Borders Reviews in Chicago, IL | Glassdoor

Borders Chicago Reviews

25 reviews

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Chicago, IL Area

2.7
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Borders President and CEO Michael J. Edwards
Michael J. Edwards
7 Ratings

25 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • The company went bankrupt otherwise I would still be there (in 15 reviews)

  • Poor management on liquidation company's behalf (in 9 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Sell books, sign people up for Borders rewards"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Book Seller in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Book Seller in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Meet some really great people. Can borrow two books at a time.

    Cons

    Managers regularly make up stories about competitions, then when the goal is achieved they never deliver on it. Very strong opertaions culture, no passion for sales, no sales training.

    Advice to Management

    Stop making stuff up! Stop promoting people who pull zero percent on their Border's rewards sign up.Crack open a sales book every now and again.


  2. "Not A Smart Company"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    Good Health Insurance (If you are FT), not worth it if you are PT
    Great Friendly People
    Flexible Work Schedule
    Selling excellent product

    Cons

    Going Bankrupt because corporate can't figure out how to run a company
    too much high skilled work for low pay
    Constant Layoffs
    No raises for 3 years
    Low payroll hours
    Relatively a really low class company

    Advice to Management

    End the suffering file chapter 7 because I really don't think you will be able to pull off the restructuring of a chapter 11 as the execs are not that bright.


  3. "Don't follow health standards because they don't care about employees or customers."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Cafe Seller in Oakbrook Terrace, IL
    Former Employee - Cafe Seller in Oakbrook Terrace, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    It's hard to find a positive about this company and store, if you're a reader than employees are allowed to rent books from the store (yes, the same ones you as a customer end up buying "new".) Employees get a 33% off discount of books and media (the bad part of this is that Borders is usually so expensive that the discount usually just brings it near the range you'd buy it on Amazon, and if you're over the age of 16 then you're probably hoping for the best benefit of your job to be something other than a store discount.)

    Cons

    Shifts can last all day for a salary that's below minimum wage. Some employees have been romantically involved with each other in chaotic and unprofessional work enviorenment. Terrible HR department-employess have been sexually harassed by customers and sometimes by other employees. Customers can be extremely rude to employees. No opportunities to advance in the company and if there were then it's likely to another position that pays close to minimum wage. "Benefits" like medical and dental are as expensive as if you were to buy insurance on your own. Cafe doesn't have enough employees working at one time to follow health code at all and often do things like handle food with their bear hands, poorly wash dishes, hand customers regular coffee instead of decaf so they don't have to brew it.

    Advice to Management

    Need to fix their HR department-Out of all the jobs I've worked at in my life, only at this company has sexual harassment been so tolerated. Customers are allowed to say nearly whatever they want to employees, and rarely does the HR department do anything about it. Customers have been known to practically stalk the girls that work in this store in and out of work and almost nothing is done about it. Also, too much in house flirting, dating, cliques, and MTV-esque drama for it to be called a professional work place.


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  5. "Run. Run very far away and don't look back!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Bookseller in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Bookseller in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    merchandise discount
    some great co-workers
    getting to see all the new book titles first
    flexible hours for the most part

    Cons

    incompetent management
    hostile work environment
    no chance for advancement
    no recognition for a job well done
    constantly changing displays, themes, sections
    no communication from management

    Advice to Management

    Give it up. Borders died years ago, even before Greg J. (former CEO) finished destroying it. Leave the rotting carcass like the vultures you are, and take your golden parachutes with you!


  6. "A soulless piece of meat"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Bookseller in Bolingbrook, IL
    Former Employee - Bookseller in Bolingbrook, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Borders full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Fun to work around books.

    Cons

    Management by humiliation
    Smokers allowed more breaks than non-smokers
    After 1 year of great service I was given a 00.17 raise
    Employees expected to prepare special events off the clock

    Advice to Management

    Going on the "warpath" is not inspiring --


  7. "Later, much..."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Assistant Manager in Wilmette, IL
    Former Employee - Assistant Manager in Wilmette, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Borders full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Working at Borders was perfect and frustrating.

    Cons

    Gone. Broke. Extinct. Not to worry.


  8. "seasonal help"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Seasonal Associate in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Seasonal Associate in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Discount on merchandise and personality driven sales floor.

    Cons

    No encouragement towards advancement, no feedback on performance, no opportunities for growth.

    Advice to Management

    Value the in-store workers, because they are the face of the company to the customers.


  9. Helpful (2)

    "Nice place to visit but wouldn't wanna work there"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Floor Sales in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Floor Sales in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    relaxed dress code, most employees are fun to work with, meet great customers now and then, flexible schedule, average benefits, employee discount is fair

    Cons

    DM offers no constructive advice only negative and never acknowldeges employees, GM is a slob who shows up 3 hrs early in the morning to eat her breakfast in her office on company salary time, one store manager carries the weight of the ineffiient secong mgr, too much to do w/ too little staff , communication is next to nil, employee benefits shrinking.

    Advice to Management

    it does not take that much effort to type out something in Word and post it when changes are made. No, employees wont call daily to see if changes are made - you have a phone list so use it. Just because you are salaried does not mean you cant run a register anymore. In times of cut backs you can't just ask staffers to step it up. Speak up about the cuts in hours instead of obeying the DM blindly.


  10. Helpful (1)

    "SBC - The Unwanted Child"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Cafe Supervisor in Saint Charles, IL
    Current Employee - Cafe Supervisor in Saint Charles, IL
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    - No dress code for book sellers
    - A very casual, laid back place to work
    - Every employee can communicate with each other via personal walkie-talkie

    Cons

    - Mandatory dress code for cafe staff
    - Upper management did not want SBC/cafe and treats it as an issue rather than a partner
    - VERY little support from all over managers/supervisors when it comes to helping out with anything cafe related..... even though every single person has been trained!

    Advice to Management

    Practice what you preach to your supervisors and associates.... be a team player!


  11. "part timer benefits, but low pay"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The people you would work with are the nicest people ever. There are a lot of creative types trying to make a living doing something else or going to school. It is a good place for part time work or if you have another job with no benefits. The benefits for part timers and nice co-coworkers really keeps me hanging around. Oh and you get a discount on purchases and can borrow books like a library.

    Cons

    It is full of bureaucracy. Corporate always has some new directive and procedure that you have to adapt to. The managers are bound to enforce it whether they like it or not. The benefits and personal freedom seem to get more limited as the days pass. Pushing people to buy X (whatever corporate focuses on at that time) has really become standard routine where it once was not. It's too bad because personally I hate going to places like that let alone having to be the person I hate. Oh and no matter how much more you are expected to do, you do not get any more pay for it.

    Advice to Management

    Try to get your staff members a raise every now and then. Push for something more significant than .05.


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