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There are newer employer reviews for REI

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General Review

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Current Employee - IT in Kent, WA
Current Employee - IT in Kent, WA

I have been working at REI full-time (More than a year)

Recommends
Neutral Outlook
No opinion of CEO
Recommends
Neutral Outlook
No opinion of CEO

Pros

Excellent people to work with

Cons

Such change going on with management that people don't know if their roles are going to change.

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  1. Helpful (3)

    My experience at REI was one of positivity, challenges, and lots of learning.

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

    I have been working at REI full-time (More than a year)

    No opinion of CEO
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Pro-Deal discounts, lots of vendors come to talk about their products, exposure to people of different walks of life, opportunities to take charge of projects, relaxed workplace, relatively easy to have a work/life balance

    Cons

    Lots of hoops to jump though to reach management, poor communication from time to time from company heads, high standards of selling memberships on a regular basis, hours based on sales (how many memberships you sell during your shift)

  2. Helpful (13)

    A Great Place to Work Until It's Not

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

    I worked at REI full-time (More than 10 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    There is a good synergy that can be experienced at REI depending on the store location and the leadership at a given store. The people that work there are usually fun, active and enjoy camaraderie while on the job or pursuing their outdoor interests. You can share good company, good times and create strong friendships. At work there is often a strong sense of teamwork and people genuinely care about each other. It can be really satisfying helping customers gain knowledge about the outdoor pursuits they are interested in and helping them select gear that can make the experience all the more enjoyable. There is usually a strong emphasis on ensuring positive experiences for the customer and contributing to that goal feels good. You will be recognized outside of work and customers will show genuine appreciation for the great advice, gear and service you provided them. I have seen peoples' lives positively and significantly impacted by the experiences and adventures that were facilitated by a trip to REI. That is always very cool.

    Cons

    The direction REI takes tends to be determined by whatever prevailing economic wind might be blowing. One season might be all about ensuring a positive experience for the customer, followed by the next season scrambling to increase profit margins by drastically cutting expenses (payroll/ schedule hours). Don't tell me that a 30% decrease in payroll doesn't impact the experience that customers have...it's pretty noticeable from their perspective. From the employee perspective it means one month you might have as many hours as you can work, followed the next month by next to nothing. REI talks a lot about Work Life Balance as a company value, but it's hard for employees to find any life balance when their hours and take-home pay can fluctuate so wildly.
    REI's leadership tends to be very inconsistent. There are some great managers who really care about the company, the customer and employees, and work hard to encourage, develop and advocate for their success. And there are managers that are manipulative, lack integrity, show a ridiculous amount of favoritism, and generally are looking out only for themselves and to curry favor for future endorsements. Upper leadership tends not to be able to identify who is who. I've seen the former type of manager somehow run afoul of their superiors and soon forced out in nasty fashion even after years of dedicated service, while the later type of manager is allowed to contentedly continue on, creating division and rancor while somehow receiving praise from those higher up. It's head scratchingly laughable and frustrating at the same time. Your experience at REI will likely depend entirely on which type of manager you happen to be associated with. At some point in your career you will probably realize it is simply time to move on.

    Advice to Management

    It doesn't matter what the economy is doing. The fundamentals of REI's success continue to be the same. Value your employees. Invest in them. Pay them what they are worth (a lot). Advocate for and ensure their success.
    Your employees will deliver the future if you allow them to. They will deliver the customer. Yeah, they are expensive. So what? It's the cost of your continued success. Your employees are your ultimate differentiator. Get out of their way.

There are newer employer reviews for REI
There are newer employer reviews for REI

See Most Recent

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