Western Athletic Clubs
2.4 of 5 10 reviews
www.westernathleticclubs.com San Francisco, CA 1000 to 5000 Employees

Western Athletic Clubs Reviews

Updated Feb 10, 2014

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2.4 10 reviews

                             

43% Approve of the CEO

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Matthew Stevens

(7 ratings)

22% of employees recommend this company to a friend
10 Employee Reviews
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    Good, not great

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsMembership and access to all of the facilities

    ConsSnobby members, low pay, high turnover

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    Good pay, but not worth it in the long run.

    Swim Instructor (Former Employee)
    Los Gatos, CA

    ProsGreat pay for hourly employees who are in service departments.

    ConsHorrible management within the department and executive team is detached from the ground level of their business.

    Advice to Senior ManagementCommunicate, don't dictate to your employees. They can be your best asset as they see the day to day more than you do.

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

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    It is all about region.

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsGym membership. Accessibility to sister clubs and resorts was always a plus.

    ConsWAC is far from the core values they express to staff during the on boarding process. Safety of staff and members is poor and should be re-examined by the state and OSHA. The company is split into two major regions; Southern CA and Northern CA (Clubs above Redwood Shores CA). The South is prime for development - allowing staff and young managers to gain experience of the business while maintaining the skills that got them to their current position. Executive management in this region is pure and positive. Low turn around for staff and managers - many managers would stay at one location if they were successful and would continue to lead their clubs to success. The North is a different beast. It is the region that led me an many fellow managers to dislike the environment and true values that WAC was portraying. Staff were undervalued - payed dirt and frequently shipped out to other club locations because WAC feared lawsuits would come their way from firing substandard employees. Club managers would only stay at a club for 1-5 months before being changed out. There was simply no consistency. The other issue that ruined staff's perception of the company and management was simple. The SVPO is responsible for all North Bay locations and the political happenings at each club. If you were not one of his friends then you were instantly placed on the chopping block. That is how the company works.

    Advice to Senior ManagementPromote from within. Listen to your teams. Redesign your executive team. The CEO is great but everyone else is holding WAC back.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Worst Company I've Ever Worked For

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsSome of the clubs are very nice and there are some good travel perks for employees. Also CEO and upper management are approachable people who do interact with the "regular" staff. Company promotes from within and there are many opportunities to work your way up the ladder quite quickly.

    ConsWorking in this industry for many years, I worked for this company. It was the most negative work experience I have ever worked in, out of any job I have ever held. This company is poorly managed with no intent to change. Although some of the senior management can be paid pretty well, almost all employees work at least 6 days per week. Salaried employees are worked long hours, with no overtime pay. For as beautiful as the clubs look and the high price of membership, many of them are actually quite dirty. Many safety aspects are disregarded. I was surprised to learn how many employees didn't even know how to use the AED machines or where they were located. (What if someone has a heart attack, which happens frequently in health clubs?) This company is a total profit machine. They will use and abuse anyone to make more money. Most employees were overworked, underpaid, and unhappy. This company will nearly bend any rule to make a member happy, but sometimes it requires an employee suffering for it, or lifting a safety precaution. They also make outlandish changes to schedules and/or policies at the last minute and expect employees to drop everything and work with their demands. This company does not follow CA labor laws consistently. Club management are not given a spending allowance or company card to purchase supplies, so necessary supplies are purchased out of pocket and employees must wait for reimbursement. Something to also be noted, most of the upper management are all related to each other. I found that to be odd, unprofessional, and frankly just wrong. It gives an unfair advantage and it's really all about who you know, who you are related to, who's butt you are kissing to get ahead. My experience there was that the employees who were "on board" literally lived and breathed this company. There was no time for a personal life. Many work 7 days per week and are threatened if they dared asked to leave early or for a day off. For what this company pays, it's not worth it to not have a life. If you are looking for a positive work/life balance, this is not the company to work for. It was the most toxic and unbalanced work experience I have ever had. It can also be quite snobby. Do yourself a favor and explore other fitness companies before even considering to work for this one. I sure wish I had known more before I worked for this company, otherwise I would never have considered employment with them. If you are looking for a fitness career where you can rapidly advance, are young and eager with time to dedicate your life to your work, this might be a good place to start. If not, look elsewhere.

    Advice to Senior ManagementTrain on CA labor laws and worker's rights. Create positive work/life balance environment for all staff or you will likely continue to have high turnover

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Run away

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsIt's a job that pays the bills

    Conspoor management, horrible benefits, toxic work environment

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Great managers, friendly coworkers

    Sales (Current Employee)
    San Francisco, CA

    ProsTeamwork is important at WAC. The company is seeking to double its size in the next year so there is a lot of opportunity. Very nice facilities, well maintained.

    ConsWAC does not pay for health insurance. I pay $700 out of pocket a month for my husband and I. Lack of communication between upper management and sales department.

    Advice to Senior ManagementMake more of an effort to promote from within. In addition to offering Sales training, it would be helpful to offer Management training since many managers are ill-equipped to create a team environment and motivate employees.

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

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    Lack of customer Service hurts business

    Sales (Former Employee)
    San Francisco, CA

    ProsGym Membership, Good networking opportunities, Decent salary, Good individuals to work with in middle management and service staff. You get to work outside sometimes.

    ConsThe management at Western Athletic Clubs, IE the Bay Club don't understand the value of good customer service. The upper management overlooks the importance to support their staff when they are in need.

    Advice to Senior ManagementListen to your employees more. They may actually have something good to say which will benefit you in the long run.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    courtside club

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    Proslove it there. great opportunity to earn good money, meet lots of people, and develop customer service skills.

    ConsSometimes it's hard to motivate yourself to use the perks of the job (the gyms) because you feel like you're at work!

    Advice to Senior Managementkeep up the good work!

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    "Lifeguard doesn't mean Clean-Up Crew"

    Lifeguard (Former Employee)

    ProsI got to be in the sun, and became good friends with the "supervising" lifeguard and one of the ladies from the kitchen. Some of the staff is very kind and are good people trying to make it by like me, but often find similar problems trickling down from poor management decisions.

    ConsI was a beach guard first and went to Western Athletics because I needed extra money and was balancing the two jobs. To explain how dumb procedures were, first of all as a "lifeguard" if there is an emergency I was not allowed to dial 911 for emergency response. I had to go call the front desk, and if one of the teens on the clock decided to pick up then they would dial 911. Stupid and illogical...YEAH! Then the "director" never seemed to really care about what the guards really needed and often would leave early from his shift. Overall the head lifeguard was the one who kept things together, another veteran beach guard. The food was really expensive and we got a wopping 10% of which when you're buying a $5.50 bagel with cream cheese, you get to save 55 cents woohoo. So that was also disappointing. Also when you start working there they give you a membership to the gym, but when the season ends, from June to mid-September they consider you not hired anymore and cancel your membership. I think that's dumb, because we bake in the sun picking up peoples towels and dealing with their snobby attitudes and we can't even have access to the facility when the season is over and we actually have time to use it! That brings me to another major point, lifeguards going around the pool lounge chairs and having to pick up food, towels, swim equipment, etc instead of being able to focus on the water. It's a pain to think that you pay to be certified to be a pool guard because even after working 2.5 years at the beach I was required to take a "pool" lifeguard cert. and in the end I end up as cleaning crew for the pool. It got so bad one day that on my break, I swapped out of my reds and put on break trunks, goggles and went into the water with a hand pool vacuum because the pool was so filthy and patrons were starting to complain. Of course management saw, asked me if i worked there!, and when i told them i was a guard on break and that people had complained about how dirty the pool was simply said oh well they always have something to complain about. Idk but that didn't go so well for me.

    Advice to Senior ManagementThinking about the customer is one thing, but forgetting about your employee's is another. The membership for the club is so high that you could afford to pay more attention to the hard working employees some and most who worked harder than me. They deserve the extra attention, because happy employees will lead to even happier customers.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Profit Machine

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    Prosclub members are a great networking resource

    ConsThey make it hard or impossible for you to get benefits, or health care. Ie: cut staff schedules so they can't get full- time hours, or not pay for admin time so you would qualify for full time. Very few get medical, holiday pay, 401 K (they don't do 401k matching)

    Cut every corner to save money, at the expense of their staff, and members.

    Changes to policies that are important either never get done, put off.

    Set monthly forecast extremely high so employees can't hit commission bonuses that make up a large part of their monthly income.

    Increased prices up to 45%

    Employees who have been with the company for up 15 years and helped build the company have all been either fired, let go, or jumped ship.

    Advice to Senior ManagementFollow your mission statement" enhancing people's lives" that the company was founded on long before KSL resorts bought the company.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at Western Athletic Clubs reviews and ratings — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for Western Athletic Clubs CEO Matthew Stevens. All 10 reviews posted anonymously by Western Athletic Clubs employees.