Kohler
2.9 of 5 138 reviews
www.kohler.com Kohler, WI 5000+ Employees

Kohler Reviews

Updated Apr 1, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

2.9 138 reviews

                             

55% Approve of the CEO

Kohler Chairman and CEO Herbert V. Kohler Jr.

Herbert V. Kohler Jr.

(95 ratings)

45% of employees recommend this company to a friend
138 Employee Reviews
Relevance Date Rating
in

Review Highlights

Pros:
  • "Good benefits, friendly co-workers, good systems"
    in 7 reviews
  • "If you can form good relationships with them, you can learn a lot"
    in 3 reviews
Cons:
  • "All upper management and even some lower level management is only there for themselves"
    in 9 reviews
  • "They need to focus more on work / life balance and promoting people when deserved"
    in 4 reviews
  • Show more review highlights

Reviews

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  • No Opinion of CEO

 

Kohler's missed opportunity in a southern state. [Searcy Arkansas]

Non-scab, Due Payer (Former Employee)
Searcy, AR

I worked at Kohler full-time for more than 3 years

ProsGood Company, with a solid product. The only company I've ever worked for, with which I consider myself their customer. Very reasonable with Organized labor.

ConsThey allowed a clique majority of production workers, - polishers - at UAW local 100; to create the widest range of incomes I've ever seen, even in non-union shops: 27K - 90K. Had that money been spread out more evenly, strikes would have not happened. My Father and Uncles were UAW, and I was a member as well - Searcy's Local 100 was NOT how organized labor Works. Those of you failed the People of Searcy Arkansas; whatever you're doing now, do it over in baldknob.

Advice to Senior ManagementFollow the Japanese model for setting up shop in the south. They don't compete with your products.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Great company, global focus, and good opportunities for growth.

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
Kohler, WI

I have been working at Kohler full-time for more than 10 years

ProsVast opportunity for position changes due to diversity of brands owned. There are many opportunities for switching after 18 months in a position. This helps to continue growth within the same company.

ConsToo many decisions have to be approved by the CEO.

Advice to Senior ManagementIf you hire the best, trust the best.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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5 people found this helpful  

Great experience. Would not go back.

Mechanical Project Engineer (Former Employee)
Kohler, WI

I worked at Kohler full-time for more than 3 years

ProsDiverser cross functional experience. Ability to work in high level position very early in career. International experience. Nice new offie for engines engineering. The Sheboygan area is a decent place to live and close enough to visit Milwaukee for a splash of culture. Lots of genuine and nice people at the working levels.

ConsCash compensation only slightly better than low end contract firms. My total cash compensation grew 90% when I moved on. Very disorganized and not clearly process driven. Training and development opportunities could stand to be better organized. HVK makes every important decision, so middle management indecision is rampent and progress can grind to a hault. Who you know being more important than what you know is more prevalent than most corporate environments. Nepotism is a term you need to be very comfortable with.

Advice to Senior ManagementPay your employees an average wage based on the industry and responsibility. Adopt some kind of formal continuous improvement process: A3, Six Sigma, Lean Process, anything. Become publicly traded or oust Herb, though David is not much better.

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

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Old Boys Club

Finance (Former Employee)
Kohler, WI

I worked at Kohler full-time for more than 3 years

ProsLarge company & opportunity for career change/advancement to the right employees. Many get stuck in a positon and are unable to move.

ConsToo much upper management and management that is not qualified (golden boys). The company management is very heavily lopsided towards the male side, and many of those males are still operating with the mindset of the 50s. Don't expect to excel to far too quickly if you are a female.
The company is also stong on favorites, regardless of your intellectual ability and career track record. It's more of a WHO you know, rather than WHAT you know kind of place.
They will wine and dine you as an intern, tell you all kinds of great things about career opportunity, travel, etc. Then after about 1-2 years, the reality sets in and you find out that it's all a bunch of lies to lure you in. Most people don't stick around for lthe long haul here, many get some experience for their resume and then move on.
You are JUST a number here, they really don't care about you as a person.

Advice to Senior ManagementRemove a few layers of upper management, hire some managers with great people skills, show that you actually care about your employees.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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6 people found this helpful  

Dishonest and corrupt. Just a horrible place to be.

Communications Specialist (Former Employee)
Kohler, WI

I worked at Kohler full-time for more than 5 years

ProsNot many. Products are well crafted.

ConsManagement is just awful. At all levels of the company. Everybody operates in fear (HVK) and if you are not the "chosen employee" your career will go nowhere. Management excels at labeling employees and putting them in a box. Never moving anybody up the ladder because they have determined that you are not capable of doing anything other than your current position. HR is bloated and causes too many barriers to real success. HR is not employee friendly. If you confide in them they will notify your supervisor immediately and tell them everything.
WARNING: If you value your career, this is not the place for you. Better think twice.

Advice to Senior ManagementNot that this advice matters becuase Kohler will never change but here you go. The people you have working for you matter. Turnover is very high for a reason. People do not like being treated poorly and they will leave. You can replace them but consider the cost. It is now a culture of contempt. Wakeup and drop the ego.

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

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Extremely fast and demanding environment

Marketing (Former Employee)
Kohler, WI

I worked at Kohler full-time for more than 10 years

ProsExceptional creative environment with a total focus on quality and the Kohler brand.

ConsA lot is expected out of executives and burnout can occur if personal life is not managed well

Advice to Senior ManagementMaintain the heritage and uniqueness of the organization.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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2 people found this helpful  

Old fashion

Procurement Intern (Current Employee)
Kohler, WI

I have been working at Kohler as an intern for less than a year

ProsRelax environment
Lots of opportunity for cost savings in strategic sourcing

Cons*Seems almost too relaxed
*Rely so heavily on print
*People are old fashioned
*Not much analysis goes into decision making in strategic sourcing

Advice to Senior ManagementMy manager is very old fashioned but I cannot say for everybody

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Sauk Technologies and the Kohler Conduct Con

Temp (Former Employee)
Saukville, WI

I worked at Kohler full-time

Prosmediocre wage - equal to industry standard for the area

ConsEverything! Glassdoor will not allow (remove) a proper review of this Company, Sauk technologies) which is owned by Kohler. They make power generators here. Internal Culture is extremely poisonous. Supervisors lack the knowledge of the machines and skills used to make parts, but you have to go to them when something isnt correct only to be sent to someone who may know. Those people dont know because they dont run your machine or products. They have a written culture of ethics but its just that, written not practiced. Half the workers come from a temp agency, if you are one of those, understand the term "At Will" employment and remain on your guard! Probably the best way I can say it so the post will not get removed. Also understand what the Temp Agency you work for policy is and Kohler/Sauktech because if you ever do bring up a "concern" you could find yourself on the end of a angry phone call with someone saying you have no right to call Human Resources. So again, understand the term "At Wii" more than any handbook or what any person says in a meeting about coming forward with a concern, we dont discriminate.

Advice to Senior ManagementManagement doesnt listen and dont care so why take the time to enter anything here. Its a manufacturing company that makes tons of dollars on manufacturing. They should follow their policies and and cfocus more on the Life, Balance part of thee Work - Life - Balance spiel on the wall.

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good place

Engineer (Current Employee)
Kohler, WI

I have been working at Kohler as a contractor for more than 10 years

Prosgreat working plant wide conditions

Consbad management too many layers

Advice to Senior Managementreduce layers of managers

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Hattiesburg facility is a great place to co-op/ intern with if you are a self starter

Design Engineering Co-op (Current Employee)
Hattiesburg, MS

I have been working at Kohler as an intern for less than a year

Pros-Opportunities to get involved in critical projects immediately
- Friendly and helpful co-workers
- Varied work day to day.

Cons-Not enough work assigned at times, you have to find work for yourself to do or sit around bored.
-Lack of structure in co-op program, it ends up being what you make it.

Advice to Senior Management-Continue to develop structure in co-op program
-Be sure that co-ops are given enough work to do.
-Equip co-ops with betters tools for the job (computers that can run 3D modeling programs, etc.)

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at Kohler reviews and ratings — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for Kohler CEO Herbert V. Kohler Jr. All 138 reviews posted anonymously by Kohler employees.