Squareknot

  www.squareknotagency.com
Work in HR? Unlock Free Profile

Squareknot Reviews

5 Reviews

1.8
5 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Squareknot President Di Cullen
Di Cullen
2 Ratings

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Strange experience

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

    Pros

    Great location and subway accessible
    Fun people
    Great environment
    Company provide you with all the tools you need to perform your job

    Cons

    No way to move on in the company if you don't kiss the right ass
    Managers don't even bother to hide favoritism for some "cool guys"
    Be ready to be back stabbed at any time

    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Terrible management. Terrible agency. Look elsewhere! There is no future here.

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    - Good work life balance compared to some other agencies.

    - Some fun people that make it bearable to deal with upper management and some seniors.

    - Good location by subway.

    - LoyaltyOne is actually pretty great, just not the agency portion of it (Squareknot)

    Cons

    Where to start...

    - Terrible senior leadership team. There is a lot of favoritism, and if you aren't on very visible projects or teams (vast majority) you will have a bad time and will be calibrated down by the completely unfair and illogical review process. The leadership team is almost 100% reactive and make completely uninformed decisions.

    - The worst review and praise system ever. You're given a rating at the end of the year that is tied to your bonus. Instead of being rated by your manager and coworkers, the senior leadership team makes the decision... There are entire teams that don't work anywhere near any members of the leadership! Talk about uninformed decisions! There is almost no incentive to work hard as you are most likely not going to be recognized for it. The praise system is equally flawed, only the most visible roles get recognition, you'll rarely see teams that are equally important that are just part of the process get the praise they deserve.

    - Not a real agency. This is a place where creativity goes to die. A combination of poor creative leadership along with boring clients makes the vast majority of the work very monotonous, tedious and makes you feel like a production line worker instead of an advertising professional.

    - Seemingly arbitrary fires and hires. There have been many very sudden and unexpected terminations to qualified individuals while other incompetent employees seem to stay around forever (another very obvious feature of the favoritism).

    - Very much an account led agency. The account teams (if you've done the right ass kissing, and you're a favorite) get to go to all the events. Meanwhile this is all hush-hush, and the digital and creative teams are never even offered or rarely get to go to events in their fields.

    - Future is not looking great. The new business team is not good, and this is more of a personal opinion than fact, but I can't see the agency growing any time soon. Things might start looking sticky soon.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Change the review system, it's terrible, and is very demoralizing.

    Start getting better at recognizing and retaining talent.

    For god sake the most incompetent and socially awkward people are planning strategies and pitching for new business. They can't even make friends or impress the people they work with, how can you expect them win the first impression of strangers!

  3.  

    A very confused company, lacking the leadership to pull it into line

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Toronto, ON (Canada)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Toronto, ON (Canada)

    Pros

    - Great central location - right above St Patrick metro station.
    - Good benefits and training offered.
    - Staff charity volunteering day every year.
    - Some very talented and dedicated staff members.
    - Opportunities for career growth BUT ONLY if you work in the "favourite departments", and follow the rules as below.

    Cons

    - There are only two ways to the top (which explains a lot about the current management issues):
       1. Dishonest ass kissing; OR
       2. By being in the company for a long time - This will pretty much guarantee you a management position, whether you have the competency for it or not.
    - Extreme favouritism of certain departments and certain people.
    - Doing it right the first time is not rewarded. But if you screw everything up for weeks, and then work back for 72 hours straight over the weekend before the deadline, this seems to be celebrated by upper management (regularly).
    - Many staff pretend to want change, but when it comes to the crunch, the favourite departments can't be bothered (as they have the sweet end of the deal), and the weaker departments (with no management to stand up for them), continue to take the brunt of the abuse.
    - Upper management will lie to your face. If you're not ok with this, don't work here.
    - HR is very difficult to deal with, as they don't understand the needs of Direct Antidote as a creative agency (they only know about the more corporate companies within the LoyaltyOne umbrella).

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The client is NOT always right. You need to support your staff in teaching them how we need to work with them, instead of standing back and pointing the finger at the wrong people. When you do, both the staff AND the clients will be much happier, and they'll respect us more as an agency (half our clients already think we're a joke). If it weren't for the LoyaltyOne umbrella holding you up, Direct Antidote would be a financial failure - What does that tell you?
    It's not cool to treat the staff / departments that you consider weak, like you do. They deserve respect and to be listened to and represented fairly by upper management. You told us that staff satisfaction was one of the top 3 goals. Stop kidding yourself and actually make that a reality. There are some amazing people at DA that know alot more than you do - let them make a difference, and support them, instead of bringing in new people that have no clue, and letting the clients run the entire show.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  4. We want your feedback – Are these company reviews helpful to you?  Yes | No
  5. 2 people found this helpful  

    Bad management, fake communication & extremely unorganised

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Terrible Management, Stay Away  in  Toronto, ON (Canada)
    Former Employee - Terrible Management, Stay Away in Toronto, ON (Canada)

    Pros

    Some of the work related activities are OK
    Location is good
    Non work-related training courses (if approved) are paid for

    Cons

    Favourtism towards the biggest ass kisser
    Management aren't interested in moving with the times, they're on the "gravy train" & not going anywhere
    Lots of account staff who are given the power to ruin a project
    Completely inefficient, run by people who think they know what agency work is

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Grow a pair & follow through on what you claim, otherwise get out and let some smarter people takeover. Stop hiring your "mates" & actually try to turn a profit (by removing the inefficiencies you put in place)

    Doesn't Recommend
  6.  

    Very cliquey. Lots of favoritism.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Toronto, ON (Canada)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Toronto, ON (Canada)

    Pros

    Up and coming agency with a lot of young fun people.
    Nice downtown location with convenient subway access.
    Big name clients.

    Cons

    To advance you really have to kiss the right butt.
    The cool kids get all the cool Jobs despite doing mediocre work.
    Unreasonable deadlines and workloads.

    Doesn't Recommend

Worked for Squareknot? Contribute to the Community!

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.