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I have been working at EMI Strategic Marketing full-time (More than a year)
Life at EMI is interesting and challenging. While the firm could broadly be described as a “marketing company”, work runs the full gamut of marketing and the mix of projects at any given time reflects that. The company has an impressive stable of clients that are primarily in financial services (you would recognize the names). Many of these clients choose to work with EMI largely because the firm “gets it” when it comes to financial services and they don’t have to explain everything from scratch, as is required with many agencies. The president and much of the management team came from financial services. The office is full of bright people (see Cons below as well). There are some really smart folks and it forces everyone to up their game in terms of delivering creative ideas, better strategies, well thought out arguments, etc. It also makes for interesting hallway/break room/lunch conversations. Culturally, the company has a family atmosphere. It is about as non-corporate as you can get (some may view this as a Con, but for me, coming from financial services, it is a big plus). There are a few people who have been with the company since its inception, but it’s not a particularly political place to work – no sharp elbows, brown nosing, empire building, etc. Junior associates get to learn marketing from some of the best and work on real projects for big name clients. The experience that comes from that is invaluable.
As mentioned above, the company is well stocked with bright minds. This also means that there are some quirky personalities. If you are someone who can get along with people, this is a non-issue. Compared to larger/more corporate environments, there is a lack of formal structure. There is no HR department. There is no sales department. There is no tech help desk. There are no regular staff meetings. If the copier is out of paper, you load it. This is life at a smaller company. It’s not for everybody.
Advice to Management
Delegate more. Consider monthly or quarterly all employee meetings.