company. They don't have an idea with what they want creatively or what kind of identity they want for the company. Tribal mentality amongst workers, it almost has a high-school mentality of socialism. Mostly young, very few people with many years of experience. People's ideas are shot down just because they don't meet the company's status quo and instead will only go with what works with other companies or whoever kisses up the fastest

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    Advice to Management

    Try to treat everyone equally and don't be too loose with your rules. Too many folks say inappropriate near sexually-harassing things on the job and just because someone is attractive and demanding doesn't mean they are right for the job. Reward for hard work, it means the worker really wanted to do a good job for the company. Also if it doesn't look good in the beginning don't go with the project because every mobile company is doing the same thing! This company has the makings of a good company don't squander it all on booze, squander it in fostering good ideas, creativity and fun with the workers to inspire them not get them drunk and have them socially fight one another. Also when a supposed potential project comes up don't let anything out in the company until the deal is signed on the dotted line.

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    TinyCo2013-11-19
  7. "copied zynga"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
     
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at TinyCo

    Pros

    free food and drinks are there

    Cons

    lot of competition, and managment

    Advice to Management

    ship out

    TinyCo2013-12-08
  8. Helpful (2)

    "Was Great at First, But Then Became Meh"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at TinyCo full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    - Flexible work hours - Good benefits - Catered dinners - Friendly coworkers - Monthly happy hour events

    Cons

    - Too many meetings - Lack of tools - Too many PMs

    Advice to Management

    Have faith in your teams and the products that are being developed.

    TinyCo2013-10-30
  9. Helpful (3)

    "A "Networking Experience""

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee -  in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at TinyCo full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    *The people that aren't part of upper management. Absolutely incredible, everyone was so close and bonded well. *Daily Dinners *Lots of Happy Hour events

    Cons

    *Upper management which specialized in SELF interest and less about recognizing the people who REALLY do the work. *Management continues to Micromanage issues which ruined any sort of actual work efficiency. *Salary is a toss up, you have folks who get paid extreme amounts for their first job than you have senior level employees getting paid way less than they should.

    Advice to Management

    DO NOT! Non-nonchalantly brush off people who leave the company in masses as nothing to worry about. Clearly there is something wrong when people are leaving WEEKLY! Recognize people with actual industry experience as something of value instead of focusing on silly things like Seniority and EGO decisions as a more value. Trust your people, we took a long time to hire them why are we so good at driving them out?

    TinyCo2013-10-20
  10. Helpful (1)

    "Good friends, good connections, bad games"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Full Time Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at TinyCo full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    - Fun environment - Interesting coworkers - Catered dinners/stocked snack pantry

    Cons

    - Management exempt from responsibility/liability Prepare to be steamrolled by management, have no choice but to implement a bad idea, and then be blamed for their mistakes. It rolls downhill, even at this small company.

    Advice to Management

    Try to make good games, not let monetization lead game design. The management doesn't understand why people would voluntarily monetize in a game without a pay wall. It's a bad sign.

    TinyCo2013-10-22
Found 67 reviews