Williams-Sonoma Reviews | Glassdoor

Williams-Sonoma Reviews

Updated May 26, 2017
1,347 reviews

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1,347 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • Tuff work life balance for entry-level employees (in 58 reviews)

  • Poor upper management provide no direction or continually turn the ship around into another direction (in 75 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Customer Service Representative"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Customer Service Representative in Oklahoma City, OK
    Former Employee - Customer Service Representative in Oklahoma City, OK
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Williams-Sonoma full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    The Customers and Coworkers,The Culture,Industry and Products!

    Cons

    Have more available permanent positions offered once seasonal positions are ended.

    Advice to Management

    None


  2. Helpful (4)

    "sales associate"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales Associate in Alameda, CA
    Current Employee - Sales Associate in Alameda, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great company discount. Interesting customers. Excellent education in retail branding. Williams-Sonoma brands are marketed beautifully and it's a joy absorbing the digital and print marketing materials and brand positioning displayed. As a part-timer, my hours are flexible and management works with me to accommodate by day job.

    Cons

    Store management personnel is hit or miss...mostly miss. I've worked as a part-time associate at a Williams-Sonoma retail store and a Pottery Barn outlet. Two out of three General Managers were tough to were for. POS and inventory management technology seems dated and is difficult to navigate and use. Also, there could be more of an effort to provide a break room for employees. Since the breaks are so short, there isn't a lot of time to go off-site and it would be good just to sit down some where for a minute. (This last issue isn't as petty as it sounds; if you're on your feet all day, you need somewhere to simply sit rest occasionally.)

    Advice to Management

    My experience with store management has not been good. Sales associates are the main point of contact with customers and if sales associates are poorly trained or find themselves in difficult circumstances because of prickly management, that's not particularly good for the outlook/attitude/demeanor of the associate and thus not good for sales. At some point, the discount doesn't make up for poor working conditions and managers who can be irrational, self-important task masters. Corporate should really pay some attention to this.


  3. Helpful (3)

    "Reality check needed"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Buyer in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Buyer in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Williams-Sonoma full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Fair pay, good benefits, nice work environment/office

    Cons

    horrible bureaucracy, long hours,

    Advice to Management

    reality check needed- we make pretty product, we are not curing cancer!


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  5. "designer"

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

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    great community great opportunities every day to contribute

    Cons

    small team for the work expected


  6. "Product Manager"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Current Employee - Senior IT Product Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Senior IT Product Manager in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma (More than a year)

    Pros

    Nice place to work in SFO

    Cons

    Commute is bad from South Bay


  7. Helpful (3)

    "Work there for discounts not for pay"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Bethesda, MD
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Bethesda, MD
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Williams-Sonoma part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    GREAT discounts. Light working environment. Depending on where you work, it can be a very collegial working environment

    Cons

    When I switched to the Bethesda location, my coworkers were very cutthroat. I understand that for very high-selling associates. there is some sort of cash bonus, but when you're working for $11/hour unless you sell $250K, it's absurd to be nasty with people.

    Advice to Management

    focus on on boarding


  8. Helpful (1)

    "sales"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in West Hartford, CT
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in West Hartford, CT
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Williams-Sonoma part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    nice atmosphere, great products, competitive pricing

    Cons

    everything else , snotty co workers, scheduling


  9. Helpful (8)

    "Run... Far, far away"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Information Technology in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Information Technology in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Williams-Sonoma full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    None. Aside from meeting a handful (as in you can literally count them in several fingers) of quality folks who were innocently caught up in this web of lies or bureaucratic nonsense, there is zero advantage for working here. This place will not make you smarter. You will not learn a skill that you didn't have beforehand. Instead the brick and mortar will kill your very soul. You will start to wonder if there is a God or a higher power. Because if such an entity existed, why would They allow this atrocity to even occur much less continue.

    Cons

    This archaic institution is a farce of a legacy. WSI normally draws to mind high end kitchen cutlery and savvy home decor. Peel away a well paved marketing campaign and you find the scurge of retail. There is "somewhat behind" and then there is Williams-Sonoma...

    You know something is wrong when EVERY TIME someone quits, they NEVER let you know WHERE they are going.

    It's basically a hodgepodge of problems. The work load is uneven. You're either working 24/7 or you're not working at all and trying to take credit for someone else's work. For every ineffective 20 lukewarm bodies, you have one star employee. Management is composed of semi-retirees. Executives are even worse. They are just highly paid sheep.

    This is the most political environment and in the worst way. If you are "favored", you can bat your eyelashes and work the system to your advantage (translation: "work from home" and AS MANY VACATION DAYS YOU WANT). If you are "unfavored", well remember that guy who recently committed suicide in Uber (from stress)? You are on the same trajectory.

    You will learn nothing here, except marvel how cheap Corporate America can be. How such an unhealthy environment exists. And dream of leaving.

    There is a reason why everyone in the corporate office looks like life has been sucked out of them and they're a hair-breath away from dropping dead.

    Advice to Management

    Fire all the executives and management. They've done and accomplished nothing. Start fresh. Stick to your budgets and your schedules. It's pointless to have a plan if you're not going to adhere to it. And get rid of useless practices - example: offshore has a 60-70% accuracy rate. Why on earth do you even use them KNOWING THIS?!


  10. Helpful (7)

    "Zero Leadership"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - IT Product Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - IT Product Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Employee discount (which you don't use much)
    Brand Name (still exists somewhat)

    Cons

    - Politics
    - Bullying
    - People fired based on whims and Fancies
    - Very reactive work environment instead of proactive
    - IT leadership invests in costly systems that nobody uses. Blame lower people for failure and fire them
    - No structured policy around bonus payout. You might end up getting lower bonus if you have a manager's pet in your team (even though you both have the same appraisal ratings). Bonus payout is completely at the discretion of management.
    - Lots of politics. You will have to align with some VP or SVP to survive
    - All about visibility and shouting the loudest.

    It is a horrible work place to work at. There are bullies in each department according to whom rest of the employees are mere bodies. The so called leadership always stands by the bullies instead of keeping them in check. The SVPs and VPs are mostly bullies. A mere disagreement or a discussion with leadership is enough to get you fired. In last 3-4 years, good managers who tried to stand their grounds have been fired. The best talent is not valued and credit is given to those who can shout the loudest. The best employees and contractors have either been fired, or have left already or are looking for new opportunities. The so called leadership is completely absent and always ready to blame and fire people who had to bear the burden of leadership's bad decisions. If you plan to join this company, be ready to lose your creativity, free thought, honest conversations etc.
    Bad leadership breeds bad culture amongst the employees. Now you never know who is going to rat you out.

    Advice to Management

    You are headed for a train crash if you don't stop blaming workers for lack of your leadership and direction. Stop changing the course ever so often. Value your good employees. Groom them professionally instead of attacking them personally.


  11. "Great Company"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Loved the office atmosphere and my co-workers. Everyone was like one big family.

    Cons

    Not the most competitive with salary or ability to be promoted.


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