Brown Shoe

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Brown Shoe Reviews

Updated August 3, 2014
Updated August 3, 2014
203 Reviews

3.1
203 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Brown Shoe President, CEO, and Director Diane M. Sullivan
Diane M. Sullivan
65 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Also good environment for young parents - work-life balance is highly emphasized (in 8 reviews)

  • The employee discount makes buying the new shoes exceedingly tempting, which is great for us shoe people (in 14 reviews)


Cons
  • Terrible upper management with the DM often ignored by SM (in 15 reviews)

  • Only store managers receive merit increases (in 11 reviews)

More Highlights

39 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Unrealistic expectations

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Store Manager
    Former Employee - Store Manager

    Pros

    Great benefits decent pay and a 40% discount.
    It was fun in the beginning .

    Cons

    Not enough payroll to controls shrink, service customers, move shoes ( because that's what we do) price changes etc.... I felt like I was spent most of my time
    deterring shoplifters instead of driving business.
    Focus was on numbers and controllables the problem was you don't get to have a life as a manager if you are to meet all the ridiculous deadlines and expectations .

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be realistic and give your managers enough payroll to accomplish everything. Oh ya an atta boy would be great once in a while.

    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Stressful, high theft, working alone often due to company payroll cuts

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Store Manager
    Current Employee - Store Manager

    Pros

    Flexible schedule. Associate discount. 401K option for store managers. Ability to perform all store functions. You never have a chance to get bored, there is always something to do.

    Cons

    Unreasonable expectations for payroll budget. Often times working alone from 9:00AM to 2:00PM without the ability to use the restroom or take a break. Lack of incentive for assistant managers and sales associates. All assistant managers get the same wage increase annually regardless of performance, as with sales associates.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Employees are human beings that need to use the restroom, eat lunch, and feel safe at work. Stop scrimping on payroll hours at the expense of the employees who are forced to follow an unsafe bare bones schedule leaving them alone for many hours each day. It is very dangerous to people's safety and emotional state.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    Not rewarding

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    30 percent discount on everything

    Cons

    No room for growth

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Increase your 3 % annual raise. It is ridiculus.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5.  

    Good. If you don't have a life...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Assistant Store Manager  in  South Portland, ME
    Current Employee - Assistant Store Manager in South Portland, ME

    Pros

    Decent Money. Sales associates we're easy to get along with.

    Cons

    Upper Mgmt. was horrible. Absolutely exploitive.
    Holiday Season...Good luck doing anything with your life.
    Horrible for students.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    A purge of management would be nice.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Not Good

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sales Associate  in  Waukesha, WI
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Waukesha, WI

    Pros

    Great discount, which you can get right away and use at any store, and you can give a discount card to a friend or family member, opportunities to advance to assistant manager.

    Cons

    Hours are based on your percentages of sales for the week. No sitting or leaning. Not allowed to wear athletic shoes (only if you're a female). Have to ask the same set of questions repeatedly to each customer so you sound like a robot. Customers are reluctant to buy because they feel like we get commission. Can be boring if you're in a smaller/slower store or too stressful in a busy/big store. Do not always work around other schedules.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Need to offer higher pay for a job like this, even if it is retail. Employees should be able to wear athletic shoes. The connect 4 system doesn't work very well, and hours should not be based on how many accessories you sell and how many emails you get. Also need to work around schedules of other jobs better, and allow sick days, etc.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7.  

    Get used to being underappreciated, if appreciated at all.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Sales Associate  in  Hurst, TX
    Current Employee - Sales Associate in Hurst, TX

    Pros

    Easy.
    Decent discount.
    Sometimes fun.
    Good first job for high school kids.
    Cool shoes.
    Trying shoes on is in the job description (product research).

    Cons

    Empty promises.
    No room for growth.
    Promotion not based on performance.
    Incompetent management and higher-ups.
    Being a sales associate who trains new assistant managers, but isn't given opportunity to move up.
    Low pay.
    Not enough hours or payroll.
    Thieves galore.
    Getting yelled at by customers about prices and coupons.
    Not being able to ask customers to leave after close.
    No benefits for sales associates no matter how long they've been with the company.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    No more empty promises.
    Allow more room for growth especially when person is fully capable and shows and interest.
    Don't make employees jump through hoops for a promotion for over a year just to tell them it won't happen.
    Handle HR situations better.
    Give raises and promotions based on performance.
    Increase payroll and hours.
    Add sensors.
    Make coupon rules, conditions, and exceptions easy for customers to see.
    Add full-time sales associate position if you're not going to give sales associates an opportunity to become management.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 2 people found this helpful  

    Company culture has changed for the worse

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Store Manager  in  Phila, PA
    Current Employee - Store Manager in Phila, PA

    Pros

    great peers and co-workers; holiday season not stressful like most other retailers; technology improving; liked my former supervisor.

    Cons

    Upper management (regional directors and above) and home office personnel have NO CLUE how to run a store and are disrespectful at best; unrealistic expectations; bare bones staffing and payroll, nearly impossible to get it all done with tools and resources provided. They keep piling on more busy work and tasks that limit amount of time spent with customers (who really pay our salaries!)

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Change the culture by changing the people in charge. Come work in a store for a week and see how single coverage really impacts the people who work there. Enough of the busy work and tasking; if you really want to drive results invest in the people who run the stores.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Sales Associate - Same thing different

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sales Associate
    Former Employee - Sales Associate

    Pros

    Average discount on shoes, Work around schedule if going to school, You should get a second job if living on your own

    Cons

    Don't give you hours (9-12 hr max), Pay is very low, Not understanding to ask time off,

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    Had to leave the drama behind

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Assistant Manager
    Former Employee - Assistant Manager

    Pros

    I really enjoyed the customers.They are all so different with individual needs which provides such a great experience if you love people. There is plenty of work to be done for those who love to work hard. The pay rate was good.

    Cons

    If you don't like to be micromanaged, this is not the place to work. They don't provide enough store hours to properly run the stores. Hours are cut regularly. The gossip throughout the districts is toxic. I did not find out that I was part time until a paid holiday came and I wasn't fully compensated. Job satisfaction really depends on your store manager. They can make it a great place or a living hell. I saw both kinds of managers in the district.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Managers should clock in up to their 40 hours to avoid abuse. Abuse of salaried hours makes more work for the short staffed, short on store hours stores. If a manager doesn't pull their weight, it's hard for the staff to catch up, especially since the store hours are not adequate to fulfill all the tasks. Use of Connect Four and Snap Shots should help the employees grow at a steady pace. If used properly, they are a great tool and help them to grow since it is a self evaluation that identifies their weaknesses and steady goals that they can reach that leads to more success and job satisfaction. Managers who have them filled out should not ignore them, but use them instead of going past it to micromanage. Micromanaging only oppresses the staff. There should be a weekly reporting of the collected March of Dimes funds as long as there is a collection box on the cashiers counter. Each Saturday night, those funds should be reported in the deposit, or at least every time the district manager does their monthly audit. Basically if the manager is good and fair, and follows the company standards, the store runs well. If the manager works 30 of their 40 hours per week by leaving early from opening shifts, arriving late to closing shifts or signing the paperwork and leaving a closing shift early, leaving the closer to close alone, then the store falls behind. The manager piles more work on the staff to cover their un-worked hours. Since the store already works at deficit hours, it is impossible to get all the work done. It's hard to make the customers the first priority when so much tasking prevents great customer service. Each store should have a minimum of 135 store hours for a staff of 4. Increase the store hours by 25 for each additional staff member. There should be no requirement by managers to text a picture message of the end of day work. Managers who can't wait for the morning report should call at the end of the day to check the progress of their store. The requirement of cell phone use should be used sparingly. If more managers and staff learned to say "Don't bring that gossip to me" the company gossip could be contained. The drama gossip causes made me want to get out of there.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Low Pay, Low Raises, and Poor District Management

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Assistant Manager  in  Columbus, OH
    Former Employee - Assistant Manager in Columbus, OH

    Pros

    The store manager at my location was wonderful and the staff at my location was fantastic until changes were made by the district manager.

    Cons

    New district manager came in from a fast food chain and had no idea how to run the business. Plus the DSM brought in people to replace managers from the fast food place and things were ran very unethically. As far as the company goes, they have ok benefits but the pay is horrible and you get very small raises if you get a raise at all. It is very hard to move up in the company because there are only a few management positions and most employees that make it to management stay for years.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get rid of the DSM in that district and it would be a wonderful place to work again.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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