Spencer Gifts

  www.spencersonline.com
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157 Employee Reviews (View Most Recent)

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1 person found this helpful  

Good Rewards, But Just Not Worth the Headache

Assistant Manager (Current Employee)

Pros*Health and PTO Benefits. For ASM's and SM's it's pretty decent (1 week vacation after 6 mos, 2 weeks after a yr, and so on, sick hours accrue at 4-6 hrs a month, full medical/dental/vision after 60 days)

*Work/life balance. Expect to be working a lot when you're there, but when you want time off, you 90% have it. I'm a total concert junkie and never had to fight for get a night off to go to a show, and when I needed some emergency time off to care for a sick relative, I got it, no questions asked.

*Awesome co-workers, for the most part. No professional judgement on looks, professional judgement is really based on how you do your job and get things done.

*Laid back atmosphere, no suit-and-tie business. Focus is on the guest, and one usually gets decent music to rock out to. They even incorporate music suggestions from store associates into their music blocks, often within a day or so.

Cons*Promotions/advancements seem to be based on politics much more than how you can perform your job and run the store and often never happen, despite how many "development plans" you go through and meet competency at.

*Upper-level management micro-manage stores and allow for almost no improvisation. At my particular location, our corporate office "partners" often watch us on our closed-circuit television surveillance systems and knit-pick the store, and us, to pieces.

*Sales culture and loss prevention culture is intense. If you're not making daily sales plan, you WILL hear about it. Often in not very nice ways from DSM's. Pretty unsympathetic to the fact that every month they carry less and less innovative product tied to today's culture scene. Same thing with shoplifting apprehensions. DSM's want to see numbers, especially if your store inventory shrink is less than company norm (which lowers drastically every year), even though managers get little training on confronting and handling shoplifters other than "request the product back, if they cause problems, ask them to leave." Luckily for me, I spent quite a few years as a professional store detective, so handling apprehensions is second nature to me. For associates and managers with no background or exposure to shoplifting incidents, it can be very nerve racking (I've had my manager try to stop a guy who concealed almost $100 worth of product in a jacket WALK AWAY when a customer asked him about a refund. We had 3 other supervisors present who could've handled that request, customer stupidity as to the situation unfolding notwithstanding).

*A LOT of Home Office disorganization. Some days it's like the right hand doesn't know what the left hand is doing. A manager will receive instruction about doing floor moves one way, then get a follow-up email within a few hours stating that Home Office people in charge decided to do it another way and you get to play Legos and put it together differently than originally instructed.

*Excessive multi-tasking with too little payroll. Managers and supervisors essentially have to run the stores by themselves most of the day, and do every little task Home Office decides needs to be done that day, all the while be #1 sales professional and #1 shoplifting extraordinare.

*Environment is a little too PC sometimes (especially for a place that sells sex toys and other unconventional goods), and if you get on the wrong end of a guest or fellow co-worker, they can make sure to try for your employment by filing bogus HR complaints. Meanwhile Store Managers who clearly violate sexual harassment policies aren't even investigated, much less disciplined.

*Assistants and Sales Supervisors often get part-time style hours and full-time salaried management responsibilities. Assistants normally get 32 hrs/week max, and if you get more, you're having a good week. Sales Supervisors only get 20ish. Sales Associates get hosed even worse, only getting about 8 per week at minimum wage.

Advice to Senior ManagementHonestly, stop being stingy on payroll. If Sales Supervisors and Assistant Managers were treated more like full-time store management (such as getting more in the way of full-time hours, responsibility, and Store Manager perks, like bonuses) they'd probably feel more invested in their positions as well as the store's overall financial outcome every year.

Same thing with Sales Associates. If they received financial incentives (like RAISES) and steadier hours for their work, you could probably attract, retain and develop better talent to work and ultimately move up the ladder. If you want people to make sales, it helps having them in the store to do it. Seen plenty of customers just leave because there were a lot of other guests and two associates running around like chickens with the heads cut off trying to help them all.

A litte less micro-management and a lot more organization from field management and Home Office would do wonders. And if you really want shoplifting apprehensions, either A) outsource detectives from third party private security firms with those services, or B) actually create your own in-house loss prevention department, like many retailers do. Having a one-man-army of managers and associates is ludicrious.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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

     

    Lifes a Party until your remember corporate trumps all.

    Sales Associate (Former Employee) Racine, WI

    I worked at Spencer Gifts part-time for less than a year

    Pros: Employees are great! Made some awesome friends! Over all for retail… Cons: Extremely high Shrink for all retail stores in my area but corporate doesn't realize that and believes it is internal. 1 week after being let… Advice to Senior Management: dont assumes employees are steeling from you. It morally isnt… Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend More

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

    1 person found this helpful  

    Terrible upper management

    Assistant Manager (Former Employee) Brookfield, WI

    I worked at Spencer Gifts full-time for more than a year

    Pros: Great staff with nice atmosphere. Cons: They do nothing to help you in terms of loss prevention. They refuse to supply you with security cameras or sensors that will go off… Advice to Senior Management: Find a better company...... No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company… More

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