Kit and Ace Employee Reviews about "lululemon"

Updated Jun 11, 2018

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3.2
49%
Recommend to a Friend
69%
Approve of CEO
Kit and Ace CEO   George Tsogas (no image)
George Tsogas
15 Ratings
Pros
  • "There is a family feel here at Kit and Ace(in 13 reviews)

  • "Company has a great people culture, they really take care of the employees(in 13 reviews)

Cons
  • "Many associate the old Kit and Ace with the(in 13 reviews)

  • "When the shop was in need of more workers, Shop Director would go to the neighbouring Lululemon with cupcakes to try to "poach" the Educators there(in 9 reviews)

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Reviews about "lululemon"

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  1. Helpful (3)

    "Team was great fun but beware of shop management."

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Shop Lead 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at Kit and Ace part-time for less than a year

    Pros

    - great fun team to work with - staff discounts same as Lululemon - networking; you get to meet a lot of people on the shopfloor

    Cons

    - Shop Director was very select about her team; it seemed like if you followed her without question, you'd be taken care of otherwise not so much. - Did not really follow the initial promise of wanting to help move employees to achieve their career goals, be it within then company or somewhere else. Had a few employees who were looking for career opportunities elsewhere get fired with no distinct reason. Started to talk about moving to another firm for a full time position and once the SD heard, I noticed I started to get shut out. - Slightly dishonourable management. When the shop was in need of more workers, Shop Director would go to the neighbouring Lululemon with cupcakes to try to "poach" the Educators there. - Also claimed to be in the business of giving feedback and open conversations. However, on multiple occasions, the SD would call people in to talk to them about something they had allegedly done wrong based on what she heard from someone else and it was very hard to convince her otherwise. - Was supposed to talk about a full-time position when the summer months rolled in and sales picked up. Ended up working 40 hour weeks, made bonus every single day but no talks of full-time. I needed the health benefits and the assured hours of a full time position but was just kept there as a part-time, got 15 hours a week on some weeks. Couldn't even get a 2nd job with the irregular hour schedulings and I really struggled to pay rent because of that

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  2. Helpful (20)

    "An extremely poorly run company"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Kit and Ace full-time

    Pros

    - Well located office - Snacks in the kitchen - 60% discount on clothes - Competitive pay and benefits

    Cons

    This company is extremely poorly run and managed. There are so many reasons that nobody who is even remotely qualified should consider working there, but let’s just name a few: - the entire purpose of the company is to make high-quality, comfortable, technical cashmere clothing. The issue is that the clothing is not at all high-quality; most of the clothing starts pilling after a few wears and some of the clothing loses its shape almost immediately after washing. Consequently, quite rightly very few people are willing to pay such outlandish prices for a poor product, meaning that sales targets are not even close to being met, sustainable growth is unlikely, etc. As if that’s not enough, there are sizing and colour issues as well. - If you were to take a job at Kit and Ace, judging by the past 12 months there is a very high chance that you would not be there in 12 months. Two high-profile mass layoffs in 2016 and scores of people have left voluntarily. Those layoffs were also seemingly political; Very few or no ex-Lululemon employees were laid off, even where their positions add little value and could easily be eliminated. Instead, a number of people who never worked at Lulu were laid off even though their positions did add value to the company. - Management and ownership does not seem to think anything through and nobody questions anything. For example, the company made the confounding decision to open up dozens of stores, only to then close many of them for not being profitable. The company also way overhired and then laid off many of those people a few months later. Of course, Mr. Wilson is welcome to waste his money in any way he sees fit, but it makes for an awful work environment. I highly recommend you do not take a job at this company unless you have absolutely no other option. The only reason this company exists is to prove a point and as a vanity project of Mr. Wilson’s. Even among the people that work there, it is increasingly starting to earn the reputation of a joke.


  3. Helpful (11)

    "No integrity in design and it shows in sales"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Brand in Vancouver, BC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at Kit and Ace full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Working alongside creative, hardworking young indviduals that put in long hours to prove their worth.

    Cons

    Desiging things that chip and Shannon want to wear, basically add Lululemon terms to knocked off pieces from other brands, and tacky kit tacks to everything!!! What's the function in that?

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    Kit and Ace Response

    Recruiter

    I want to thank you for taking the time to give us feedback. We are taking your feedback, sharing it with our leadership team, and looking to evaluate the pieces called out. Thank you for addressing the above- it helps us to make Kit and Ace a better place and best of luck in your future endeavours.

  4. Helpful (17)

    "I wish I never worked there..."

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Head Office Job in Vancouver, BC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at Kit and Ace full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    There used to be great perks about working there. Lunch every wednesday, monthly social events... then the financial results came in and they started cutting on all the perks. The office also looks great.

    Cons

    It's a startup and not a good one. They have no idea where they're going, spending money on anything and there's no collaborations between most employees. Most departments are working in silos and that creates big problems. It's also a bit of a cult where they say Integrity is their main thing and then they use it against you every time they can. It's all based on the very lucrative business called Landmark Education. They are hoping to be a high end very fashionable business but they have a very hard time getting away from the Lululemon look and the quality of their garments isn't great especially at the price they're selling them. They are not able to get stuff done on time or be competitive in the fashion world. As an employee you can expect to work very long hours, be treated very poorly, be given unrealistic deadlines and get you to commit to it and them to eventually realize it wasn't realistic and still hold you to it. Senior management are all good buddies from the Lululemon years and they're not doing much to improve the success of the company. In the end it all sounds like a big ego trip from the Wilson's hoping they'd be able to build another success story like they did with Lululemon but it's far from that. They have no directions, spending money like there's no tomorrow and absolutely no credibility in the fashion world as a high end fashion brand. Also, if you need help from HR, forget about it, they're useless.

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    Kit and Ace Response

    Recruiter

    Thank you for your feedback. We are committed to creating a transparent and collaborative environment for all employees, so I am disappointed to hear about your experience. We value and consider all feedback, and have shared this feedback with our leadership team. Please know that your voice and comments have been heard.

  5. Helpful (3)

    "Sinking ship!"

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

    I worked at Kit and Ace

    Pros

    The team I worked in was only 6 people, we were lucky as the entire team felt like family. Great discounts for full-time (60% off), flexible working hours and fun activations.

    Cons

    - Our Australian showroom was closed in one day after we found out on Instagram that morning! - This company preached so much about integrity and transparency and then has the decency to do this to their loyal staff - it blows my mind. - Has no direction with the product, target market, and locations. - Slowly implemented changes to become a clone of Lululemon. It was super obvious to staff and customers, it just wasn't working. - It's not surprising they went out of business in 3 countries, they amount of money they wasted on the most irrelevant things was crazy. The salaries were way too high for what staff were actually doing/responsible for, they implemented multiple shop-fit outs, replaced 60 stores worth of hangers and all the mannequins in the company. The old mannequins and hangers were thrown away! Most of the new hangers & mannequins stayed in the backroom in boxes because we didn't need them anyway. - Enforced programs like Landmark even if you had preexisting mental health conditions. - Created a cult-like culture and favouritised those that contributed.

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  6. Helpful (2)

    "Not Surprised"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Kit and Ace full-time

    Pros

    This company was a really great professional teacher. I learned what red flags to look out for while job searching. I also walked away with some awesome business development strategies.

    Cons

    I was recruited and hired on as a Junior Shop Director. The recruiting process was a whirl wind since I was in a job I loved and had no intention of leaving. They presented all of the salaries and promises of being promoted to Shop Director with in months, not to mention advertising all of the "cool stuff" you get to plan like events, and influencer gifting. It was more money than I had ever made so it was very enticing. I ultimately took the job after researching the development of Lululemon and thought it would have the same structure and be very successful. I was very wrong. There was barely any training. I had never been in retail management before so I really did need more training than understanding "integrity." When the Shop Director left very shortly after opening I was put in the acting position - again without any training and no pay raise. Things spiraled down from there... * Crazy budget cuts while continuing the expectation of large impact events * The District Director not knowing anything about how things are actually run in the shop day-to-day (she didn't even know how to use the point of sale system) therefore lending no help when the system failed. * Change in the target markets * Expectation of last minute events to generate business lead to scrambling to fulfill and then looking desperate to guests * why would you put a shop in an alley? There is not any foot traffic and this was surprise to HQ * When the first set of lay offs happened, the management team had to work every day, all day. Zero work - life balance -- something they claimed was one of their values * Cocky - "Billion dollars company in 5 years" - might have been achievable if the work culture was better and the company knew who they were before growing so fast. * landmark - OMG run! People do get offended by the things you say. Words do have meaning and there are real consequences to your actions. * They only hire people who are not looking for a job - they recruit them out of jobs they were enjoying and then close months later. The money was not worth it - I'm so lucky my former job welcomed me back and I got out before the entire company closed it's doors - I can't say I'm surprised - but it really sucks for the teams still in place. They had no warning.

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  7. "Shop Specialist and Educator"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Walnut Creek, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Kit and Ace full-time

    Pros

    - Great platform for social media, outreach, and putting together events. - Good quality clothing

    Cons

    - Very petty drama and favoritism between teammates and management. - Same work culture as Lululemon. - Not worth your time if you cannot survive practically "living" with your coworkers.

  8. Helpful (17)

    "Highly Misleading"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
     
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at Kit and Ace

    Pros

    -Beautiful Stores, high-end details in a casual non pretentious environment -Perfectly executed branding (stationary, decor, website,fixtures,photography etc) - Employee discount (60% for full time employees) its good but not great, specially because it is mandatory to wear "the latest styles at all times" while working, and they do not give you an uniform or a clothing allowance. Also they throw it in your face ALL THE TIME which gets old and annoying- this are clothes made in China and even at 60% off they are making money out of it so they need to calm down. -At the shop level the chance to connect with restaurateurs, PR agencies, local artists, influential people. -If it is your first job, or you are in an early stage of your career you will learn a lot and fast.

    Cons

    Kit and Ace in general is not a bad place to work at for someone young or new to the industry. BUT I do not recommend anyone working there unless it is their first job or very early in your career. The problem (and the reason why you can read so many negative reviews) lays in their misleading and malicious hiring and HR practices. Let me elaborate: -Kit and Ace wants to hire overqualified individuals for all the positions. To achieve this they over promise from the beginning. You get that video with the beautiful photography, Interviews in hip coffee-shops and then via Skype with enthusiastic, very well trained to get you excited District Directors and Shop Directors. The big talk about doing great things, being an entrepreneur etc etc... -What they forget to tell you is that NO ONE ever gets promoted or a raise, That their policy across the company - (ask during the interview and you'll see) is that when positions become available employees get offered "The acting role" to "prove their commitment" and because "it is a great learning opportunity". In the year I worked for Kit and Ace I did not see ONE person get promoted to roles they were a) more than qualified to do b) already doing c)had been acting on (for a year in some cases).If no one takes the acting role all the work from those open positions is "Delegated" to those below and the position left unfilled. This is just how they operate and is done in a very well planned and executed manner. -Pay: they claim to be paying more than others in retail. again not true. They do pay a bit more than cheap mass retailers but they do not pay more than Designer shops, High-end retailers , Department Stores or any place that has commission or bonus structures. They continuously complain and throw in your face they "they pay on the top 75% of the industry" which is just not true. Given that if you work at Kit and Ace you are expected to do : Admin work, Sales, Cleaning, Catering, Event planning, PR, Human Resources, IT, training, deliveries, customer service expected to look a certain way, have rich and influential friends and contacts etc. -they actually do not pay enough. If you decide to work for them be very good and aggressive negotiating, I saw within shops (as others have pointed here) up to 40% difference in pay for the same position both for Salary and Hourly people. Keep in mind when negotiating that they do not believe in raises or promotions so what you get is what you get. -Micromanaging: The company advertises itself as a place for entrepreneurs and ambitious people. Again not true. Every single decision is made by LITERALLY a handful of people in HQ. You have to go through inconsistent, unorganized, inefficient never ending, layered processes to get anything done or approved. Every person in HQ has their own definition of how things should be done and many of them are very young and inexperienced. They are all under enormous pressure to be the one that impresses the owners or the one that comes up with that one idea that will make the company explode to stop the bleeding of millions of dollars. If you have some experience already, some of the mistakes you will witness here will leave you in shock. -Product: still very inconsistent and it is very hard to justify the prices to customers, for every hit there are several misses. This applies to design, fit, sizing, and quality. It becomes very hard to establish good relationships with clients when the product is just not there yet. Company is better with women's basics, other than that they are still all over the place. And this is where all their energy and resources should be on. -Target customer: an obsession to sell the product to those young, cool and beautiful, who no matter how they call them or how they try to approach them are just not interested in the brand.(sometimes not even for free). Meanwhile the only group actually buying (wealthy ,white, old and suburban) is disrespected and looked down by HQ and Brand and Market teams. -Integrity/culture: this is the worst part about the company. The use of phrases like "fanatical following" and "cult like commitment " by senior team members in HQ should have been a red flag. Pretty much they are trying to replicate the following Lululemon had, but so far they have not found that one thing to tie it to and they are getting desperate. The use of the word Integrity is a joke specially when they do not follow it. This is a for profit corporation and all of their practices and decisions are based on nothing but money (nothing wrong with that this is a business) but they act like they are saving the world. ex: HQs decisions of not pulling from the floor product they knew had quality problems (mens swimwear, those white and gray women t shirts that were literally dissolving before people bought them, fabrics that bleed or peel etc). The malicious firing of people back in Feb to replace them immediately with people that took lower offers, turning full timers into part time to avoid paying benefits etc. Also anyone that starts asking too many questions or does not act like this is the best thing that happened in the world is classified as "low culture". Immediately a very unethical "separation" process begins. The manager gets coached and instructed by HQ on how to set up and build a file on the person,(this is very detailed, with the manager getting specific instructions with bullet points, language, specific tasks with deadlines and times etc) in crazy emails and "feedback" starts, to make the person either leave or have a justification to fire them.

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  9. Helpful (13)

    "HR asking employees to write good reviews is telling of the company"

    2.0
     
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at Kit and Ace

    Pros

    Accelerated expansion. Comradery with my peers and great coworkers. Supporting creatives is genuine. Chip is awesome and generous with his time.

    Cons

    Accelerated expansion with no growth. Trying to re-create the magic of lululemon with no brand recognition. Expectations for my job does not meet the support given. The head of our department is airy and doesn't get people. My boss is a replica of the lululemon culture which seems to be celebrated. I was sold on creativity and growth but promotions come externally and hands are slapped. The "Blue Book" is something we scratch our heads about because it's not what is occurring. The more you tell management what they want to hear and stay positive, the better off your position in the company. Feedback is brushed off in a very confusing way.

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