Potbelly Sandwich Works

  www.potbelly.com
  www.potbelly.com

Potbelly Sandwich Works Reviews

Updated December 16, 2014
Updated December 16, 2014
162 Reviews
2.8
162 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Potbelly Sandwich Works President and CEO Aylwin B. Lewis
Aylwin B. Lewis
88 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Sometimes you have the pleasure of working with really great people (in 10 reviews)

  • Fun work environment, good overall environment with occasional live music (in 9 reviews)


Cons
  • Ironically upper management is theoretically blind to the lack of integrity (in 12 reviews)

  • Extremely low pay with no incentive to work hard because you only see a percentage based pay increase ONCE a year (in 9 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Cashier

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

    I worked at Potbelly Sandwich Works part-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    I enjoyed meeting new people, seeing new faces everyday. I made a "family" there with amazing people. Some room for growth but not a lot.... you'd have to be there for like 3 years to be making like $12/hour

    Cons

    Low pay and not enough hours. I personally started out as a cashier with a lot of customer service experience but I still made minimum wage. On top of that you will not get a "full-time" position unless your going to be a manager or an assistant manager but sometimes even they only get pat-time. The hours they would schedule me would always interfere with my school hours and I would tell them multiple times.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You need to enforce that there is room for growth because I personally didn't feel that way

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Sideways Solute

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Associate in Southfield, MI
    Current Employee - Associate in Southfield, MI

    I have been working at Potbelly Sandwich Works part-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    -Clean and sanitary workplace (I still eat at PB's long after I've resigned)
    -Meetings designed to ensure everyone is on the same page.
    -Cross training and possibilities for promotion.

    Cons

    -Everything can fall apart without the right management. Luckily, I had great managers...but I've seen other stores throughout my area with less than acceptable store policy implication.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I loved worked at PB and made some lifelong friends there. But the cleanliness, efficiency of operation, customer satisfaction, and various other factors of are all made or broken by the leaders in charge. Be firm and take charge, be fair and assertive...don't get taken advantage of, your employees are your friends OUTSIDE the workplace.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    company lacks foresight.

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

    I have been working at Potbelly Sandwich Works full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    interacting with customers is fun at times, otherwise, their simply is not anything else to write about here as a positive. can't wait to get out of here.

    Cons

    hours- 60/70 hour work weeks as a salaried manager while you are only payed for 40.

    regional management - lacks foresight. continues to ignore impending problems until they are too late to fix.

    if you enjoy sucking up you well be promoted instantly, if you kno how to run a business, you have little chance of advancement

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    quit micromanaging

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5.  

    Great company, great values, perfect environment!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Shift Lead in West Lafayette, IN
    Former Employee - Shift Lead in West Lafayette, IN

    I worked at Potbelly Sandwich Works part-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    The culture of the company is very open to consumer and staff input. The work atmosphere is fun and not stressful. It is a very flexible company.

    Cons

    It is a restaurant, so there are times where you have to work on the weekends and week nights. The hourly rate could be more competitive and employee benefits could be improved with offering stock options.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Great culture. I love this company...

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

    I have been working at Potbelly Sandwich Works full-time

    Pros

    The culture from the top down is what I love about Potbelly. Their mission statement or "Potbelly Advantage" is what drove me to work here - hearing the passion in which we speak of Potbelly makes me want to do my best here. The people are important - from the managers to the associates. I also love our customers - the regulars and the new ones. Telling people about Potbelly and why we have the best sandwiches is a fun part of my job.

    Cons

    Takes a long time to get things done. The company is very frugal with their money - abnormally so. They ask a lot of their GM's as far as paperwork and administrative work. Sometimes they ask for GM's/ DM's to focus on one thing and then all of a sudden - change the focus to something else abruptly so that it is difficult to accomplish the original goal. The DM's feel a lot of the pressure from upper level management. Also - sometimes the way in ehich they project labor makes it hard to create a schedule for hourly associates that makes them want to work at Potbelly as opposed to competitors.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    It takes money to make money, so don't be afraid to spend it when needed. Give the shops more labor dollars. The managers work very hard.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    It started out great.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Shift Lead in Minneapolis, MN
    Current Employee - Shift Lead in Minneapolis, MN

    I have been working at Potbelly Sandwich Works full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    This job started out with a flexible schedule, good hours and a decent starting pay. I moved up fast at first. The people are great and it was a fun atmosphere at first.

    Cons

    Once I become a shift lead I started to notice everything wrong with this company. First off my pay hardly went up from as an associate, there were also new hires getting exact same pay as me and veteran shift leads (one who worked as an SL for 2 years) getting the same pay as me. Second I have now worked for potbelly for a year (still not that long) and I have had three general managers, right when the store seems to get used to the new GMs way of running the shop and everything starts getting smooth again potbelly goes "oh hey lets give you a new GM or AM" it really has a great effect on turnover every time we had a GM transition we have lost almost half of our staff. They are lazy on hiring, they are extremely strict on labor, they say they want us "110%" yeah in potbelly talk that's 5 people over a busy peak. That promised 8 minutes through the line will not happen with only five people on a peak at lunch. They have extremely unrealistic goals for us. We just rolled out the new flats and they are harping us like crazy they are making us be so insanely pushing I see it driving customers away. We we can't hit our goal upper management makes snide snarky remarkes in rude emails. Upper management is also never there a DM is supposed to visit regularly ours visits maybe once a month? She comes in takes our GM off the line during a very busy peak and then complains because we aren't staffed then next week we actually staff what we need because she was upset we were understaffed and she complains we are overstaffed and spending to much. They change their kinda every week. There is so much more I could go into but for the sake of your time I'll leave with one last one, the greed. I have never seen a greedier company, we are only closed thanksgiving and Christmas, but if a customer wants catering on either of these holidays you bet we are open. We don't get time and a half or any compensation for working holidays and the scheduling on these days is unfair and you'll never see a DM work a holiday. Everything's about money they have a joke of an employee discount. The customers can get away with murder. I had a customer screaming in front of me and other customers (children where there too) calling me a "c word" because she thought she didn't have cheese on the sandwich. I was nice at first (I get the whole the customers always right) but when she threw that word out I went to my GM and asked if we could kick her out he said we have to let her stay she's "money". What a joke there were children there and she was yelling profanity! They also keep teenagers later than the law allows in my state along with other illegal practices. I would leave this company in a heartbeat if I could afford to and you bet the second I find another job I am gone.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Love your values. Treat your employees how you'd like to be treated. None of us would mind working holidays if we got something extra! Not everything is about money if you are being too pushy about a promotion you may lose money. Yeah the customers important but so are your employees without then you'd have no one to run your shops and with no shops you'd have no customers and no money. Give realistic goals, with the labor budget you give us we can't have great customer service or happy employees I have also been to many shops and have never ever seen a shop consistently hit labor. It's downright impossible.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    Corporate sucks

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Shift Lead in Des Plaines, IL
    Current Employee - Shift Lead in Des Plaines, IL

    I have been working at Potbelly Sandwich Works part-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Great with flexibility with hours. The employees become your family.

    Cons

    They don't like you to work overtime and do not pay extra for holidays. They give small yearly raises based on the stores overall performance. The average raise is about 20 cents...

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Give better raises, pay extra for holidays.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Great place for a first time job

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - General Employee in Warrenville, IL
    Former Employee - General Employee in Warrenville, IL

    I worked at Potbelly Sandwich Works part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    lots of cool people, most of the time not bored, great food

    Cons

    Some odd people working there

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    some managers are very condescending

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    Fast paced, fun restaurant business concept with great training program and opportunity to grow

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Shift Manager in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Shift Manager in Washington, DC

    I have been working at Potbelly Sandwich Works full-time

    Pros

    flexibility, working environment, human approach, training program

    Cons

    stressful environment, non-professional behavior of associates, time pressure lack of communication from upper management, poor HQ help support

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    upper management level should listen to concerns of lower management

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Support Center works with lean resources

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

    I worked at Potbelly Sandwich Works full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Exciting brand that has a good future.
    Meal discount.
    Great teamwork among co-workers.

    Cons

    Leadership keeps asking for more output without providing the necessary resources.
    Little flexibility in work schedule.
    Poor work/life balance.
    Overkill from managment on the company culture.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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