Williams-Sonoma

  www.williams-sonomainc.com
  www.williams-sonomainc.com
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Williams-Sonoma Reviews

Updated 27 September 2014
Updated 27 September 2014
619 Reviews
2.7
619 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Williams-Sonoma President, CEO and Director Laura J. Alber
Laura J. Alber
257 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Great discount for to enable everyone to spend their salary in store (in 84 reviews)

  • Best Reason to work here is the employee discount and the Sample Sales (in 54 reviews)


Cons
  • Work/life balance is often unbalanced especially during the holiday seasons (in 30 reviews)

  • Upper management never visits the stores- causing a complete disconnect from stores to corporate (in 37 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1. 3 people found this helpful  

    Asst Mgr

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

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Very Creative --interesting Culture great products. Fun people to work with generally-I have learned so much while working here. I have made a major life change since working here and am able to show my new found passion for cooking and clean eating while making a living.

    Cons

    the corporate attitude has really disintegrated the company Chuck started. I understand the need to make a profit--but why at the expense of the company's original concept.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    listen to store every associates--they are face to face with your customers every single day.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Amazing Store but...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Associate  in  Washington, DC (US)
    Former Employee - Associate in Washington, DC (US)

    I worked at Williams-Sonoma part-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Loved the environment and the people. The quality of the store products are amazing. Great company. 40% discount on all items except plug-ins which is 20% discount. Your entire paycheck and more will be spent at the store.

    Cons

    The salary is the worst. It is a very low paying job. Everyone had a second job except for the managers. Everyone is part time except managers who work 40+ hours. Associates are not allowed to work full time and the schedule changes every week. Also there is only a 10 minute break when you work less than six hours, 30 min break for more than 6.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Make the starting salary at least $10 an hour, not $8. Paychecks are the worst part of working at the store and probably the only bad thing about working for the company. Too much work and effort is expected for very long work days and only making 8 an hour. Also make 10 minute break at least 15 minutes. Nothing can be done in 10 minutes. Employees should also be able to combine their associate discount with store promotions.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    Some of the nicest people I have ever worked with !

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  San Francisco, CA (US)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA (US)

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma as a contractor for less than a year

    Pros

    Inclusive Culture, Work Life Balance, Learning and Development are not only encouraged, but ample opportunity to do so. Along with the appropriate offering of training in house.
    I really enjoyed the ALL Hands San Francisco Associates Conference held at the Historic Galileo High School - followed by a Wellness Carnival at the Maritime Museums Bocce Ball Courts this week.
    I was inspired by the leaderships presentation and speeches.It has invigorated my ability to 'dare to dream' ! It was an all round wonderful day of learning and engaging. Lunch was provided by a great selection of food trucks, followed by camaraderie and physical activity with fellow co-workers.

    Cons

    to be honest, I have not experienced any yet.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Executive Leadership Team leads the way

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Vice President  in  San Francisco, CA (US)
    Current Employee - Vice President in San Francisco, CA (US)

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    What is most important to me today is to work at a place where I feel the leadership likes to win and succeed and also focuses on giving back to the communities where we do business. This exists everyday at Williams Sonoma, Inc. Acting like an entrepreneur is alive and well here which means hard work with a real sense of meaning and purpose.

    Cons

    It's retail so you have to love being flexible and not sweating change

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    What do you need from your associates to achieve the growth goals?

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    In it for the long term

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Retail Support  in  San Francisco, CA (US)
    Current Employee - Retail Support in San Francisco, CA (US)

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

    Pros

    we have a rich culture of service to our external customers and internal associates. It's possible for any associate to make a difference. Amazing products- proud to be part of the team.

    Cons

    we sometimes need to slow down and listen to associates- ask them to actively be part of the solution.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep your vision and dream. Never forget our values-it's what has made us great.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7. 4 people found this helpful  

    Little support

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - ACM
    Current Employee - ACM

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    The company offers great benefits from insurance to retirement plans. Cross brand discounts are great at 40% off retail. Rewarding associates trough contests and recognition of tenure is a nice touch.

    Cons

    Leadership can develop great initiatives but have no concept of the working conditions at the retail level. Expecting 2 people to run a store ( FOH, BOH ) is insane. I have had the pleasure of working at more than one brand of WSI and have experienced more disconnect with this brand. Disappointed in the leadership of this company but thankful for the experience and growth.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Consider the back end of an initiative. How will it be accomplished while both challenging our teams but realistically able to be completed and supported?
    Stop creating new visual sets every 3 weeks, they can't be done at current payroll restrictions. Consider creating signage that doesn't change every new set but carries over. Stop wasting food on props and let's cross brand with props. Live branches cut and mailed to stores to use in vases, really!!!
    What a waste of money.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8.  

    Upgrade technology and ditch coupons

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Associate Store Manager  in  Atlanta, GA (US)
    Current Employee - Associate Store Manager in Atlanta, GA (US)

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    I love my co-workers and my managers.

    Cons

    Store systems are ancient. Registers, Store Wide Web system, printers and faxes are impractical and obsolete. Very frustrating. WS does not provide the proper technology/equipment that I need in order to help WS customers. Promotions are degrading the brand. Customers are treating the store like a flea market and berating me for not giving them extra discounts. They have been conditioned by WS to expect discounts and deals. Because they get so many emails, they expect flexibility on what item can be discounted. I have had three people this week ask me if WS is going out of business. I am beginning to search for a new job that provides me with the tools, payroll, and backing to support my responsibilities. Know that if you work for WS, your main job will be to work around technological obstacles. Are you willing to be frustrate day in, day out?

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Update your technology. It is becoming a major issue in the stores. Change the website, as the new look/visual is clinical instead of warm/inviting. The overall tone has become very corporate, unfriendly, greedy, and alienating high-end customers. Stop making employees accountable for people who don't want to give their email. Please realize that it does appear that the company is going out of business.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9.  

    Room For Improvement

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Temporary Assistant Buyer  in  San Francisco, CA (US)
    Former Employee - Temporary Assistant Buyer in San Francisco, CA (US)

    I worked at Williams-Sonoma as a contractor for less than a year

    Pros

    They paid well.
    Had a good discount.

    Cons

    The people who worked there treated other employees horribly unless they were friends.
    Lied when telling me the temporary position had ended.
    No good management.
    No good training programs.
    Would take time to help you.
    Snobby people.
    People were leaving left and right because of how people treated each other and the work ethics.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Change the people you have working for you.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10. 6 people found this helpful  

    Unappreciated

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Distribution Planner  in  San Francisco, CA (US)
    Former Employee - Distribution Planner in San Francisco, CA (US)

    I worked at Williams-Sonoma full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    Great discount and sample sales are really fun. Great benefits. For the most part the employees are really smart and dedicated to their business which makes it a nice place to work. I worked at WS for 8 years and was highly satisfied until 2 years ago when management shifted.

    Cons

    Career pathing is non-existent so very little room for advancement. It's nearly impossible to move up unless you're in the "in" crowd or get lucky and a manager decides to leave. Managers are not trained and, in my experience, have no people management skills thereby over-working their direct reports with no regard for work/life balance. Having to work every weekend (mandatory!) through peak as a corporate employee speaks to mis-management and disregard for work/life balance.
    HR is under-utilized and under-staffed. They seem absorbed with hiring only and lose track after the initial hire. I returned from a 6-week LOA and had zero contact from HR. When I decided to leave the company (giving 6 weeks notice) I had to contact HR the day before my last day about scheduling my exit interview.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus on training all managers. HR is uninvolved and should be engaging and meeting with all employees to have an idea of job satisfaction, etc...Providing breakfast and lunch is not a reward when asking employees to work extended hours.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 4 people found this helpful  

    Overworked, under payed and unreasonable expectations!!!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Stock Associate  in  Miami, FL (US)
    Current Employee - Stock Associate in Miami, FL (US)

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Generous employee discount. Flexible scheduling to fit you personal needs. Good open door policy.

    Cons

    Work load is extreme through out year. Even worst around the holiday season. Always cutting hours. How can anyone live on 10 to 15 hours. Wages extremely low, not competitive for industry. Most be extremely knowledgeable of product, customers want to know how things work, taste and where they are made. No training program for product knowledge. Upper management always want more but don't pay more.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop cutting hours. Be realistic with work load and give sufficient hours for task at hand. Stop categorizing people as casual and part time. Give people full time and enough hours to live a comfortable life.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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