Deep Focus Reviews | Glassdoor

Deep Focus Reviews

Updated June 20, 2017
60 reviews

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Full-time Part-time

3.0
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Ian Schafer
34 Ratings

60 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Great work/life balance, especially for the industry (in 8 reviews)

  • Great atmosphere & team work, you learn a lot (in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • Limited room for growth / Work life balance (in 4 reviews)

  • Upper management is clueless and so out of touch with the employees - stuck in their ivory tower (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "lot of love for DF"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Social Publisher/Copywriter in Bronx, NY
    Current Employee - Social Publisher/Copywriter in Bronx, NY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    some folks see an agency in shambles, i see an agency in flux making changes in en ever-evolving and ever-changing industry. i think the agency, from management, to our CEO, to everyone in between, is invested in the process of growing professionally and personally. there is plenty of opportunity to share thoughts, opinions, and ideas to help grow our business and create dialog around effective means on how to do that. i feel supported, loved, and listened to, from HR to facilities all the way up to our president and CEO.

    Cons

    sometimes i do wish the agency was smaller. we have the mindset of a boutique agency but don't function like one.

    Advice to Management

    listen to staff, ask questions, let them voice their concerns and opinions.


  2. "An evolving agency with a bright future"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Deep Focus full-time

    Pros

    I don't typically write reviews, but the most recent review of Deep Focus is just so negative, it's offensive. I felt I had to set the record straight. So here goes!

    Ian is a visionary. I came here several years ago because I believed in him, and I stayed for this long for that same reason. He knows what will happen before it does, and I always learn something when I'm in a room with him. He's exceptionally knowledgeable when it comes to marketing, but he does lack expertise in operations - hence the new leadership. We needed that leadership to help our agency thrive.

    Yes, we have had a lot of change recently, but it's for the better. Being a digitally-led creative agency in today's world is really challenging. It's increasingly hard to prove the value of what we do to clients and to drive a profitable business. Our competition is no longer just other digital agencies, we compete with platforms, publishers, media agencies, PR agencies. That is a constant for any agency of our size and specialty. We have to evolve or die. So we are evolving.

    Our HR team is wonderful. Truly lovely people. One of my favorite people in this agency works in HR, so I am deeply offended by some of the comments made on this site. They have gone above and beyond to accommodate the needs of our employees. We have best-in-class benefits. We have health fairs and unlimited perks. I get a discount on my child's daycare because of the perks our HR team provided.

    One of the best changes this agency has made over the last few years is becoming a great place for working parents. We have a parents group that meets monthly to support one another. Our HR team has allowed flexible schedules for employees who have personal needs to prevent them from working full time. Our facilities team is absolutely stellar. I promise you, we have the best mothers room of any company, ever.

    And, yes, we have a great culture. Fun, creative people. Bagels on Mondays. Thirsty Thursdays. Creep Focus Halloween film festival. Ridiculous holiday parties. I feel like you've already read all that, so I won't belabor those points.

    Cons

    If you don't like change, then don't work here. But I guess if you don't like change, you should consider a new industry altogether.

    Yes, we've had cuts. It's a tough time for agencies in general. And yes, we work hard and long hours, and people can feel stretched too thin at times. But again, that's agency life.


  3. Helpful (5)

    "Great place to work, but terrible HR department"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Deep Focus full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - awesome colleagues
    - great team

    Cons

    Terrible HR department. Most unprofessional I ever met.

    Advice to Management

    change HR department completely.


  4. "A digital family, IRL"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Deep Focus full-time

    Pros

    Everyone says their favorite thing about DF is the people, and that's absolutely true. The people who work at DF are committed, hard-working, interesting and passionate. As the world of social and digital have grown and changed Deep Focus has kept pace with those advancements, shifting its offerings and keeping ahead of trends. Smart Strategy, dedicated Account and Production. I've met some of the smartest and most interesting people I've ever worked with at this agency.

    Cons

    The agency has had to respond to two major simultaneous shifts: becoming integrated into its parent company and agency family Engine, and the major changes in the industry that all agencies are feeling. Those have had an impact (some for good, some for bad) on overall agency stability, but I feel really good about the direction that leadership is charting and the day-to-day changes they've been making. Growing pains aren't easy, but they bear fruit.

    Advice to Management

    Keep the lines of communication open about the things you're doing, both small and large, to maintain momentum and keep Deep Focus on the cutting edge.


  5. Helpful (9)

    "HAS HIT ROCK BOTTOM & THEY ARE NOT COMING BACK FROM IT ANYTIME SOON"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Deep Focus full-time

    Pros

    I have seen Deep Focus in both it's best and worst times, which is now. It has always been the people (some, not all) that I have met along my journey that have made my time here memorable. And by the people, I am referring to my direct colleagues and Ian. Deep Focus had some of the smartest and talented individuals in this industry pass through their doors, but they have let that all slip away in the past year and half by appointing leaders that have no idea what they are doing. I have watched this company have all the potential in the world, to barely keeping its head above water.

    Cons

    Talent is RUNNING not walking out the door due to horrible executive management. There is 0 transparency, a ton of layoffs (where seniority doesn't matter so long as you "have connections"), huge clients leaving, and a very heavy lack of job stability/security. Deep Focus is trying so hard to be what they are not, that they are losing what made them great to begin with...

    Worst HR department that I have ever seen. They are unhelpful, disrespectful and to be honest, just really bad at their jobs. Production & Finance have finally gotten a little bit better but there is still no process and organization. Creatives are smart but do not adhere to industry standards and best practices because they are so overworked that they do not have time, nor do they care because the moral is so low. This has led to sub-par work and DF would rather stack the executive team with a CCO than keep those in house that actually do the work. Strategy & Analytics are also extremely intelligent but are being led by a CSO that does not know what he is talking about most of the time. Tech is understaffed and overworked.

    Bottom line: no one on the executive team knows what they are doing and they have ran this company that Ian built, into the ground. I do not think they will come back from their downfall.

    Advice to Management

    Wake up! Worry more about your employees and a little less about yourselves , they ARE the culture you try to portray as having. Focus on building the relationships with the clients you STILL have and worry less about stacking new business pitches with overworked and underpaid employees - no success will be sought this way.

    Stop spending so much time on pulling people into your new shiny endeavors, when the old shiny endeavors are what made you successful in the first place. You are so concerned with "starting from scratch" that you don't look to amend what you currently have in place.

    A restructuring is needed desperately for there to be any hope in making this better.


  6. Helpful (5)

    "Company probably won't be around long"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Deep Focus full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    There are a few really cool people that work here. There's free beer on Thursdays. CEO is nice. The office is large and convenient to trains. Free coffee. Dogs in the office once in a while.

    Cons

    Most people hate working here from talk I hear everyday. All of my coworkers are one foot out the door and people are leaving so often and fast. Management is so bad! People keep getting laid off and we keep loosing valuable accounts. There are so many empty desks here it's really sad. It has become increasingly more corporate feeling and we are constantly hiring new executives and firing creatives. My prediction is that this company probably won't be around in the next 5 years or less. It is very poorly managed and things are NOT transparent at all. Much has changed in the years I have worked here! People work crazy hours and salaries from what I hear are pretty low for the industry. My salary is definitely low for the industry. I have received only one small raise in 4 years of working here and it didn't even cover my cost of living increase. I am constantly looking for new jobs because I am worried about being laid off like everyone else here. No one really gets promoted except executives and people overseas at the parent companies. I would look elsewhere.

    Advice to Management

    Management is really the biggest issue here in my opinion. People come and go so fast. The is NO CULTURE whatsoever. Make step to improve your employees happiness and the work will improve and the business will grow. Stop hiring so many executives and hire people who actually create the work! We are dying here and need help. Not another CCO....


  7. Helpful (3)

    "A candle in the wind"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    People here actually seem to become friends.
    Looks great on a resume.
    You'll get to work with big name clients.
    Occasional fun projects.

    Cons

    3 lay-offs in one year doesn't necessarily allow for any boost of morale or a glimpse of a brighter future.
    Lots of upper-level management seems to be trying to individually shine rather than create strong teams. A big "figure it out for yourself" attitude.
    Disorganized agency, many departments seem to spend more time arguing who should know what and pointing fingers rather than learning more or working together.
    Constant changes in what the agency offers (Moment Studio, Cassandra, etc.) in order to up-sell clients isn't actually helping build a stronger agency, just a shinier product that breaks in a few months.

    Advice to Management

    Make changes in how you build teams and keep your employees educated in the ever changing digital world. Stop trying to sell yourself as something better than you are and actually put that energy, time and money into actually becoming that great agency.


  8. "San Francisco is a great place"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Strategy Director in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Strategy Director in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

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

    Pros

    I work in the San Francisco office and I love it. We have a great team here and the culture feels like a startup but with the backing of larger network/big agency. Everyone on the team shows a sense of commitment, hustle, collaboration and dedication. I'm happy to work with the people here and many are my friends outside of work. Deep Focus is truly a great place to do good work, grow and also maintain a work life balance.

    Cons

    It's hard to say anything bad about the San Francisco office. However, the network has room for opportunity.

    Advice to Management

    NY, LA, and SF could be a little more connected when it comes to training, and access to resources/tools.


  9. "Great Company to work for- love the people!!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The best part about Deep Focus is the people! The people at DF become more like your family rather than just co-workers. They have a great work-life balance and truly care about their employees across every level. There is lots of room to grow if you are a hard worker and the company culture in unbeatable. I think one of the coolest things that seems to be pretty rare at other companies is that you will find upper management interacting and socializing with everyone down to the interns. Upper management is great and they seem to finally have the right people in place.

    Cons

    No cons. I think there were some growing pains last year, but I feel like everything really came together this year and is only going to continue to get better!

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the great work!


  10. Helpful (4)

    "Another one bites the dust"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Account Executive in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Account Executive in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Not many right now. Used to be great. All of the good talent has left. There's a beer fridge, but what agency doesn't have a beer fridge.

    Cons

    Third round of layoffs in less than a year. Things are not looking up and the current HR team is absolutely terrible.

    Advice to Management

    Cut your losses, you can't attract the top talent anymore because you have invested in all of the wrong talent.


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