Williams-Sonoma
2.9 of 5 534 reviews
www.williams-sonomainc.com San Francisco, CA 5000+ Employees

534 Employee Reviews (View Most Recent)

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16 people found this helpful  

After a blissful decade, I am now embarrassed to work at Williams-Sonoma.

General Manager (Current Employee)
Washington, DC (US)

I have been working at Williams-Sonoma full-time for more than 10 years

Pros-Great Discount
-Mostly Fun, Energetic, Passionate Co-Workers
-Awesome Products

ConsFor the first time in a decade of tenure, this week I became embarrassed to work for Williams-Sonoma. I don’t say that lightly-for many years I have laughed when recruiters from other companies have tried to lure me away, but I always knew that Williams-Sonoma Inc. was the gold standard. Not any more.

It’s not that Williams-Sonoma was a perfect workplace; like anywhere, there have always been pros and cons. The difference was that previously there was not the disconnect that exists today between upper management and the field. There have been signs of these issues for over a year, but this week it became clear that the Williams-Sonoma culture that I used to love so much is in the past tense. Despite the fact that my store is on target for all payroll costs and earnings YTD, I and every single one of my fellow GM’s have been directed to cut our payroll this week and next to a minimum that we normally use during the slowest times of the year. I run a mid-volume store and tomorrow, a Saturday in December, I will run the store with myself and ONE other person all day. All of the things that my company has always said separates us from the competition is out the window. Need a gift wrap? Sorry, you’ll have to take some ‘giftwrap to go’. Buying a 15 piece set of cookware? Sorry, I won’t have staff to help you to your car because I literally will not have one extra person to do so. Need some one-on-one help with some new cutlery? Maybe Sur la Table can help you. No customer will be greeted when they enter the store tomorrow because I and my one other person will be at the register all day. I hope I don’t have to have a bathroom break. Incidentally, the previous guidelines from the same Saturday in previous years would call for 8-12 people working at any given time.

We had a conference call earlier this week with an EVP of the company in which she demonstrated, with breathtaking clarity, her utter lack of understanding of our operational practices. She was literally instructing every GM in the company about computer processes for payroll management that don’t exist. Disturbing. I would crawl over broken glass for my DM and RVP, but there is a point at which the corporate leadership has to lead the culture, or else the culture dies. It’s dead.

Advice to Senior ManagementAt this point I don't even know where to start. See above.

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

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

3 people found this helpful  

Fear and Loathing at Williams Sonoma

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
San Francisco, CA (US)

I worked at Williams-Sonoma full-time


Pros: Great views from the Cafe Cons: Company is run by fear of dictatorial President, who is actively closed to conversation Arthritic processes Conspiratorial environment Detest change and risk averse Competing visions of… Advice to Senior Management: BoD needs to kick out Pres before any change for… No, I would not recommend this company to a friend More

  • Culture & Values
         
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  • Senior Management
         
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  • No Opinion of CEO

3 people found this helpful  

Dumbing down of Williams-Sonoma

Casual Associate (Current Employee)
Cambridge, MA (US)

I have been working at Williams-Sonoma part-time for more than 5 years


Pros: -Hired when the associates were bright, fun, hardworking, and informed about product. -40% is a good… Cons: -Product is getting stale and dated while prices going up too much without increased quality to customer. -Customer service taking a huge nose-dive due in large… Advice to Senior Management: Go back to what Chuck thought was important - sell a great… No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company… More

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