TransPerfect Director, Business Development Reviews | Glassdoor

TransPerfect Director, Business Development Reviews

Updated April 3, 2019
22 reviews

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Director, Business Development

3.6
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Phil Shawe
1 Rating

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Pros
  • "great opportunity to learn a lot from your project" (in 21 reviews)

  • "You will meet some great people" (in 41 reviews)

Cons
  • "Work/Life balance is terrible compared to most good sales teams" (in 70 reviews)

  • "long hours, no security for 6 months, management is awful" (in 81 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Great people, do what average people don't want to do"

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

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

    Pros

    If you like freedom, accountability and getting better, there is not a better place to work. From the top down, everyone is challenged to be best they can be and better than that tomorrow. It is that focus that allows even the entry level people to see ideas, make improvements and better service the client and the company.

    Cons

    Being told there are areas anyone can improve on is tough.

    Advice to Management

    Keep improving for your clients, employees and the industry


  2. Helpful (4)

    "Disaster"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Director of Business Development in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Director of Business Development in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Big Company with lots of resources

    Cons

    Terrible management
    Resources poorly utilized
    Frat House atmosphere

    Advice to Management

    Grow up

  3. Helpful (3)

    "Sales - Director, Business Development & Middle Mgmt"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Director of Business Development
    Former Employee - Director of Business Development
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at TransPerfect full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    TP offers an entrepreneurial opportunity to all sales people. You get the chance to make your own success.

    You will learn about a vast number of industries giving you the opportunity to see how different businesses function in the global marketplace.

    Many seasoned sales professionals to learn from and bounce ideas off of.

    Abundance of services to sell to a wide array of business units.

    Robust marketing efforts to aide you in the sales process.

    Ability to select your preferred internal business unit(s) for each project.

    Training has improved drastically.

    Opportunity to become an expert.

    Opportunity to elevate to a middle manager relatively quickly.

    Cons

    Company culture used to be one of the greatest pros about the company. With the lawsuit and court ordered sale process, the company culture has changed drastically with politics looming large instead of meritocracy.

    The company no longer has a clear strategic vision for various business units within given marketplaces that it once had. Perhaps this is also related to the court ordered sale or perhaps it is part of rapid growth.

    Be prepared to grind. Client retention is not always prioritized.

    Not enough transparent sharing of successful and unsuccessful enterprise sales efforts.

    No transparent goals or reasons why some are promoted from middle management to upper management.

    Advice to Management

    End the politics associated with the court ordered sale process because they affect the company top down and have clearly hurt the brand in the eyes of some clients.

    Stop making promises you cannot deliver on despite attaining a goal. Too many times you ask to give back to help the company or the team and too many times it does not swing back the other way.


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Director, Business Development"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director of Business Development in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Director of Business Development in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at TransPerfect full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    A ton of opportunity if you are a hungry salesperson. There are a ton of companies TransPerfect does not work with that you can go after.

    Cons

    There are a lot of companies that TransPerfect already has relationships with. There is also a lot of internal competition.

    Advice to Management

    Enforce territories more clearly.


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Director of business development"

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

    I worked at TransPerfect (More than a year)

    Pros

    You have an opportunity to make money here, if translation excites you..

    Cons

    Huge company, lot competition, your just 1 of hundreds of sales reps.


  6. Helpful (10)

    "Run, just run - Director of Business Development review"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Director, Business Development
    Former Employee - Director, Business Development
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    If you have a rich history in the legal field, have a bunch of connections in the legal world, or have family members who are all lawyers, you can make money. But if you are anyone else, see cons.

    There are also some amazing people who work here. Hard workers. People who try hard to protect their livelihood and families. I was fortunate to find gems of people all over the company, around the world.

    Cons

    I am going to do my best to be objective, here are my thoughts. I know its biased regardless, so bear with me. I have a lot to say. I did pretty well in this company...and I still left.

    1. Look up the companies owners, history, and other reviews. That alone will tell you loads of information about why you should seriously reconsider taking an opportunity at this company.
    2. Its a huge company that's lost in the stone age, and is desperately trying to stay relevant when it comes to processes and technology. Its products are super niche, and deathly boring. Currently the company is doing a slow facelift of the look and feel to make it seem more modern.
    3. In legal selling anything to lawyers is incredibly difficult, nearly impossible. Enterprise Marketing, Legal, Life sciences, e-commerce, localization, anything in the sales where you have a quota, just stay away.
    4. They look for two types of people. Cut throat salespersons or people with connections in their field who are aggressive about their areas, and happily poach, lie, and pull strings to generate revenue out of areas they aren't supposed to be in.
    or
    People who have just graduated and are interested in anything at all as a first job. Then they make said person jump through a million hoops to make fractional increases in incredibly low wages and long hours that take a minimum of 3 years from entry to make any impact at all in their quality of life.
    5. Leadership blatantly boast unachievable goals and heads down work ethic, while promising "huge sums of money" for a 3 + year investment (interview with them I promise you'll hear this), it's a lie. A fraction of a percent of the sales team anywhere in the world make it to this stage. I was in the fraction of a % that made impressive numbers in the first year, and still left because of the bureaucracy and disrespect to any sort of work life balance. It almost has the feeling of a multi-level marketing scheme.
    6. Sales leadership (I'm not allowed to name or use title per Glassdoor guidelines) would often highjack big deals, and literally take them directly from the hands of hardworking salespersons, or arbitrarily take a % (usually half, just because they have ridden an elevator with the person or met once) of deals with no one to stop them . There is definitely a "Boy's Club". Women on the sales team are easily mistreated and frowned upon in general. Funny right? for an outspoken partially woman run company.
    7. Micromanaging is on every single level, and permeates every conversation with management.
    8. Sales leadership (I'm not allowed to name or use title per Glassdoor guidelines) is said to be spearheading Transperfect to be the next Apple. Which is hilarious, because there are so many things wrong with this company. He does not receive feedback well, does not make decisions based on insights or data from specialized (published best practices) knowledge in design or execution. There is vision in him, but it is not backed up. Conventions are breached constantly that could potentially give sales teams edges to get ahead and gather leads. "But that's just not how it works here."
    9. Any company that blocks "glassdoor.com" from their offices is dangerous and sends a clear message of lacking transparency and trust with their employees.
    10. There are the people who have moved around from office to office and have been apart of the company for less than 5 years. They have, through luck, drive, and rubbing shoulders with the right people, been successful. Then there are the people who have been there for 10+ years who only know what it is to stay and follow protocol and cant innovate. Then there is the majority of the people who have been there for under 4 years who are miserable, desperately trying to play the game and get ahead.

    Last words - If you are employed by them, they are taking advantage of you in a truly horrid way. Take advantage of them, do good work, leverage your position, hunt for other options, and take the best offer. You will learn more somewhere else but its a good place to jump from. If you stay, you are pigeon holed with niche knowledge that will soon become irrelevant and is not transferrable to many other industries.

    Advice to Management

    Stop micromanaging. If you treat your employees well they will do a good job. Stop making the quotas unachievable, saying that things are desperate and you need to tighten the collar on all the sales teams till they choke, then boast record setting revenue goals. You can treat employees well and hit realistic quotas without torturing your employees.


  7. Helpful (8)

    "Felt lucky to have a job during recession"

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

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

    Pros

    Management are consummate salespeople, not great trainers but great to learn from if you're smart and self-motivated.

    Cons

    Echoing a lot of the other reviews on this site; poor management from top down, over promise on compensation, unfair commission structure (fine you for everything), required to work long hours without being paid, require you to be accessible via Mobile including emails on phone but don't pay for data plan.

    Stay away.

    Advice to Management

    Grow up. Get with the times, your employees are your best asset. Invest in them, treat them well & you'll reap the rewards. It's impossible to retain talent at the current rate. Also treat your translators/contractors well, they are human too.

  8. Helpful (9)

    "Tremendous job experience college grads interested in a sales career"

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

    I worked at TransPerfect full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    If you want real-world sales experience with a "boiler room" feel, TransPerfect is the place. You will be given an immediate opportunity to sell world-class business solutions and innovative technology to some of the most reputable companies in the world. The experience that you gain along the way will be invaluable no matter how much you love or hate working for this company.

    The localization industry if growing and continues to outperform other industries at an exceptional rate. While many companies between have downsized, TransPerfect continues to grow annually at a 10-15% rate. That is unheard of.

    TransPerfect is at the forefront of technology within the localization industry. The other two big players are SDL and Lionbridge.

    If you can hack it out for two years and get promoted from an Account Manager to an Account Executive and then a Director, you will be in a position to make a lot of great money. Fortunately, being successful is not rocket science at TransPerfect. Just keep your head down and do what the managers tell you to do: hit the phones, send mailers, and be diligent in your follow-ups. If you don't waver from this process, you will be successful. Period. Whether or not the money is worth the effort is a whole different story.

    The people who are successful in this company are highly intelligent; they are good at what they do: selling. There is no doubt about it.

    If you get promoted to the Director level, you will essentially have free reign to run and operate your own business within the confines of their system. This includes sales, project management, hiring your own employees, accounting, collections, and direct marketing. Very few people will be exposed to this much at such an early age.

    Cons

    You will make peanuts for salary during your first 1-3 years.

    Account Manager ~ $38K/year
    Account Executive ~$40K/year + ~$5-10K commissions
    Director ~$40K/year + $50K commissions if you hit your quota (note: some reps land strategic accounts and make between $100K and $200K per year. It is extremely difficult but it can be done).

    Very poor work/life balance.You are NEVER off the clock and you constantly burn the midnight oil. This is fine if you are fresh out of college - but as you get older and establish yourself in the company, the long hours will wear on you. Especially when your priorities switch from establishing your career to establishing a family.

    It is highly competitive industry that is very price-driven. This makes it difficult to sell because competitors are always undercutting you.

    There is ZERO sense of teamwork at TransPerfect; it is every man for his or her self. Everyone is a shark. Employees in other offices will often go behind your back and take work from your clients because they are so desperate for commissions. This costs people tens of thousands of dollars.

    The training program and continued education is pretty much nonexistent; you will be forced to learn on the go with little guidance. When you make mistakes, management will call you out in front of your peers. This will often make you feel like crap. There will be many nights when you wake up terrified at 2 AM because you had a dream about forgetting to send a client email.

    If you work in one of the smaller satellite offices, then you will not have adequate exposure to senior management. This will make you feel like you are an outsider and not part of the big picture. Additionally, this will limit your ability to learn from those in the company who are successful.

    If you work in one of the larger offices (NYC, Chicago, DC) then you might feel like you are in High School. There are cliques and senior managers tend to play favorites. At annual sales conferences, senior managers will often ignore the impressionable employees so that they can brush shoulders with the executives and be part of the Club Of Cool Kids (aka C.O.C.K).

    Because there is no formal training program, and because your managers will be too busy focused on cashing their own commission checks, any success that you attain will be gained on your own. That is very empowering for you as an individual - knowing that you get to reap what you sow. Unfortunately, managers will mistake your success for their own. On the contrary, managers refuse to shoulder any of the blame when employees don't pan out.

    If you want to grind out a 3-5 year sales career and gain immeasurable experience, give TransPerfect a try. You'll eventually make really good money. And eventually, you'll tell yourself that the money isn't worth the hassle. You'll then look for a new job and quickly learn that you are far more experienced than anyone your age. Finally, you will be shocked when you start receiving multiple offers from companies that are willing to line your pockets.

    Advice to Management

    -Spend less time managing your clients and spend more time developing you employees.
    -Establish a more formal training program
    -Ask your employees what motivates them instead of telling them, "Hey, do this and you can be successful like me!"
    -Create a more team-oriented environment


  9. Helpful (5)

    "Honest review from former employee"

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

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

    Pros

    Great opportunity to get into an exciting industry. Well established company. Good training program that will provide you with the tools to be successful in the industry.

    Cons

    While working for TransPerfect for over two years I came to learn quite a few things. There is 0 work-life balance.
    I worked until 1 am on a Sunday and it was expected of me, because that was "my job"

    The company itself has an extremely high turnover rate and management doesn't care because they can replace bodies and only care about what clients you bring in, and can transition those clients to other people if you leave the company. It is odd to me how a senior manager can keep their job when 6 employees quit in a 1 1/2 year span and they are over 50% under goal.

    TransPerfect promises bonuses when you start, and these are impossible to attain due to the fact that they are not performance based and are dependent on other individuals that you can not control. Additionally, the commission structure is that of a pyramid scheme. You do not get any commission until you are promoted to an Account Executive, and the commission at that point is less than 0.05%. So you are doing all of the work, while your boss is sitting back and counting checks.

    I have witnessed senior managers lie and manipulate clients so that it benefits them and they didn't think twice about it. I am a firm believer of morals, ethics and values- and TransPerfect doesn't support any of these.

    Advice to Management

    Ditch the pyramid scheme. Don't let people keep their jobs just because they have been there for so long, even when they don't contribute.


  10. Helpful (5)

    "Work hard, get your experience and do what everyone else does...move on."

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

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

    Pros

    At 23 you can be client facing, and by 24-1/2 you can be looked at as a Sr. person in your office. -That is, if you can make it for more than 1 year.

    Cons

    I've met amazing people here, but everyone leaves. Visit an office and you'll see an extremely young staff and a small handful of people above 26.
    -Official (minimum) office hours are 8:30am-6:30pm, use your laptop or cell to cover the other hours.
    -There is no work-life balance whatsoever. You are expected to answer emails at any time of the day/night/holiday/vacation.
    -You will hear or read the word "awesome" 30+ times a day.
    -You will be bombarded with emails and cc'd on 30 distribution lists where 5 people will reply all.

    Advice to Management

    The company revenue could grow so much if you could manage to keep staff.