There are newer employer reviews for Teavana

Helpful (5)

Needs a LOT of Improvements.

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

I worked at Teavana part-time (more than a year)

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

Pros

I was a Teavana Employee for 2 years, here's a detailed review.
While I have many disappointments about this company, there are a few perks which I enjoyed while working there:
-Free cups of tea while you work, Unlimited amount! It's a great way to get to know all the teas first hand and give accurate feedback to customers, help them with purchasing.
-Generous 40% discount for employees, which is really nice.
-Upbeat environment, and beautiful displays. My store was small so clean up usually is easier.
-Many of my coworkers were great to work with. It's mostly a young/hip crowd. I've made really good friends while I was there.
-Promotions: They're always searching for a new GM or AGM, etc, in many new stores and existing stores, as well as corporate positions if you have worked in the company long enough. Since this company is expanding there are many opening positions and new positions for people to fill, so promotions are fairly quick that is If you do well in the company (sales, management, etc). I was asked to attend the 2 weeks training at HQ.
-Education: They do provide excellent training in tea, tea products, etc. The training manual explains everything, and has flashcards to help you study.

Cons

-Pay: Minimum wage. You get a 25 cent raise every year, or at least at my store. Unless you get promoted to a team lead or an assistant manager, or a GM, then don't expect the pay to be that much. There is a bonus structure, but you only get it once you hit your monthly goal. Whether you get it or not may depend on your store volume, and your sales skills.
-Hours: The hours are dependent on your sales, if you do well you are guaranteed a consistent amount of hours. If you do not, then your hours will be cut…Kind of unfair because it may just be a slow week for you. And those who are trying to make up their sales will not get their chance if their hours are cut, and that leads to quitting, finding other jobs etc. Also one of the reasons for the HIGH TURNOVER rate.
-Sampling: I think many of the current/past employees will agree with me, Sampling is the most monotonous, draining task during shifts.
-Sales Process: The sales process works, to a certain extent. However, I felt dishonest when I was selling because of the "script" and how manipulative it is. You have to be pushy to a certain point, but Teavana takes it to a whole different level.
-Unrealistic Goals: There are several ways you are scored. Your total sales, your $ per hour, your average ticket, how much you sold of the indicators, cast iron, etc etc. The company sets goals that are hard to reach, and at times impossible. It makes your work stressful, because you want your bonus, but only so many people are coming in to the store and not buying anything.
-Management: The company sees $$$, so if you sell well, you get promoted quickly. However, that does not mean those who are promoted to managers, will make good managers. As long as you sell a ton, the company won't care. If you don't sell well enough, all hell breaks loose and you might get written up and get fired.
-The stress on how to make good tea etc. Okay so this may be a good thing as well, but I feel like Teavana makes the entire process way too complicated than what it is. All the temperature measurement, the amount of tea to put in, the best way to make tea Which by the way is NOT cast iron, blah blah blah. Guess what? None of that actually matters outside of the USA, because no body's that meticulous about making their tea (Unless you're in a freaking tea ceremony), the whole point of drinking tea is Zen and comfort, not stress and annoyance. When I was in Asia EVERYONE drank tea, and guess what? They're not doing ANYTHING that Teavana teaches to its customers. I went to a green tea capital in China, and the way they sell tea and drink tea is so organic, and simple. And nope you don't even need a tin :)

Honestly, I stayed at my store because of the wonderful people. I quit in the end because I was leaving for a long vaca after graduation, and saw it as the perfect time to say good riddance.

Advice to Management

Change your sale tactics. The pushiness is uncomfortable. Know who deserves to be promoted. Don't just recognize the money that one person is bringing in, find good leadership! Chill out, relax. It's just tea!

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  1. Helpful (1)

    Just say no.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sales Associate/"Teaologist"
    Former Employee - Sales Associate/"Teaologist"

    I worked at Teavana part-time (less than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    1. You'll be very tea literate when you're done with your training.
    2. All the free tea you want on the job! (and a 40% discount on everything!)
    3. The people I worked with were pretty awesome!
    4. Start rate of $8.00/hr which is not terrible for a sales based retail job. (Also a "bonus" program but good luck getting that benefit)

    Cons

    I think a lot of the complaints I've read on here about the company are very true. I'll break down my short and very unpleasant experience with the company.
    First off, I think I was lucky in the fact that I got to start with a store that was about to open. Me and my co-workers got to have the training all together without having to deal with the sales process. It was a paid two week training that was pretty awesome. This also was the only time I had a substantial paycheck.
    I took this job as a go-between as I was moving and this was the first place to offer a job. (What I have experience and a degree in doesn't have a lot going on around here). So i took this job thinking I would make ends meet until something else came along. Wrong. If you want to make $80 pay checks then, this is the place for you. If you have bills to pay, keep looking. They claim to offer health benefits to part time employees but if you're barely making any money it's not going to be worth your while to opt in. (I wasn't here long enough to opt in but from past job experience it probably wouldn't have been as decent!) I'm not saying the crappy hours are done on purpose but read the other reviews to form a better opinion.
    Your hours are based on sales. Being one of the only employees with COMPLETELY OPEN availability, I was given the crappiest hours. If I worked on the weekend it's be from 6-Close when the customers weren't at peak. Or a weekday afternoon when the mall was dead. It's hard to establish your sales when you work crap shifts all the time.
    Your sales technique is based on confusing the customer. We were told to not give the customer time to think and basically make the decision for them. Most of us didn't abide by this because confusing customers hardly get you a sale and it tends to turn them off. I believe they'd rather you have no sale than a big sale and I think that's terrible customer service. Sometimes all people want is a 2 ounce bag of tea to try. (If they've never had it before why would they want a pound of it?) If customer likes it, they'll come back and get more. Telling them they'll save a trip doesn't ease the fact they might not like it. They need to overhaul their sales technique. They assume customers are stupid which is wrong.
    Also, our store has (maybe had at this point) a terrible manager. Everyone, and I mean everyone, has issues with her. We'd complain but nothing ever seemed to get done. So while our issues weren't getting addressed by higher-ups or corporate, the issues weren't getting better either. A lot of the issues made both the company and employees look bad. She also seemed more concerned with her sales then her managing duties which didn't help anyone since most of us were new and needed more guidance.

    Advice to Management

    1. Change your sales procedure. Customers aren't as dumb as you think and they appreciate being respected, heard, and related to.
    2. Respect your employees and listen to their complaints. Also, don't promise these amazing benefits when the likelihood of them even being obtainable is low. Also, don't lie about your hours. People take this job because they have bills to pay. We're not robots for your company. We're real people with real issues.
    3. On a last note: Have faith in your product. If your products are as amazing as you tell us they are they should speak for themselves. We shouldn't feel like we have to con people into buying it. Teavana has high quality tea and products. They should sell themselves. We should be educators and consultants NOT pushers. I actually liked helping customers with educating them on the loose tea leaf brewing process and showing the different kinds of tea I think they'd like based on their preference and experience. If they walk away confident in their purchase (even if it's a 2 ounce bag of tea) they'll be back for more next time and trust your opinion more, too.

  2. Helpful (1)

    A great company when I started, a steaming pile of turnover and burnouts when I left.

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

    I worked at Teavana full-time (more than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Competitive atmosphere that can be fun if the general manager and area manager are worth their salt. Advancement is quick and the possibilities for growth are self-determined.

    Cons

    Don't plan on staying long, from my experience the average lifespan of a teavana team member is about six months, and most are either fired or put in positions where they have to quit. If you survive to management the average lifespan is about two to four years from promotion, if you're lucky. If someone doesn't like you even for petty reasons, you will find yourself without a job in short order.

    Advice to Management

    The biggest gap in the company has always been the AM's and RD's, the liasons between corporate and store levels. There is little compliance to company philosophy there. Also while determining a stores allocated payroll based on past performance is fine, using a blanket matrix for all stores is moronic. The volume, GM and AGM payroll, and local minimum wage need to be taken into account to schedule effectively.

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