Caribou Coffee

  www.cariboucoffee.com
  www.cariboucoffee.com
There are newer employer reviews for Caribou Coffee

 

Terrible, no good, very bad.

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Current Employee - Team Member in Merriam, KS
Current Employee - Team Member in Merriam, KS

I have been working at Caribou Coffee part-time (more than an year)

Pros

-You get paid.
-Free half pound of coffee every week.
-Shift drinks.
-Some nice people although there are also many very annoying people.

Cons

Basically everything else. There is a host of things that is wrong with the company and everything they make their employers do. There are so many things wrong with this job that I don't even know where to start.

The first thing that comes to mind are the terrible, terrible products that this company makes us sell. There is such a huge emphasis on food at Caribou; food that is all frozen and disgusting. Stick anything in the convection oven and it becomes a grease faucet. That includes chocolate chip cookies and things that you really wouldn't expect to have any grease in them at all, like scones. The breakfast sandwiches are okay until you cut one in half and take a good look at what you are eating. We are asked to up-sell this slop to every single ticket: "Would you like a grown-up grilled cheese or an apple fritter with that?", even ones who repeatedly say no upon multiple visits. I remember once being asked to lie about the meat contents of the roast beef grilled cheese to a vocally vegetarian couple in order to sell it to them.

The coffee beans are also terrible. Although some of the lighter roasts are actually pretty good for corporate-roasted coffee, anything dark-roasted is going to be slathered in oil and grease and will be literally pitch black. We are also forced to up-sell beans to almost every single customer. There is a promotion going on right now for an "extremely rare" coffee that we are selling for $19.99 a pound. This same "extremely rare" coffee can be purchased through internet retailers under a different name for $6.00 a pound, and yet we are asked to force these beans on to everyone, including those who have denied it in the past and those who just want to pay two dollars for a small cup of drip coffee.

The merchandise that we are pushed is a huge waste of corporate money. I can't imagine that anyone going to a coffee shop would want a 2GB flash drive that costs $16 or a shoe wallet. Corporate can afford to send us these awful items with every order, but can't afford to pay it's employees normally (indicated by the new "differential pay" system, which means there can only be one person clocked in at a time receiving supervisor pay. Multiple supervisors at once will not all be paid their supervisor salaries).

Upper management is a massive tangle that I like to think of as a phone switchboard. People are always being shuffled in and out. The assistant manager at my store, who doesn't have a car and can't feasibly switch locations right now, is being asked by the district manager to relocate and manage a store fifty miles from where she lives, or else get fired. The DM knows that she can't move but she refuses to accept it; she's basically forcing the AM out of a job for really no visible reason.

There are many, many more things I could bring up about this company but this review has gone on long enough. In a nutshell, don't work here. You will hate your job and your life, and the company is gonna fold in the next few years anyway.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Stop with the terrible merchandise, terrible promotions, and go back to paying your employees normally. Also, stop making us do your jobs for you. Shouldn't you be managing customer relations instead of making us ask survey questions to three customers a day? We're basically doing your job for you, all you do is sign the checks and come up with the terrible ideas that we have to deal with every single day.

Doesn't Recommend
Negative Outlook
Disapproves of CEO

279 Other Employee Reviews for Caribou Coffee (View Most Recent)

Sort: Rating Date
  1.  

    Caribou Coffee ... so-so

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Store Manager in Maplewood, MN
    Current Employee - Store Manager in Maplewood, MN

    I have been working at Caribou Coffee full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Corporate environment and the perm's that go with it ..

    Cons

    Corporate environment and the politics that go with it ...

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop looking at teacher's pets and look at experienced employees ...

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Fun atmosphere and people, district communication was rough

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Team Member in Gambrills, MD
    Former Employee - Team Member in Gambrills, MD

    I worked at Caribou Coffee part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    The product was fun to make and learn about - the company really stresses knowing about each individual coffee and understanding the process of how coffee is made. It was fun to learn and challenge myself with sales. Team members' compensation isn't based on sales, but managers would regularly let us know how our store was doing in our district, and how our district was doing company-wide, which helped with motivation to succeed as a team. Caribou wants you to make a connection with every guest and express your unique personality. I was always pushed to keep getting better at what I did. I loved learning guests' drinks and chatting with regulars.

    Cons

    I appreciate the Rainforest Alliance initiative but a farmers co-op would be better (like Equal Exchange has), as would the across-the-board use of organic coffee, milk and teas. Even though individual store managers were awesome, morale in the district was pretty low and a lot of time managers are put in tough situations and forced to hire or keep team members that just didn't care or didn't make any effort to do a good job, show up on time, follow standard operating procedures, etc. So that's frustrating, but overall it's a fun work environment and everybody tries to work as a team.

    It's also hard to know you're serving something that's not really the best for people to be consuming a ton of - when people get the same giant, caffeinated, fat-filled drink every single day - it's good for sales but it's not good for them!! And it's hard to hand that over every day to someone you have come to care about when they're a regular. Once in a while, okay, go for the large with half n half and whipped cream and two extra shots but, man! I know it's not my fault or Caribou's that people regularly order, pay for, and consume those types of drinks but it's hard to feel great about it all the time.

    That being said, I really did appreciate the variety of products and the effort Caribou puts in to making the quality good as well.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Overall I loved working for Caribou Coffee. Store managers do a great job motivating the team but it seems like they're extremely stressed out and underpaid a lot of the time. Put some more time, effort, and $ into training, rewarding, and generally taking care of these people!

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
There are newer employer reviews for Caribou Coffee

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