Guitar Center Reviews

Updated August 26, 2015
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Guitar Center CEO Darrell Webb
Darrell Webb
16 Ratings

Pros
  • Great discounts on gear and decent health coverage (in 33 reviews)

  • You can buy gear at cost with your employee discount (in 41 reviews)

Cons
  • basically minimum wage as a regular salesman your first year (in 29 reviews)

  • Several Layers of Middle to Upper Management (in 13 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

139 Employee Reviews

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  1. Operations

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

    Pros

    Great being around other musicians, Good discount on gear, Flexible hours

    Cons

    Low pay, management expects too much out of employees based on compensation.


  2. Once upon a time it was a great place.

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

    I worked at Guitar Center full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    The people you get to work with and customers were the best part. Very good medical and dental as well. The training used to be good for management when they sent you to vendor training offsite.

    Cons

    Terrible upper management that doesn't seem to have ever worked in a musical retail environment. Unattainable bonus structure and way too much responsibility and pressure on store management.

    Advice to Management

    Hire back all the "Leaders" you fired and get back to your Core Values. The ones they taught years ago.


  3. Great job that went downhill.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Guitar Center full-time

    Pros

    Industry leader with great selection and access and huge market share. Unbeatable pricing would drive massive amounts of floor traffic generating in store sales.

    Cons

    After the Bain Capital takeover, the chain of stores became a showroom for guitarcenter.com, and sales dropped in smaller market stores to the point where comission sales employment was no longer viable. There is no longer store stock of a plethora of items and categories that would have made in store shopping attractive.

    Advice to Management

    Sell the Guitar Center name out from under the Bain Capital umbrella before the damage done is irreversible. Or even make an attempt at stocking your stores with things that people would buy.


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  5. Analyst

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Analyst in Woodland Hills, CA
    Current Employee - Analyst in Woodland Hills, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Guitar Center (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Co-workers are cool. You can wear jeans. That's about it.

    Cons

    Negative. Terrible culture being ruined by Corporate heads. Not what it used to be 7 years ago. Terrible benefits.

    Advice to Management

    Take care of your people! Stop being so money hungry--it's costing you a lot of great talent which in the long run will cost you much more in searching and training new hires. The turnover rate is embarrassing.


  6. Wouldn't recommend

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Manager
    Former Employee - Manager
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Guitar Center full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Cool co-workers, service to musician community, gear discounts and sometimes free stuff.

    Cons

    TERRIBLE commission rates that occasionally drop further, corporate mentality does not care about the people on the sales floor, the company is after the profit.

    Advice to Management

    Increase commission rates for sales associates.


  7. Helpful (3)

    Organizational Structure Flaws

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Assistant Manager
    Former Employee - Assistant Manager
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great discounts on gear Wonderful opportunities to help people learn about music Massive inventory Opportunity to meet and work with interesting people

    Cons

    The structure of the organization is trying to evolve to keep from going bankrupt and stop losing high quality employees. These changes seem misguided and unfocused. 3 CEOs in 3 years. Very low employee appreciation and pay rate.

    Advice to Management

    Instead of opening dozens of new stores, focus on the hard working people keeping the current locations afloat. Build a strong and proud culture from the bottom up and then look to expand.


  8. Helpful (1)

    A once great company

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

    I have been working at Guitar Center full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Great employees and customers. Decent salary if you've been there longer than the last two CEOs.

    Cons

    Huge move away from people focused leadership. Results are all that matter. Any entrepreneurial spirit has been swept away in favor of robotic consistency. The stores are becoming sterile boring boxes with dwindling selection.

    Advice to Management

    Value the experience and input of the veteran employees instead of firing them and replacing them with cheap robots. We need people leaders not box checkers.


  9. Great for Musician to learn knowledge .

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Ex Department Manager/Sales Associate
    Former Employee - Ex Department Manager/Sales Associate
    Negative Outlook

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

    Pros

    all the knowledge you can learn about the music industry, co-workers , and that's it. In major stores like new york's main store and other hubs there is opportunity to make money as a "sales associate"

    Cons

    weird commission system, no good health plan, management unrealistic , the layoffs were real . employee discount was raised .


  10. Ehhhhh

    Current Employee - Sales Associate in Flint, MI
    Current Employee - Sales Associate in Flint, MI
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Guitar Center (More than a year)

    Pros

    Working with music gear all day

    Cons

    Pay. Management. Customer base. Flint.


  11. Lots of unpaid time

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Instructor in Athens, GA
    Current Employee - Instructor in Athens, GA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Good working wage, great Employee discount, good relationship with coworkers

    Cons

    Chronyism in management, Instructor position is forced to take many unpaid "breaks" throughout the day. Need to have a wide open, 7 day per week schedule to make enough to live on

    Advice to Management

    Use your brains. So many miscommunications between departments, Employee, and customers. Although i guess you get what you pay for



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