Borders Reviews in Chicago, IL

436 Reviews

3.3
436 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Borders President and CEO Michael J. Edwards
Michael J. Edwards
136 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Coworkers were fabulous people, love of books and music (in 24 reviews)

  • They had a nice employee discount (in 33 reviews)


Cons
  • Upper management didn't have a grasp on the stores as a whole (in 27 reviews)

  • Borders kept around 40 employees on Part-Time status to avoid giving their employees benefits (in 13 reviews)

More Highlights

22 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1.  

    A good one

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Bookseller  in  Griffith, IN
    Current Employee - Bookseller in Griffith, IN

    I have been working at Borders

    Pros

    The flexible schedule, the people, love of books and being appreciated.

    Cons

    No pay raises. Pushing us to books for donations to locale charities. This went on for way too long.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You needed to come down and do undercover boss and see exactly how things really were in the book selling trenches. But I guess your lack of concern in this area (our area), shows since you let the company go under.

    Recommends
    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    I miss it....

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Cafe Seller  in  Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Cafe Seller in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Borders

    Pros

    Great team
    Great customers
    Pay was ok

    Cons

    Lack of hours
    Lack of growth
    Snobby customers
    Store closing

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Maybe yall should pay attention to more of the employee concerns if you are worried about numbers in the store. Most of our customers were returning customers so that whole Border Rewards percentage calculation was bs!

    Recommends
    Disapproves of CEO
  3.  

    New to Borders, but enjoying it so far!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - General Manager  in  Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - General Manager in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Borders

    Pros

    Getting back to core business. They are very people orientated. Good benefits, excellent compensation for what I do.

    Cons

    Company is in trouble finacially and that is scary. Technology is seriously outdated. SOP's and synergies are outdated, old or non-existent.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep focusing on being simple. Sell, books, movies, music. People are extremely loyal, hard-working and love Borders. Encourage and build on that!

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Great Staff, Great Supervisor, Troubled Company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    Current Employee - Operations Manager  in  Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Operations Manager in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Borders full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    The company wasn't doing well, but the people that worked alongside me turned what could have been an entirely negative experience into a mostly positive one.

    My Supervisor, who was the District Manager of the Chicago Market, was a strong leader. He was honest and fair. I learned a lot from him and my time spent w/ him has helped in my post-Borders career.

    My staff and colleagues, meanwhile, were equally strong. I learned as much from my subordinates as I did from my supervisors. We were in a sinking ship, and we knew it, and we worked together to keep it afloat as long as we could.

    I worked in three separate stores while I was with Borders, and each experience was similar to the one before it; great staff, great supervisor, troubled company.

    Cons

    From the onset of my employment, the company was in financial crisis. E-books were killing brick and mortar book retailers, and making our store monetary goals became more and more challenging as time went on. Everyone on staff knew that the book industry was in trouble. This made for some stressful situations. Company-wide conference calls were disheartening. Corporate management was panicked, and focuses were changing weekly in a desperate attempt to find something -anything- that would reverse the trends of the business. It was hard. And, ultimately, nothing worked. The company eventually closed its doors and we all lost our jobs.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    A Place To Be Missed

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - General Manager  in  Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - General Manager in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Borders

    Pros

    The People. The product. The customers.

    Cons

    Could be stressful at times due to the uncertainty of the compaies fate.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Wish they could have saved her.

    Recommends
  7.  

    Good

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Cashier  in  Gurnee, IL
    Current Employee - Cashier in Gurnee, IL

    I have been working at Borders

    Pros

    Good environment, fun atmosphere, books and discounts are nice

    Cons

    Customers, hours, computer systems/rewards system/coupons errors.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    N/A

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    Nice place to work if you like your coworkers

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sales Associate  in  Schaumburg, IL
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Schaumburg, IL

    I worked at Borders

    Pros

    great discount; typically your coworkers are well-educated and interesting; always discovering cool new books and music; customers generally treat you well

    Cons

    low pay; you end up spending all your money buying books and cds; you have to work late and come in early on weekends

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    allow more room for promotion from within; less hours on registers (vary it a little); allow people to switch departments

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    A great place to work, while it lasts.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Seller  in  Highland Park, IL
    Current Employee - Seller in Highland Park, IL

    I have been working at Borders

    Pros

    Opportunity to connect with people through books and music. It's a sales job without having to be an aggressive sales person. Hard work always goes noticed. being able to check out books has helped me develop into a very well read person. It calls for independence and self motivation while working as part of a team.

    Cons

    The company is facing challenges so getting hours cut can be a regular thing. There seems to be a huge disconnect between the home office and the stores themselves, they work in different realities.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There needs to be more consistency, more accountability. Needs to make it easier to fire bad apples as they can bring a whole store down very quickly.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  10. 4 people found this helpful  

    Once a magnificent store, could be again...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Bookseller  in  Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Bookseller in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Borders

    Pros

    Love working with Books, and customers. Each day is different and you are certain to have a variety of experiences. Customers often need personal attention, and you may find yourself spending 15-30 minutes helping someone locate or order a list of titles they must have. Often books are turned to as a source of solace and you find yourself helping customers dealing with the death of a loved one, a child diagnosed with autism, or someone who's just discovered they have cancer. You can make a difference in people's lives here. Your co-workers are often wonderful, and a real community develops.

    Cons

    Seriously cutting hours and demanding the impossible in sales in this terrible economic climate.Management has loaded sellers with too many tasks, with too little value given to customer interactions. Each store has unrealistic sales goals in this economic mire that we find ourselves... people are saving money for gas. This used to be a place I couldn't wait to go to each day, now with the cuts and penny-pinching customers are not a priority and sellers are not valued or honored for the many skills they must have to do the job well. Intelligent, capable sellers are the cornerstone of a bookstore.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Sell it to amazon! You have already announced we are up for sale. So let's sell to someone with the resources to run our stores well and with pride. George doesn't care if we are selling Shakespeare or shirts. Borders booksellers do. They work for Borders because they love what they sell, as well as the bright and interesting people they work with.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  11.  

    not too bad, not too great either

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Bookseller/Barista  in  Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Bookseller/Barista in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Borders part-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Being surrounded by books is always nice!

    Cons

    Hours and pay are not great!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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