Williams-Sonoma

  www.williams-sonomainc.com
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Williams-Sonoma Reviews in San Francisco, CA

Updated Jul 14, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

2.8 145 reviews

61% Approve of the CEO

Williams-Sonoma President, CEO and Director Laura J. Alber

Laura J. Alber

(51 ratings)

43% of employees recommend this company to a friend

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Great discount for to enable everyone to spend their salary in store(in 82 reviews)

  • Best Reason to work here is the employee discount and the Sample Sales(in 50 reviews)


Cons
  • No work life balance, payroll constantly being cut some DMs had little pets who could do no wrong(in 25 reviews)

  • The current upper management does not appear to care about the employees or their customers(in 33 reviews)

145 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews
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    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    2 people found this helpful  

    A company losing its way.

    Coordinator (Former Employee) San Francisco, CA

    Pros- Fantastic people in-stores and mid-management
    - Great discount at Williams-Sonoma, Pottery Barn, and West Elm, 40%
    - Solid products that are easy to stand behind.

    Cons- Upper management has completely lost the direction and mission that the company started with.
    - Store and district managers are leaving in droves with firing of President Richard Harvey and somewhat hostile takeover from Pottery Barn senior management team.
    - Customer is no longer the focus. Numbers, numbers, numbers!

    Advice to Senior ManagementGo back to the roots of great customer service which inspires great customer loyalty.

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

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    • No Opinion of CEO

    2 people found this helpful  

    Horribly unprofessional workplace

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee) South San Francisco, CA

    ProsSample sales and employee discount. Good first job out of college. Get your feet wet then graduate to a professionally managed corporation.

    ConsWSU doesn't promote from within. Very incompetent management. Bordering on harassment and gender discrimination. Management is very unprofessional. Don't get stuck in this hole.

    Advice to Senior ManagementClean house and reorganize

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    • Approves of CEO

    3 people found this helpful  

    Great people, company doesn't do enough to retain employees.

    Inventory Control Manager (Current Employee) San Francisco, CA

    ProsThe people are phenomenal. You will work with wonderful, dedicated and talented individuals.

    ConsThere are no frills to this company. A nice discount only gets you so far. They do not pay the industry average and once you are there, you are lucky to get a bathroom with sufficient amounts of toilet paper. WSI does not do enough to retain it's employees. The turnover is extremely high, which may lead to quick advancement, but if you get stuck in a group of lifers, be ready to be around for awhile without any movement.

    Advice to Senior ManagementDo whatever you can to retain employees. Don't make promises you can't follow through with. There would be far less mistakes if there were people around for longer than a year.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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

    2 people found this helpful  

    Great company for self-starters

    Creative Director (Current Employee) San Francisco, CA

    ProsLots of opportunity to grow. Very creative environment. Very positive focus on its people and their value. Lots of people to learn from who know the business inside and out.

    ConsManagement thinks they know best and aren't open much to market research. Very slow to embrace internet and social media but now master it.

    Advice to Senior ManagementListen to your people more

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

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    • Disapproves of CEO

    4 people found this helpful  

    People First!...NOT.

    Product Development Intern (Former Employee) San Francisco, CA

    ProsI interned here and was paid decently for my work, and the hours were flexible.

    ConsLearned quickly that it was not a place I would ever want to work after I was finished with school. The designers were worked to the bone and made to jump through hoops...and the interesting products they would pitch early in the season were always watered down to the same old mush. Ultimately, because of changes within the structure of my group, I was notified via voicemail that my internship was over..."people first"...yeah, whatever.

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

     

    Overall, I've enjoyed my time as a contractor.

    ECommerce Creative (Current Employee) San Francisco, CA

    ProsI really like the people I work with.

    ConsUnfortunately, I'm still a contractor without any benefits.

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    • Disapproves of CEO

    7 people found this helpful  

    Sad

    General Manager (Current Employee) San Francisco, CA

    ProsGreat product and dedicated associates.
    The best customer service model in the business.

    ConsLaura is not a replacement for Howard. She lacks the heart and passion for the brand she leads. She lacks the ethics and poise to be in her position.

    Advice to Senior ManagementGet back to the core of what made WS best in class.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    • Approves of CEO

    4 people found this helpful  

    Difficult personalities to manage, fun product, bad managers.

    Buyer (Former Employee) San Francisco, CA

    ProsThe product is great and so are the core company values. Everyone is passionate about the product and doing the best work.

    ConsA majority of managers are over jealous and poor managers. Most are too young to effectively manage and leave their subordinates ill equipped to manage the rigors of succeeding in the personal politics of the everyday work. There is a "sorority/fraternity" mentality across all cross functional groups and levels. In some functions there is an attitude of one-upping and back stabbing that is encouraged by some managers. It takes a person with thick skin and a flare for moving around these obstacles to succeed at the corporate office.

    Advice to Senior ManagementA deeper look at the VP/Director/Manager positions needs to happen. It is the lack of support, encouragement and everyday back stabbing of subordinates that is prevalent across many functions. If this was changed, the company could truly be great.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    4 people found this helpful  

    Treated poorly, no investment in people to set them up for success.

    Merchandise Coordinator (Former Employee) San Francisco, CA

    ProsSome nice people but most would throw you under a bus. Great brand.

    ConsVery cliquey and if you don't fit the WS mold, they will try and run you out.

    Advice to Senior ManagementStop resting on the laurels of Chuck's name and the brand he created. Your products are not all that great anymore. People should not be made to feel as if it is a privilege to work there.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    • Disapproves of CEO

    9 people found this helpful  

    Lots of work with no rewards

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee) San Francisco, CA

    ProsDecent employee discount. Talented co-workers.

    ConsUpper management has no integrity. You are promised rewards and take on more and more responsibility in good faith with no pay-out. Career growth is minimal. No investment in employees. They hire super talented people and then work you to the brink with no rewards.

    It takes years for people to get promoted – unless you’re a SVP’s favorite. Then you’ll fly up the chain of command in this upper management heavy company and not have to worry about being qualified or competent.

    Managers are not trained to manage employees. There is no accountability. Managers are supposed to invest in their employees, helping them grow. This is a ruse and something everyone does at review time, but very rarely comes to fruition.

    Leadership attitude is, “it is a privilege to work here” and use it as an excuse not to compensate their employees. Leadership touted several times how 2012 was such a fabulous year, yet no one got more than 1% (many receiving less than 1%) merit increase. The excuse was the successful brands had to make up for the ones that didn’t hit the mark. This is false. Management lied. All the earnings reports were positive. We did better than last year, yet our merit increases were less. And this didn’t keep upper management from receiving their bonuses. While the hard working “staff” toil with no gratitude. And really why should they be grateful for all the OT, sweat, blood and tears? After all, it’s a “privilege”.

    This company was a slightly different animal when I started. It was a kinder, more generous place to work. Current leadership is a sham – greedy, selfish, arrogant. What’s shocking is that even upper management is cliquey and snipey – incredibly unprofessional and demeaning to the employees. Last I checked, they hired competent adults to work for them. They should really treat them as such. I would never recommend anyone to waste their time and talents at Williams-Sonoma, Inc. It’s simply abusive.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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