Pros: the commute was 20 mins
Cons: no strategic leadership, senior management unavailable, catty corporate environment, no communication, fly by the seat of their pants
If you are approached to interview for this company, RUN AWAY! I have worked in IT for over 15 years and have a very strong skill set with an excellent track record. I have never been fired from a job in my life and the treatment I received at Pampered Chef was deplorable! I would love to sit with Warren Buffett and tell him how much money he is wasting – more... on this company. The culture is very woman-focused in a bad way (I’m female). It’s catty and annoying. My manager was uncomfortable with me as I would make suggestions to help improve business processes and make things run more smoothly. She hated me for that. She was also too low skilled to understand that not everyone needs to write down EVERYTHING said in a meeting. She would scribble down everything that was said, even if it was in the requirements document, and expected me to do the same. I spent HOURS writing documentation, creating business use cases, and working with the team who needed the application – I knew what was in the requirements! I would work late, stay late to be more convenient for the senior management, work until 10:30pm, and come in early at times. I was polite, worked well with my team, and VERY dedicated. I made EVERY deadline. I was fired because I “didn't take enough notes” (despite knowing exactly what was being requested)!! REALLY! I was given this pathetic excuse IN WRITING!
I’d describe the Pampered Chef experience as chaotic, disorganized, and downright hostile. Sometimes, chaos is good if there is an overall strategy and the company is focused on resolving issues - not the case here. This company needs better leadership at the CIO level and senior management needs to communicate with each other. At the time I was there, they had three huge projects going at once and no one from the project teams talked to each other. Their PMO is practically non-existent. I was hired to be a Project Manager but my official paperwork called me a Business Analyst. I am a PMP and they do not follow PMBOK at all! I was also told that they are an Agile shop. This is not true. Labeling a status meeting as a scrum meeting is not Agile.
The senior management, despite saying that they want to get things done, will accept your meeting invites and then not show up to the meeting! This happened to me 3 times in one day! They will change their requirements on you (sometimes late at night!!) and not tell you for days. And like I said, they don’t show up for meetings, respond to phone calls, or answer emails so it’s hard to know when changes are made. You have to hunt them down if you want anything. This was a daily occurrence. I took my laptop into the hallway sometimes just to catch them!! If they worked in another company, they’d be fired on the spot.
Their Oracle database is a mess and they can’t integrate old data to the website. (The Lifetime warranty is worthless if you don’t have your order number btw. And, if you bought your product off of eBay, they will not live up to their warranty.) The beta website and new portal for consultants was supposed to be rolled out at the beginning of 2012 and it still is in beta. I remember the night it “went live.” The management team worked overnight for several days. It was ridiculous! How do you rollout a site when you KNOW it isn't ready? Dare to point this fact out and you lose your job.
Besides having no strategic leadership, the other root cause of their IT issues is that the company bends over backward to keep their sales consultants, and that includes breaking rules that make writing code and designing a database impossible. One thing that really annoyed me is that they always seemed to want us to purchase their products. It’s one thing to give us a discount but quite another to be pushy about it. If you didn't buy the products, you were looked down upon. I was asked why I didn't want to have a home party or become a consultant!
Also, your employment is conditional for 3 months. During the time I was there, I saw 5 people quit. I have also noticed that the same jobs keep appearing over and over again. You can’t invest in the retirement plan until you've been there for about 6 months. I remember the medical insurance starting fairly quickly. – less