Trader Joe's

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576 Employee Reviews (View Most Recent)

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  • Culture & Values
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
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  • Disapproves of CEO

35 people found this helpful  

Started great, went downhill from there.

Mate (Assistant Manager) (Current Employee) Philadelphia, PA

ProsOriginally, the great atmosphere, happy crew members, advancement from within, and hearing customers say" I love Trader Joe's".

ConsAfter Theo Albrecht died(German brother who owned Trader Joes), Dan Bane made massive and monumental changes to the structure of the business(If it ain't broke, don't fix it?). Trader Joe's was not broke but running like a fine tuned machine. First, destroyed the nautical hierarchy(Captain, First Mate, Second Mate, Merchant, Specialist, and Novitiate) and made it Captain, Mates(Captains-in-training) and Merchants(usually past-full timers or other long time store leaders). Making Mates a generic position was meant to promote competition for advancement and just led to back-stabbing to get ahead.
     And then came the numbers.....SPPH(sales per person hour), Comp. sales to previous year, raises being a set figure yes/no based on meeting expectations or not, lowering raises, promoting Mates from part-time status at $8-$10 LOWER than the "off-the'street" Mate hires who are managers from the Walmarts, Targets, Whole Foods, etc. and don't know the Trader Joe's culture. (In response to the 10 year part timer who had "15" bosses making $50K- $120K,- after three years of being a mate, 1 out of every 3 crew members is still making more per hour than I am under the new Mate raise system, which is once per year, so it angered me that those part-timers making $3-$4 per hour more than me would say"that's why you make the big bucks in stressfull situations". And they aren't commuting an hour to work. But I do agree that there is alot of incompetance with management in general, what do you expect from Walmart?) Basically trying to sanitize management of anybody that has risen from within as most hires are off-the-streeters and Captain positions are given to RMT's(Off the street hires put on a fast track to Captain for no good reason).
      In a nut shell, the company is now being run by an accountant(whether that be Dan or Ed) and is now treating crew like numbers instead of people. You will see poorer customer service because with fewer crew members at the store to perform the duties that need to be done, there will be little time to show you where that product is or after their 5th hour on register(usually reserved for the lazy crew member who accomplishes little on the floor so we staple them to a register to keep track of them), their demeanor at checkout is likely to be less polite than once was. But that is what you get when numbers are more important than people.
     Trader Joe's is raking in the profits. They finance all the new stores with their own money(smart) and are planning more aggressive growth(dumb). Anybody relate with the term "discontinued" or "TOS"-temporarily out-of-stock? Trader Joe's is kind of like Walmart where they negotiate deals to keep the prices low and then grind the crap out of the manufactorer to keep supply up. TJ's can't keep many of the popular items on the shelf now, how the heck are they going to do it with more stores.
     I miss hearing customers say "I love this store" and now only usually hear "oh, you discontinued that, too?"
     Watch as everything that made Trader Joe's great starts to erode under the new business plan.

Advice to Senior ManagementStop looking at the numbers only and hear the cries of your people.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    A festive work environment with possibilities of upward mobility. Regular reviews with (small) raises.

    Crew Member/Sign Artist (Former Employee) Santa Rosa, CA

    I worked at Trader Joe's part-time for more than a year


    Pros: Consistently draws good and interesting co-workers. Excellent health benefits. Cons: Irregular hours. Unable to work more than 35 hours… Advice to Senior Management: Invest in people for the long haul. Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend More
    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    Vague but accurate.

    Crew Member (Current Employee) Wilmington, NC

    I have been working at Trader Joe's part-time for more than a year


    Pros: Everything! They treat everyone in the store with respect and… Cons: (see below) Unable to attain full time status leads you… Advice to Senior Management: Let the Employees actually get to take on opportunities that… Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend More
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