WE Communications "sorority" Reviews | Glassdoor.co.uk

WE Communications Employee Reviews about "sorority"

Updated Sep 8, 2019

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Found 321 reviews

3.5
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61%
Recommend to a Friend
78%
Approve of CEO
WE Communications CEO Melissa Waggener Zorkin
Melissa Waggener Zorkin
200 Ratings
Pros
Cons
  • "Work life balance differs amongst teams(in 44 reviews)

  • "There is a clique-y sorority type of vibe that may not jive with everyone(in 18 reviews)

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Reviews about "sorority"

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  1. Helpful (24)

    "past its prime"

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

    I worked at WE Communications full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Good pay and benefits and there some genuinely nice, hard-working incredibly smart people who work there. When I first started to work there over a decade ago it was the most inspiring, supportive place to be. I gained amazing communications skills from even more amazing people and grew so much professionally and personally. Those people have all left.

    Cons

    The agency has become a dead end. They are not considered innovative in the market and have not secured a new, major client since landing Microsoft in the 80s. I have learned so much more about the changing field of communications since leaving. If you don't fit the mold, you may lose your soul trying. I've seen the term "mean girl" used to describe the work environment, and I would have to agree. Senior... management is made up of what they call "lifers." Those who have been there 15+ years and who have completely lost touch. The mold to get to senior management is the sorority, alpha female type who bullies and undermines the confidence of those around them to give the appearance of "managing." Senior leadership postures and positions well, but in the end accomplishes fairly worn-out, mediocre work. This seems to be rewarded for some reason. You really don't realize how much confidence you have lost and how much of yourself you have given up trying to move up until you leave, and then you feel as though you escaped an abusive relationship. I know this could be said of many work environments, but I wouldn't chose this again.

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    Advice to Management

    After working here for more than a decade, I honestly don't know what to say to management that would be heard. All the advice I see here on Glassdoor is solid, but it's been given over and over for many years now. No one is listening. I would simply work elsewhere.

    WE Communications2017-03-02
  2. Helpful (1)

    "Great place to work but heavy tech oriented"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Intern in Bellevue, WA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at WE Communications full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    -Great culture/open office -Great pay -Great benefits

    Cons

    -Fast working environment full of the same type of work -There is a clique-y sorority type of vibe that may not jive with everyone -Headquarters is in Bellevue which leaves a far commute if you live in south of Seattle/Bellevue area. Needs a Seattle location.

    WE Communications2017-02-10
  3. Helpful (6)

    "Seems to be losing momentum"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
     
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at WE Communications

    Pros

    There are some talented people here who are in it for the right reasons and have a genuine desire to do good work. However, that group seems to be shrinking all the time. Benefits are pretty decent, including 4 weeks vacation to start and sabbatical at 7 years (if you can make it that long.) Traditionally, it has not had the pressure and politics of other NY-based agencies, with more of a Pacific Northwest,... easy-going vibe.

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    Cons

    Thought they've tried to expand the business, the agency still revolves largely around technology and one client, Microsoft. Agency is in denial about its creative potential; generally speaking, it's work is uninspired and not very cutting-edge. It's struggled with digital and creative. Leadership lacks awareness about what it doesn't know, leading to poor decision making about other practices, such as healthcare.... Everything is seen through a narrow technology lens. Environment has grown more toxic in recent years, with back stabbing and politicking among some of it's not especially talented senior leaders. One of the least diverse workplaces as far as ethnicity you will ever work at. Management doesn't make diversity a priority, unless you count having photos of the CEO surrounded by children in Africa. Maybe hire a few African Americans and Hispanics? If you're in management, you better figure out fast how to fit in with a bunch of blondie Pacific Northwest sorority-girls who are not as nice as the pretend to be and not as rock star-ish as they all think they are.

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    Advice to Management

    Get a better handle on what is actually happening in the company and stop disingenuously patting everyone on the back for mediocre work. The CEO needs to talk less about the stuff she does outside of the office and focus on understanding what's going on in the different offices. Seems clueless at times. Try talking about the importance of diversity as you simultaneously describe yourself as a "global agency." Focus... on tech--it's the only thing you really do well.

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    WE Communications2016-09-29
  4. Helpful (7)

    "Account team"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
     in Portland, OR
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at WE Communications for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Some super-ambitious people who bring great ideas and passion to the practice. More opportunity to work with top influencers, build relationships. Variety in the type of work one can do, if one is interested in moving around.

    Cons

    Couple things. Those who really want to excel and grow should choose their team wisely. Options are limited outside of a few core accounts and there is an unspoken reality that to advance, you need to spend a sizeable amount of time in Seattle. As other reviewers have mentioned, there is a sorority culture and not a lot of diversity. The Portland office is a dead zone. Long rows of empty cubes, generally low energy,... it's tough. On the upside, new leadership is making progress in creating a vision, which has helped bring a sense that someone is actually leading the company.

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    Advice to Management

    Something needs to happen to the poor Portland office. It's a soul-sucking carcass. There should be more transparency about opportunities outside of a few core accounts where clients, business are invested in stellar PR and doing it well. Finally, more diversity. This is one of the most homogeneous places you can work - really counter as a culture for out of the box thinking.

    WE Communications2016-06-10
  5. Helpful (18)

    "Not recommended unless you are very thick skinned."

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

    I worked at WE Communications for more than 5 years

    Pros

    For the most part, the people are great. I made some lifelong friendships while at WE. The PTO benefit is one that keeps people there. I was pushed to be better at my job like no other place I've worked, and I benefited from that.

    Cons

    Very much a sorority. One day you are the best of the best, and the next you are getting fired. I spoke up about something I wasn't happy with, and they decided it was time for me to leave. For account staff, there is no work life balance because the senior leadership works 24/7. Junior staffers believe they have to emulate this behavior, or they will be fired. During my time, I saw people fired for "just doing... their job". I was with WE for 5 years, and wondered every day if I was going to get fired. Very toxic environment.

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    Advice to Management

    Listen to your employees and their concerns, without the threat of termination (they like to call it separation). Look at what your competitors (not clients) are doing to insure employee retention, and follow the industry example.

    WE Communications2016-05-19
  6. Helpful (9)

    "Good starting place, but don't get stuck"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Graphic Designer in Bellevue, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at WE Communications for more than 3 years

    Pros

    I really enjoyed my immediate team and the types of projects we were doing. The PR teams were professional and pleasant to interact with. Good starting point for a career, but I definitely wouldn't stay and get stuck in a rut.

    Cons

    My last few months at WE were absolutely demoralizing and I was treated in such a derogatory and unprofessional manner it affected my life outside of work negatively. Generally, interaction with the actual PR account teams was pleasant and professional but there's also a clear disconnect when it comes to PR teams understanding requirements and deliverables around non-PR related projects. The result of this was... minimal budget for our team on projects, so big ideas weren't always executable. Perks and benefits are constantly being slashed. Work life balance no longer exists. Whenever there is an upper management change, expect a ton of disruption. In four years I went through about 6 different company reorganizations. The culture outside of service teams is very sorority-like. There are occasions where people you work directly with don't acknowledge you outside of meetings. It gets old fast and you don't realize how toxic team culture can be until you've left. In non-PR roles there really is no way to advance. You're ultimately handling the same projects, even if your title changes.

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    Advice to Management

    Vet who you bring into leadership roles beyond a personal recommendation from a leader. That person may not always really know who they're bringing in. Stop trying to create a culture that doesn't align with your clients' values. Not all clients are "sexy" or want to show up that way. There's a clear disconnect between what your client needs and what your teams want to deliver.

    WE Communications2016-05-11
  7. Helpful (3)

    "A bit too clicky"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
     

    I have been working at WE Communications

    Pros

    Great benefits, especially Sabbatical (if you survive that long) Flexible work schedule

    Cons

    Sorority atmosphere Inconsistent with promotions--you are either a chosen one or a commodity Office location

    WE Communications2016-03-31
  8. Helpful (19)

    "Toxic and Aging."

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

    I have been working at WE Communications full-time

    Pros

    They have a strong 401 K program and an average health care program.

    Cons

    If you have seen the movie Heathers or Mean Girls, it sums up the culture and mission of WE. This alone should give you pause prior to joining this "Sorority" filled haven. Leaders have stayed too long and look the other way to achieve marginal success.

    Advice to Management

    Your day has passed. Open your eyes to the toxic environment that you call first in class. Most hires don't even stay beyond a 1 year time frame.

    WE Communications2015-05-19
  9. Helpful (3)

    "good benefits, OK salary, catty coworkers"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Assistant Account Executive in Bellevue, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at WE Communications

    Pros

    Well the vacation package is amazing. 4 weeks of PTO is nuts and awesome--I only wish I was paid enough that I could afford 4 weeks of vacation a year. :P But truthfully, if they like you and want to keep you, my feeling is that WE will make all sorts of adjustments and deals to do that. Additionally, and I think this benefit is more important/helpful for junior account staff, the learning and development program is... amazing. If you're new to PR or the professional world, their L&D program will legitimately teach you all the skills you need to succeed--that's why people say it's such a good place to start your career.

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    Cons

    Depending on the account and your manager, there is a very real chance you will be worked to death/quitting. The time off policies are nice but if your manager is the sort of person who wants you online at 8pm, you need be online at 8pm. It's unfair and unfortunately I've had both types of managers: good ones and ones who worked me to death. It's a competitive work environment, which is good sometimes, but also... leads to people grabbing/hoarding good projects and opportunities so they can get promoted. Finally, and this had always been my criticism of WaggEd, they need to stop hiring the same cookie cutter sorority girl or they will get the same ideas coming to the table over and over again. Just more diversity in general would help this company immeasurably.

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    Advice to Management

    Well, first of all, you need to stop this BS regressive benefit system. There is this de-facto acknowledgement that you don't get/deserve a quality of life or work life balance until you've made it to the SAE level or higher. A quality of life--a balanced life--should be something you guarantee to your employees right off the bat because you care about them. Also move to Seattle. Creative... ideas/companies/startups/the future are not coming out of Bellevue.

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    WE Communications2015-03-26
  10. Helpful (3)

    "Political environment, terrible management"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at WE Communications full-time

    Pros

    Nice work environment from a perks perspective, overall good skill development programs if you are just starting a career.

    Cons

    Terrible management, catty environment, abysmal compensation for the number of hours you will actually work. No life/work balance, intense micromanagement of every single daily process. Hires mostly sorority/fraternity types, does not value intelligence or creativity. If you want to be a cog in a machine, this place is for you!

    Advice to Management

    Start training your managers and focus on retaining your best and brightest.

    WE Communications2015-04-15
Found 321 reviews