Grand Circle Travel Employee Reviews about "call center"

Updated Mar 28, 2020

To filter reviews, or .
2.6
36%
Recommend to a Friend
26%
Approve of CEO
Grand Circle Travel Chairman and CEO Alan E. Lewis (no image)
Alan E. Lewis
197 Ratings
Pros
  • "The Associate Travel benefits are AMAZING(in 35 reviews)

  • "Great people, great business model-if you work hard, you are rewarded(in 20 reviews)

Cons
  • "Call center is a challenging place to work due to nature of job(in 29 reviews)

  • "They preach their "core values" but good luck being open and courageous and taking risks, you'll be the out the door real fast(in 23 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

Reviews about "call center"

Return to all Reviews
  1. Helpful (5)

    "Job instability and excessive overtime define Grand Circle — don't work here."

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Traveler Support Associate in Boston, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Great coworkers in TS, the location in Boston is excellent, and there is a great commuter benefit for the MBTA. I learned skills that allowed me to obtain a new, higher paying non-call center job.

    Cons

    If you want basic job stability, Grand Circle is not the place to work. Arbitrary, ever changing metrics determine employment status. Monthly metrics (KRAs) such as post call surveys (PCS) and average call time (AHT) are key to career success, even if results aren't entirely within your control. Traveler Support department managers do their best to help you improve metrics, but the metrics change so quickly that it is difficult to keep up. There is a culture of fear within the support department because everyone (except managerial favorites) is fighting to keep their job. The vast majority of my training class were fired or quit — there is a revolving door of turnover due to this company firing so many people. Career progression is based on how well you do within the first month or two of employment — if you're below the top five of your training class, obtaining a promotion is unlikely. It is also very difficult to maintain work life balance due to the excessive mandatory overtime. There were four hours of mandatory overtime per week from April to August. Working hours are unstable due to a shift bid that occurs every six months, which is also based entirely on metrics. The travel benefits that Grand Circle boasts about are extremely difficult for support employees to obtain, and PTO is difficult for support employees to use. Seriously, don't work here. I wish I listened to the Glassdoor reviews when I applied. I thought it was just disgruntled employees. but I was wrong.

    Continue reading
  2. "Challenging but rewarding company to work for"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Customer Service 
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Grand Circle Travel full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    -Tons of opportunity for growth -Amazing benefits including 100% transit reimbursement - Amazing travel benefits (been to 18 destinations with the company) -Great people to work with

    Cons

    -Long hours and tons of overtime -Call center is a challenging place to work due to nature of job.

    Continue reading

  3. Helpful (2)

    "All and all Decent."

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Traveler Support in Boston, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Good benefits- Such as wellness program, gym in the basement, commuter plan, PTO Great Coworkers- You really do get to interact and work with great people here at GCT, but it can be a "every man for them selves" type of attitude here Great Location- Right in the seaport district..about a 5min walk from SS, with great restaurants, coffee shops and bars to go to or just to walk and explore on a nice day.. Management and supervisors are pretty great- With the right ambition, you can work your way up, but it does take a while.

    Cons

    Where to begin? All of the former reviews are true. The environment can be good, but the call center department really is treated differently compared to everyone else in the company. The call center can be a lot to take in and effect your personal or work/life balance. Mandatory overtime. Constant shift bids that comes with multiple different schedules . Everyone is ranked against eachother and everyone can see those numbers including their post call surveys. The system they use is old and odd. GCT is def not in the 21st century. The constant changes can be a lot as well, especially when there is a cancelled tour. Also, the clientle base that GCT can be a bit rude and ruthless..Overall the work life balance isnt the greatest, it effected me the most out of all the jobs i've had yet. Not really worth it.

  4. Helpful (11)

    "The best, most fun toxic workplace ever"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time

    Pros

    At their best, the employees can be very nice, caring people. This is partly fostered by the negative cultural aspects--people at Grand Circle tend to develop thick skins after a while; when not afraid for their positions they often have a "we're in this together", rueful sort of companionship. Travel benefits seem very nice. They kick in after a year, but I chose to leave before then. The company is profitable despite its drawbacks, and pays somewhat well to offset the constant turbulence. It also fosters an amazing amount of charity work; if you like that sort of thing you'll find plenty of opportunities to help.

    Cons

    The stories you will read about Grand Circle are true. Turnover (both involuntary and voluntary) is at high levels, and not just in the call center. Problem behaviors and people can be actively encouraged, due to misapplication of the principles by which the entire company operates. The culture exacerbates problems like aggression, lying and scapegoating, due in part to fears by employees that they will lose their jobs. People have different ways of dealing with stress, and this is to be expected; however, it obviously can be worse when a stressed-out supervisor starts browbeating and scapegoating employees--which the organization has no solid way of counteracting. Performance is constantly assessed, and in some negatively skewed ways, creating more tension. Performance ratings, when one of the frequent localized cultural breakdowns occurs, tend to be based not on actual performance but on personal bias. Imagine a bunch of stressed-out people, encouraged or even forced to jockey for position with each other, constantly giving open ratings on each other. That's what you'll get. It's a pressure cooker. People are sometimes not just treated negatively, but openly humiliated. The company prides itself on its ability to thrive on change. This leads to chaotic results when working on projects; due to the constant threat of a "stop" being called, ending the project, the overall focus is on quick-and-dirty work. This sadly applies even on new projects begun to clean up the old quick-and-dirty work.

  5. Helpful (11)

    "Unfortunate waste of time"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Travel Consultant in Boston, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Great parties and food for employee's

    Cons

    Call center treated like separate company not given same opportunities as other departments for advancing career. If you do not go out with the "in crowd" and get smashed after work you will not get far People are promoted based on favoritism not talent Metrics and managers change daily so good luck succeeding at them

    Continue reading
  6. Helpful (3)

    "Grand Circle Corp has changed my life!"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Communications Manager in Boston, MA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Grand Circle Travel full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Back in 2014 i started my journey here with Grand Circle Corp. I'd been referred by a friend that had been working here 15 years at that time (and is still here). I came in with dreams of traveling and truly making a difference in the lives of others. My first role was in the call center as a Traveler Support Specialist. I was immediately impressed with the level of support I was given as a new hire. I knew nothing about travel. In fact, I'd never been out of the country. I was set up with a mentor that really helped me learn geography as well as the ins and outs of the industry. Through hard work, dedication, the support of my mentor and management team, I quickly excelled! Before long the guy that knew nothing about geography and had never left the country was leading the pack with his performance. After just a few short months of hard work, asking for help, and implementing feedback I was chosen to be a part of a coaching pilot team, and sent to Austria & Germany for FREE on a product training trip. I really loved coaching. It was an opportunity to support new hire associates in the way that I was supported when I entered the doors at GCC. As a coach I assessed call trends, created & facilitated training content, and helped drive overall performance. It was then that I was offered my first supervisor role with a team of 15 associates within my first year of employment. Again, with the support of my peers, my management team, and my mentors I was able to excel as a supervisor. My heart however remained with the coaching program. So when I was asked to return to develop future coaches, I jumped on the opportunity. After one year of developing coaches, I was offered a role as a New Hire Training Specialist where I trained all new hires in Traveler Support. Facilitating in a classroom environment was something I always wanted to do but feared. By the time I became a trainer though, Grand Circle had taught me the importance of taking Risks!! Fast forward to my current role. I am currently the Communications Manager for the Lewis Family Foundation (non-profit side of GCC) where our mission is to give back to the community, double the amount of 4 year college grads in the Dorchester, Roxbury, and Mattapan areas. I have been with GCC 4 INCREDIBLE years! While I understand that everyone has their own experience, I felt that it was important that I share my journey with you as it has been and continues to be a positive one. The guy who never left Boston has now built a career that he can be proud of, and traveled to 13 countries in just 4 short years! If you're looking to make a POSITIVE CHANGE in your life and in the lives of others, then this is the place for you.

    Cons

    well the con is that it's hard work!! NOTHING WORTH HAVING COMES EASY. The industry is ever-changing and ever-evolving. Things change frequently because they need to. We need to keep up with industry standards as well as the expectations of our travelers. You need to be the type of person that is very self aware, open to receiving feedback, and remain positive in times of challenge.

  7. Helpful (5)

    "Challenging, but can also be rewarding"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Creative Services in Boston, MA
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Grand Circle Travel full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    • Excellent benefits: health/dental/vision, FSA, 401K, transit pass subsidy, gym onsite, rebates for classes, and discounts on travel • Good location: Easy commute on public transit, busy neighborhood with lunch options nearby • Supportive co-workers who are passionate about their work • Opportunity to be promoted, even if you don’t have experience in a given field—which is great for someone starting out or looking for a career change • Inclusive environment at entry- and mid-level positions: You will not be judged for your race, gender, religion, sexuality, etc. • A great product that does impact peoples’ lives—you will be helping travelers expand their horizons and local communities benefit economically. Also, the company does a lot of charity work, both at home and abroad.

    Cons

    • Constant changes and shifting priorities: Sometimes with good reason and sometimes not. You have to be OK with making changes that you don’t agree with or don’t understand. • A mixed bag when it comes to company culture: The company has certain core values that they ask you embrace, many of which are common corporate goals (quality, speed). But others are unusual, like taking risks and open communication. These can be hard for associates because they are somewhat subjective, yet your performance will be tied to them. When done right, they can help you grow. When done poorly they can be a source of conflict and discouragement. • Lack of diversity in top positions: Not certain why this would be the case given the openness in the rest of the company, but sadly true. • When reading other reviews, keep in mind that The Call Center is more regulated than other departments. Roles outside of the Call Center have more freedom/flexibility.

    Continue reading
  8. "Much improved!"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 

    I have been working at Grand Circle Travel full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    I worked here a long time ago and returned last year. They've earned a lot of the negative reviews you've probably read in the past but I have to say the winds are changing. They've realized they have to be more human to recruit and retain talent, and I see the difference. Having worked at other travel call centers in the area, I find gct to be flexible and accommodating, especially when compared to other call centers. Options to work from home, great travel opportunities, and more vacation time than the competition. Every five years you qualify for a 1 month sabbatical, a whole month off unpaid! Cool coworkers, and young management that is open to feedback. The company is very charitable and gives you opportunity to participate in that.

    Cons

    Like any call center, phone jobs are stressful and goals change often.

    Continue reading
  9. Helpful (29)

    "AVOID THIS COMPANY"

    1.0
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Boston, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Health benefits and time off

    Cons

    The CEO is the biggest issue for in this company and he runs it like a 5 year old having a temper tamptrum and changes his mind every other minute. People are promoted and given jobs that have no experience for and are expected to conform to his wishes. If I could give this company a zero rating I would. This company feeds on negative feedback and management lives on it. It is true in the remarks below that this CEO got physical with a former employee and if this is the company you want to work for go right ahead. The call center has been doing mandatory overtime for over a year now (because they keep firing employees)but do not worry your supervisors and management don’t have to join you since they are salary. Oh, let’s not forgot even though we had an OUTSTANDING YEAR, and unpressidented numbers why the ceo is holding back our bonus since we are loosing money. Take my advice no pro is worth working here.

    Continue reading
  10. Helpful (2)

    "Fun place to work, friendly environment, great for career growth"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 

    I have been working at Grand Circle Travel full-time

    Pros

    The environment at Grand Circle is nothing I have seen at any other company. When you walk into the building you see a sign that says "We change peoples lives", and its true. Everyone who works here has a passion for travel and loves talking about it. Management finds ways to make our competitive environment fun and enjoyable. There are always opportunities to grown within the company.

    Cons

    The travel industry can be very challenging and a lot of changes happen on a daily bases, but this company really teaches you how to thrive in times of change. Another con is the strict structure of the call center, with scheduled breaks and lunches and being on the phones all day.

Found 36 reviews