Trader Joe's

www.traderjoes.com
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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    It's great if you can get a good captain, otherwise it's just pretty good.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - F/T Crew Member in Hollywood, CA (US)
    Current Employee - F/T Crew Member in Hollywood, CA (US)

    I have been working at Trader Joe's full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    It's a relaxed culture where you can be yourself with tattoos, different hair and unique personalities (as long as you're not crabby to the customers or your crewmates). It also has a really good starting salary (especially if you have previous retail experience). As part of the Crew, you don't specialize. You will work ALL ASPECTS OF TRADER JOE'S. Everyone, from the Captain to the Mates (asst. mgrs.) to the Crew, works register, unloads trucks, stocks shelves, greets customers, works Demo (where they give food samples) and cleans up. TJ's stresses product knowledge, so we have food and wine tastings weekly.

    AND if you make TJ's your career, you can have a very good life, because the Mates make VERY GOOD MONEY ($50k to $90k) and the Captains ($90k+). It's not brain surgery, folks, but if you like people and are friendly and helpful (and patient with others), you will really like Trader Joe's. Oh, yeah, I almost forgot. The benefits are good (in CA, 700 hrs a year qualifies you for health insurance) and for those under 30, you get a yearly bonus (but for those over 30, you get the bonus as an IRA contribution).

    Cons

    Like any job, the job is only as good as its leader, and if you get a crappy Captain or lazy mates, the days can suck. The Captain at my store had 30+ years with the company, but was the most indecisive man I'd ever met. Today this, tomorrow that. It made things confusing. Also some of the Mates came in as managers, so they weren't promoted up from crew. THAT makes a huge difference! The crew would often get angry that they didn't pitch in to help enough due to a perceived sense of entitlement. Then whoever writes the schedule says our sales are low and cuts Crew on the busiest days. We all have to rush around and some have gotten hurt (including me), but we should be grateful to have a job, right?

    Those who work smart aren't always rewarded, while those who have been with the company more than five years seem to put their feet up and do as much of the work as they want to. They have the best shifts, yet the majority aren't the best workers. This leads to a cascade effect where work not done or done incorrectly falls on YOU. And like every other job, there is favoritism, but as long as it doesn't affect my money, I don't care.

    Oh, and the customers. The majority (85%) are nice, but the others? You have to bite your tongue and be kind when you get insulted, treated rudely or yelled at. Remember: the customer is always right, even if they're a ranting nutjob.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    When you see a store that's hemorrhaging Crew Members, take a look at the Captain and Mates. Our store has had so much turnover lately, it's surprising. When I ask Crew at other stores if they lose people frequently, most don't. Oh, and managers-- feel free to COME IN THE STORE and talk to the Crew. We're the grunts on the front line of your image, so check in with us and see how we're doing. Many of us have great ideas for improvements.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Great company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Crew Member in Pittsburgh, PA (US)
    Current Employee - Crew Member in Pittsburgh, PA (US)

    I have been working at Trader Joe's

    Pros

    Convenient, highly transparent management, great level of team work

    Cons

    customers are exhausting, the break room is tiny, there is very little personal space

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    keep on keeping on

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Trader José

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Part Time Crew Member in San Diego, CA (US)
    Current Employee - Part Time Crew Member in San Diego, CA (US)

    I have been working at Trader Joe's

    Pros

    I get to work with food and people all day. It's low stress and a team encironment. Good benefits and good coworkers!

    Cons

    Working late hours could be a con for some people

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Fun place to work - but be prepared to lose work/life balance once promoted

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Atlanta, GA (US)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Atlanta, GA (US)

    I worked at Trader Joe's full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    You meet a lot of interesting people. Trader Joe's has a great reputation both as a store and a employer. There is a sense of comradeship when working with crews who take pride of their work. You really can build long-term friendship here. Also, benefit isn't what it used to be but it's still great!

    Cons

    No work/life balance once you became a mate. Be prepared for with lots of drama and politics - it's inevitable in a close-knitted work place. You can avoid it when you are a crew member, but you'll have to play the game once you're a mate, just to survive.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    we pay everything by cash and has no debt, and yet our benefit is decreasing and almost every store is short-staffed? This doesn't sound like the definition of integrity this company trains us for!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Crew Member

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Crew Member in Falls Church, VA (US)
    Current Employee - Crew Member in Falls Church, VA (US)

    I have been working at Trader Joe's part-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Trader Joe's has a great environment! 90% of crew members, mates, and captains are very upbeat and put in lots of effort to keep stores running smoothly. There's lots of flexibility for hours and it's not a dead-end job. If you work hard you can get raises and if you choose to, becoming a mate isn't incredibly difficult. Most people just work here for the time being and move one though.

    There's a TJ culture that some would call cult-like. I think it's nice that there's a community at my job. It's welcoming and at times over-bearing, but still nice to experience.

    Cons

    It's a very labor-intensive job. I use an app on my phone to track the distance I walk in a day. It ranges anywhere from 4-8 miles in a 8 hour shift. This includes standing at the registers and taking my lunch breaks. There's also lots of lifting involved and constant bending up and down. Everyone has to be very conscious of how they are working because injuries happen and they happen often. I come home with a sore back, shoulders, arm, legs, and feet. Some days it's worse than others.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I honestly feel bad for mates and captains who work 10 hour shifts since they only get a 30 minutes break just like everyone else. I feel like my lunches zoom by and I can't imagine how fast they go by for them. During the holidays I can barely catch my breath. I think most people would agree that even a 5 minute increase in a break would be great!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  7.  

    Crew Member (Everyone is Part-Time), unless a Mate or Captain

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Part Time Crew Member in Algonquin, IL (US)
    Current Employee - Part Time Crew Member in Algonquin, IL (US)

    I have been working at Trader Joe's part-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Working for Trader Joe's is not rocket science. If you like helping people, cooking (or eating good food), and working hard...Trader Joe's is an awesome place to work! Benefits are pretty awesome too.

    Cons

    Depending on the store, some coworkers can be a little sensitive about what they're asked to do. And the "work life balance" can be a little difficult for people needing specific time's for work. As Trader Joe's schedules according to the "needs of the customer." So if you have open availability you most likely with fit right in.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Spend more time training the people that want (and have the potential) to get promoted.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    A great company to work for if you are in college

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Part Time Crew Member in New York, NY (US)
    Current Employee - Part Time Crew Member in New York, NY (US)

    I have been working at Trader Joe's part-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Trader Joe's stores have a very friendly atmosphere where even though you are doing physically demanding job but you are still having a good time. The schedule is pretty flexible if you are work for the bigger stores. Health insurance and pension plan come after 4 months or so if you keep working 5 days a week. It's very easy to get transfer from store to store across the country if you are doing a good job.

    Cons

    It's a very physically demanding job. Crew members are required to lift up heavy boxes up to 40 pounds and break grocery pellets. It's not easy for older employees. The promotion from crew member to mate, from mate to captain is very difficult.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    After further review my experience the Trader Joe's was worth it.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Crew Member
    Current Employee - Crew Member

    I have been working at Trader Joe's part-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    The best reasons for working with Trader Joe's as a part timer were the 10% discount, health benefits, PTO/vacation, flexible hours, casual environment, ability to transfer, 401K and other employee benefits.

    Cons

    Although still stronger than a lot of companies, the corporate culture and employee benefits are not nearly as strong and competitive as they once were. Depending on the captain/full timers and the overall store, the crew member climate has a tendency to differ significantly. Although benefits change and evolve, the captain has the ability to manipulate matters and provide direction tempering negative outcomes and lasting damage.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Revisit compensation and corporate climate of Trader Joe's from 2007-2008.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    Sweet intro job.

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

    I have been working at Trader Joe's

    Pros

    Awesome coworkers and theres a lot of food.

    Cons

    Maybe just some bad customers every now and then.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Nice family of co-workers, good benefits and working conditions

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Crew Member in Columbia, MD (US)
    Former Employee - Crew Member in Columbia, MD (US)

    I worked at Trader Joe's

    Pros

    There was an upbeat positive atmosphere, where management was interested in the well-being of employees.

    Cons

    Felt easily replaceable. Work could be hectic and draining.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Make employees feel like integral parts of the team.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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