Red Lobster Reviews

Updated September 17, 2014
Updated September 17, 2014
507 Reviews
3.4
507 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Red Lobster President Kim Lopdrup
Kim Lopdrup
171 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Flexible schedule, it's usually easy to pick up extra shifts or to give shifts away (in 35 reviews)

  • friends for life, Benefits ,401K, opportunities for advancement (in 12 reviews)


Cons
  • If you want money you have to work long hours (in 24 reviews)

  • 4 table stations to ensure guests get what they want then 1 year later changing back to 3 table stations (in 13 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Awesome!!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Server  in  Atlanta, GA
    Current Employee - Server in Atlanta, GA

    I have been working at Red Lobster full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Great pay and friendly all the time.

    Cons

    No military discount is given.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Add a military discount.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Great company to work for, high emphasis on guest satisfaction.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Red Lobster

    Pros

    Realistic expectations for sales and labor management targets. They really care about the guest experience and give you the tools to succeed.

    Cons

    Shaky future ahead in California. Some restaurants barely break even at the end of the year.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Increase traffic while selling higher margin products. We need to stay competetive, not stuck in the past.

  3.  

    Pretty good!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Host/Seater  in  Columbus, OH
    Current Employee - Host/Seater in Columbus, OH

    I have been working at Red Lobster part-time

    Pros

    • I absolutely love (the majority) of my co-workers. Many are easy to get along with and as a first job, this has been a great first experience - getting me accustomed to clientele, the work place, and more.
    • We get paid week by week which is nice; as long as you can practice self control and save up!
    • I've seen various complaints about management on this site but personally, I have no complaints at all! My managers are all incredibly sweet and understanding. They defend their employees when necessary, which is something I've never witnessed before and provide constructive criticism for the most part rather than just barking at their employees.

    Cons

    • The customers can sometimes be a big issue. For the most part, I've been lucky to enough to work in a location that is primarily filled with happy and enjoyable clients but of course there are the occasional cranky folks that make my job 10x harder. Rude, snappy, etc. I've been whistled at, snapped at (literally and figuratively), yelled at by people who come in and can't get a table right away, so on and so forth and all the while you have to put on your best face and not let anything show. Which is natural of any job in the restaurant business, but it is something that should be bore in mind when thinking about applying here.
    • Busy. Days. Whenever we get busy, it turns into complete chaos. Servers get nasty, the kitchen staff practically goes completely silent to avoid saying anything negative, things fall, clients are unhappy with waits, and you simply have to be able to deal with stress. If you can not handle stress, this would perhaps not be the best job for you. (I used to not be but this job has certainly made me grow in this regard which I'm frankly thankful for.)
    • Having started off as an SA, I literally never take any of them for granite. SA's are literally the bottom of the totem pole and get worked unbelievably so for the worst pay in the restaurant. Though you do have to start somewhere - and typically it is with this position - it is awful. Several times I have worked double shifts as an SA and not even made minimum wage per hour. (Though it should also be noted that Red Lobster does compensate for this if you don't make at least minimum wage via tip share - and, yes, you get paid with tips as a server assistant.) On busy days you can make more than minimum wage. It really just all depends on how generously customers tip that day. Add to that, when the restaurant is busy and you're SAing, if you even dare take a breather to get water, chances are you'll get snapped at by an angry server for not having cleaned off their table yet... Even if the customer has been gone for three minutes.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  4. We want your feedback – Are these company reviews helpful to you?  Yes | No
  5.  

    My favorite restaurant to work for

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Alley Coordinator  in  Harrisburg, PA
    Current Employee - Alley Coordinator in Harrisburg, PA

    I have been working at Red Lobster part-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Great culture, good management and professional atmosphere

    Cons

    Getting cut before working a full shift is always disappointing.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep bringing in better technology and uniforms

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    I wouldn't turn this into a career.

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

    I worked at Red Lobster full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Shifts are very flexible and management makes sure you're educated about the menu including promotions. Management rewards top servers with prime sections.

    Cons

    You will always go home smelling like fish, and may even develop an allergy from constantly touching and being around seafood. Staff is allowed to eat as many cheddar bay biscuits as they would like which initally causes some weight gain, if you don't have self control.

  7.  

    Red Lobster was a great company to work for.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Bartender  in  Mankato, MN
    Former Employee - Bartender in Mankato, MN

    I worked at Red Lobster part-time for more than a year

    Pros

    The training program at Red Lobster for serving was extensive but it was because they took pride in the service they provided their guests.

    Cons

    It was very frustrating to run out of food, especially something that was being advertised in the current promotion.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8.  

    Never caring

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Host/Hostess, Cashier, Take-out Specialist
    Former Employee - Host/Hostess, Cashier, Take-out Specialist

    I worked at Red Lobster part-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Discounts on food, free Cheddar Bay biscuits, great friends, extremely nice customers

    Cons

    Management in multiple stores, the unwillingness of co-workers to help you out, not at all flexible with hours

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The management doesn't understand how stressful it can be going to school full-time, handling a job and trying to take care of your great grandparents, while your parents are splitting up and you have to take care of siblings. Obviously, that's not everyone's case. I think the management should be more understanding when it comes to advance day-off requests, once in a blue moon call-offs and exhaustion after working 36 hours in four days. Communication throughout the restaurants is nothing. When I quit, at least 4 other people quit at the same time.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Worst job I've ever had

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Hostess  in  Traverse City, MI
    Former Employee - Hostess in Traverse City, MI

    I worked at Red Lobster part-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Overall it seems as if Darden cares about its employees. It offers a variety of programs that help the employees, including health insurance & help with any financial hardships that may occur.

    Cons

    The management team spoke to me as if I was an idiot, when I asked about the possibility of training to be a server, they did not even consider it and basically just shut me down right on the spot. however, when i applied and interviewed for the job the original manager said to me that there was potential to move into a serving position. Asking for time off is a hassle, and never expect holidays off.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    Hostess Position

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

    I worked at Red Lobster part-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Red Lobster pays above average compared to other restaurants. The employees are paid weekly and they are flexible with the hours you can work. This is a great job for someone in high school or college.

    Cons

    It seemed a bit unorganized. I came to work one day and there were about 5 Hostess' standing at the front. This was a day during the week so there weren't very many customers. I'm not sure why someone would schedule that many Hostess' for a slow day during the week. Also, the seating is very hard to understand and the system is not very easy to learn. I feel as though the training that I went through didn't really explain the system very well.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Invest in a better training program for all of your restaurant staff.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11.  

    Red Lobster was a very fast pace environment.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Host/Hostess  in  San Antonio, TX
    Former Employee - Host/Hostess in San Antonio, TX

    I worked at Red Lobster part-time for more than a year

    Pros

    The food is awesome from all Darden companies, schedule is flexible, time off requests, duties and training was learnable.

    Cons

    Upset guests on occasion, leadership needed work from the higher management, long hours at times which could be inconvenient.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat your employees equally, favoritism does not help when needing to keep your staff. Be more understanding of what the crew is having to deal with in the front with all the guests instead of demanding from the back office.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

Worked for Red Lobster? Contribute to the Community!

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.