Before you partner up with any business, whether as a new employee, customer, client, investor, or other type of shareholder, it’s important that you do your due diligence. You need to know what type of organization you’re getting involved with.

Is the company you are interested in growing? What is its mission? What are its values? What does it stand for? How does it treat its employees?

That last question may be one of the best when it comes to reviewing a company online. After all, its the employees who make or break a company, and if they are happy at work, chances are the business is healthy and prospering.

GlassDoor.com is an online review site made up of millions of employee reviews. Employees (both current and past) post anonymous reviews of their companies that include pros, cons, advice for management, and other ranking factors. They key is that employees post anonymously. This empowers them to actually speak their minds and say what they truly feel. When it comes to sites like these, anonymity and honesty are pretty much synonymous.

Pretty much any major company you can think of has a profile on Glass Door. Employees have been submitting reviews to the site since 2008. The larger the company, the more reviews you can expect to find. Most of the companies on Glass Door are based in the U.S. Let’s examine three different organizations.

1. Sears reviews
Sears earns an overall rating of 2.6 stars, which is average. However, only 32% of employee reviews would recommend Sears to a friend, and a dismal 19% approve of CEO Edward Lampert. Of the 8,074 total reviews, here are some samplings:
Pros – “Flexible schedule, good management sales training and support. Open to listen, flexible with scheduling changes. The colleagues in the office are friendly and supportive, too.”
Cons – “Too many metrics that you are graded on. You get pulled in many different direction, due to the fact of downsizing dept. managers. You are responsible more multiple depts. while overseeing the entire store performance. They make it so complicated just to sell stuff!!!”
Advice for Management – “Promote the right people and adjust to the times.” “Corporate is clueless. A trained monkey could do your job better than you!”

2. Bob Evans Reviews
Bob Evans does a little better, with a 3.0-star rating, 47% employee recommend rate, and 55% score for CEO Saed Mohseni. Here’s what a fe employees have to say about working at the restaurant chain:
Pros – “It is a great place to work for , the employees are very hands on with the customers and have a great relationship with their co workers.”
Cons – “Was expected to do more than what my position specified. Managers were lazy, and avoided angry guest. Kitchen staff was unsanitary and overly aggressive. Servers were lazy and didn’t do their job in a timely manner. Unsatisfactory working environment.”
Advice for Management – “Take part in the day to day instead of hiding in the office all the time.” “Good luck. Everyone is out for themselves and likes to put blame. It’s no longer a family environment company. Hope the new CEO is different.”

3. Melaleuca Reviews
Melaleuca, a consumer goods manufacturer, scores quite well on Glass Door. It enjoys a 4.0-star rating, 81% of employees would recommend it to a friend, and the CEO, Frank VanderSloot, has an 83% approval score. Employees said this about working at Melaleuca:
Pros – “The family values supported by the company are one of the main benefits. The Executive Leadership has been consistent in make good judgments.” “Good benefits if you’re in it for the long run.”
Cons – “Headquarters is in a small town. They have high expectations of employees, but that I think is what makes them successful.”
Advice for Management – “Keep up the great work. Don’t be afraid to say hi to someone in the hall even if you don’t know who they are.”