Design Within Reach Reviews | Glassdoor

Design Within Reach Reviews

Updated April 24, 2017
87 reviews

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Full-time Part-time

3.2
Star Star Star Star Star
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John Edelman
48 Ratings

87 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Really good day-to-day work environment, team, organizational structure (in 9 reviews)

  • Now that DWR is owned by Herman Miller our reputation has improved and resources expanded (in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • Too much nepotism, and cliquey environment, leading to high turnover rate (in 6 reviews)

  • Constant issues with customer service and shipping/delivery (in 7 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Operations Specialist"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Operations Specialist in Stamford, CT
    Former Employee - Operations Specialist in Stamford, CT
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Design Within Reach full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great to work there
    Team players
    They really appreciate their employees
    Great flexibility
    Able to work from home
    Great breakfast

    Cons

    Pay is minimum
    I took a pay cut and was promised a raise
    But then that was basic


  2. "Account Executive"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Account Executive in Dallas, TX
    Current Employee - Account Executive in Dallas, TX
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Design Within Reach full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great collection of products, comission

    Cons

    Constant issues with customer service and shipping/delivery.


  3. "Social & Environmental Issues=Unfair & Unhappy Impact"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Account Executive in Paramus, NJ
    Former Employee - Account Executive in Paramus, NJ
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Design Within Reach full-time

    Pros

    First and for most the PRODUCT is the best of the best. I can not say anything more then, the new clients would walk into our Studio and just either get really into it and appreciate the product OR walk in a couple of steps, then turn right back around and head out where they came in from (I guess that COMO gave them a bit of sticker shock!)

    Cons

    Management IS and WILL BE the death of the AE/SA (Account executive/Studio Assistant) at these Studios. I VERY briefly worked at one of the Companies newest Studios located in Paramus, New Jersey-At Garden State Plaza, one of the BIGGEST malls I've ever been to in America. On any given Saturday, the Studio would basically become a meet and greet of some sort, just trying to engage with dozens and dozens of women, men and their children would be..lets just say, NOT worth it. Sales goals are ALWAYS being talked about, in a open matter. Hopefully you potential newbies won't be to shy in expressing yourself each and every working day on what your "Business looks like," and to be quiet frank, I CANT OPEN UP SOMEONES WALLET. Thats what it felt like over time, WAY TOO MUCH PRESSURE. Sure, if I was working in one of the Manhattan locations , I'd be killing it, but here I was, in the middle of suburban NJ, trying to sell to clients that just aren't interested about the History, quality or value of these pieces I sold. They'd be more then happy going to one of the competitors down Route 17, and buying a comparable sofa, coffee table or lounge chair. Point blank, we are living in a new age of Retail, I've been in the game for a long time, I'd say, for a Mid-twenty something living in one of the Country's BIGGEST Metropolitan areas. People don't want to wait, pay for ANYTHING more then they have too, and lastly and mainly, people are looking for a DEAL! No one knows what tomorrow holds so they, like myself are a little worrisome on when and what we are spending are HARD earned money on. This is the classic U.S.A. mentality and is now in a place of GREAT DEPRESSION in our currant social economic AND political environment.

    Advice to Management

    For someone luck enough, like myself to get to meet the C.E.O. twice in one week, then one other time, right before I was let go, says something about the way a company works/communicates/functions in a general positive light! Unfortunately, at the end of the day, Mr.Edelman never responded to my email I sent him, after my demise, but that being said, I think it says a lot when someone is trying there HARDEST to survive and make it in this world, giving it there ALL, then suddenly one day, being called into a conference room, mid-day and being completely blind sided and told that, today will be your last day working for this company because of a "TONE" that I had in my voice towards my Proprietor. Get real, open door policies are just easy loop holes for discussing corporations to use on the people that threaten others by, the simple fact that, their motivation is SO POSITIVE, that unfortunately the people on the other side of the spectrum, to be fair, are lost for words. Well, I say to you, join the club, its going to be a bumpy one.


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  5. "Unique opportunity to grow with a start up."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Regional Account Executive in Los Angeles, CA
    Former Employee - Regional Account Executive in Los Angeles, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Design Within Reach full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    The number of licenced products, and the quality of DWR originals. Shipping is some of the best in the inuustry.

    Cons

    Moved away from outside representatives, to studio proprietors. Not much Focus on retaining long term employees with A&D industry contacts.


  6. "Great company"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - EVP in Stamford, CT
    Current Employee - EVP in Stamford, CT
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Design Within Reach full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Creative entrepreneurial environment. Excellent offices and beautifully designed products. Owned by Herman Miller, so great financial backing. Growing quickly with opportunity to advance.

    Cons

    Really no cons to speak of. Great facilities and co-workers. Flexible management who are easily accessible. DWR is opening a lot of new stores.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work. Promote from within.


  7. Helpful (4)

    "AE"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Stamford, CT
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Stamford, CT
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Design Within Reach full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Amazing products, beautiful studios and great coworkers.

    Cons

    Too much nepotism, and cliquey environment, leading to high turnover rate.

    Advice to Management

    Appreciate your employees.


  8. Helpful (1)

    "Friends, with some benefits (and commission)"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Account Executive in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Account Executive in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Design Within Reach full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Really good day-to-day work environment, team, organizational structure. Mid level and regional management is extremely helpful and nurturing. CEO is passionate about the business. Great people to work with, just need more support staff to run more efficiently.

    Cons

    It is extremely hard to manage a high volume of sales on the front end while following up with hours of customer service on the back end. Not enough focus opportunity for the sales staff on new clients and making new sales.
    A 401k match would be a decent benefit. Numerous larger companies offer this and it help with dedicated staff retention.
    A better commission structure would be appreciated by all. And an hourly guaranteed salary base would balance the good and bad months greatly.
    More than 4 national holidays per year would be great. JAN 1, JUL 4, Thanks giving and DEC 25 are a disappointing BARE MINIMUM, which DWR employees get. Many other national holidays the studios are open, but these are very quiet, poor sales days. Previous employers offered 14 days of paid recognized holidays, plus a floater, and birthday holidays, plus the employee's annual weeks' holidays.
    DWR is very tight with paid employee holiday time.

    Advice to Management

    Hire more dedicated customer service reps and let the sales staff engage and teach new clients about all the great brands and products carried, instead of setting up returns/ exchanges/ and repairs of unsatisfactory product and one-off bad experiences. Having sales staff manage the resolution of CS issues instead of securing and driving new sales business is a huge time suck and it pulls critical sales team members from their primary and critical role of SELLING.


  9. Helpful (5)

    "Design Within 15+ Weeks"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Studio Account Executive in Berkeley, CA
    Former Employee - Studio Account Executive in Berkeley, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Design Within Reach full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    You don't need much experience or skill to succeed. If you're a people person or a great actor you will do very well. There are beautiful, iconic designs all around you. You listen to music all day, every day. You get paid every month no matter how much you sell.

    Cons

    You have to train yourself because your Manager will be too busy competing with you to even bother training you. Success is random = talking to the right person at the right time. Building relationships with customers is useless because there is no loyalty structure. A customer can spend 5+ hours talking your ear off at the store and then go home and order online and you get 0% of that sale OR a customer can book an order with you one minute and book an order with a different Account Executive the next minute. This creates a toxic environment with other Account Executives because you are constantly having to fight over whose sale it is. You have to ship ~$30k worth of furniture each month before you can even earn commission. So even if you sell $100k this month, you won't get commission until the orders ship (and you only get a percentage). It also doesn't help that there are limited big ticket items in stock, leaving you waiting for months to cash in on your orders. Good luck keeping customers happy when they have to wait 15+ weeks to get their order. Paychecks are inconsistent and if you ship at/below $30k per month you will end up bankrupt and homeless. On top of that, your health benefits are deducted from your already miserable paycheck - which is unfortunate since you will make yourself sick worrying about making your goal every month.

    Advice to Management

    Invest in your employees. Offer base pay on top of commission - at the very least pay a living wage commensurate to geographical location. Develop a better system where each Account Executive can "own" his/her customers. This way, building relationships with customers would actually be worth something. Managers should not compete with their own staff. Instead, Managers should empower their staff and give them the tools they need to thrive.


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Account Executive"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Account Executive in Los Angeles, CA
    Former Employee - Account Executive in Los Angeles, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Design Within Reach (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    The product sells itself and draws a highly educated and interesting clientele.

    Cons

    Management who have no real management training or skills. Daily squabbling over sales with colleagues brings out the worst in people. Uncontrollable obstacles in DWR policies directly affect your paycheck.

    Advice to Management

    Create a team environment in each studio with a commission split pay structure. The people working for you are talented and passionate - leverage those wonderful assets and it would pay dividends in the long run.


  11. Helpful (2)

    "a shame"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Stamford, CT
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Stamford, CT
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Design Within Reach (More than a year)

    Pros

    product, industry access, beautiful stores

    Cons

    no vision or strategy, cool kids club, noncompetitive benefits, zero ability to recruit due to location

    Advice to Management

    listen to people around you, share the wealth, adopt modern business practices


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