Southern Wine & Spirits
2.9 of 5 104 reviews
www.southernwine.com Miami, FL 5000+ Employees

Southern Wine & Spirits Reviews

Updated Apr 16, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

2.9 104 reviews

                             

59% Approve of the CEO

Southern Wine & Spirits Chairman and CEO Harvey R. Chaplin

Harvey R. Chaplin

(49 ratings)

44% of employees recommend this company to a friend
104 Employee Reviews
Relevance Date Rating
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Review Highlights

Pros:
  • "There is opportunity for advancement even for a woman"
    in 4 reviews
  • "great pay and benefits for where i live in south carolina"
    in 6 reviews
Cons:
  • "Upper management clearly does not care about those working at the entry level"
    in 9 reviews
  • "The wear and tear on your car is huge , no car allowance , just gas money"
    in 5 reviews
  • Show more review highlights

Reviews

  • Culture & Values
         
  • Work/Life Balance
         
  • Senior Management
         
  • Comp & Benefits
         
  • Career Opportunities
         
  • Approves of CEO

 

Chain Territory Manager

Chain Territory Manager (Current Employee)
Cerritos, CA

I have been working at Southern Wine & Spirits full-time for more than a year

ProsEntry level position, good experience, exposure to industry, growing company, reputable within industry

ConsSalary, utilizing personal vehicle, very early and long work hours, holidays were so busy it was hard to enjoy them

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We can't teach personality ! Certainly not a boys club

Key Account Manager (Current Employee)
Buffalo, NY

I have been working at Southern Wine & Spirits full-time for more than 5 years

ProsGreat pay and excellent people .

ConsThe hours are sometimes crazy

Advice to Senior ManagementHire more people. Make more divisions

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  • Culture & Values
         
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  • Senior Management
         
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  • Career Opportunities
         
  • No Opinion of CEO

 

It's enough to keep me for now, because it pays the bills, but nothing beyond that.

IT Support Specialist (Current Employee)

I have been working at Southern Wine & Spirits full-time

ProsThe people are awesome! Good comradery!

ConsVery little room for advancement. Not much advice is taken from the lower ranks. Compensation is much lower than comparable positions with other firms.

Advice to Senior ManagementGive more incentives for good performance. Right now there is no reason to be a leader, or to take initiative.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Room to Grow

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Southern Wine & Spirits for more than 5 years

ProsGreat experience, lot of opportunities to grow and expand business. Many locations around the United states offer great benefits. Be prepared to work extremely hard with no pat on the back. Extremely heavy on corporate culture and good ol' boy mentality.

ConsWhile you do receive paid vacation, half the time it's blacked out, and you will be scorned for taking vacations, even though you've earned it and need time off. If you allow yourself to work 23 hours a day, it's not enough for this company.

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  • Culture & Values
         
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  • Comp & Benefits
         
  • Career Opportunities
         
  • No Opinion of CEO

 

Sales Consultant

Off-premise Chain Sales Representative (Current Employee)
Kirkland, WA

I have been working at Southern Wine & Spirits full-time for more than a year

ProsYou get to work in a high paced, somewhat fun industry, depending on the market you are in and type of sales role your hired for. Southern in somewhat family focused and will work with you needed.

ConsIf you are in considering a career in chain sales in Washington research the position closely. I have been in the wine and spirits industry in Washington state for many years, with the new laws passed and many customers choosing to shop and Costco and Total Wine and More it has made sales to regular chain stores very difficult. Stores now order product from their own warehouse just like they would order breakfast cereal, the sale consultant position is essentially suggestive sales where a manger can and will change their mind about a sale with out telling you. That can get frustrating especially when a big incentive is on the line.

Unfortunately SWS does not value the role of sales consultant. In Washington there is no merchandising staff, a sales consultant is forced to return to their account the following day to work a load which can add to the long day making it difficult to achieve your goals. As a sales consultant you wear many hats, sales rep., merchandiser, and reset crew. With all these job would think pay would be good, sorry that is not the case.

You will drive allot, with very little gas allowance, and monthly commissions are virtually a thing of the past. If you want to advance you have to make friends with senior management it is definitely a boys club. I can go on and on, If you want to work long hours with okay pay take on the position.

Advice to Senior ManagementConsult the sales team before making changes. Take a look at the leadership of the company, if there is problem in the market that a sales associate is telling you listen.

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

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  • Disapproves of CEO

 

It's like selling on a roller coaster while someone repeatedly punches you in the face

Sales Representative (Former Employee)

I worked at Southern Wine & Spirits full-time for more than 5 years

ProsExcellent Proprietary Sales Software. Easily the best in the industry. Terrific portfolio filled with brands that sell through.

ConsBrutal hours with zero work life balance; insane quota levels with qualifiers changing every other month; pointless boiler room sessions to intimidate reps; way too many superfluous meetings; complete disconnect between warehouse, office, and sales management -- it's like they're in 3 separate companies.

Advice to Senior ManagementIt should be apparent by the massive turnover rate that you're burning out reps right and left.

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

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Outside Sales Rep

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

I worked at Southern Wine & Spirits full-time

Prosgood work-life balance, good incentive opportunities, decent base salary + commissions

ConsNot much support from management, no compensation for high personal expenses (gas, mileage, cell phone, etc.), unrealistic goals, weak upper management.

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

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Good starting point job

Chain Territory Manager (Former Employee)
Santa Monica, CA

I worked at Southern Wine & Spirits full-time for less than a year

ProsLearn some sales experience-although at the lower levels it is all about buying off store managers/liquor clerks. Good bonus potential depending on your territory and division.

Consdriving driving driving-all day you drive and are barely compensated enough for it. The hours suck-you start most days before 4:30am in the field (although you do end at 2pm which is kinda nice). As a territory rep you basically have to hope your manager supplier pays off the store managers to get your product in there.

Advice to Senior ManagementNo issued with management-more so with the company as a whole. They do not seem to care about the "little guys." And you are definitely replaceable. But with said you can do well when you are promoted!

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

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Fast, challenging, rewarding career

Sales Representative (Current Employee)
New York, NY

I have been working at Southern Wine & Spirits full-time for more than 5 years

ProsGreat book to sell
Six figure incomes

ConsPressure and stressful
Lots of fire drills

Advice to Senior ManagementManagement pushes the envelope onto employees because of the pressure from suppliers

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

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Sounds better than it actually is

Chain Territory Manager (Former Employee)

I worked at Southern Wine & Spirits full-time for less than a year

ProsFun meeting, usually with food. Big party once a year with LOTS of food.
You are off at 230pm usually.

ConsYou start at 6am or earlier.
Constantly followed and monitored by bosses.
They sneak around and follow you. Then when your GPS tracking doesn't show what they think it should they call you in for a "meeting" and make you explain what was happening. Example, I had my bag with the GPS tracker at the back of a store. They were cleaning and asked me to move my bag. So, I brought it to the front of the store and left it there while I worked with the account. My boss called me and said that by moving my GPS it looked like I left the store and was in the parking lot. The GPS is not that accurate.
Oh and it does not pay very much and the "car allowance" is a joke.
Mostly, your actual job is to get permission from the store to set up "dummy" displays and take pictures of them to send to management. Basically just a bunch of empty boxes from other stores stacked up to look like there is a ton of alcohol in the store. This is VERY encouraged by management.

Advice to Senior ManagementTrust your employees. It is bad for morale to see you spying on us and it makes us feel like you are just waiting for us to make a mistake. It is very nerve wracking.

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

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Southern Wine & Spirits – Why Work for Us?

​​Our Corporate Vision To be the leading distributor of beverage alcohol— creating superior value for all tiers of the industry. Our Mission Providing superior business solutions that drive growth and value for… Full Overview

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