Columbia Distributing Company Reviews

Updated July 20, 2015
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2.2
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Gregg Christiansen
16 Ratings

37 Employee Reviews

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  1. Could use a little more compassion for the underlings.

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

    I have been working at Columbia Distributing Company

    Approves of CEO
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The employees are wonderful to work with. They create a super fun, casual atmosphere that still allows work to get get done professionally.

    Cons

    Long, off time hours. Upper management seems to only be out for themselves except for a select few. Disconnect between corporate and operations as well as between Portland and Kent.

    Advice to Management

    Compensation for long work hours is key. Knowing exactly what occurs in every department would be helpful to the company as well. Cross training is key!


  2. Lower management needs lots of work

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Accounts Payable in Portland, OR
    Former Employee - Accounts Payable in Portland, OR

    I worked at Columbia Distributing Company full-time (Less than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Upper management are awesome. Cheap beer/wine.

    Cons

    Lower management doesn't care about staff. Overworked with little help from management.

    Advice to Management

    Work with your staff more. A lot of people are struggling and you look the other way. A good boss makes a great team, learn from it.


  3. Do not work for this company

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Human Resources Coordinator in Portland, OR
    Former Employee - Human Resources Coordinator in Portland, OR

    I worked at Columbia Distributing Company (Less than a year)

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

    Pros

    Really nothing great about this company. I guess you can get some cheap beer from the broken bottle section, but that's about it. Some of the people aren't bad.

    Cons

    This company lives by the motto "everyone is replaceable". If you work here just know that they are waiting to replace you at any time.

    Advice to Management

    Run your business more like the Washington office.


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  5. When your in your in when you ask questions your out...

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

    I worked at Columbia Distributing Company full-time

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

    Pros

    Great team environment, flexible work hours, little to no micro-managing at the lower levels, great opportunities to sample and try the portfolio of beverages. Work related trips at little or no cost to salesman

    Cons

    pushing the line of sales almost to the point of forcing products on customers. High pressure sales tactics, little training from one position to another. Look the other way more often than not with employees who were related to upper management.

    Advice to Management

    Follow the law, listen to the mid level managers, employees are people to, look at the turn over rate and determine why, rather than just hire another body.


  6. Administrative

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

    I have been working at Columbia Distributing Company full-time (More than 3 years)

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

    Pros

    The people I work with are probably the only thing that has kept me going. Moving up is encouraged, but managers hold you back and some talk employees down.

    Cons

    Managers talk down about employees, hold them back from advancing, some don't deserve the position they are in. Seen and hear with my own eyes and ears every single day! Pay is horrible, don't expect a decent raise. "Budget" is always to blame, yet managers expensing thousands of dollars a month is ok! Turnover is ridiculous and managers and the higher upper management don't care to fix it and make the company more reputable with people and employees. They only care about the dollar and sales and not the help that make it possible to get there!

    Advice to Management

    Take more time with people in the positions that you started in. Take a moment to stop and listen to what is actually going on and care about the employees that bust their selves making the company #1. And pay what competition pays! People won't leave if they know you care


  7. People are great. Management has no clue who you are if you're lower level

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

    I worked at Columbia Distributing Company

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Great people, good experience gained, okay pay

    Cons

    Management, hours are too long, you get no help sent your way.

    Advice to Management

    Learn how to run a business, your people are your backbone and not everyone is replaceable


  8. Helpful (1)

    Management is extremely disconnected from the real world.

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

    I have been working at Columbia Distributing Company full-time (More than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Great group of people to work with. I have met some of the best people who love the industry. Excellent top management.

    Cons

    Management is disconnected with what is really happening with their employees and managers. Managers are rude, and unfair to many employees. Instead of trying to make Columbia a better company managers believe that if you don't like how they do things you should leave, because we are right and you are wrong. The thought of management taking a idea from a general employee is appalling to middle management.

    Advice to Management

    Your middle managers are rude, mean and back stabbing.


  9. Great place for retail experience but not so for pay scale.

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

    I have been working at Columbia Distributing Company full-time (More than 5 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    I was given weekends off within 3 months of working, lots of knowledge you gain about the DSD business and what goes on behind the doors at your local grocer, cheap beer in the dents room, meet lots of people at while servicing accounts

    Cons

    Pays about 4 to 6 dollars less then the competition within the beverage industry, not willing to promote merchandisers to sales team without a degree or sales experience, too many SKU's for merchandisers to service all at once.

    Advice to Management

    Push the merchandising team to move into sales or give out monthly incentives like a $20 gas card to the top performer, small little gestures like that will keep people around for a while.


  10. Not a lot of growth

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

    I worked at Columbia Distributing Company part-time (Less than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    This job is physical so I didn't need to go to a gym after work. The teams all help each other, so if you have a fast day you go help a slower team. This means that most of the teams work the same amount of hours. I enjoyed the weekly free beer nights sponsored by Columbia brands.

    Cons

    Either you go home at a decent time and do an okay job or you do a good job and go home later. The longer the breaks and lunches you have the later you and your team goes home. Many people did not take lunches and it was generally frowned upon when you did take a lunch. My "breaks" were eating in my car while driving to the next location. Holidays are all hands on deck, so if you have Monday off and the holiday falls on Monday then you will only have one day off. The job is boring which leads to gossiping. The promotions they often talk about really aren't that great.


  11. Big companies often mean more opportunities!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Multiple Positions Over Multiple Years in Portland, OR
    Former Employee - Multiple Positions Over Multiple Years in Portland, OR

    I worked at Columbia Distributing Company full-time (More than 3 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    I met some of the most wonderful people (that I still keep in touch with) at their Swan Island facility. I also loved some staff that moved to the Yeon location. We were permitted to spend some time forming committees to work on things like recycling, how to make bike riding to work easier, etc. I also enjoyed serving on the B Well committee and participating on the Portland/Hood to Coast teams. There was also good local fundraising, and programs/opportunities to volunteer or donate.

    Cons

    It is still the largest corporation that I've ever worked for. A large board was in charge while I was there, but at least we would occasionally still see the patriarchs of the business... maybe because I worked in a dept. where the staff had been there 20+ years. Columbia was bought by an investment firm (around 2012?), so the 'family-owned' and 'family-run' feeling is long gone. At that point, it feels like you are just a cog in a dispassionate machine. I didn't feel heard when I would talk about the fact that we represented so many companies and so few were here in Oregon. Oregon is a HUGE beer producer, and very few companies want to go with the 'big giant' because they feel like they will get lost in the crowd. After Columbia, I worked for their competition, and because they did a great job representing Oregon brands, they grew by leaps and bounds.

    Advice to Management

    In departments like Purchasing and Graphics, we were often not told about company functions, tap takeovers, etc. My journey to LOVE and know beer while working there was not fostered. It seems they assume we are not in sales, we wouldn't enjoy the events, products, etc. Do NOT ASSUME everyone in accounting, HR, graphics, reconciliations, etc. do not love craft beer, cider, wine, etc!



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