Kona Grill Reviews | Glassdoor

Kona Grill Reviews

Updated August 14, 2017
139 reviews

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3.9
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Berke Bakay
49 Ratings

139 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • long hours- but all restaurants have (in 7 reviews)

  • Most side work you will ever do in a serving job (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (3)

    "Kona Grill - Culture"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Kona Grill full-time

    Pros

    Company is experiencing a lot of growth, which is very exciting when you first start with the company.
    Great people who work hard, especially in the restaurants

    Cons

    The corporate culture is very paranoid and insecure from what I saw.. I didn't feel confident in the leadership team, they didn't seem confident in decisions or really that they knew what they were doing. They want to grow restaurants without any thought as to what would be involved with this - support, new systems, programs. Working in the restaurants is difficult, low quality of life, overworked and underpaid.

    Advice to Management

    Focus on the people that are working for you - do the right thing for people. Bring in someone at the top who can provide some direction and stability.


  2. Helpful (9)

    "Scary..."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Scottsdale, AZ
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Scottsdale, AZ
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Kona Grill full-time

    Pros

    I worked in the corporate office, it was a casual work environment and looked as nice as the restaurants.

    Cons

    The company does not care about it's employees and sees them as replaceable. There's no direction or strategy. Little to no communication. The corporate office leadership is very paranoid and the CEO will not listen to anyone who tries to help him improve the company.

    Advice to Management

    Get a COO or someone involved that has more than just Kona Grill experience. You need a real leader with experience to guide the strategy. Think about company morale when you make decisions...it's not just about the bottom line.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Server"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Kona Grill part-time

    Pros

    -discounted food
    -1 free uniform shirt
    - staff camaraderie among servers

    Cons

    -I never had less than a hour+ of side work daily.
    -Uncomfortable and unsafe required footwear for uniform.
    -Blurred employee/employer professional boundaries
    -Promotions were given based upon personal relationship with management and not skill level


  4. Helpful (2)

    "Not as expected"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Server/Waiter in Austin, TX
    Current Employee - Server/Waiter in Austin, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Kona Grill full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Coworkers and management are great, menu has a nice variety. Teamwork is big there and is a nice thing to have at an employer.

    Cons

    It takes hours to do the side work. The shifts are really long, as in you may end up working 10+ hours or scheduled doubles by management and they do not give breaks of any kind. Shifts are hard to get covered if you get sick because other employees are stretched thin already with long shifts that they are too burnt out to pick up shifts if needed. The rotation makes no sense, leaving some servers with tips in the mid double digits on a busy Friday night, while the "closers" make double to triple that. Table transfers, voids, and employee meals must be transactions made by a manager, whereas most other restaurants want their employees to be efficient and the employees take care of these areas.

    Advice to Management

    Change how you do rotation. If someone is scheduled as a "closer" consider it a part of working for Kona Grill and the employee scheduled as a closer just needs to deal with it. Giving the closer the first 2 tables in and then other servers any stragglers walking in after that makes for servers not making any money. The shifts are long and it is illegal to not provide breaks, especially during scheduled doubles. These 2 factors are why the Austin, TX location has a very high turn over rate.


  5. "Horrible experience"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The pay and tips were great and you got a lot of hours and the hours that you wanted and the customers were also great

    Cons

    Terribly understaffed to the point that 6 employees were expected to run a restaurant that seats over 400 ppl with no bartender the management ye was horrible young and inexperienced very unorganized workers were over worked doubles 7 days a week


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Terrible Management"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Server Extroadinaire in Cincinnati, OH
    Former Employee - Server Extroadinaire in Cincinnati, OH
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Eclectically designed, free food sometimes

    Cons

    Bad management, complete disregard for employees dignity. Customers think they own you. Very negative environment

    Advice to Management

    Get it together


  7. "Server"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    There is Free food when training.

    Cons

    Management do not treat all employees equally.

  8. "No"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Manager in Plymouth, MN
    Former Employee - Manager in Plymouth, MN
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Kona Grill (More than a year)

    Pros

    Sushi sushi food and drink

    Cons

    No integrity on corporate end


  9. Helpful (3)

    "Corporate restaurant hell!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sous Chef
    Former Employee - Sous Chef
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    No pros, store was a disaster, general manager was conniving, and the staff fought continuously.

    Cons

    I spent 8 weeks in training that I can never get back, and when I complained about some of the methods on my personal time, they threatened to fire me instead of hearing my complaints and resolving the issues.

    Advice to Management

    Upper management listen to your store management and help fix issues


  10. "Management"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Assistant General Manager
    Current Employee - Assistant General Manager
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Kona Grill full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Pay is ok... no standard for positions of pay

    Cons

    Work well over any quality of life they promise during interview... low ball pay no standards for rank in management.. no respect from senior management

    Advice to Management

    Take care of those that make your profit and payroll


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