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Golin Reviews

Updated 19 March 2019
181 reviews

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3.4
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Golin CEO+International, CEO+Vision, and CEO+Operations Jonathon Hughes, Matt Neale, and Gary Rudnick
Jonathon Hughes, Matt Neale, and Gary Rudnick
31 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • "Wonderful office with great people" (in 17 reviews)

  • "Perks like Unlimited PTO and 1 Work From Home day per week are a great bonus but not always taken advantage of" (in 9 reviews)

Cons
  • "Work life balance can be tough at a more junior level" (in 14 reviews)

  • "The level of access to senior management and empowerment is great, but is not universal" (in 14 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    Helpful (3)

    "Diversity and Inclusion"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Chicago, IL (US)
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Chicago, IL (US)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    I’ve been here for five years and what initially attracted me to Golin is what continues to keep me here. The creative+ innovated environment and commitment to diversity and inclusion are some of the main reasons why I love coming to work every day. They also have some of the best benefits and flexibility programs in the country! Recently Golin’s managing director, Ginger Porter, has brought tremendous change to our organization creating an even more welcoming environment and elevating our diversity and inclusion efforts. I have seen Golin hire diverse team members who come from all types of backgrounds that have allowed them to develop unique insights and expertise. As a Latina in the workforce, I had always strive to find an employer that embraces the same values and opportunities as I do.

    Cons

    Although we are located in an awesome building, it's a little hard to get to but we manage.


  2. "Work Review"

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

    I have been working at Golin full-time

    Pros

    Great Clients to work with

    Cons

    low pay scale compared to industry standards

    Advice to Management

    Corporate Hierarchy makes it difficult for quality employees to stick around

  3. "Shiny on the outside, challenging on the inside."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    The culture ebbs and flows: when things are high, they are high. But when they’re low, they are very, very low. I write this review out of honesty and not hostility. As somebody who has seen the good and the bad and the very bad, it really has to come down to culture. The issue is, not everybody clicks and that is OK. They’re not supposed to, but in moments of perceived stress, growth or the natural movement of a colleague out into another agency, all of this changes.

    If you can find a great account and run with it, you’ll open yourself up to a lot of career growth that is a great “resume enhancer” as they say. It comes with a cost.

    The building itself is nice. It has a terrace, a free coffee bar and a cafe on the inside. There’s a lot of work to be done on the inside, though.

    The pay is satisfactory, but it is not nearly as competitive as other firms. The gender wage gap is also something that the company mentions they are working on but hasn’t fully addressed.

    The company is progressing - all of that said - so there is hope for the future. Having worked at a few other agencies, these cycles are what they are: cycles.

    Your one working from home day per week benefit is nice. Sometimes it’s good to be out of the office if you are working on a really long project that takes time and you can do so in a quieter place.

    Cons

    Management is disconnected from staff needs, and this unfortunately spans all levels. When a company is in growth mode, managers are more connected. When this changes, it feels like they disappear.

    When employees leave, there is little to nothing done to recognize their contributions. This is the first agency that I know of where that gratitude isn’t received.

    Pay, as I mentioned, isn’t up to par. Perhaps it is higher when the company is in a fast search for a new hire, but make sure to do your research so you don’t sell yourself short.

    Change is good, but it takes way too long. This goes back to culture. If somebody isn’t the right fit, the company will take months to remedy the situation.

    Working hours can be completely unbalanced. Staff are worked to the bone, not thanked, not compensated and accounts are not staffed appropriately. The most senior people (NOT Executive Directors, think lower) are left carrying the account work without so much as a thank you. This is demotivating, and hard workers deserve better. A future Golin should walk the walk if they’re going to truly have your back.

    Unlimited vacation time is a double-edged sword. Note that you do not get paid for unused time because you technically don’t accrue it, so if you plan to leave, I have seen employees go on two week holidays and then resign - that’s the smart thing to do.

    Advice to Management

    Please give your hardest working team members the gratitude they deserve, and be more present. There is nothing more disheartening than not feeling appreciated. We can’t set a precedent for junior staff who experience that as their first entree into PR.

    Close the gender pay gap. Back-pay your employees. Give bonuses to people who make less, not those who bring in more money or make more money. They have enough.

    Please stop taking so long to believe a coworker who is making an honest complaint or request to make change. Six, eight, ten months down the line, you’ll end up making the change they told you about, but it will be too little too late. Connect with the people who are your engine and make sure their voices aren’t just heard - they’re respected. Also, please stop twisting people’s words. Clients and others will find out the truth. If you’re going to say you stand by something, then do just that.


  4. "Project Accountant"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Project Manager in London, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Project Manager in London, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great atmosphere! Lovely team! Good life balance! Great benefits!

    Cons

    No career path. No room for progression.


  5. "Could be better"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Designer
    Current Employee - Designer
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Golin full-time

    Pros

    Good employees
    Decent benefits
    Fun social events

    Cons

    No room to grow upper management doesn’t value young employees or compensate them to stay

    Advice to Management

    Take care of employees


  6. Helpful (4)

    "Do Not Work at Golin Los Angeles"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Senior Account Director in Los Angeles, CA (US)
    Former Employee - Senior Account Director in Los Angeles, CA (US)
    Doesn't Recommend

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

    Pros

    I am not sure I have any pros.

    Cons

    Do not work at Golin Los Angeles. I have worked for other agencies and by far this was the worst experience. My management was horrible. It was a "do as I say, not as I do" environment. They have no problem blaming stuff on others. Also, since leaving, I have found out that when my prospective employers call them, they are bad-mouthing me. Now who does that. So glad to be out of there. I am telling you - not a place you want to be.

    Advice to Management

    Keep a better eye on how group VP's and Directors treat the people below them. There is zero accountability for those at a the top and can treat and do whatever they want to whoever they want.


  7. "High turnover and destructive environment"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Associate in Singapore (Singapore)
    Former Employee - Associate in Singapore (Singapore)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    The only good thing is only having a bright name on your CV, that's all

    Cons

    Bad work flow and work delegation, instructions often are not clear and have lots of questionable perimeters.

    High turnover of junior staffs. Shortest turnover was 3 weeks.

    Toxic managerial staffs who are often ready to shame you by sending a mass email and letting your team know your shortcomings.

    Lack of communication with junior staff and company culture. Everyone just puts on a smile on team meetings just to display their survival in the company.

  8. Helpful (6)

    "Behind the times"

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

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

    Pros

    • company practically runs itself
    • no need for A+ ideas
    • most co-workers share your sentiment
    • no need to stand out

    Cons

    • slow moving company
    • not a place for career growth
    • will keep you past 7pm often
    • 3 white male CEOs will introduce themselves to you with a tone deaf "ad" video

    Advice to Management

    Take a step into the 2018. Is a coincidence the company loses its best and brightest to the big tech companies? Sometimes it seems people are there as a stepping stone or necessity and once they're good enough they leave.


  9. "Great company culture"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Assistant Account Executive in Taipei (Taiwan)
    Former Employee - Assistant Account Executive in Taipei (Taiwan)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Golin part-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Full-time employees are all passionate about their job

    Cons

    You might get calls from office after work


  10. Helpful (24)

    "You do not Have Her Back"

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

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

    Pros

    Working at Golin looks good on paper and gets you connections to some big name clients

    Cons

    We are used the the annual gimmicks you roll out for self-promotion. The Untern program? Silly and pointless but fairly harmless. Unlimited vacation? Nice in theory if only employees were empowered to take advantage of it. Climbing a mountain to save an endangered species? A total waste of time and resource but it gave everyone a good chuckle.

    But with Have Her Back, you've gone too far. How dare you take a very serious issue and use it for agency promotion when you don't actually follow the standards that you are preaching about? You are in no position to lead a discussion on this matter with your three white male CEOs and your history of protecting and promoting individuals who are guilty of the behavior you wax on about. It's disingenuous, and a real insult to current and former women employees who've been subject to sexual harassment, gender pay disparity and other disadvantages there. So many talented amazing women at all levels have left the agency, been pushed out or not considered for leadership positions, and no one had their backs.

    Advice to Management

    Take a real stand by cleaning house of the known perpetrators -- you know who they are and they are the first to joke about the initiative and the issue in general.

    And since you love a bold and brave idea, how about this? Take a look at the pay gap history between current and former men and women employees at the same levels, and give women back-pay to the start of their employment there to make up for it. That would get you the kind of attention you seek, even well beyond the PR trades.