KCSA

www.kcsa.com

KCSA Reviews

Updated January 7, 2015
Updated January 7, 2015
13 Reviews
3.2
13 Reviews
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Jeff Corbin
10 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    KCSA: A Great Place to Learn and Grow

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY

    I worked at KCSA full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    KCSA is a great company to grow up in; it is a meritocracy that promotes and reward professionals who are entrepreneurial, hard working and results-driven. The company has an "open door policy," and senior management is willing to take the time to teach employees to help them learn more about clients and the trade. The senior management team values work-life balance, which is great - if ever an employee is ill or has to deal with a personal matter, they are extremely understanding. After five+ years here, KCSA really feels like family; the whole team - from the CEO and partners to the junior staff - is helpful, smart and supportive.

    Cons

    We often get challenging clients or clients with small retainers that demand a great deal of attention (but I think this is just the nature of the industry). At times, some accounts feel understaffed, which I think could be remedied by building out the middle management levels (SAE, AS, AD) to support managers more and guide juniors.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I got along well with all the partners and the CEO. A couple pieces of advice to consider: invest more readily in supplemental education for employees (conferences, summer courses), at times those were hard to get approved or rejected because a price tag was slightly high. Build out the middle management team - these people are doers and thinkers and will really help the managers to have people to lean on.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Good environment to learn, grow and carve out your own path for success.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Vice President in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Senior Vice President in New York, NY

    I worked at KCSA full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    There's not much in terms of bureaucracy and so you can make a name for yourself rather quickly there, especially if you're smart and ambitious. Management is very accessible and supportive.

    Cons

    Hours can be unpredictable at times, but that's really a reflection of KCSA's clients themselves more than anything else. In this business, it kind of comes with the territory.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The group outings make a lot of sense for a lot of different reasons, but don't be afraid to mix it up and try different things that may have a wider appeal.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Disappointment

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

    I worked at KCSA full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Good hands on experience for your first job

    Cons

    A lot of turnover. Don't seem to care about your personal growth.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
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  5.  

    Only for those who need experience or are desperate

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

    I worked at KCSA

    Pros

    - There is a good work life balance - you will be out the door before 6:30 PM daily.
    - Many of the clients are start ups which allows you to get involved in some interesting business and opportunities
    - There is a lot of camaraderie among the junior staff

    Cons

    - There is extreme turnover, in both staff and clients. (In two years the roster for both changed dramatically)
    - The senior management team takes out their personal aggression on the juniors in such an unprofessional manner.
    - The company says "they work lean" but it only means the accounts are understaffed and
    - The CEO is so focused on his new business that he does not pay attention to the needs of KCSA as an agency
    - The partners walk around the office screaming obscenities like they are in a frat house rather than a business setting
    - Daily arguments and screaming coming from management on the office floor which leads to daily tears from the junior staff
    - Management would rather throw juniors under a bus then work on a solution to help and benefit the clients
    - The egos of the partners are really the worst enemy of the company - they will cause this agency to either get sued or eventually go under.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Consider a mentorship program to retain younger talent. There is extreme turnover at the lower level and the management uses the excuse of "that's the industry." In addition remember that KCSA is the company, not theIRapp, and it needs to be nurtured and cared for as much as this new venture.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    Great stepping stone for your career, but low morale and very high turnover.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Account Executive in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Account Executive in New York, NY

    I worked at KCSA full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Ability to work across multiple groups within the company. Constant contact with management and higher ups allows for beneficial feedback. Work directly with client C-level executives across multiple industries.

    Cons

    Frat house. There's no leadership until things need to get done, at which point it's chaotic and forced. Expect to spend a lot of time pitching your clients to the masses, unless you have a manager that has a plethora of connections and he can book you easy meetings that don't add value to the clients' shareholder base.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Reward the few hard working young people who keep the company sustainable. Set up an alert system for weekly/monthly items for each client and distribute them through the managers. Promote the hard workers more visibly to motivate the rest of the staff.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    I worked at KCSA

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

    I worked at KCSA full-time

    Pros

    Small office with a lot of transparency. You will almost never have to work past 5:30 and the office is located in a great location.

    Cons

    The management team is very unorganized and half of the managing partners sexually harass female employees daily. The CEO inherited the company from his father and is focused on side projects more than the agency.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    The perfect place for a smart, hard-working person who is reading and willing to learn

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Account Executive in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Account Executive in New York, NY

    I have been working at KCSA full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    You have to be tough, smart and ambitious to really succeed at KCSA—and if you are, you’ll be welcomed by a management team who is eager to teach, mentor, and offer advice throughout your career. It’s rare to find a firm where even the junior-most members of staff are given access to C-suite clients, encouraged to brainstorm and strategize alongside partners and managers, tasked with projects that require critical thinking, and expected to contribute alongside experienced veterans as essential members of account teams. That’s all true at KCSA. You’re given credit for your work and you’re fairly compensated; you’re encouraged to ask questions and grow. Sure, there are obligatory tasks and menial projects, but managers work to foster your growth and assignments are truly tackled as a team. For all of these reasons, KCSA is a really great place to learn, grow and launch a career. You’ll learn and you’ll actually like the people you work with.

    Cons

    As with any fast-paced job, you’re expected to work until a project is completed. That might mean you can leave at 6:00, but that also might mean you have to get to the office at 7:50 to prepare for a big meeting. In other words: you’re never forced to work long hours just for the sake of putting in facetime, but sometimes longer hours do come with territory. Also, as with any office, there's some discrepancy in supervisors' management styles, so some people are easier to work with than others.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire smart people. When you hire someone who can't keep up with the rest of the team intellectually, it puts that person at a disadvantage (despite how eager and hardworking they might be...)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9. 2 people found this helpful  

    Smart People. Great Environment. Like a Second Family.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Rather Not Say in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Rather Not Say in New York, NY

    I have been working at KCSA full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Very intelligent counselors. Strong work ethic among the partners and employees. A caring environment and beautiful offices with great location. They really do it right here.

    Cons

    Rapidly growing firm with a fast-paced workday. Not a good fit for the lazy, clockwatching set. You will be expected to work hard but they don't require face time so you can actually have a life... unlike most NY agencies.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Very little to complain about. The partners are great.... but always very busy. I wish I could spend more time learning from them directly.... but that's life. They should definitely get more interns to handle some of the less engaging stuff but even the partners are willing to roll up their sleeves and get dirty.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    Avoid unless desperate

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY

    I worked at KCSA full-time

    Pros

    The people at the top are a little shady (my humble opinion). Now that is no reason not to work somewhere, but it does not help. The CEO inherited the business from his dad, and installed a few of his buddies in the top spots. His buddies are likely the “current employees” who wrote 5-star reviews. They work, party, and fight like college roommates. It is definitely a house of "bros" and women there used to complain about this. Now my experience was over a year ago, so this may have changed… But I doubt it.

    Cons

    The review that said that this is a good stepping stone to a better agency is right. It is a decent stepping stone company for a junior level employee - if you can survive a year of dialing for dollars, lots of pitching of stories or micro-cap companies. If you are more experienced and have any business contacts, be ready to burn them in order to get your paycheck. Good hands-on experience writing releases and media plans, and lots of face-to-face time with clients (small companies mostly, but great experience developing client skills if you are just starting out).

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    It is a small company, and you need buy-in from employees to be successful. Ask them for feedback on what is working and what is not.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great title bumps that help when you leave, but poor morale and high turnover

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY

    I worked at KCSA full-time

    Pros

    Promotions given every year or so, so you can move up quickly. The hours good for the industry, and you will be out by 5:30-6pm. Management is casual about vacation and time off, and you can work from home when needed.

    Cons

    Fraternity house atmosphere. Very low pay for positions lower than MD. The company is virtually unknown in industry (but titles help). Frequent, and often open, staff fights. Poor HR procedures (Lawsuit in waiting).

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Incentivize performance of lower ranks through bonus pool. Address morale through company events. Improve workplace harassment reporting procedures.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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