Best Places to Work 2012

Leo Burnett Is No. 33 on Ad Age's Best Places to Work List

A Legendary Agency Fosters Pride in Its Staffers, Who Don't Rest on Their Laurels But Fill Up Continuing-Education Courses

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One of Chicago's biggest agencies, Leo Burnett USA boasts a swath of amenities to make employees feel more at home: an in-house bar, a fitness facility and a weekly happy-hour gathering, Artists in Residence, that includes musicians and other celebrities.

Visiting artists have included Duran Duran, Hanson, Scissor Sisters, Forest Whitaker, Justin Bieber and Dean Winters, the face of its "Mayhem" campaign for client Allstate. The agency also hosts an annual holiday breakfast and afternoon fete, which took place at Soldier Field last year.

Many employees said they appreciate the people and atmosphere. But they also love working for brand Leo Burnett. The agency "takes pride in the history of the company," one respondent said. Another wrote: "We follow Leo's words and use them every day to help us do better and go further. Holding on to the traditions and history is important to me."

"People love this brand," said Rich Stoddart, president of Leo Burnett USA. "They come to this brand wanting to do great work. They come because of the legacy, and they want to drive it forward."

Leo Burnett University offers continuing-education classes on things such as strategic thinking and craftsmanship, as well as training for new and senior managers. Burnett also has a digital curriculum to get employees up to speed on trends and pop culture.

Every continuing-education class is full, Mr. Stoddart said. "We're proving that people want every bit of training and development we can give."

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