Trader Joe's Reviews

Updated April 8, 2015
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68 Reviews
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Trader Joe's Chairman and CEO Dan Bane
Dan Bane
57 Ratings

68 Employee Reviews

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  1. The crew and customers are great to work with. However, the store leadership structure is poor and unsupportive.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Crew Member in Portland, ME
    Current Employee - Crew Member in Portland, ME

    I have been working at Trader Joe's (More than 8 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    The ability to swap shifts and have a somewhat life/work balance. Customers are very friendly and loyal

    Cons

    Mates (Assistant Store Managers) are to busy trying to be promoted and competing against each other. The company has progressively reduced benefits and raise over the last 5 years.

    Advice to Management

    Dan Bane and the senior leadership team needs to take the time to listen and engage employees.

  2. Helpful (5)

    Very eye opening and disappointing.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Cashier in Tampa, FL
    Current Employee - Cashier in Tampa, FL

    I have been working at Trader Joe's

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

    Pros

    The crew members, we have all become a family in which we are all so supportive of each other and will do anything to help each other out. I love that the company has great unique food at such a great price, with no added anything.

    Cons

    I have quite a few more cons than I do pros unfortunately. First one being the management. They have their favorites and it's becoming very frustratingly obvious. To be working so hard, and feeling so proud of yourself- but still consistantly told you're not doing a good job really gets to you after awhile. Especially when other mates are congradating you on your great work that day. To me, I know I'm not doing anything wrong. So I'm not mad at myself, I'm angry with how they are able to do this. I know I'm not the only one this is happening to at my store, which is sad to me that other people are going thru it as well. Now; I don't ( and didn't ever ) see myself working at Trader Joes for the rest of my life, that being said, I was super excited to sign up for the experience that I had heard about working there, and all the fun that would come out of it. My captain once told me that this job isn't rocket science then proceeding to basically call me ( for lack of a better term ) stupid for the rest of the 15 minute meeting, which ended with a final warning due to an issue that was a mistake and not even a big deal AT ALL. I had never been in trouble before so a final warning made no sense to me. Over time my hours decreased even though I had been working very hard only to go un-noticed. I'm very disappointed with how I am treated and thinking of taking it to corporate. I feel worthless at this company because they know that if anyone quits they'll have a new person in the following day. They really don't care about their staff.

    Advice to Management

    Train your mates to be more appreciative of the crew members, we work so hard on our feet all day, lifting heavy boxes even at 4 in the morning. Train your mates to get to know all of the crew members and each of their learning styles so they don't feel stupid like I did just because I wasn't trained a way that I understood best. Train them to treat everyone equally. I shouldn't even have to say train, you should HIRE people with these quialitys instead of power hungry people who care nothing of their staff. I shouldn't be told " oh he's nice once you get to know him " no, he should be nice right when I meet him.

  3. Chaotic and cult-like

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

    I worked at Trader Joe's

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Food tastings were fun, and when things were busy the day moved quickly.

    Cons

    Poor management, benefits were cut, a bad employee discount (10%), no private areas away from customers or other employees in the entire store, and people had this weird cult like obsession with all things Trader Joe's.

    Advice to Management

    Be more supportive to employees especially when handling HR issues.

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  5. Helpful (5)

    Great Company But Horrible Store

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Crew Member in Winston-Salem, NC
    Current Employee - Crew Member in Winston-Salem, NC

    I have been working at Trader Joe's

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Excellent benefits and pay.
    Insurance is really cheap for the employees.
    401k plan.
    10% employee discount
    company minimum wage is $10.00 and hour

    Cons

    All the captains are given pretty much free reign over their store so they can either make a store really enjoyable or a nightmare. Unfortunately this store is a nightmare. Mates are encouraged to be degrading and micromanage. People are often rewarded and promoted by sucking up or gossiping about fellow crew members. You can meet some really awesome upbeat people here but you unfortunately can't trust anyone. Very hard to have your ideas heard or valued. Hours aren't very good if you want to have a personal life.

    Advice to Management

    Focus more on the people who work hard not the ones who get by by dealing out gossip

  6. unprofessional dishonety

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

    I have been working at Trader Joe's part-time (More than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    import merchandise not easy to get

    Cons

    cashers often scan more time than the items purchased

    Advice to Management

    ethics

  7. Helpful (3)

    friendship with management will take you far

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

    I have been working at Trader Joe's (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Decent Benefits,compensation raises have finally been made equal.

    Cons

    if your not "Buddy-Buddy"with management you will be stuck doing the same thing over and over they can and will be bias.Management has total control of your lively hood,hours worked,work load and even pay.
    so if you want to be successful be friends with them purchase your Disneyland passes and enjoy your own time with them.

    Advice to Management

    Stop running the company as if it where your personal business to run into the ground,management you are also
    'Employees OF TRADER JOES' .

  8. Helpful (6)

    alright company to work for

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

    I worked at Trader Joe's

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Any position past Crewmember is not a position of stability. The crewmember positions are well paid for the amount of work that is required.

    Cons

    Once a very great company to work for but has changed its corporate culture so much it is like working everyday with your job on the line mentality.

    Advice to Management

    You have changed the culture that once made this company proud and strong and turned it into a culture where your core values are just blurred lines of words. You allow people to have positions they can not handle and listen way too much to the cliques that your own regionals create and hold others lives in their balance based on the cliques opinions. It should always be the best person for the job but now its who is the best female, minority, or alternative life style person can we get to increase our percentages. You have lost sight of what it was that made you great and that all of these people were represented naturally in your environment based on their own skill set and hard work not on a resume of what they did for one of your competitors or what degrees they achieved and the whole time over looking the same types of people you covet that are right under your nose but because they don't have an impressive resume or they didn't interview well you just ignore the body of work they have achieved for you already. Your structure the way it sits right now will be your ultimate down fall. To bad you have surrounded yourself with yes men that won't tell you are wrong. Good luck.

  9. Helpful (5)

    They have lost their way. I have 10+ yrs in on two coasts, and its gone to hell.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Crew Member
    Current Employee - Crew Member

    I have been working at Trader Joe's

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    If your manager likes you, you get to work. If your captain does not, you are written off the schedule. Personal rectal/oral application with lots of tongue to keep your job and hours.
    Benifitts, or we had them until the company cut them, cut out all the good things we had, like good health care coverage, tasting programs, store parties, overtime, and more. We used to have nice things.

    Cons

    The place is so felching worried about the SPPH that they kill their employees. Do more with less, constantly. We hit a sales day with a $400 spph. The store was a wreck, the employees frazzled, backs injured, etc In short, the company is too incredibly greedy and does NOT care about the employee or the employee safety anymore. They have been going after senior staff lately in an effort to reduce payroll. Ger rid of the old timers, and hire new kids you can abuse for less.

    Advice to Management

    Look where you came from. Go back to your roots. Loosen up or kill your culture. Get rid of abusive managers and even more important, abusive regional and super regional managers.

  10. Helpful (14)

    I committed to the company-they cut everything they could.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Crew Member in Lake Oswego, OR
    Former Employee - Crew Member in Lake Oswego, OR

    I worked at Trader Joe's part-time (More than 8 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    I liked having an active job where I could use my body and mind simultaneously. Coworkers are for the most part extremely good natured and caring.

    Cons

    Injuries are rampant, as are safety violations. Safety standards are put in place and then ignored. Concerns raised about safety are routinely ignored. Food safety standards are inconsistent. People are targeted for termination and fired on absurd charges. Benefits have gradually and consistently been cut over the past eight years. Managers who have multiple harassment complaints are transferred from store to store rather than fired. Relationships between managers and subordinates often result in a transfer for the subordinate and no disciplinary action for the manager. There is a glaring lack of female representation in management. Gender discrimination varies from store to store, but manifests most often in duties assigned and rate of pay over time. Crewmembers are told they can be fired for discussing their wage or raises. Raise structure changes about as often as raises are due. There is no consistent process for being able to understand how to earn a raise, and in some cases people are lied to about what would be necessary to earn a raise.

    Advice to Management

    "Sales per person hour" is a phrase not many employees understand if there is high turnover, and they understand even less because they have not seen the number be pushed higher and higher over the years. A big part of my decision to quit was the stress of no longer being able to do my job adequately- along with the latest "restructuring" we have been left with huge gaps in our ability to keep the shelves stocked during the day - we are losing sales while the captain and schedule writer try to keep spph up. The people who care continue to work incredibly fast and hard, putting themselves at risk for injuries. Everyone else sees that it is a lost cause and gives up, just going through the motions (with no accountability, either). Morale is incredibly low. Some of us still remember getting gift cards in the mail at Christmas. That meant so much. I left school at 21 because of the promises this company made me when I agreed to work for them, and not a single one was left by the time I quit. I used to know what every single thing in the store tasted like. There was no tasting program at my store for months, maybe a year, before I quit; I had to tell people continually that I didn't know how a certain product was. It was embarrassing. The continued financial success of the company is practically inevitable, but they are erasing all of the parts that gave it the true structure of a great company, one I originally believed in.

  11. The good days are long behind us...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Crew Member in Sandy Springs, GA
    Former Employee - Crew Member in Sandy Springs, GA

    I worked at Trader Joe's part-time (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    A very physical and fast paced job. Food that you can proudly stand behind if you are into clean eating. A nice little 10% discount.

    Cons

    I can't speak for other stores, but there is a complete and utter disconnect between the mates and our captain. However, if you have half of a brain in terms of retail sensibilities, its easy to see how this is the case when your regional doesn't stop by more than twice a year. It seems that the only question asked when hiring people is "Do you have a pulse?" because even though we are supposed to hire the cream of the crop, it appears that we are no longer even trying to reach mediocre (though the proper term to use to describe recent hires at my store is disgraceful). When seasoned and knowledgeable crew members try to Kaizen (one of our core values! though at my store, one of the most ignored) various aspects of the store, they are called complainers and negative. Crew members who steal, hide in the breakroom and openly trash customers on the sales floor are enabled and ignored in order to avoid confrontation and bad survey scores (of which they are graded upon). Hours are cut uniformly, instead of being based upon production and merit. Now that we need 30 hours (instead of 20) for health insurance, this can be problematic for those who do need our benefits and work at 100% every day. Trader Joe's is constantly reminding you via letters mailed to your house about how great things are and why we should be so grateful about having this job, which I find to be terribly ironic. The more people tend to insist that something is true, it usually turns out the be quite the opposite. I guess they are trying to convince themselves... because those of us at the bottom are apparently the only ones who are really aware at how awful things have gotten.

    Advice to Management

    Stop hiring people from the outside. If you really can't find crew members who will invest in a higher career with our company, then there is something terribly wrong.

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