Blind Items: Through the Looking Glassdoor

By Patrick Coffee 

  • Mostly-anonymous employer ranking site Glassdoor just released its “25 best jobs of 2016” list, and you’ll be very surprised to learn that “Ad agency creative director” did not make the cut. Guess what did, though? Consultant. Anyway, a certain West Coast agency has not been particularly satisfied with its rankings on the site, and sources have repeatedly told us that management recently decided to take the matter into its own hands…by writing a bunch of fake and overwhelmingly positive “employee reviews.” The reviews in question are indeed a bit suspicious, with headlines like “Strong Team, Even Stronger Work” and “Lots of Passion.” We hear that the issue has grown so urgent that management held a meeting in order to encourage other staffers to post their own four-star write-ups to counter negative “Going Nowhere” notes. (If you thought Glassdoor was reliable, you should probably reconsider.)
  • A “major major” advertiser, which is both a big spender and a critical darling that scored several awards for recent campaigns, has allegedly taken inspiration from other, cheaper multinational corporations on the production side. According to our sources, this client is currently refusing to pay its own agency partners for production work on campaigns that ran in 2013, 2014 and 2015. The client has (again, allegedly) given nothing approaching an explanation for this behavior, and vendors are beginning to consider legal action.
  • An independent agency that fell upon bad fortunes and ceased operations last year is running into more problems. Its principals have been trying to start a new venture, but we hear they’ve been unable to pay current employees assisting with their launch plans. Executives now face lawsuits from former staffers along with complaints from unpaid vendors dating back to mid-2015. Despite this, our sources tell us that these massive business failures have not led the executives to curtail their own personal spending…and we hear that they let a few more of their core team members go this month. Hard to see how they make it out of this mess in one piece.
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