Brown-Forman

  www.brown-forman.com
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Brown-Forman Reviews

Updated Jul 21, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

3.7 42 reviews

90% Approve of the CEO

Brown-Forman Chairman, President and CEO Paul C. Varga

Paul C. Varga

(31 ratings)

79% of employees recommend this company to a friend
42 Employee Reviews
Relevance Date Rating
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    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
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    • No Opinion of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Great company if you like politics!

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee) Louisville, KY

    ProsFamily owned, good benefits, flexible work arrangements (dependent on your manager), company values are straight forward, opportunity for growth, international offices, very polite culture (although this can cause problems at times), most people are friendly

    ConsIf you don't do well with politics, then you won't do well at B-F. Although it is a lean organization, it is not a flat organization and the ones who move up the ladder are the ones who have the relationships. You can do your job really well, but if people don't like you then you won't last. The opposite also applies, if you are mediocre at your job, but have great relationships with your superiors then you are moved to the top of the line for promotion. They say they are a performance over potential company, and while this might be try some of the time, it isn't a standard they actually stick to. They pay in the 65 percentile, but you do better to come in at a higher level, because if you start out there then your increases will be minimal year over year and if you leave and come back you will get a large increase. Never seen a model that actually incentivizes departing the company to move up, but it works for them. Although there has been a recent push toward "innovation", that really is just a buzz word around the company. They are incredibly risk averse. unfortunately this doesn't engage the young professionals that are necessary to continue to grow their business. They are bleeding young talent because once they hire them, they have a hard time retaining them. Lastly, if work/life balance is a top priority of yours, this is not a good fit. They actually call it Work/Life integration at B-F (probably because no one has balance), but either way you will be hard pressed for a clear line between your professional and personal lives. You will work hard all the time... yes, even on vacation. If this suits you, then you MIGHT do well!

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    1 person found this helpful  

    An amazing company to work for.

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsThey are so involved in the community. They support their employees and create a enjoyable work environment.

    ConsWhen I figure that out I'll let you know.

    • Culture & Values
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    • Approves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Great products, booming business

    Finance Employee (Current Employee) Louisville, KY

    Pros- open and diverse work culture
    - exciting and fun brands
    - warm and friendly employees
    - competitive salaries and amazing benefits!!!!

    Cons- lack of set career paths
    - lacking young professionals or jobs for recent graduates

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    • Culture & Values
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    1 person found this helpful  

    State Manager

    State Manager (Current Employee)

    ProsGreat onboarding process. Wonderful support system and culture. Phenomenal benefits.

    ConsNo obvious cons as of yet.

    Advice to Senior ManagementFantastic focus on associates attracts and retain the best talent.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
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    • Approves of CEO

     

    Excellent Culture

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsGreat company to work for, excellent culture. There are many benefits here that not are available at other companies - flexibility in hours/location, Cafe on campus, extra Holidays off, hair salon onsite, as well as a product spending allowance.

    ConsIt's very difficult to move around in the company. Most people tend to stay in their positions for years. Lateral movements are more common.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Great company to work for!!

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee) Louisville, KY

    ProsAllows you to grow and stretch your abilities and provides a continuous learning environment, flexible scheduling is great for work/life balance. Time off: many holidays vacation time.

    ConsSome departments seem to work in silos, and in certain areas, there is little room for advancement.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
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    • Career Opportunities
    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    Marvellous

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsGreat environment. Great people. Great Brands

    ConsMany people involved in most decisions

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    4 people found this helpful  

    Cutthroat management, Workaholic culture

    Vice President (Current Employee) Louisville, KY

    ProsGreat pay, benefits and perks. Beautiful corporate campus. Lot's of parties and fun activities involving B-F's brands. Complex and interesting business to work in.

    Cons"My way or the highway" CEO. Surrounds himself with yes men. This leads to a cutthroat back stabbing and insular culture at the highest levels of the Corporation. Many senior executives have dubious business ethics. For the most part, senior management lack creativity, an understanding of the real world outside of Brown-Forman and, in some cases, intellect. B-F is basically a one trick pony. Let's face it, it does not take a rocket scientist to make money off of Jack Daniels.

    The company has little loyalty to its employees. In the end, it's all about lining the pockets of senior executives and Brown family members. Under previous management, this was not the case.

    A lot of talk and no real action when it comes to social responsibility. Contrary to claims in some editions of B-F's Annual Report, alcohol is not like a car because both can be abused. Alcohol is enjoyed responsibility. Yet it is also an addictive psychotropic substance causing great harm to millions of people, families and society as a whole. B-F is mostly talk, not action, when it comes to addressing these concerns. In recent years, they have gone to extreme -- some employees say too extreme -- lengths to promote diversity. Yet the company has retrenched from its reputation as a leader in social responsibility, sustainability and community engagement.

    Advice to Senior ManagementDitch the snobby Louisville Country Club mentality.

    Start living up to your obligations to society and your employees.

    Abandon Paul Varga's "my way or the highway" culture. Replace it with the "None of us is as smart as all of us" philosophy of the late Owsley Brown II.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
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    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    Small Town Feel

    Merchandiser (Current Employee) Union, NJ

    ProsSolid brands, everyone who comes into NJ market from B-F to visit whether they were marketing, brand, finance, etc. were honestly nice people.

    Laid back, calmer company. Leads to less stress, but also more lax attitude regarding salaries sizes.

    Opportunity to participate in and experience great, unique brand events.

    Seems to be more politics in headquarters in Louisville, not so much out in the field.

    Small town feel to the company, which is a pro or con.

    ConsSlow moving, conservative company often late to act. Regarding future career advancements, there is poor management of expectations for those in training program which often leads to empty promises.

    Like any corporation there is a bit of corporate hassel. Those in contracted positions and training programs are often sold a bright future within B-F. Once in the training/contracted positions, one realizes the vision was oversold and not as bright as once thought to be. It is what it is and there are always opportunities outside of B-F. The training programs/contracted positions do enable one to enter the wine and spirits industry and provide great training in managing a diverse portfolio of brands.

    Advice to Senior ManagementLearn to management your employees' expectations regarding their future and speak honestly to them about it.

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    I loved working at BF

    Quality Control Specialist (Former Employee) Louisville, KY

    ProsClose family like atmosphere, employee development is great, great perks and work life balance

    ConsNeed to focus on diversity more

    Advice to Senior ManagementUse the talent that you have

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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