Mullen "work life balance" Reviews | Glassdoor

Mullen Employee Reviews about "work life balance"

Updated Oct 22, 2019

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3.2
64%
Recommend to a Friend
19%
Approve of CEO
Mullen CEO Lee Newman (no image)
Lee Newman
18 Ratings
Pros
  • "Most of the folks in the creative department are some of the best and most talented people I've ever had the pleasure of working with(in 14 reviews)

  • "Great people (excluding upper management)(in 11 reviews)

Cons
More Pros and Cons

Reviews about "work life balance"

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  1. Helpful (1)

    "Senior Art Director"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 

    I have been working at Mullen full-time

    Pros

    Great culture. Really talented people.

    Cons

    Work life balance can be tricky.

    Mullen2018-02-02
  2. Helpful (1)

    "Working toward a reaction and awards instead of creativity"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Creative Services in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Mullen full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    The portfolio of work here is great. There are many clients that are very different from each other, so you can dedicate yourself to a niche. One frustration I have is: not everything should default to one trend! So many projects or pitches began with manifestos and scripts, so much so that other creative activations and designs were falling short – or vice versa – partnerships and activations are being pitched... without any campaign strategy or design being considered. It would be great to see more experimentation in creative ideas at this company, but I ultimately left because those ideas were rarely seen for what they could be. I always got involved with the events and perks the company provided me with, but because of the alienation between departments and poor/last-minute planning, nobody ever seemed to take them seriously. Some events and perks were seriously unique, but nobody felt motivated enough to enjoy them. This is a great job when you’re starting out. They'll hire new grads and people just starting out in advertising. You will find yourself somewhere between talking to the younger crew in their language exclusively built on memes, and directors about the future of advertising and if that future might require staffing up your team, especially when others are leaving – if you are being considered for a mid or senior-level position, make sure you can plan ahead not just regarding your kickoffs, but how your team will ultimately work together in the midst of change. The work done here requires late nights, a lot of energy, and flexibility that often requires you to give the world to your job, where you might drop everything in your personal life just to keep your clients happy. If you take your time to think through concepts, have a lot of hobbies, value work/life balance, or want to put your name or get credibility for the work you do, this job isn’t for you - you will more than likely be eclipsed unless you are hired into a senior or director level role. If you find yourself very level-headed, want an ad agency on your resume, and have expert level technical skills at this job, can work quickly under pressure and can read body language and navigate small talk, you will find working here valuable. I don't regret working at MullenLowe at all, but I do acknowledge the work that needs to be done here as a community and at the heart of what an agency promises, but is hesitant to deliver through the life cycle of employees.

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    Cons

    Despite the office perks, a “get back to work” culture is extremely prevalent. These perks (free beer, snacks, make your own work hours, slightly discounted gym membership) are nice, but are common at many agencies nowadays, and I felt they fall too short for what they are trying to compensate for. I saw that my colleagues were constantly too stressed or had a strong dislike for hanging around the office to enjoy... them at all. I used the unlimited PTO on days where I was just too exhausted from pitches or so many late nights in a row. There is an expectation that you should be on call 24/7, often on weekends. If you get an email to come in, you should have left 20 minutes ago. There are constant fire drills on new accounts and little time to compose yourself between them before you’re expected to hop onto the next project. Because of this, everyone’s attention can only be applied to so many clients. I saw account and project managers not knowing where assets were or if we made them at all, and creatives confusing old work with new brand guidelines because they have to put upcoming projects on the back burner to their regularly assigned clients, making it especially hard to break into new work. I saw multiple projects that I had expressed a lot of interest in and would be honored to work on, go to other employees that gave them little to no attention, just because they were more senior level by title. The senior-level employees of all departments are expected to juggle the hitmaker accounts, where juniors or newer employees would have days of nothing to do and therefore, nothing or nobody to learn from. Even so, the accounts were considerably understaffed in various areas, without any project managers (account managers are expected to also become project managers) to keep each project moving efficiently. The seniority level/complex of higher up employees prevented new hires because each employee wanted to create work for awards, instead of the consumer or client focus. I saw this become most evident when work would come back from testing with poor reviews, but creatives argued to keep the work going because of their "vision." The open office layout has little to no privacy, and there are - without exaggeration, due to the shortage of conference rooms - zero private spaces to think, make phone calls, or even eat lunch without someone feeling entitled to walk up to you and ask you about work. Desks are spaced so close together that your neighbors will constantly monitor you from all directions. Even the GCDs and directors are subject to this, nobody has an office of their own. While at some workplaces it may be enjoyable or helpfully efficient to work near your teams, the lack of culture and little to no company activities or morale makes this layout and these interactions with teams around you seem forced and uncomfortable, what makes it even more uncomfortable is that everyone knows this. There are cliques within the different teams/departments and the only bonds that get formed were often by proximity. The only employees I ever saw truly enjoying their afternoons were the juniors and interns who haven’t worked anywhere else to compare their time to. The company has spoken out about this office style in the past and how they are hoping to change it, but nothing has changed since opening the NYC office. There is a culture and political problem that needs to be changed at this company in order for brighter talent to shine through in once-bright employees. There is a disappointing salary increase system in place that’s not at all merit-based, it’s based on the years you spend at the company. You are responsible for collecting your own feedback on your performance for annual salary reviews that happen once a year, and if there isn’t a budget for your department at that moment, you’ll have to wait another year. This is also problematic, because despite submitting my self-assessments on time, as every performance review I ever had was 6+ months late. Every HR system added for career success has been laughed off by the employees that are already too jaded or too politically driven to give you quality feedback that would help your chances of improving. The odds of getting promoted internally are slim to none, despite any empathy or encouraging words you may be given. The only employees I’d seen been promoted internally across different teams in all my time here, were ones who gave ultimatums or weeks notice they were going to leave, and even then, some weren't offered any reason to stay at all. The communication style between departments creates an uncomfortable power dynamic. In most meetings, should you stick around after they end, the other half of the team often had little to nothing nice to say about the teams they just met with behind their back. Rather than giving anyone a chance or look forward to work they’d see, everyone - regardless of their position - acted if it was a chore to work with the clients AND each other. For this reason, along with a growing sense of stagnation in my career after getting passed over for multiple promotions and raises, I needed to leave to foster a more authentic community of advertisers and creatives, instead of ones acting as if they were playing their job on tv, and the background cast didn’t matter to them.

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    Advice to Management

    Hire employees who can deliver the skills they put on their resume. We need a more rigorous screening process for the creatives that are hired here. Provide/set up actual one-on-one training sessions for those who are struggling, I often took it upon myself to take time out of my schedule to teach creatives how to set up their work or connect them with people who could do so, so things could be approved faster....  Listen to your employees in any department who want to contribute ideas. Don't develop a superiority complex, we should have talented writers and creatives anywhere in the agency's departments, able to contribute happily, not feel alienated or hopeless when they step into meetings. Don't gaslight anyone in-house for opportunities for free work, after all, they're already your colleague too. Stop understaffing, and listen to, hire, promote or compensate the employees who are working around the clock under supervisors, senior-level, or directors who leave them to finish their work. Speak up for your colleagues who you feel deserve recognition or promotion for their work that may have gone unnoticed. Give your employees opportunities for privacy, community, and personal comfort instead of continuing the surveillance-style culture that exists and hosting events your current employees are laughing at because they feel too overworked to get involved in any of them or contribute any changes. Listen to your employees when they are feeling frustrated. In my exit interview, I wasn't even asked how I enjoyed my time here at MullenLowe or what I'd do to help/change anything.

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    Mullen2019-10-22
  3. Helpful (1)

    "Good people that work hard"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 

    I have been working at Mullen full-time

    Pros

    Smart people, fast paced, feels small

    Cons

    low salaries, long hours, little work/life balance

    Mullen2019-01-05
  4. Helpful (1)

    "Opportunities abound"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston, MA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Mullen full-time

    Pros

    Plenty of good stuff to work on. Merit based.

    Cons

    Work life balance can be tough.

    Mullen2018-05-17
  5. Helpful (2)

    "Pros and Cons"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston, MA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Mullen full-time

    Pros

    Great culture and overall place to work. Advancement possible

    Cons

    Tough management structure to navigate. Lack of information flow Work/Life balance lacking

    Mullen2017-05-15
  6. Helpful (5)

    "A place that teaches you a lot"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Mullen full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Typical agency with tons of work that pushes your limit. You can definitely learn a lot and get alone with your peers.

    Cons

    No work life balance. Young kids often work day and night with terrible pay. There is not much room to grow but polities and dramas.

    Advice to Management

    Treat your employees with respect and appreciate their hard work with appropriate pay.

    Mullen2017-05-11
  7. Helpful (1)

    "Account Executive"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 

    I have been working at Mullen full-time

    Pros

    - Fun office environment - Big name client accounts

    Cons

    - Office is very political - Lack of structure when it comes to professional growth, development and reviews - If you want a work life balance you need to be the one to make that a priority, working nonstop through nights and weekends is the expected norm

    Mullen2017-03-22
  8. Helpful (2)

    "Better work/life balance than most agencies"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA
    Recommends

    I worked at Mullen full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Beautiful office space Respectfulness and kindness inside and across departments People who love what they do Good work/life balance (outside of crunch-times, but that's an industry standard) Account people are awesome, they defend the agency and its work to clients and set reasonable expectations Not much clock watching

    Cons

    Processes could stand to be streamlined

    Mullen2017-02-07
  9. Helpful (1)

    "Account Supervisor"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Mullen full-time

    Pros

    You get a lot of autonomy and responsibility right out of the gate. Great place to learn and to learn by doing - you're not overmanaged and get real client management and interactions right away. Opportunities to make really great and creative work and work with talented people.

    Cons

    Work/life balance can be tough sometimes with everyone expected to work long hours and be available outside of work to answer emails, etc.

    Advice to Management

    Mullen's upper management could be more invested in the day to day of the lower employees and care more about the non-sexy accounts that bring in the $$.

    Mullen2017-01-09
  10. Helpful (1)

    "Senior Media Planner"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Media Planner in Boston, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Mullen full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Holiday Schedule, Free Food/Alcohol, Immediate Responsibility

    Cons

    Misguided Leadership Team, Long Hours/Weekends, Work/Life Balance, Under-Staffed Workforce, Salary

    Advice to Management

    Hire more people and pay them a competitive salary, don't bend over backwards and say "yes" to every client request

    Mullen2017-01-06
Found 33 reviews