AbelsonTaylor Reviews | Glassdoor

AbelsonTaylor Reviews

Updated October 23, 2017
122 reviews

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122 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Great work/life balance (the best I've experienced at an agency) (in 21 reviews)

  • Free Snacks and Drinks on Every Floor (in 23 reviews)

Cons
  • Work-life balance can be challenging (seems to be the case at most if not all agencies, not just AT) (in 12 reviews)

  • The transition to project management had been unbearable (in 17 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Enjoying time off guilt free"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director
    Current Employee - Director
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    I enjoy working at AT with colleagues that are dedicated to not only doing great work for their own client or brand, but care about doing great work for every brand that we service because they know it strengthens our agency. You can feel good when you take time off knowing that your responsibility on a brand will be taken care of while you are gone. There is no stress or guilt so you can enjoy the time off that you have earned.

    Cons

    PTO should still go up as years with agency increase after 10 years


  2. "Need to work on planning"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at AbelsonTaylor full-time

    Pros

    Good people, work-life balance, hours

    Cons

    antiquated processes, lack of work, mediocre benefits

  3. "Happy Place to Work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at AbelsonTaylor full-time

    Pros

    Great people at AT. Great culture

    Cons

    Not many. Hard work pays off.


  4. Helpful (2)

    "Great for work/life balance, but could be a little more relaxed."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at AbelsonTaylor full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    In terms of work/life balance, AbelsonTaylor is by far the best agency I have experienced in my 16 years in advertising. Leaving at or near 5pm is the rule and not the exception. The office space is nice and lends itself to open collaboration. AT has a strong team atmosphere where the typical office politics are minimal.

    Cons

    Stricter than normal office policies tend to limit the kind of fun social mixing, both in the office and after hours, that you might expect from an Advertising agency. While this is somewhat understandable for such a large agency working with highly regulated products, this is still the industry of Mad Men and we are all professional adults who like to let loose a little bit and have some fun together. Plus, a few Friday afternoon drinks with colleagues can be great for bonding, morale and creativity.

    Advice to Management

    Loosen up the rules a bit and allow for some Thursday or Friday afternoon happy hours where team members (who don't have deadlines) can mix, mingle, play some music and have some fun. At work.


  5. "Experience AT"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior CopyWriter in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Senior CopyWriter in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at AbelsonTaylor full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great work/life balance, smart, caring people, competitive salary, stress-free atmosphere.

    Cons

    Work from home policy, minimum days off for holidays (no holiday break).


  6. Helpful (3)

    "Still trying to be the best agency, but...."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Account Supervisor in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Senior Account Supervisor in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at AbelsonTaylor full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    REASONABLE HOURS - I don't know what people are saying about no work/life balance! Many agencies have you working weekends but not AT. So you occasionally have to stay until 7 when you're entry-level...this is advertising!
    GOOD PAY - google industry averages and you'll see
    DALE TAYLOR - smart. mild-mannered owner who just wants to win "Most Creative Agency" award every year. He resigns business if the client stinks (more so in the past)
    SOME EXECS REALLY DO CARE - they immerse themselves in the day to day and stand up for their teams
    HR - they do their best to help employees

    Cons

    SOMEWHAT DETACHED MGMT - learn more about day-to-day activities; attend Job Start Meetings to experience the reality (it may help explain the high turnover)
    "AT WAY" TRAINING- not sure this was a wise investment; no one asked questions because they were scared for their jobs
    GET IT DONE ATTITUDE - the classic "quality vs speed" debate has landed on the side of speed. Used to be different (she says wistfully...)
    EGOs AT THE TOP? Some deserved, some not.

    Advice to Management

    We know you're busy bringing in new business so that we all get to keep our jobs, so "thank you." Ask your reports to invite you to big-project JSMs (eg, website, etc) and you'll quickly see it's near-impossible to follow the new process...there just isn't time.


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Much hullabaloo, little substance"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Snacks, partly subsidized Friday lunches, general relaxed atmosphere, competitive pay, very convenient to public trans, and if you like Chicago's Loop it's right in the center

    Cons

    Where to begin. Stingy time-off program-- sick days are taken from PTO; management is too far away from the on-the-ground action; outdated approach to digital; poor advancement opportunity

  8. "Great place to work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Overall good place to work.
    Mgmt looks for ways to improve work environment

    Cons

    Don't seem to learn from previous mistakes
    Don't always think through how decisions and explanations will be viewed by employees


  9. "Solid agency year after year"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Stable leadership at the top that carefully manages the client portfolio, genuinely cares about developing talent and creating a fair work environment, and works to thoughtfully evolve the workplace as needed. Day-to-day folks are easy to get along with. Collaboration is prized and encouraged. Work-space is pleasant and hours are reasonable. Plenty of charitable events and happy hours to keep things interesting. New organizational changes around project management are finally paying off and the company is refocusing to once again to try and figure out the next way to push the boundaries of what creative work means in pharma.

    Cons

    Concern for thoughtful change sometimes equals slow change. The past few years have seen a lot of big organizational changes that were for the long-term health of the agency (adding PM and the agency-wide software to go with it) that required a staff-restructuring and new process training. It was confusing and challenging and a lot of individuals left because they didn't like their new role or didn't want to sit through the turbulence of the agency figuring it out. The PM and AM positions have largely stabilized now.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to put people first. The perks of independence (reasonable hours, access to decision makers, willingness to stand up to abusive clients) are obvious to people joining us from the networks. Find ways to incentivize innovation (reviews, promotions, recognition) in how the agency sells, supports, and creates breakthrough ideas. The challenge of a really stable environment with leaders that have been there a long time is the pace of change. How can you invigorate staff and enable a leading edge approach to the work?


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Experience at and impression of AbelsonTaylor, Inc."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Highly creative ad agency on the cutting edge of technology & social media

    Socially responsible

    Good benefits

    Nice perks

    Cons

    A surprising number of copywriters who write very poorly and have little grasp of proper English or medical science; they get hired and promoted without appropriate credentials

    Trend toward following the dictates of clients on copy, even when clients' grammar is poor

    Trend of making all tactics for a brand "match" even when there are errors

    Lack of intellectual stimulation, interest


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