Longbow Research

  www.longbowresearch.com
  www.longbowresearch.com

Longbow Research Reviews

12 Reviews
3.0
12 Reviews
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David MacGregor
4 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Self-starters only - not a "punch the clock" job

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Junior Equity Analyst in Cleveland, OH
    Current Employee - Junior Equity Analyst in Cleveland, OH

    I have been working at Longbow Research full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    - Pay is above-average at all levels relative to other finance jobs such as corp. finance departments.
    - Autonomy. If you're a "doer" instead of a "punch the clock" employee, you can essentially dictate your own hours. My senior only cares that my work is done. IMO this is the single best reason for careers on the sell side.
    - Rise up the ranks as fast as you're ready. Longbow is an entrepreneurial atmosphere: make a sound case to cover a stock or a sector and it can be done. Sure some have flamed-out, there is no guarantee for success.
    - I regularly interact with upper management and portfolio managers. In my first year I was peppering a mid-cap CEO with questions. Again, cool part of working sell-side.
    - Cleveland! Doesn't pay like your peers in NY, but it's a centrally located suburban office park, couldn't be an easier place to work.
    - People. Like anywhere it's a mixed bag, but there are research teams doing some high quality work. You interact with some very smart people, both internally and in the customer base.

    Cons

    - Repeat: if you're a punch the clock employee, workin for the weekend, the sell side is not for you. Entrepreneurial self-starters only. As a junior or associate you are expected to develop industry contacts and write reports on industries you're learning on the fly. It's not a boiler room like Quicken Loans, but it does take a certain personality to succeed.
    - Yes you can dictate your hours most of the time. But others times such as earnings season you need to be glued to you desk, depending on earnings call timing.
    - Results are choppy. My annual bonus has been +/-$25,000 depending on the environment and flow of business. Essentially big years are great and small years are disappointing.
    - CEO takes ample of flack, some deserved, but alot is sour grapes. He's the bad guy who needs to make hard decisions to keep the company on the right track. He's recently farmed out the day to day to lieutenants around the organization, morale is significantly improved IMO.
    - Travel can be cumbersome and increases as your responsibilities do. Essentially you must enjoy traveling to NYC. I do not.
    - Long term, the outlook for the industry is questionable. No it does not go away. But customers are active money managers. Gen XYZ is being pushed into passive investing vehicles.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Transparency is improving, morale is improving, keep it up.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    A good experience with a quality firm

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

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

    Pros

    There's a great balance between autonomy and managerial oversight: there's a high level of trust and flexibility for those who meet goals, deadlines, and standards. And that's a good thing: micro management is rarely the way to go. The people are friendly, the atmosphere is relaxed, the office and accommodations are really great. Clean, spacious, well furnished office space.

    Cons

    Can be a high pressure environment at times, with little margin for error. But no more so, I don't think, than any other similar industry.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Positive Wall Street Experience w/ above-average responsibility

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Junior Equity Analyst
    Current Employee - Junior Equity Analyst

    I have been working at Longbow Research full-time

    Pros

    - Solid independent research shop with good client base
    - Differentiated research product, though the quality varies team-to-team (as with any research provider)
    - Given low coverage (200+ stocks), junior analysts are provided a clear runway for promotion after recent changes to the research department. Those who want to grow, can and will with the right attitude and drive. LBOW provides good support and tutelage along the way.
    - Good access to company management. Same can't be said for most independent research shops.
    - Plenty of young employees...can make friends easily. Everyone is nice.

    Cons

    -Research has gone through some growing pains, though its mostly a function of bringing in non-midwestern talent who do not share the same midwestern values as the rest of the firm. They're more likely to leave for other shops for no real reason.
    - Pay is lower than NY's wall street standards, but lower cost of living in Cleveland offsets this almost entirely.
    - Long hours, high quality standards and a high pressure sales force...though this is too be expected
    - Office is nice, but located in the suburbs. Most of the staff is young and lives downtown (or near it)

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    - Limit turnover at junior level.
    - Expand coverage through continued internal promotion of qualified candidates, while also growing the business with outside hires. Make sure new junior analysts aren't covering an industry on their own (on and island).
    - Downtown office would be preferable and a boost to morale

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5. 3 people found this helpful  

    Great people, horrid CEO

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Junior Equity Analyst in Cleveland, OH
    Former Employee - Junior Equity Analyst in Cleveland, OH

    I worked at Longbow Research full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Since everyone at the firm is trying their best to get out, there is a decent amount of room for promotions.

    Cons

    Just about every issue at the firm (and there are MANY) stems from the lack of leadership, vision, and overall managerial ability.

    MacGregor runs all bonus meetings and, through some arbitrary process, decides who gets what. It doesn't matter if you've only interacted with him 3 times since your last meeting, he believes he knows how well you're doing your job. There is also the issue that the sales vote is private and has been altered in the past.

    Those who "kiss up" are MUCH more likely to receive favorable bonuses.

    The administrative staff is bloated and ineffective. They are so far away from the cutting edge that they're not even on the knife.

    The sales force has gotten fat at the top due to a poor distribution of accounts. This has removed the incentive for the top earners to prospect or develop new accounts. The guys at the bottom are pushed around like pawns and have no say in the structure of the sales process. A "head of sales" was brought in to try and fix this situation, but no one has yet been able to figure out what he has contributed.

    The company's vision changes at the whim of the CEO. This typically happens every 3-4 months and multiple meetings are called. New initiatives are handed down without discussion and then promptly forgotten about a month or two later.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Remove MacGregor, bring clarity to bonuses, put a proper management structure in place, value employees by their contributions (not how much they brownnose), cut the dead weight in your administrative staff, reorganize your sales force, set a vision, define the strategy to your employees, and when you begin to execute this strategy, don't give up after 2 months and forget about it.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great experience working on Wall Street from Cleveland, OH.

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

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

    Pros

    -The firm gives you the ability to drive your own success. Many of the most successful analysts at the firm are home grown.
    -In a firm of only 60 employees, you cant just hide in your cube. The industry and specifically the firm are results driven and if your goals aren't met, changes become necessary.
    -Challenging work in a competitive industry.
    -Good brand name.
    -Friendly environment
    -Good benefits

    Cons

    -There are some long days (earnings season/travel days) although that should be expected on Wall Street.
    -The firm has lost a couple good employees over the past few years although plenty of good ones remain.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 4 people found this helpful  

    Very frustrating

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

    I worked at Longbow Research full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Longbow has some really good and upstanding people.

    Cons

    The firm has absolutely no vision and is run by it's CEO, David MacGregor, like a dictatorship. It's either his way or the highway. There are no "checks and balances" as David is the majority shareholder and essentially has no one to report to. He used to be a solid steel analyst but he's taken on way too many responsibilities at Longbow. He's trying to be a publishing analyst, a CEO, and the Director of Research. Each one of those jobs is a full-time job in itself. He's spread himself way to thin and is not effective in any of those roles. Part of the problem is that he's a control freak and cannot stand the thought of delegating.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    1) The CEO, David MacGregor, needs to decide what he's going to do. Either be a CEO, be an analyst or be the Director of Research. Not all three.
    2) Longbow has got to stop the revolving door of employees. They're constantly losing their best talent. Wall Street does not like constant change and will pay a premium for consistency.
    3) Longbow has to find a way to keep it's best people. Whether they're constantly losing top analysts, salespeople or traders - they have to keep their best talent and not lose it to other Wall Street firms.

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

    Good people at firm but overall direction and expectations firmwide are muddled.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Research Analyst in Cleveland, OH
    Former Employee - Research Analyst in Cleveland, OH

    I worked at Longbow Research full-time

    Pros

    - People are great. Decent amount of after-work organized happy hours and events. Non-senior management is a younger group of workers; ranging from early 20s to early 30s.
    - Freedom in day-to-day activities, you are trusted to do your own work without someone constantly checking on you.
    -Benefits are good (firm covers health care costs) though they do not match their 401k.
    - Encouraged to start own projects/come to your senior with new ideas. Collaboration and open dialogue is encouraged.
    - Work is intellectually challenging.

    Cons

    - Long hours. Work/Life balance is not great though weekend work is almost nonexistent. Oftentimes feel like you just have to sit there to put in face time even if nothing to do.
     - Expectations/degree of training/overall culture highly dependent on which team you are on. No real unifying overall expectations.
     - Initiatives are talked about but rarely followed through on.
    - Pay is somewhat lower than comparative firms.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get a standardized training system for all new employees; culture/survey practices vary widely from team to team.

    Negative Outlook
  9.  

    Growing company with smart people

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Research Associate in Cleveland, OH
    Former Employee - Research Associate in Cleveland, OH

    I worked at Longbow Research full-time

    Pros

    -Small company with great collaborative atmosphere
    -Intellectually-stimulating work
    -Fast-paced environment
    -Coworkers are enjoyable to be around, friendships go beyond workplace
    -Company takes care of its employees

    Cons

    -Longer hours
    -Economy has affected the industry
    -Lots of multi-tasking required

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  10. 3 people found this helpful  

    Look elsewhere, anywhere else

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Independence, OH
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Independence, OH

    I worked at Longbow Research

    Pros

    Generally cordial environment barely working 40 hours a week.

    Cons

    Autocratic owner that has no respect for outside opinions or employees. There are a handful of insiders (6 or 7) that are taken care of, while everyone else is expendable. The research is sophmoric, which should be expected given that 60% of Longbow's analyst's have no Senior Experience outside of Longbow. The "differentiated survey work" is merely data-mining, simply designed to confirm an existing opinion.
    As is the case at most poorly run organizations, morale is extremely low. I would venture a guess that 80%-90% of current Senior Staff would leave at any other offer.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Replace yourself or do the rest of the street a favor and stop diluting the commission pool with your sub-standard product.

    Doesn't Recommend
  11. 2 people found this helpful  

    Smart People, Independent Research Groups, Poor Survey Operation

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Intern in Independence, OH
    Former Employee - Intern in Independence, OH

    I worked at Longbow Research

    Pros

    Somewhat intelligent associates (30%), some really smart senior analyst, no micro- mismanagement, bonus incentives, free coffee, carpet floors, decent computers, cozy cubicles

    Cons

    Unsophisticated survey process done entirely by untrained interns and 1st year associates, survey questions idiosyncratically tailored to produce non-neutral results. Poor team work.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Company should develope professionalized management team, create unadultered survey process, leverage small company environment to explore more efficient operational models.

    Doesn't Recommend

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