Etna Interactive Reviews | Glassdoor

Etna Interactive Reviews

Updated October 22, 2018
32 reviews

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3.6
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Ryan Miller
25 Ratings

32 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (5)

    "Great and getting better"

    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 Etna Interactive full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Super smart people that care about what they do, a straight forward directive to provide leads to clients, and ever changing landscape of tools and competitors just what every growing company needs. Etna provides a great environment to learn and succeed with competitive compensation.

    Cons

    Further refinement of key tactics is required to break away from the traditional agency hourly grind.

    Advice to Management

    Create more opportunities to learn and to change the state of the art.

    Etna Interactive Response

    Sep 1, 2017 – CEO

    Thanks for the input.

    We have a big initiative underway to refine our tactics and free up more time for creative expression within our work. Swing by my office and I’ll share more about that... More


  2. Helpful (2)

    "Quantity, Not Quality"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Luis Obispo, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Luis Obispo, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Etna Interactive full-time

    Pros

    Culture, culture, culture. Etna has spent years cultivating a positive, fun, lively work environment, and it shows. Most current and former Etnans say, without hesitation, that the people are what make it great. During the hiring process, individual personality and cultural fit are weighed just as heavily as skills and experience.

    Cons

    In recent years, Etna has gone from a stalwart of innovation to a profit-driven sweatshop. The language might be a little dramatic, but the sentiment is the same. Upper management is EXTREMELY concerned with "utilization," a much-maligned corporate buzzword that basically translates to billable output. This completely crushes the creative process and doesn't allow for any type of thoughtfulness in our work. It also significantly reduces our ability to experiment and innovate. Most importantly, intense focus on utilization is a precursor to burnout. Promotions are dependent on utilization rather than talent, tenure, skills, or really anything else. If you can make Etna a lot of money, you'll rise straight through the ranks.

    I worry this newfound shift in focus is responsible for our declining levels of client satisfaction. We're simply not the same agency we used to be.

    Advice to Management

    We know turnover is a concern, but you don't need webinars and conferences to understand how to make us stick around. Want to retain talented, hardworking Millennials? We don't want another ping-pong table or an elaborate holiday party. Instead, we want you to recognize the quality of our work and reward good ideas instead of constantly pushing for more "output." Show us that professional growth and development are possible, and give us space to create. In return, we'll reward you and our clients handily with beautiful, well-performing websites, ads, and marketing plans that are like nothing else in the industry.

    (Oh, and speaking of clients? A more thorough client screening process can make everyone's lives easier. Let's stop sinking money into adversarial clients who will never be happy and seek out clients who are excited to collaborate and contribute.)

    Etna Interactive Response

    Oct 24, 2018 – CEO

    Thank you for taking the time to give us your feedback. I’m glad to hear that you value our culture as much as we do. The leadership team and I really care about creating a great place to work and it... More

  3. Helpful (2)

    "Stellar Place to Work, but Potential to Improve"

    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 Etna Interactive full-time

    Pros

    Etna offers an upbeat and casual environment, a pretty generous compensation package, room for growth & development, lots of fun events and activities, and even opportunities to give back. The staff is full of bright, creative thinkers and working with these great people is one of the best things about the company. Everyone truly cares about the quality of work and delivering the best products & results to our clients. This results in some great collaboration and innovation along the way. Etna supports their own. Be it professional development, or just working around personal hardships, they go out of their way to accommodate what's best for the individual as well as the company. The camaraderie here is excellent.

    Cons

    There are some players in key positions that simply don't have the chops and that holds back team members' full potential success & enjoyment of their work. If these particular managers were trained to be better - or we had more suitable ones in place - we could elevate to new heights, increase production, and reduce employee-turnaround which is often a problem here. We've lost several really good, talented folks that would all agree with the pros mentioned, but it's this final piece that ultimately encourages them to look elsewhere.

    Advice to Management

    Hold management accountable. They say a chain is only as strong as the weakest link, well that goes double, triple, quadruple, etc., when that link connects to several other lengths of chain. Can we implement standards or procedures to ensure that the whole connection is strong & united? Perhaps employees fill out a review of some fashion on their managers that is reviewed by directors? Some feedback has been given / collected here and there in the past - via direct conversations, group discussions, exit interviews, etc - but we haven't seen this effect any significant change thus far.


  4. Helpful (2)

    "Great People but Needs Improvement"

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

    I worked at Etna Interactive full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - The people. Etna is mostly comprised of talented, kind-hearted, collaborative people.
    - Work-life balance. Work-life balance is engrained in Etna's culture, and it helps create a laid-back, energetic workplace.
    - The CEO and core values. Ryan Miller, the CEO, is fantastic. He genuinely cares about his company, his employees, and his clients. He embodies the company's core values and makes sure that they never fall by the wayside.
    - The Admin team. Etna's Admin team goes above-and-beyond to make sure that the employees are taken care of. From stocking the kitchen with snacks to coordinating opportunities to give back to hosting a fantastic weekly happy hour, they work incredibly hard to make sure that the employees are taken care of.

    Cons

    - Management. There are some departments that are lacking leadership they desperately need. While the teams are smart and self-driven, the lack of a good, effective, engaged leader is a detriment that effects the teams and, by extension, their clients.
    - Opportunities for growth. While there is plenty of opportunity for "growth" within the company, the promotion process that is in place for some departments cheapens the process and the outcome. It is not based on employees' overall quality of work, client relationship management, or leadership potential. It's a gamified system that has created competition and tension that did not previously exist.
    - Providing company feedback. While many members of HR and the leadership team have created comfortable, safe spaces to provide company feedback and discuss solutions, it is disheartening to see nothing come of that feedback.

    Advice to Management

    - Listen to your employees and take action when needed. Creating a safe space to talk is one thing, but knowing when action needs to be taken is much more important, especially when multiple people are bringing up the same issues. It could be the difference between keeping and losing valuable team members.
    - Ensure your teams have the leadership and guidance they need to be successful. Putting in place quarterly, anonymous manager reviews would be greatly beneficial.


  5. "Awesome Environment & Great People"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Marketing Specialist in San Luis Obispo, CA
    Former Employee - Marketing Specialist in San Luis Obispo, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Etna Interactive full-time

    Pros

    Etna Interactive makes a point that you know who you're working with. When you start you get to meet all the members from the different teams so you immediately feel included. The culture is great; people are kind, professional, and good at what they do. You even get to learn more about them at Friday happy hours. They're good at being flexible with your work schedule - whether you like coming in at 7 or 9, they can accommodate and offer working from home as well. From coffee to snacks and even Emergen-C®, they've got your back. Ryan (CEO) is willing to talk to you about the company and is passionate in taking care of his employees. Upper management is very transparent and all ears in hearing ideas | advice to better the company.

    Cons

    Base level pay is low compared to other places I have worked for with similar duties - I guess this could be compensated for if you achieve yearly bonuses and stay long enough to get raises you deserve. As an agency, you have to bill your time to prove what your efforts were throughout the day - every day. This can get a little nuanced and take up more time than needed. Although duties (at least for Marketing Specialists) are consistent, each specialist can approach them in a different manner and pass the next step on to you. This can either set your up for success or failure which is illustrated in your work product, not theirs. The company went through a significant revamping when merging the marketing department and the social media department. There still rests a few things that haven't been fully implemented and are a little undefined.

    Advice to Management

    Keep being you, you're doing great.


  6. "OK"

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

    I worked at Etna Interactive full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    It was a job, what more can you say?

    Cons

    Not as bad as many.

    Advice to Management

    Keep on keeping on.


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Not a happy place"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Luis Obispo, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Luis Obispo, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Etna Interactive full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great clients. Reasonable project timelines.

    Cons

    Inconsistency between declared company 'values' and actual employee treatment.

    Advice to Management

    Be honest with employees. Include employees in company planning, at least keep them informed.

  8. Helpful (2)

    "Job Seekers Beware!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Luis Obispo, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Luis Obispo, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Friendly coworkers, free snacks, open parking lot and there’s a happy hour every Friday. Not much else to say. It’s a job.

    Cons

    •Management is inept
    •People in all departments are unhappy
    •Unless you’re a brown-noser, your work will not be recognized, your feedback will not be taken seriously and you will be passed up for promotions
    •Employees talk behind each other’s backs constantly
    •Turnover is exceptionally high
    •Employees with ambitious solutions to problems are seen as threats to those in management who wish they came up with the idea themselves or refuse to hear others ideas.
    •No negotiations with your compensation offer- take it or leave it
    •PTO policy could be improved

    Advice to Management

    Fire and replace manager(s) of department(s) with the highest turnover. Mismanagement is the reason why people continue to quit. HR needs to apply feedback from employees. Not sure what they actually do here at this company.

    Etna Interactive Response

    Nov 6, 2017 – CEO

    In 2017 we decided to undertake one of the toughest things any organization can tackle…a radical re-organization. We did it to create more rewarding opportunities for our teams, to break down silos... More


  9. Helpful (6)

    "Soul-Crushing Minutia Extolled As Learning New Things"

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

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

    Pros

    Weekly happy hour is nice. The "front line" people are generally pretty good at what they do.

    Cons

    There is no forest at Etna. There are only trees. So many trees. There is a process for everything, everything is analyzed and catalogued to death, and "custom" work is a thing to be feared (because it can't be analyzed or processed or catalogued properly).

    Leadership dwells on details all day long as the ship continues to sink, and there's no life boat in sight. Turnover — which is exceptionally high — is dismissed as "Oh, so-and-so wanted to move to [the Bay area, Chicago, etc.]", and leadership is simply oblivious to the fact that, even if there are motivations other than work too, employee after employee still chooses to speed up their timelines, uproot, and start anew — because it's better than staying here.

    The re-organization of the company, while it began with somewhat noble goals like helping us all become more well-rounded marketers, has become more of a self-inflicted death knell. People are doing things they don't enjoy because they were told that they now had to start doing them. So they leave. It's as simple as that.

    The heartbreaking part about writing all of this is that the leadership really does care a lot. They try so hard.

    But they just cannot see the forest through the trees. Meanwhile, the culture is being destroyed.

    Advice to Management

    If you're going to ask the team for their opinion about the status of things, you need to actually follow through with clear examples of the ways you're taking their feedback and acting on it. Anything less just looks like lip service.

    Etna Interactive Response

    Aug 30, 2017 – CEO

    Ouch. That hurt.

    But I want to sincerely thank you for the feedback. It stung, and I wish you had felt comfortable coming to me in person. If you had, I would have validated many of your concerns... More


  10. Helpful (1)

    "A great company!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Account Executive in San Luis Obispo, CA
    Former Employee - Account Executive in San Luis Obispo, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Etna is genuine in striving for quality results for its clients and as a result, team members are encouraged to grow, learn and challenge themselves in a positive way. A supportive, collaborative team atmosphere is paired with the freedom of autonomy so that you can tackle the tasks you need to to make your day successful. Smart and fun people and good visibility to the results you're achieving as a company so everyone knows their work is part of a bigger strategy and goal. Speak up if you're looking for more learning opportunities, management is supportive and wants to see you thrive.

    Cons

    Not enough hours in the day to see everyone! But there's always Happy Hour on Fridays.

    Advice to Management

    More exposure to cross department trainings or tasks would be beneficial as the more everyone understands eachother's work load and responsibilities, the more connected and empowered one feels to the larger picture.


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