Northlich Reviews | Glassdoor

Northlich Reviews

Updated February 13, 2019
30 reviews

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2.9
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Kathy Selker
16 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. Featured Review

    "Great opportunities for those who like to lead"

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

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

    Pros

    Northlich is a legend in Cincinnati advertising. This current group of ad veterans and ambitious young talent are taking the agency into its 70th year with passion and excitement. This is a great place to make a big impact and see the fruits of your labor in local, national and international markets.

    Cons

    This is not a good place for someone who wants to be told what to do. Everyone is very collaborative but also very self-motivated. It's a lean team so opportunities abound but it also means there's not a lot of oversight and hand-holding.

    Northlich Response

    Feb 19, 2019 – Associate

    Thanks for your positive review; we’re proud to be part of a legacy that has been creating iconic brands and memorable campaigns for 70 years. At Northlich, we work to foster an environment that... More


  2. Helpful (1)

    "This is a place where you can do great work"

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

    I have been working at Northlich full-time

    Pros

    You have lots of ability to create your own direction at Northlich. This is awesome because people tend to embrace new approaches and ideas. Every year when I look back on the work produced, I am proud of what we have accomplished. I have also met some amazing people here.

    Cons

    It's an agency, so it can be hectic. But most of us love that.

    Advice to Management

    Keep hiring the very best people possible.

    Northlich Response

    Feb 11, 2019 – Associate

    We’re pleased to hear that you view Northlich as an agency that champions innovative ideas, appreciates and seeks out talented people and the quality-work they produce. Thanks for taking the time to... More

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Great place to create your own path"

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

    I have been working at Northlich full-time

    Pros

    If you have an entrepreneurial spirit and are naturally wired creative problem solver - Northlich is a great place for you. I've been with the organization for nearly two years and have been able to create my own path and work with some really talented people.

    Cons

    Not really a con but Northlich is in a phase of reinvention....which means some level of ambiguity (and opportunity). If that makes you uncomfortable, it's probably not the right place for you.

    Northlich Response

    Jan 25, 2019 – Associate

    Thanks for your positive remarks; at Northlich we believe in lifting business results with insights and ideas that inspire people to action. Executing this mission often means being comfortable with... More


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Northlich is what you make of it"

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

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

    Pros

    If you're a self-starter, a positive person, and great at what you do, you will flourish at Northlich. I've been at Northlich for 3+ years, and I've done some of the best work of my career here.

    Cons

    As an agency, we are constantly reinventing ourselves (as a whole, and as individuals). This type of change can be frustrating for some personality types. Not a criticism, just an observation.

    Advice to Management

    Keep on listening to your creative leaders and reminding the whole staff about your open door policy. I have had great success with our candid conversations.

    Northlich Response

    Jan 25, 2019 – Associate

    Thank you for taking the time to share your authentic perspective of Northlich. We are proud to foster a company culture that encourages transparent conversations and builds off of a desire for... More


  5. Helpful (9)

    "The worst."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cincinnati, OH
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cincinnati, OH
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    A couple really smart and nice people.
    The dog was cool, but he's gone now too.
    Starbucks coffee

    Cons

    So many that there is probably not enough room to write them all. But the biggest con is ownership.

    The CEO is a passive aggressive train wreck. This is a person that lacks the vision and the skills necessary to run an agency. Or probably any business for that matter.

    Under her watchful eye the agency has hemorrhaged both accounts and people. She has no understanding of the business and really no understanding of what it takes to create marketing campaigns that stand out and get noticed.

    She hires leadership that she likes on Monday and tires of by Friday because they haven't been able to clean up the mess she's made out of the place . The leadership that she has kept in place talks repeatedly behind her back, but is too frightened to say anything to her face for fear they will be the next person to lose their job.

    Advice to Management

    None, because management has been given great advice by so many people and has chosen to ignore all of it. The only thing that can save this place is for the CEO to sell and remove herself.

    Northlich Response

    Oct 18, 2018 – Director of Human Resources

    Thank you for providing your candid point of view. Northlich welcomes all feedback in a continual effort to create an open culture for its team in today's evolving business and landscape.

    In... More


  6. Helpful (13)

    "Dead Agency"

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

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

    Pros

    A few talented and dedicated people are left (but probably looking).

    Cons

    Ever been to a “dead mall” or seen one online? A once beautiful, creative and vibrant place but now in ruins. That’s Northlich. I feel for those still left who are talented and dedicated. Many want to do good work but are hand-tied by an unpredictable, passive aggressive and sometimes less than truthful senior leader. Seriously, if you’re looking and talented, keep looking. Don’t let the interview process fool you. Once you’re inside you’ll immediately see the train wreck.

    Advice to Management

    Stop worrying about petty things and focus on ethically moving the business forward. And stop assuming everyone is out to get you. You’ve hurt too many people but may be able to salvage the few who are left if you work honestly and professionally.


  7. Helpful (11)

    "Not a place you want to work"

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

    Pros

    Some really smart people
    Cool (if over-sized) office space

    Cons

    Too many to name them all.
    People are jumping ship faster than they can be replaced. Turnover is roughly 50% for the last year.
    A constant change in processes leaves teams rarely knowing how to get things done.
    Processes are overwrought with layers - nothing can be done simply and clients pay the price.
    CEO plays favorites and has a penchant for changing her mind often. She makes decisions based on who she likes, not what is good for business, the client or the team.
    Financial information isn't shared the team and a lot of people are worried.
    Even the fun-squad events seem to lower morale.

    Advice to Management

    Northlich is not the powerhouse it once was. It is time to update the processes to create a new lean-and-mean model. Leadership, what is left of it, needs to be more transparent with the staff and stop blowing smoke.

  8. Helpful (10)

    "Passive Agressive"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cincinnati, OH
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cincinnati, OH
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Rank & File: great people! Smart. Passionate about what they do.

    Cons

    CEO is a train-wreck. She has no idea what it really takes to get the work done. She has her favorites - but those change regularly and the previous one is tortured until they quit. She constantly asks for advice but never listens anyway. If you aren't working 12 hours a day, you are not committed. TURNOVER is outrageous. It is so sad.

    Advice to Management

    Sell the agency to someone who knows how to run it. Stop the parties - they are merely a bandaid to the real issue.


  9. Helpful (6)

    "Making Positive Changes"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cincinnati, OH
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cincinnati, OH
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Northlich (More than a year)

    Pros

    Outstanding team of talented and committed professionals
    Excellent work product - creative, digital, PR and social media delivers excellent results for clients
    Diverse roster of clients
    Lots of opportunities for personal growth and advancement
    Culture of peer recognition and bringing proactive ideas to clients
    The acquisition/merger of Forza Marketing has added sr. leaders to the organization as well as additional expertise in PR, content, publishing, lead generation and social media.

    Cons

    High turnover
    Lack of clear roles and responsibilities (who owns what)
    Sr. leaders are not enabled or empowered
    Northlich is a small agency that functions as if they were much larger. The company dramatically downsized due to economics but never adjusted their process or evolved their culture to adjust to todays "lean and mean" environment. Portions of the agency are bloated, expensive, slow and unable to meet the demands of clients who want a simpler, more streamlined creative product.

    Advice to Management

    • Annual goals and tracking against those objectives need to be communicated.
    • All employees need to understand how the agency makes money. Most employees don't know the budget for projects, nor do they know their hourly rates.
    • Clients should be evaluated on their profitability, not on the size of their budget. Some of the agency's largest clients are less profitable than our smallest.
    • Corporate emphasis on meeting billable hours target encourages hoarding of work vs getting work done in the most efficient way possible.
    • Too many layers in the creative department that add expense and complexity to projects.
    • Lack of management discipline. Constantly shifting priorities due to how management is feeling about the health of the agency.


  10. Helpful (5)

    "A Solid Place, Really Gaining Momentum"

    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

    -- A good group of diverse clients across healthcare, restaurants, retail, and cpg
    -- A smart core of people who produce smart work / enjoy doing it together
    -- Forza acquisition has brought smart agency pros with experience
    -- Winning new business

    Cons

    -- Finally recovering from some of the leadership turnover that zapped office energy and culture (this was a con that many of the reviews from the past 12 months touched on that's far closer to a neutral today)
    -- Agency processes could be far more efficient, more defined, more repeatable
    -- The physical office is in a silo'd part of downtown with few food/bar options within a short walk

    Advice to Management

    Don't panic. The most painful times at Northlich are when leadership is concerned (about talent leaving, about losing a pitch, about losing a client) and they start helicopter over projects or adding more steps to an already poor process. This causes people to spin their wheels, and it leads to inefficiencies where time and effort can be wasted.