Ghirardelli Chocolate

  www.ghirardelli.com
  www.ghirardelli.com

Ghirardelli Chocolate Reviews

Updated September 6, 2014
Updated September 6, 2014
34 Reviews
3.6
34 Reviews
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Ghirardelli Chocolate President & CEO Martin Thompson
Martin Thompson
25 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Easy but Awful - Chicago store

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

    I worked at Ghirardelli Chocolate part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Easy work, good pay, guaranteed hours especially in the summer and holidays. Fun work environment; great, funny, outgoing co-workers and great supervisors (minus the GM.) Time and half on holidays and free menu items on each shift.

    Cons

    There was only one con to working here and that was the General Manager. Seriously. Extremely condescending and on the verge of sadistic, especially to Fountain workers. Would constantly say rude and just plain mean things about employees behind their backs. The usual chit-chat/laughter would cease as soon as he came around and loud groans filled the work room when we knew he was scheduled to work that day. Not only that, but we would constantly be running out of chocolate (yes, in a chocolate store) and scrambling to find alternatives for those free samples and bags on display.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    To the GM: learn to run a store properly and lead by example and not by fear.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    not so sweet after all

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at Ghirardelli Chocolate full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    For the work that you're doing you get paid way too much.
    For the most part co-workers are cool and relaxed.
    Fun environment to be in.
    union (kinda)

    Cons

    They're a union controlled corporation so theres tons of red-tape around everything from getting direct deposit to health insurance to simply changing schedules. Also the hiring as an absolute crapshoot, it seems like hiring managers don't care about attitudes or qualifications and as a result you end up having to work with immature and unprofessional people. also being union everything is done on a seniority basis. besides one or two stars most management is unorganized and unprofessional.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3.  

    One week and gone

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Chocolateer in Lake Buena Vista, FL
    Former Employee - Chocolateer in Lake Buena Vista, FL

    I worked at Ghirardelli Chocolate full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Upper management was very nice but they didnt have a framework as to what its really like behind the scenes.
    Lots of hrs
    pay decent but you work for it

    Cons

    Too many supervisors
    very picky about speed and consistency
    alot of the trainers did not care as a matter of fact the very first words out of her mouth was " nobody cares about your feelings here" . I was like lady its ice cream not the marines.
    Lake buena vista is a very busy location with alot of tourists.
    Diversity is great but must be able to communicate effectively in a loud environment.
    I was very claustrophobic and felt damned if you do and damned if you dont

    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Fun work environment that is undercut by poor management and over-scheduled employees.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Chocolateer in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Chocolateer in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at Ghirardelli Chocolate (less than an year)

    Pros

    Free access to chocolate, ice cream.
    Friendly, enthusiastic environment to work in
    Competitive pay

    Cons

    Non-existent benefits
    Poor management
    Stressful during peak hours when the confectionery is full
    Corporate can be cut-throat/brutal to employees if they do not maintain the Company's image and work ethic. Corporate management can fire you on the spot if you make a mistake
    Hours are non-negotiable. Volatile scheduling. You must be available to work "on-call"

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Respect your employee's scheduling requests. I requested to work part-time, 20-25 hours a week. By the 4th week I was scheduled to work 38 hours.

    It seems that there is a disconnect between the corporate management and the general manager/supervisors.

    Doesn't Recommend
  6.  

    Sales

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

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

    Pros

    It's an iconic brand with strong equity and a ton of upside in the market. Their focus on quality means you always have an advantage when selling.

    Cons

    One of the biggest challenges is the relationship with the parent company. Ghirardelli is clearly the strategic leader in the portfolio, which must be intimidating to the other units.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Marty Thompson is a dynamic CEO with a strong sales background. Keep pushing and keep leading within the broader organization.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    Good Employer

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Leandro, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Leandro, CA

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

    Pros

    The company is growing and moving forward in the right direction (but that comes with growing pains). Management is open to new ideas and changes that will benefit the company and the people.
    Pros-
    1. The people. You get to work with AMAZING people not just in your department but in others.
    2. Benefits. The package is really good for the size of the company. Management thinks about the employee's well-being and not what is 'cheap' to the company
    3. Security. I felt safe working at Ghirardelli because of the security measures put in place. I'm never worried when I leave late at night or start early in the morning when its still dark
    4. Free chocolate!

    Cons

    There is a separation between the employees in production and in the corporate office. Both departments need to come together as ONE.
    Cons-
    1. Salary. Great if you're a new hire, not so good if you've been there for years and no adjustment with additional responsibilities
    2. Room for growth/ promotions in certain departments
    3. Some departments are favored more than others

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep doing what you're doing but take more time to listen and observe the hard-workers in Production and Retail not just Corporate employees.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Supportive team and management and we make chocolate! What’s not to love!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Leandro, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Leandro, CA

    I have been working at Ghirardelli Chocolate full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Management is very approachable and everyone is the building is nice and easy to work with. Everyday brings different challenges so you have to like and be ready to adapt to change to work here. Once you think you know how something works- it changes.

    Cons

    This is more than a 9-5 job for 80% of the people who work here. There will be late nights and early mornings. None of this is mandated by your manager, but it is really the only way to get the work load done especially at busy times of the year when there are projects on top of your everyday workload that is non-stop. The impression given is that we should have work life balance but it is hard to walk away and leave work undone.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Bring in more support staff to provide more balance to the work load and let key people grown the business.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Delicious and Rewarding!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Marketing in San Leandro, CA
    Current Employee - Marketing in San Leandro, CA

    I have been working at Ghirardelli Chocolate full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    This is one of the best companies I’ve worked for and the longest one I’ve been with. Working at Ghirardelli is extremely satisfying and enjoyable especially when the people you work with share the same passionate about the product (chocolate!) as you do. Being a mid-size company you get your hands on a variety of highly visible projects. As a result, you get to have a lot of ownership and decision making power within your business.

    During the course of my career I’ve had the pleasure to work for and with some fantastic managers. I know this is not the case for everyone or every department but overall I have really appreciated my managers. I am constantly learning and being challenged on a regular basis. There's rarely a dull moment and two days are never the same which keeps the work exciting and engaging.

    Last but certainly not least chocolate is everywhere! You begin to develop a very refined palate and form a strong appreciation for sophisticated flavors and complimentary ingredient combinations. An added perk is giving your feedback on new flavor development.

    Cons

    You do have to be comfortable managing lots of changes and working at a fairly fast pace. Timelines are rarely standard and most projects are extremely rushed. This motivates some people but makes others miserable and those they work with frustrated.

    The office is a bit dated and does not reflect the premium image of the brand therefore making it difficult to host outside business partners with pride.

    The location isn’t much better mostly because there are not a lot of lunch options and you need to drive just to go out. That being said the company is generous about providing catered meals for lunch meetings.

    Finally, not sure if this is really a con but being surrounded by premium chocolate you inevitably become a “chocolate snob” and have difficulty enjoying mainstream chocolate and average desserts ever again.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    We know that we are a very strong and fast growing company with a focus on innovation but there seems to be a lack of urgency to invest in additional headcount within key departments. Many departments appear to run too lean making it challenging to keep up with an ambitious product pipeline.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    Not a bad place for a college job

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Chocolateer in Anaheim, CA
    Current Employee - Chocolateer in Anaheim, CA

    I have been working at Ghirardelli Chocolate part-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    great starting pay. the recipes are simple to learn. free ice cream and/or chocolate

    Cons

    can get very, very low hours. favoritism may come into place. on- calls

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    listen to your employees more

    Recommends
  11.  

    Established company, going through growing pains

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Leandro, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Leandro, CA

    I have been working at Ghirardelli Chocolate full-time

    Pros

    The company hires very dedicated and passionate people. There is a very strong belief in the brand and an energy to make the company's mission statement come to life. Overall, the people who work at the company are friendly and inviting. The benefit plan is excellent and the employee contribution rates are relatively low. Flexible Time Off policy is generous; 401k plan with company match is very generous. Some departments have created a great team atmosphere. More processes are being put into place that should make the work flow better.

    Cons

    The growth of the company is strong, which means that there is a lot of pressure on departments and individuals to always be delivering. Work-life balance is encouraged in word but not necessarily by action; expect to receive emails and voice mails on days off, weekends, nights with an implied response expected. Being a smaller company, there is not much room for upward growth.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Growth opportunities are important at any level, career pathing is important to people - what is next? Encourage more open door communication in all departments as some are still road blocked from expressing their opinions.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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