Vitamin Cottage Natural Grocers
2.8 of 5 69 reviews
www.naturalgrocers.com Denver, CO 1000 to 5000 Employees

Vitamin Cottage Natural Grocers Reviews

Updated Jul 7, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

2.8 69 reviews

                             

30% Approve of the CEO

(no image)

Kemper Isely

(27 ratings)

33% of employees recommend this company to a friend
69 Employee Reviews
Relevance Date Rating
in

Review Highlights

Pros:
  • "The employee discount is pretty decent if you buy vitamins and such"
    in 12 reviews
  • "Great benefits, awesome non management coworkers, great products"
    in 5 reviews
Cons:
  • "Many of the people in the home office are not familiar with the employee handbook"
    in 12 reviews
  • "Store managers usually last a year or so and most always hire from the outside for those positions"
    in 7 reviews
  • Show more review highlights

Reviews

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

     

    Great company with great people

    Operations (Current Employee)
    Denver, CO

    ProsIf you are customer service oriented, this is the company for you. Making connections with other individuals and working together towards health goals is the name of the game. The management, from Execs all the way down, are well trained and hard working. Lots of transparency. If you are ever in need of anything, all you have to do is ask.

    ConsBonus payouts can be paltry from time to time, and no stock options are currently available to employees.

    Advice to Senior ManagementOffer stock to employees.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    Was this review helpful?
    Yes | No
    Add Employer Response Flag Review
    • Culture & Values
           
    • Work/Life Balance
           
    • Senior Management
           
    • Comp & Benefits
           
    • Career Opportunities
           
    • Disapproves of CEO

     

    Nepotism

    Manager (Former Employee)
    Denver, CO

    ProsIts a job- They're trying to do the best they can.

    ConsLeadership consists mainly of family members, that routinely make poor decisions inconsistent with retaining their most skilled and experienced. Marketing and how you attract new customers is key, the tv ads are repellant. One of the cleanest grocers and no one would know?

    Advice to Senior ManagementFollow your policies, model your standards.

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

    Was this review helpful?
    Yes | No
    Add Employer Response Flag Review
    • Culture & Values
           
    • Work/Life Balance
           
    • Senior Management
           
    • Comp & Benefits
           
    • Career Opportunities
           
    • Approves of CEO

     

    Best employment in my 25 year career in natural foods.

    Category Manager (Former Employee)
    Lakewood, CO

    ProsManagement was open to any and all suggestions and implemented several ideas presented. Salary was extremely fair and the work to play factor was recognized and monitored to ensure we were in balance. Co workers quickly became a team and developed into a group of people working toward the same goal which was a successful company offering high quality products at the best price available. Leadership is strong with company goals clearly stated in the mission statement. Staff were recognized for service. Benefits were excellent and HR was extremely helpful with all issues.
    Leaving due to personal reasons, otherwise I would have retired from this company in 10 years.

    ConsDivision between Home Office Departments was sometimes an issue. Some departments were focused on covering up issues or creating a way to blame another department and not working for the better of the company.

    Advice to Senior ManagementStay close to your people. Listen. Watch the To Do List and make sure it is the important issues being addressed first. Don't stop caring.

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

    Was this review helpful?
    Yes | No
    Add Employer Response Flag Review
  • We want your feedback – Are these company reviews helpful to you?  Yes | No
    • Culture & Values
           
    • Work/Life Balance
           
    • Senior Management
           
    • Comp & Benefits
           
    • Career Opportunities
           
    • Disapproves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    high expections

    Department Manager (Former Employee)

    Proswonderful customers ...good products if your gluten free. it would be nice if they carried some good high quality food products...not just gluten free.

    Consfavoritism galore. if management don't like you, they will work on getting you out, regardless of your work preformance or good numbers in your dept....

    Advice to Senior Managementrecogize the strengths and dedication of staff and do not lead with fear. get over the Power Trip.

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

    Was this review helpful?
    Yes | No
    Add Employer Response Flag Review
    • Culture & Values
           
    • Work/Life Balance
           
    • Senior Management
           
    • Comp & Benefits
           
    • Career Opportunities
           
    • Approves of CEO

     

    Very interesting

    Anonymous (Former Employee)

    ProsThe pros are easy.... Great discounts, inexpensive product and the ability to move up in a growing company.

    ConsThe cons are a mix. While you can move up its costly to change state's. They also adjust the pay scale of managers in a weird way. A friend I know was hired at a higher wage than I was for the same job. Come to find out they raised the pay for that position. Interesting that current employees aren't getting the bump in pay.

    Advice to Senior ManagementEqual treatment equates to a better work environment, happier employees and more dedication. If you change the wages for positions when it comes to newly hired people at least make the playing field equal and pay current employees the same....

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

    Was this review helpful?
    Yes | No
    Add Employer Response Flag Review
    • Culture & Values
           
    • Work/Life Balance
           
    • Senior Management
           
    • Comp & Benefits
           
    • Career Opportunities
           
    • Approves of CEO

     

    Family-owned business with a lot of great people!

    Produce Clerk/Buyer (Current Employee)
    Denver, CO

    ProsI worked as a cashier, first ,and then later moved to the produce department. My experience was great, especially during my two years as a produce clerk/buyer. The great thing about this company, as one can imagine, is that it attracts all kinds of people --- usually with the common denominator being nutrition awareness (but not always). There are some cards, but there are some fantastically bright and motivated people, too. I think compensation is fair for a grocery retail position, and leadership --- as it goes with any organization-- can be spotty but also great. Depends on who you get, ya?

    ConsI think the Pros far outweigh the Cons. Promotions are easy to come by if you demonstrate enthusiasm, energy and passion. I realize that sounds a bit trite, but it's probably trite because there's something to it. Work/life balance is a non-issue all together. Office culture can be great depending on which department one joins, and this company is full of really bright people, and also some cards, but I have mostly positive things to say about the company culture.

    Advice to Senior ManagementI think management should really concentrate on getting people working in different departments. I didn't really start thriving and putting my best foot forward until I got off the register and into the produce department. And I was never more valuable to the company until then, too. Don't be afraid to give people responsibility --- especially those who have demonstrated their worth. Unfortunately, I know their heads are a bit on the chopping block --- and the turnover is high, and risk is considered against that, I understand.

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

    Was this review helpful?
    Yes | No
    Add Employer Response Flag Review
    • Culture & Values
           
    • Work/Life Balance
           
    • Senior Management
           
    • Comp & Benefits
           
    • Career Opportunities
           
    • No Opinion of CEO

    2 people found this helpful  

    Demanding work for little appreciation.

    Anonymous (Current Employee)
    Colorado Springs, CO

    ProsGreat benefits, awesome non management coworkers, great products.

    ConsManagement is never consistent with policy. The rules change daily in my store, depending on who is in the building. I was passed over on a promotional opportunity because management "doesn't have time to train" me on the ordering system, yet an external candidate was offered the job with the same level of experience. Store manager is verbally abusive at times. Store employees who try to uphold store policy with customers are under minded by management constantly in the name of world class customer service.

    Advice to Senior ManagementI don't think anything will change with this company. Home Office will always try to micromanage from miles away, putting undue stress on store managers who then lash out at their employees.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    Was this review helpful?
    Yes | No
    Add Employer Response Flag Review
    • Culture & Values
           
    • Work/Life Balance
           
    • Senior Management
           
    • Comp & Benefits
           
    • Career Opportunities
           
    • Disapproves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Highly disorganized, micro-managing and non-strategic executives

    Home Office (Current Employee)
    Lakewood, CO

    ProsGood discount and free money for food loaded every payday
    Nutritional coaches are very helpful and willing to give input and education
    Highly receptive store personnel who want leadership, structure and training

    ConsAnother example of a small family owned business who have gone public and are expanding beyond their current knowledge level and capabilities. Company seems to be stuck in an operation mode from about 20 years ago and the family who runs the organization are more worried about micro-managing every tiny facet of day to day operations instead of dealing with the big picture and future needs.

    They have hired some people to lead day to day, but the expectations and reporting structures are unclear and they don't allow these people to do their jobs effectively.

    Training (what there is of it) is overwhelmingly detailed and boring leading to poor retention
    HR is not effective - policies are unclear or nonexistent and applied inconsistently
    EXTREME nepotism
    EXTREME turn over at the store management levels
    Poor communication from Management and between departments leading to confusing and conflicting information being communicated.
    Poor morale at both the office and stores due to all of the above listed points.

    Advice to Senior ManagementUntil the Isely's can let go and realize that they can trust others in their organization, this company will suffer. They do not have the knowledge and skill set to expand at the current pace and keep day to day effective. They have already suffered an earnings miss.

    Bring in some consultants, outside subject matter experts and LISTEN!!

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

    Was this review helpful?
    Yes | No
    Add Employer Response Flag Review
    • Culture & Values
           
    • Work/Life Balance
           
    • Senior Management
           
    • Comp & Benefits
           
    • Career Opportunities
           
    • Disapproves of CEO

     

    Natural Grocers

    Grocery Manager (Current Employee)
    Sedona, AZ

    ProsFree money for food every week, benefits, easy to move up if you're a hard worker, growing company with a lot of opportunities

    ConsThey have no marketing skills what so ever. I want to badly to help them out and give them ideas to get their name out into the communities they are moving into, but I have heard they do not take advice very well.

    Advice to Senior ManagementImprove your marketing and hire me on your marketing team to get this business really booming

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

    Was this review helpful?
    Yes | No
    Add Employer Response Flag Review
    • Culture & Values
           
    • Work/Life Balance
           
    • Senior Management
           
    • Comp & Benefits
           
    • Career Opportunities
           
    • No Opinion of CEO

    2 people found this helpful  

    Not the same Atmosphere

    Cashier (Current Employee)
    Denver, CO

    ProsCo-workers make it worthwhile. Also are lenient in giving time off. Pay is just o.k.

    ConsIt used to b a looser atmosphere which made it fun to come to work. Now they have tightened down the reins, mainly coming from upper mgt. so you're afraid to step a toe out of line for fear of retribution. A bullying mentality.

    Advice to Senior ManagementGo back to treating your employees like assets instead of liabilities.

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

    Was this review helpful?
    Yes | No
    Add Employer Response Flag Review
RSS Feed Embed

Worked for Vitamin Cottage Natural Grocers? Contribute to the Community!

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

Glassdoor is your free inside look at Vitamin Cottage Natural Grocers reviews and ratings — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for Vitamin Cottage Natural Grocers CEO Kemper Isely . All 69 reviews posted anonymously by Vitamin Cottage Natural Grocers employees.