Kalmbach Publishing Reviews

Updated July 23, 2015
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3.0
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Gerald B. Boettcher
3 Ratings

17 Employee Reviews

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  1. Advertising Sales Representative

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

    I worked at Kalmbach Publishing full-time (More than 10 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Great people, talented managers, good benefits, customer-focus oriented

    Cons

    Declining subscriptions and newsstand challenges due to mature and declining markets.

    Advice to Management

    Actively seek out new and growing markets to serve.


  2. Art department

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Waukesha, WI
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Waukesha, WI

    I have been working at Kalmbach Publishing full-time (More than 10 years)

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

    Pros

    The people are very friendly. It's a pleasant working environment, and they have a 37.5 hour work week.

    Cons

    There are too many cooks in the kitchen. Every project and decision has to be approved by so many people, and go through so many different channels – you begin to lose passion for your work. There is also very little room for advancement, the employees are overworked and underpaid, and the culture is very conservative.

    Advice to Management

    Give your employees more recognition, and make them feel valued. There is very little feedback (good or bad) once a project is complete.


  3. Helpful (1)

    Overall great place to work

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Waukesha, WI
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Waukesha, WI

    I have been working at Kalmbach Publishing full-time (More than 10 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The company has a lot of integrity and continues to find new avenues of growth. Works hard to retain valued staff.

    Cons

    If the company decides you're not a "flight risk," you can easily get parked somewhere and forgotten about. Little opportunity for growth or personal development. Pay and employee incentives are sadly out of date. Whole environment feels stodgy and out of touch.

    Advice to Management

    Ditch the Customer Focus program. It's a bit of a joke that doesn't actually accomplish its stated goals. Learn how to be faster and more agile in responding to changing market conditions. Find some way to show appreciation for loyal employees who aren't a high flight risk.


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  5. Good

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Marketing Specialist in Waukesha, WI
    Former Employee - Marketing Specialist in Waukesha, WI

    I worked at Kalmbach Publishing full-time (More than 3 years)

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

    Pros

    The people were nice and friendly and the atmosphere was very professional with nice working facility. A customer focused company.

    Cons

    The magazine publishing business is steadily declining with many challenges. There was a fair amount of stress as a result.


  6. Helpful (2)

    Friendly Small Publisher With Aging/Declining Brands

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

    I worked at Kalmbach Publishing full-time (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Most folks are friendly (a few sharks to watch out for) and management is respectful to employees. Short hours, unlike most publishing companies. Management clears out at 5:00. Hard-core enthusiast customers are very loyal to the model-railroading brands. Private company avoids short-term financial pressure typical of most equity-owned publishers.

    Cons

    Mostly aging magazine brands serving older customers in declining markets:: model trains, model cars, beading, etc. Company bought science magazine "Discover" and is struggling to understand that market and make it work. Management is dominated by aging males. Can't figure a way to shake things up and bring more young women into policy-making roles. Management is very conservative and suspicious of new people with outside ideas. Management structure not typical of most magazine/digital publishing companies--too many cooks in most projects make progress political and difficult. Company has traditionally avoided doing customer research.

    Advice to Management

    Utilize the talent you already have on staff...Smart young women (and men) who see the world differently from the middle-aged guys who call all the shots. Do more research.


  7. Helpful (1)

    Going Down

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

    I worked at Kalmbach Publishing

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Great company culture, great co-workers

    Cons

    No training, dying medium so not good job security

    Advice to Management

    Thin out the managers that do not do anything, and reward the 'working bee' employees. There are not many people left, so boost their morale by taking on more responsibilities. Keep the transparency of the poor performance of the company.


  8. Helpful (1)

    Be careful with these guys.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Staffer in Waukesha, WI
    Former Employee - Staffer in Waukesha, WI

    I worked at Kalmbach Publishing full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    They still publish magazines and have jobs, albeit low-paying ones, for editors and writers. People are generally friendly. Reasonable work-life balance is possible.

    Cons

    Low pay. Hollowed-out benefits. Rigid, cheap management that refuses to invest in modernizing their publications. Culture of mediocrity. Management tries to junior out the staff to pay as little as possible, so older employees should watch their backs and make contingency plans for their future. Management gives lip service to caring about employees (what they call the Customer Focus program) but treats them like commodities to be kicked to the curb at management's convenience.

    Advice to Management

    Do what you say and say what you do. And try actually listening to your employees' opinions for a change. A lot of the time they know more than you do.


  9. Kalmbach Publishing is a customer-focused company that is good to their employees.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial in Waukesha, WI
    Current Employee - Financial in Waukesha, WI

    I have been working at Kalmbach Publishing full-time (More than 10 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Customer focused approach to doing business; people are very nice

    Cons

    Declining financials due to print products

    Advice to Management

    Less management - more worker bees


  10. Kalmbach is a great, customer-focued company to work for

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

    I have been working at Kalmbach Publishing

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Good work-life balance, good corporate culture

    Cons

    Current products are focused on print publishing


  11. Great place to work, and a strong customer focus program. A great boss who understands balance between work and family

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Kalmbach Publishing (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Customer focus program, good work life balance

    Cons

    Printed pubishing is on a downward trend



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