Leo Burnett Reviews

Updated October 21, 2014
Updated October 21, 2014
187 Reviews
3.7
187 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Leo Burnett Chairman and CEO Tom Bernardin
Tom Bernardin
97 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Very flexible with working from home and other work/life balance issues (in 11 reviews)

  • Some great people and great opportunities for great work (in 13 reviews)


Cons
  • Work-life balance is very bad, compared to the salaries (in 7 reviews)

  • You work super long hours including weekends and holidays (in 12 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Great experience

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Junior Executive in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Junior Executive in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Leo Burnett as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Great atmosphere and friendly environment. It is a place you can wake up and be excited to go to.

    Cons

    The stratification of different departments can come in the way of work that can be executed much quicker.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Start employing people who have an understanding of both new media and web development process in order to keep up with the times.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Smart people!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Digital Producer in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Senior Digital Producer in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Leo Burnett full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Really smart people work here
    Interesting client work (both for North America and Global)
    Opportunity to make a difference

    Cons

    Lean teams so quite stressful

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Great Agency to be a part of!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Producer in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Producer in Chicago, IL

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

    Pros

    I really love this agency. There are a lot of fun people, the environment is cool and all in all a good place to work. Also, our Christmas party is a lot of fun. I heard there used to be bonuses, but those are gone. Bummer.

    Cons

    It's advertising so of course the hours our bad. I would also like to see a client roster that allows creative thinking, not just a production house, but I know that's pretty hard to find anywhere.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Let's be more ambitious about getting new clients! The agency is ready to help.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Internship Experience

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Intern in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Intern in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Leo Burnett as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    You get to meet a lot of people within LB and outside. You are expose to do work for real clients. The events are pretty good and there is always good food. You are going to meet some pretty amazing talented people. Take advantage of every network opportunity. I think that's the most value you can get out of this internship.

    Cons

    The work you are going to be given is not as creatively challenging. Some of the creatives are stuck in a very traditionalistic mentality of doing work and it becomes inefficient. We live in a digitalize world and it's time to move on!
    Because the company is so big is hard to make a difference and be appreciated or valued by the work you do. So if you want to get that networking going be aggressive and get out of your comfort zone. There's lots of arrogant people, but also pretty great creative people, it's just part of the culture.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Make the intern project more fun and creative. The mentors I felt changed there mind most of the time when it came to giving feedback to the teams.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Burn and churn type of career…they use you up and lay you off

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Project Manager in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Project Manager in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Leo Burnett full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    The people can be very passionate about the work and be energizing to work with. The fun aspects are there…parties, social activities, a bar in the building.

    Cons

    The company is so stacked with hierarchy that you don't know what is going on in the company half the time. Once a year there is a holiday party where they talk about "the work". Other than that you only really have insight into your own accounts efforts.

    You work super long hours including weekends and holidays. They just shrug and say "welcome to agency life".

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Shed some of the layers between you and the actual teams. You have lost perspective.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Amazing advertising agency environment. Leo Burnett fosters a supportive, a learning, and an interactive environment!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Vice President, Regional Director in Dallas, TX
    Former Employee - Vice President, Regional Director in Dallas, TX

    I worked at Leo Burnett full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    If you want to contnue your growth and development in advertising, Leo B is the right choice. Great benefits, great perks. But you'll find the reason you stay is for the growth experience.

    Cons

    Always depends on who is assigned to your group, but you learn to make the most of it. You can learn from ANY leader, some are better than others.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I think upper management needs to be aware of everything that happens in the field and a way more willing to listen to what works in one versus another. Some of the leaders are less willing to look at new things than others. But overall, Leo B fosters an open, supportive environment. Great place to think and create!!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Loved the place

    Current Employee - Art Director Inter in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Art Director Inter in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Leo Burnett as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Good opportunities as an intern to work with lots of people
    Feedback was actually helpful and constructive
    Cool and smart people

    Cons

    Worked lots of overtime with no overtime pay

  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Leo is rolling in his grave and shouting to "take his name off the door"

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Vice President, Account Director in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Senior Vice President, Account Director in Chicago, IL

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

    Pros

    It's located in Chicago.

    The benefits package is above average in today's marketplace though nowhere near what it once had been.

    The elevators work (even if they remind you of the buffet at TGIF circa 1988).

    If you like a culture that doesn't care or take pride in its appearance, this is the place for you. Nobody picks up after a meeting in a conference room or any public place.

    Cons

    (From someone who worked at Burnett when it was at the top agency in the world, was rated a very solid "1" and was recruited to return and sadly experience its present day form ...)

    Burnett is a shell of once it once was yet it continues to thrive solely on its reputation of old. In fact, Leo Burnett the man and founder would be appalled at what the agency has become today. There's a film clip of Leo himself entitled "When To Take My Name Off the Door" that specifies when his name should be removed from the door and apples shoved own the elevator shaft. The removal should have been years ago when the leaders sold out to Publicis. (Shame on you Rick Fizdale).

    It all starts with the executive team and their reputations in the business (and former colleagues and peers of mine). Rich Stoddart is known for managing up incredibly well. Not a lot of substance with Rich as he went to the right school (Dartmouth) and he's quick to take credit for other people's ideas as well as engage in sabotage. Rich is as political as it gets and leads Burnett with form over any real substance. Susan Credle is a lackluster creative who self-aggrandizes her work and background. I was unimpressed by what she brought to any meeting. Rumor has it that her award-winning campaigns from her NYC agency days weren't even her concepts but ideas of the vendors with whom she worked. Bill Rosen is an original Frankelite which was a d-league agency that became Arc – still a d-league business unit whose leaders are 5 years behind the digital space and quick to provide excuses rather than produce quality work in a timely fashion. There's never been any there there with Bill. Like Rich, Bill succeeds by not rocking the boat above him, looking the part, and failing miserably as a manager/leader to his subordinates. Add Nina Abnee to the mix and you've created a hot mess of a leadership team. The terms "mean" and "nasty" were descriptors of Nina's reputation back in the day and it's still true that you can't teach an old dog new tricks. Nina likes to hear herself speak.

    Spend time with these leaders at the same time in a conference room (like I did) and you'll understand why the agency has become so dysfunctional. Sit back and watch as each tries to out-talk the other with absolutely no listening or collaboration happening between them. Yes, it's clearly a clash of the self-important egos with this bunch.

    "Reaching for the stars" are empty words here as striving for excellence is nowhere to be found here. The quality of the current work would get laughed out of CRCs of old. The head of HR actually refers to the culture as "soft" and pushing for excellence isn't even close to being a standard. Employees well-known as "viruses" and those fired from other sub-par agencies persist at Burnett. Some actually openly use their ethnicity to prevent from being fired (i.e. threaten a lawsuit if fired).

    If you're a true rock star, this would be nowhere near my list of target employers.

    (Note: By the way, you will no longer find the "When To Take My Name Off The Door" film clip anywhere at Burnett.)

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Walk your talk.

    Do something about your insecurity and don't be afraid of true performers who present substance over style.

    Support those who actually push for excellence, still hold people accountable, and actually "reach for the stars" and produce results.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Cold, corporate, and uncaring.

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

    I worked at Leo Burnett full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Lavish holiday party - gave the appearance of fun but many people snuck out early for the chance to actually get home at a sensible hour for once.

    Cons

    It's a big place, so it depends on your department, but overall impression not good. Too big to feel personal and human. Not everyone is treated fairly with the perks and benefits they promise upfront. Don't be fooled by the glitz of the office - it's all a facade. Long hours, often just as a statement. Ghoulish managers. Constant threats of layoffs and firings. Not what it used to be in the 90s and prior. Creative suffering as a result.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Time to take Leo's name off the door.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11.  

    Ship without captain

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Associate Creative Director in Miami, FL
    Current Employee - Associate Creative Director in Miami, FL

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

    Pros

    Good client portfolio. Nice facilities. Free coffee.

    Cons

    Top management was clueless about new-business acquisition and valuing their employees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Promote from within. Get rid of Old-School LB veterans that lack a solid grasp of today's digital evolution.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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