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Vulcan

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Vulcan

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Vulcan Employee Reviews about "manager"

Updated Jul 5, 2022

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Found 6 of over 157 reviews

3.3
46%
Recommend to a Friend
73%
Approve of CEO
Vulcan CEO Bill Hilf
Bill Hilf
46 Ratings

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a 

Technical Account Manager

Being a woman in tech, I only recently started advocating for myself at work about advancement opportunities. Because of this I wanted to ask this question to my male counterparts. When you have 1:1's with your direct reports and talk about career growth / aspirations what is your managers’ response typically? I’d like to gauge how my experience (negative) differs from others. For instance are you met with blockades, enthusiasm, dread, etc?

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Pros & Cons are excerpts from user reviews. They are not authored by Glassdoor.

Reviews about "manager"

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  1. 4.0
    Current Employee, less than 1 year

    Great team dynamics, really cool projects

    Jun 30, 2017 - Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    I love the variety of work I am involved in during any given week - no day is ever the same. I love my team, and appreciate the autonomy I have to get my job done, with the right balance of support from my manager. Vulcan offers great perks and benefits, and the pay is really competitive. There are things that I get to do and experience at Vulcan that continue to blow my mind. And I love that I get paid for it!

    Cons

    I think there is some inconsistency in employee experience based on your team and leader. Some areas seem to have better work/life balance than others - but such is the risk with such a diverse organization working on such different projects. There do seem to be some growing pains with new leaders, but overall I truly believe leadership is doing what is best for the company and employees.

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    2 people found this review helpful
  2. 2.0
    Former Employee, more than 3 years

    Decent place to work

    Feb 27, 2020 - Project Manager in Seattle, WA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Vulcan offers a plethora of different projects to work on Benefits are very unique and they have all sorts of fun company parties The physical office is very beautiful and offers lots of quiet places to grab coffee and work from your computer, in case you ever need a rest from your desk.

    Cons

    Co-workers are 50/50. Some are great, but leadership needs work. Real estate and finance are the best departments to work in. Though if you're a project manager with their tech or philanthropy departments get ready to survive several organisational changes and layoffs at the drop of a hat, without warning.

    4 people found this review helpful
  3. 4.0
    Current Employee, more than 8 years

    It's always interesting

    Jul 23, 2015 - Administrative Assistant in Seattle, WA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Vulcan is full of really smart people. It can be an exciting and challenging place to work. We work hard and have some great employee benefits. I am an hourly employee but my base salary is pretty competitive with our companies.

    Cons

    The pace can be frustrating at times but hey that's life! I personally feel very valued my direct manager but sometimes the structure of the company limits my compensation and career mobility.

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    4 people found this review helpful
  4. 2.0
    Former Employee, more than 10 years

    Good in theory, terrible in execution

    Jul 29, 2018 - Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Vulcan has many intelligent and competent employees. The downtown office location has stunning views of Seattle. I never get tired of the views! Benefits are pretty good, although the medical plans have been scaled back recently. The only plans available now are the consumer-driven HSA plans. Unique perks, such as movie night at the Cinerama. Vulcan has excellent party planners. Vulcan hosts a lot of employee parties, and they are very well done. Lastly, Vulcan has a Coke Freestyle machine that dispenses a wide variety of beverages. It is the highlight of working at Vulcan!

    Cons

    The culture at Vulcan is its chief con. The general culture is elitist and authoritarian, which is sadly ironic because Vulcan is desperately trying to brand itself as free-thinking, egalitarian, and collaborative. Unfortunately, it is largely the opposite. There is a very deep and rigid hierarchy at Vulcan. Executive management lives in fear of getting berated by the owner. That fear then gets passed down through all levels of management and then saturates the rank and file. Consequently, much of what the workers do is support their direct manager in preparing them to have a good story to tell when they get called out publicly by their own manager. So instead of doing what is best for Vulcan, employees often do what is best for their manager’s survival or career aspirations. Communication at Vulcan is very unidirectional; namely top-down. Do not expect to have healthy debate with your manager and see your feedback make its way up the reporting chain. You are essentially told what you need to deliver, when to deliver it, and to refrain from asking challenging questions. So essentially, creative thinking, reasonable discussion, and intelligent debate are informally suppressed in this culture. Vulcan tries hard to market itself as a flat, collaborative, startup-like environment, but it tries to achieve that aim through superficial means, such as redesigning the technology department's workspace by eliminating all offices. So if you work in technology, you work in a big room with small cubes, no privacy, lots of noise, and no place to store work related items. In other words, Vulcan has recently jumped onto the “open office” bandwagon. Much of what I say here is based on my perspective of having worked in technology for many years. There are some departments that are quite different. Some departments wield a lot of influence, and consequently, enjoy privileges not available to other departments. If you hire on to one of these departments, your experience may be a positive one. But it is this disparity among departments that is one of the greatest weaknesses about Vulcan culture. It is highly political, and who you know, or who you are, rather than what you do, that largely determines your experience at Vulcan. Cronyism, unfortunately, is a big part of work life there. Many employees in key positions are not reluctant to dole out special favors for their friends or their subordinates. This, I feel, damages the integrity of the organization. As I mentioned, Vulcan desperately wants to be like a startup. I have worked in Silicon Valley at a startup, and Vulcan is the antithesis of the startup culture. A startup company has a flat managerial hierarchy where there is a strong sense of shared purpose (and sacrifice). In contrast, Vulcan has an extremely high manager to employee ratio. That in itself is not necessarily a problem, but there are so many managers who are unwilling to perform work that they feel is beneath them. Many managers will not even schedule their own meetings or perform their administrative, and even managerial tasks. They have their administrative assistants do that work. This is why the low-rung workers are consistently overworked. There are lots of people with ideas, some of which are good, though mostly absurd, and not enough people to actually execute the work. Also different from the typical startup is the way that they treat I.T. employees. In a typical small technology company, the technologists are highly valued and their treatment reflects that attitude. At Vulcan, you are treated as a drain on cash. And because Vulcan does not generate much, if any revenues from technology, the tech workers essentially ARE a drain on cash. I.T. is treated as a necessary evil, so to speak. If you are looking for a technical position, just keep that in mind. You will likely be paid competitively, but do not expect a lot of respect from Vulcan management. Because of this general attitude by management, you can sometimes expect similar treatment from your internal customers. And do not expect your managers to back you when you need their support. As some other reviewers have mentioned, HR is not your advocate. Their primary objective is to keep the owner from getting angry. Secondarily, they strive to keep the C-level managers happy. At least this is the feeling that many people have. If you consult HR with a problem, their first thought is to protect the owner and the company, not the employee. Another reviewer recommended that you should hire a labor attorney if you accept a job offer. Unfortunately, I fully agree. That is all I can legally say on that topic. My advice to people contemplating employment at Vulcan. If you work in technology and you are sufficiently marketable, don’t waste a year or two testing the waters at Vulcan. You will likely be disappointed with the way you will be treated, relative to the other departments and companies. If you are desperate for employment, then take the job offer and “suck it up” like many of us here are asked to do. If you are not in technology, give Vulcan a try. You may end up in one of the premier departments and have a good experience. And one last “con”, in addition to the political culture. Telecommuting is not allowed, unfortunately.

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    25 people found this review helpful
  5. 1.0
    Former Employee, more than 10 years

    Least "caring" company in the country.

    Jan 5, 2013 - Technology in Seattle, WA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Good benefits - lower level employees are what makes the company roll.

    Cons

    Both the CEO and founder of the company are looking out for themselves and not the people that make their already cushy lives cushier. Employees to them are nothing more than dollar signs,disposable, and replaceable. They would rather put people out of work than sacrifice anything that might even remotely impact their lavish lifestyle. Upper level management are spineless and will not stand up for any employee, specifically in the technology department. Loyalty means nothing to anyone above manager, and most managers will put their subordinates on the chopping block instead of standing up against irrational budgetary decisions. -0- work life balance - when an owner calls you are expected to drop everything for them regardless of day, time, or season. Everything revolves around, and centers on, the families comfort, regardless of the other altruistic (minimal for these people) endeavors presented to the public, and if you don't go out of your way to meet those comfort requirements then you are simply disposed of.

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    15 people found this review helpful
  6. 2.0
    Former Employee, more than 1 year

    The Illusion of Work

    Jan 2, 2018 - Senior Software Development Engineer in Seattle, WA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    As a software engineer, I was afforded the opportunity to learn in several new fields. Salary was slightly above average.

    Cons

    Abysmal morale. Engineers are rarely promoted or encouraged to self-organize. The manager to engineer ratio is incredibly large. Management is constantly churning and the new managers are brought in from the outside, never promoted up from within. Groups working in niche fields built up capabilities only to have their efforts redirected by whoever the latest manager was who had no domain expertise. Managers were brought in based on their credentials at the biggest tech companies but the strategies they learned there were inappropriate to the size, scope, and audience of Vulcan projects. Imagine a 2 person 6 month research project. Now bring in 3 managers who insist on making the prototype 'enterprise grade', halting progress. Be sure to berate the engineers on their way out. Projects managers focus more on reporting progress than progressing. I've never been at an organization which spends the amount of effort this one does to tell employees how great it is to work there. I wish I left sooner.

    12 people found this review helpful

    Vulcan Response

    Vulcan

    Thank you for your feedback on your experience and your advice.

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Vulcan photo of: Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin joins Vulcan CEO Bill Hilf on stage at a recent company meeting
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Vulcan photo of: Volunteering at Lowell Elementary
Vulcan photo of: Russell Wilson and Ciara stopped by recently to meet with Vulcan CEO Bill Hilf, Mary Cadera and Art Min to discuss philanthropic endeavors
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Vulcan photo of: At Vulcan we take the dog days of summer literally and invite employees to bring their dogs to work for a fun-filled day. This year we had more than 75 dogs in the office.
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