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Starcom USA Reviews

15 reviews

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Starcom USA CEO Lisa Donohue
Lisa Donohue
2 Ratings

15 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • Depending on the team, the work life balance can be hard to obtain (in 32 reviews)

  • Long hours - Never saying no to clients means working to turn things around in a crunch (in 33 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Worst Place I've worked"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Media Associate in North Hollywood, CA
    Former Employee - Media Associate in North Hollywood, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Starcom USA (More than a year)

    Pros

    Hip workplace with free beer.

    Cons

    No training in west coast office.

    Manager who liked to see people fall and purposely set people up with tasks that could not be done in the time frame expected.

    Pay was terrible, even by advertising standards.

    Insane work hours (11-12 hour days).

    Least friendly staff I've encountered.

    Advice to Management

    Change everything.


  2. "Account Executive"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Account Executive in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Account Executive in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Great staff that gives their all

    Cons

    Upper Management consistently made BAD decisions

    Advice to Management

    Before they implement anything new please consult the employees to make sure that they don't waste employees valuable time.


  3. Helpful (1)

    "The company is a fish out of water"

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

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

    Pros

    Depending on the team (and if the business stays) you will work with "resume builder" brands and network with ad tech and publishers (this is where you land your real job). You will learn "basic media planning" at most. If you want to further your growth and expertise, you must be proactive, since leadership is lazy, fragmented, and does not care about the team's personal growth, only their bonuses.

    Sometimes there are bagels.

    Cons

    Overall pay is below market if you do the research.

    Leadership does not inspire employees to want to do more, just get the minimum done. Leadership demands, they do not lead.

    Leadership will only address surface issues and avoid the root cause of the problem because of their egos or lack of knowledge. So said problem repeats itself over and over.

    It is only a matter of time before clients realize how out of touch the company is with the modern advertising landscape. That said, job security is a concern.

    Teams are understaffed and everyone is just a number until they leave.

    Advice to Management

    The operational structure is archaic. The correct structure needs to mirror the strengths and needs of today's industry (not 1960s madmen). Invest in high performance talent to grow the company. Stop wasting $$$ on reckless trips and client events. Staff up the bottom and weed out the lazy top, think horizontal. Learn from your mistakes, learn how to manage, learn how to inspire, and appreciate the few loyalist you have left.


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  5. Helpful (3)

    "Poor management, you're just a body"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Media Supervisor in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Media Supervisor in Chicago, IL
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Starcom USA full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Young culture, work hard play hard

    Cons

    Poor account management, terrible work-life balance

    Advice to Management

    Provide more training for rotational program. Hire more people to help balance work load.


  6. Helpful (2)

    "There is a reason it is a revolving door"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    You will learn about media planning and buying, lots of vacation, abundance of free meals/events/gifts/etc

    Cons

    - Most teams are under-staffed and combined with demanding clients leads to long hours
    - Low pay
    - Little consideration of career objectives by management
    - Few instances of talent development of the lower levels
    - It seems like the people that others don't like to work with are those getting promoted; also process for promotion is not clearly defined and seems political
    - Company is losing more clients than it is gaining

    Advice to Management

    Take some time to listen to the career objectives and desires of your employees and also ensure what is be preached at the VP level is being filtered down to the Director/AD level. There is a huge disconnect.


  7. "Horrible place to work"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Media A in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Media A in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Starcom USA full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Free cereal
    Free lunches
    Learn a lot

    Cons

    Low pay
    Bad work environment
    Bad management

    Advice to Management

    Do something


  8. "A great place for the "bottom 50%""

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Media Supervisor in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Media Supervisor in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Client roster, rotational program, office location

    Cons

    Non-monetary perks (client dinners, "freebies", vacation calendar) get old very quickly. What incentivizes a 23 year old doesn't work on older employees

    Advice to Management

    Go to business school. Learn how to run your business & grow your employees.


  9. "Good temporary job, but would not recommend working there as an experienced professional."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Media Supervisor in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Media Supervisor in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    * Great clients and ability to learn different types of media.
    * Nice to meet a lot of younger folks from around the region

    Cons

    * Competency and logistical problems of all media buying. Billing is consistency late and provides no centralized way to client. New systems that have been implemented are not compliant with federal regulations and statutes
    * Current client list is not media savvy. Majority of clients need marketing education.
    * HR is not committed to fulfilling the needs of employees. During disputes, they will always side with management, irregardless of the issue.
    * Promotion of entry level people is done without increase in pay
    * Reverse discrimination is widespread and the most knowledgeable talent is often looked over for available positions.

    Advice to Management

    * Invest in younger talent from within the company
    * Expand on technology and increasing client knowledge across media platforms


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Stalled"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Media Assocaita in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Media Assocaita in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Starcom is ok for about 6 months. If you know nothing about advertising/media it is a good starting point.

    Cons

    The pay is unbearable. And the work is too demanding. The pressure is high and the training is low. It can be a real jumble when everyone is stressed out. Morale is at an all time low, and more than one person on my team has started taking anti depressants - as a direct result of the work environment.

    Advice to Management

    If people don't see change the best talent is going to leave as soon as possible. Decisions should be more transparent. This company treats you like a number and trap people at levels below their skill set for months to even years with out a reais. I am not familiar with anyone outside of Starcom in the same position in terms of work level (often more than 10 hours a day) and pitiful pay. It takes a toll on productivity.


  11. Helpful (2)

    "Starcom Sucks!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Media Associate in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Media Associate in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Starcom provides great benefits for employees and a lot of vacation days.

    Cons

    I went through way too many different supervisors in three years. The majority of them quit for a better job or to go back to school because they hated their job, a few were promoted, and the rest were just reassigned to a different client.

    Regardless of why they left, I successfully managed multi-million dollar accounts on my own for months at a time and made my clients very happy. I received great mid and annuals reviews, but I never got promoted. I kept working there because they'd butter me up just enough for me to think I was going to get promoted, and then they'd blindside me with a new supervisor to train at the last second.

    I started to notice a pattern in the types of employees that got promoted - they were the employees that kissed the most management ass and not the employees that worked the best with clients and/or created the most effective advertising campaigns. After a while, I stopped caring about my job and spent most of my time seeking employment elsewhere.

    Advice to Management

    Bad leadership is expensive. Under the watch of poor leaders and managers, staff morale declines and workers feel less committed to the organization and its mission. It leads to employees producing lower quality work and feeling less obligated to complete projects in a timely manner. Poor morale saps energy and contributes to an uncomfortable climate that turns petty disputes into interpersonal warfare. Workers who lose their focus and commitment to quality are prone to making more mistakes. Even worse, poor leadership can stop planners from producing new ideas and solutions to problems. (ESPECIALLY If you've got a boss who constantly bullies, criticizes, or doesn't give you your due credit, why would you want to do anything extra to make him/her look good?)


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