There are newer employer reviews for Container Store
There are newer employer reviews for Container Store

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Helpful (4)

A decent place to work or start a career in retail

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Current Employee - Sales Associate in Hallandale Beach, FL
Current Employee - Sales Associate in Hallandale Beach, FL

I have been working at Container Store part-time (More than a year)

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

Pros

Discount off store merchandise is 40% (gift-cards too!)
Training is abundant -- they spend a lot of time training you on how to sell
Casual wear (jeans and t-shirts)
Schedule is posted 2-3 weeks out
This location has some great employees that are fun and truly nice
Above average pay to start in retail
Decent part time benefits -- 401K, dental, vision, health ins and EAP
Great Culture (in theory) -- Their 7 Foundation Principles are pretty solid.
Communication is pretty good -- they only have like 55 stores so still pretty small company.
Great products -- ELFA is a well made product and designed very well
In FL -- a lot of opportunity -- 3 new stores in 2013

Cons

They don't promote from within -- all full time employees in this location are hired from outside -- there is no incentive to work hard and be rewarded with a promotion
high turn-over -- one day your friend is there and the next day they are gone?
managers have favorites - corporate lingo types --"OK HAL Team, lets do it -- lets SELL SELL SELL"
no commission -- you can sell a $10,000 ELFA closet and make only $30 bucks! (but you feel good about helping someone design their DREAM CLOSET for more money than you will make in a year selling closets!)
privately owned company -- no stock purchase - no incentive if company performs well
no shift differentials -- work a shift unloading a truck from 9pm to 1am and make the same as the person standing at a cash register for 3 hours from 12pm to 3pm.
constant PRESSURE to sell ELFA -- CONSTANT focus on meeting unrealistic sales goals DAILY!
strong culture - to some outsiders at first it can seem like a kool-aid drinking cult!

Advice to Management

Share the wealth with those who actually "run" the store and make it work. Promote from within. Give long term incentives to those who want "grow" with the company. Have store management team learn what true leadership is and how to gain the respect of their employees through ACTION. LEAD by example.

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  1. Helpful (5)

    Above Reproach - NOT!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Full Time Visual Sales in Los Angeles, CA
    Former Employee - Full Time Visual Sales in Los Angeles, CA

    I worked at Container Store full-time (More than a year)

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

    Pros

    Employee discount is good.
    Elfa products are very nice.
    Initial training is good.

    Cons

    A closed mouth culture. There is a "don't tell" reality going on at a "communication" oriented company that is prevalent behind the scenes. Maybe I'm naive. Perhaps, a smaller company can control things from getting out of hand before it becomes viral while a larger one must contain & maintain the air of exclusivity.

    Don't be fooled. The Container Store is on the list of the "Top 100 Companies to Work For" because the form is filled out by mostly new hirers (of course, the long term staffers fill it out too). It's the nature of retail, a lot of turnover. At the beginning, we were all wide eyed and excited about the new job. We all know that retail is the best solution for students who need a temporary gig and for the dependable, mature employee who doesn't need to work (retract... these days, most people need to work in this economy). For many others, it's a dead end job. If you think, "I'll work hard, take on more responsibility and move up", it doesn't work that way. No matter how hard you work and how efficient you are, you may get a verbal "good job" but it won't be reflected in a discernible raise or move up in position. It's too bad because The Container Store used to hire great people. Now, they hire good ones to not so good.

    In my experience, I noticed so many long time employees moved on once a better opportunity came along OR changed their perspective of their job. They would have made great managers.

    No Communication
    Limited upward mobility (if you can wait 3+ years for full time or 5-8 years for mgt - no promises)
    Obvious Favoritism
    Staffed Inappropriately

    Employees are affected by all of the above.
    Customer Service is affected by all of the above.
    Ultimately, customers are affected.

    Advice to Management

    Communication is critical. Concentrate on factors that affect the morale of your whole staff. Forget the mundane. Leadership flows when employees see you're part of the team. Being in the office stops the flow cold! What's more important than sales (since that's the main goal now)? Get out on the floor and be a leader that flows with the prime timers and full timers and the customers. And no, 10% floor time doesn't count.

  2. Helpful (6)

    Used to be fantastic---truly awful for the last couple of years

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Part Time Sales in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Part Time Sales in Washington, DC

    I worked at Container Store part-time

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

    Pros

    High hourly pay rate when you start
    Friendly coworkers
    Fabulous discount (the best part about working here)
    Company culture comes from a good place
    Our customers are a lot of fun and very grateful for good customer service

    Cons

    Poor management structure: Quality of full time staff is inconsistent
    As a part timer, the store never hired from within for their full time openings. Frustrating to work so hard and continue to get passed over for a FT position
    Everyone is trained in multiple positions, but a shift spent cutting shelving with a bandsaw and lifting very heavy shelving orders earns you the same amount as a shift standing at the cash register.
    Staff members trained to process the morning money, which is much more responsibility than someone who only does sales shifts have a pay rate that never reflects the additional responsibility
    Inconsistent application of rules and regulations
    The "top 100 places to work" survey is something we are "strongly encouraged" to fill out, and each person is required to let management know when they've mailed it in.
    The focus on sales has become oppressive. Silly sales role plays at each morning huddle, talking to part timers like we are children.
    Tone deafness by management when a full timer is not really meshing well with the Part time staff.
    The late and very early (6 am) hours (in a market where the transit system isn't really available very late or very early) are presented as necessary to do to be successful, even though 6 AM shift or an overnight shift may not work for single parents, or etc.
    The culture can be seen as somewhat 'cult-like' from the outside of it, I didn't really find it to be like that, but can understand why others may not feel comfortable with it.
    After the xmas rush, the seasonal people are let go---but the little dirty secret of the container store is that anyone else who isn't 'working out' can be let go as well at this time, but they don't consider it to be a lay off, stop scheduling you, even if you haven't done anything worthy of being fired, and they will fight your unemployment vigorously.The CEO says that they don't lay people off----EVERY February they play the same game and get rid of people (even long term people who have been there for years) who aren't working out. You are walking on eggshells every year until you have your individual spring meeting to see if you still have a job.

    Advice to Management

    Everyone from other stores says that this location is very different (and not in a good way) get closer to all of the "Lessons from staff meeting" and go back to respecting and listening to your employees. To the CEO, get closer to your individual stores and find out what is going on in the day to day there. The environment is very different than the company culture.

There are newer employer reviews for Container Store
There are newer employer reviews for Container Store

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